2024 Presenters

Molly Boeka Cannon (Lead Scholar)

Molly Boeka Cannon is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Utah State University. She serves as Executive Director and Curator for the Museum of Anthropology, communicating research through public programming and exhibition in the museum to USU and Cache Valley communities. Her research examines the role of material culture for understanding past communities and experiences. She is Co-Director of the NEH-funded Bringing War Home Project (2021-23) and is currently the Director of the Mountain West Center for Regional Studies at USU.

Molly Boeka Cannon

Susan R. Grayzel (Lead Scholar)

Susan R. Grayzel is Professor of History at Utah State University, teaching classes in modern European history, gender and women's history, the history of total war, and war and culture. Her books include Women’s Identities at War: Gender, Motherhood, and Politics in Britain and France during the First World War (UNC Press, 1999); awarded the British Council Prize from the North American Conference on British Studies in 2000; Women and the First World War (Longman Seminar Series 2002, second edition forthcoming 2024); At Home and Under Fire: Air Raids and Culture in Britain from the Great War to the Blitz (Cambridge, 2012); The First World War: A Brief History with Documents (Bedford St Martins, 2012, Second Edition, 2021); and the co-edited volume Gender and the Great War (Oxford, 2017). Her latest book, The Age of the Gas Mask: How British Civilians Faced the Terrors of Total War, an exploration of how one material object—the civilian gas mask—reveals how the state and individuals responded to the first weapons of mass destruction, was published in autumn 2022 by Cambridge University Press. She is Co-Director of the NEH-funded Bringing War Home Project (2021-23)

Susan Grayzel

Zara Anishanslin (Keynote Presenter)

Zara Anishanslin is a scholar who specializes in doing history through material culture—the “historian with a thing for things.”

She’s a professor who’s equally passionate about spreading historical knowledge inside the classroom and being a public historian. You can find her talking history on podcasts like Ben Franklin’s World and TV shows like the Travel Channel’s Mysteries at the Museum. She writes about how the past is relevant to the present for the “Made by History” series at The Washington Post—like the real history of the famous phrase, “a republic, if you can keep it.” She’s often a historical and material culture consultant for exhibitions, like the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s recent redo of its early American galleries, and (most impressive to her children) Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton: The Exhibition.

From 2023-25, she’s a Postdoctoral Fellow at the David Center for the American Revolution at the American Philosophical Society, working on her new book, Under the King’s Nose: Ex-Pat Patriots in the American Revolution (The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, forthcoming in 2025). If you haven’t seen it yet, check out her first book—Portrait of a Woman in Silk: Hidden Histories of the British Atlantic World (Yale University Press, 2016), available in paperback. Andsoon you can find her talking about lots of stuff (literally!) on her new history podcast “Thing4Things.” To meet the rest of the team, hear more about Season 1: “The Stuff of Revolution,” and get notified when it premieres, visit wwww.thing4thingspodcast.com!

Zara Anishanslin

Nichelle Frank 

Nichelle Frank is an Assistant Professor of U.S. History at Utah State University Eastern, studying the effects of the U.S. environmental and historic preservation movements on cultural landscapes in intermountain mining towns from the nineteenth century to the present. Her courses include survey U.S. history courses, women in U.S. history, and public history. In the classroom, she incorporates historic documents, artifacts, music, images, films, maps, and other highly visual elements as she encourages students to pursue topics of their own interest. This classroom experience delves into the intersections of environmental, architectural, women's, race, and transcultural histories in the realms of public history and historic preservation. Dr. Frank also works with organizations such as the National Council on Public History, HistoriCorps, the Public Lands History Center, and university of Colorado's Center for the American West to bring a historical perspective to current affairs.

Nichelle Frank

Clayton Brown 

Clayton Brown is an Associate Professor of History, specializing in Chinese national and ethnic identity formation as informed by anthropology and archaeology. As an undergraduate, Dr. Brown spent a year at Peking University, and as a graduate student he was a Fulbright Fellow at the Academia Sinica. After receiving his doctorate, he held a postdoctoral fellowship at the Smithsonian Institution. His work has appeared in both Chinese and English in OrientationsGujin LunhengShuchengEducation About Asia, and the edited volume Knowledge Acts in Modern China with Berkeley’s Institute of East Asian Studies. His current book project chronicles Sino-American collaboration in archaeology and cultural heritage management. 

Clayton Brown

Dustin Crawford 

Dustin Crawford is a Lecturer at Utah State University and the Assistant Director of the USU Writing Program. Since coming to USU in 2003, Dustin has taught composition and the breadth-depth literature courses for the Department of English. Currently most of his work focuses on composition pedagogy and rhetoric.

Dustin Crawford