Bringing War Home Project

Many of us are familiar with wartime souvenirs, whether we have direct experience with the battlefield or not. Some of these objects are personal, a way for veterans to preserve their experiences. Often, we treasure objects from our relatives who have participated in the wars of the 20th century; special things linger on as memorials that help our families tell the stories of how beloved fathers, grandfathers, mothers and grandmothers, cousins, and siblings contributed to the larger history of war. Through a National Endowment for the Humanities sponsored program led by two Utah State University faculty from history and anthropology, the “Bringing War Home” project invites the community--military and civilian alike--to connect with the history of war through sharing wartime objects and the personal stories that surround them.

Upcoming Events

Date Event
Mar 1, 2024 Tanner Talk - Women and America's Vietnam War Symposium, USU, Logan UT 
Apr 13, 2024 Bringing War Home Roadshow - 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Location: Dan Gyllenskog Veteran's Resource Center, 1760 North 200 East, North Logan, Utah (Directions: Entrance is on the South end of the Rocky Mountain Dermatology building)
Jun 24-28, 2024 Bennion Teachers' Workshop - Objects of War: How Material Culture Helps Us Study and Remember Mondern Conflict

Bringing War Home

UPR Logo

Resources available in partnership with UPR

Seal and logo for the National Endowment for the Humanities
Funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities Dialogues on the Experience of War Program

Student Documenting Trench Art

'Bringing War Home' Roadshows

Students and volunteers are eager to document and preserve these special items in a planned community archive to be housed with USU libraries. Such public history preserved in a digital archive will enable students, educators, and future generations to engage with these important sources of our shared past.  Working with Utah Public Radio, we also plan to record the family narratives that accompany such objectives in order to appreciate fully the long-term impact of war. Using the objects and stories collected at these roadshows, we will be working with USU Digital Initiatives to create an accessible, public digital archive and exhibition “Effects of War: Stories and Objects from Utah.”

We invite you to share your story in a recorded interview with Utah Public Radio.

The Things They Carried book cover

Book Discussion Kits

The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien

The Bringing War Home Project at Utah State University offers book club kits for Tim O'Brien's classic novella about the Vietnam War experience The Things They Carried.

Book club kits include copies of the book, discussion questions, and additional resources including links to videos, additional veterans' writing and the history of the Vietnam war.

Host your own book club or contact us to facilitate a discussion group.

woman presenting at conference

Tanner Talk Symposium - Women and America's Vietnam War

Symposium - Utah State University, Logan, Utah
Eccles Conference Center
Friday, March 1, 2024

The United States formally ended its participation in what it called the Vietnam War fifty years ago. Many are still living with the legacies of this conflict, and one of the populations deeply affected by this devastating event were the women of many backgrounds who served militarily, had loved ones go to war, tended those affected by their direct participation in the war, protested its impact, or otherwise attempted to make sense of the war’s complex experiences and legacies.

Americans live with the material artifacts of war--knitted socks produced by our grandmothers at home, postcards sent from war zones. We might have a family memento that originated in France or Laos, but no way of placing this object in context. Through our project, we aim to provide students, veterans, military family members, and the general public with an opportunity to gain access to the tools to contextualize, preserve, and analyze these objects and the stories that surround them.

Susan Grayzel, Project Co-Director

By creating the source base for future community-based discussions, we will help Utahns create a living digital archive not only of the objects of war but also the stories that convey their personal meaning.

Molly Cannon, Project Co-Director