Greenhills, Ohio, was designated a National Historic Landmark in the summer of 2017, and celebrated its 80th anniversary in the spring of 2018. To commemorate these important events and celebrate the early history of the Village, the Greenhills Historical Society partnered with the University of Cincinnati’s history department. UC’s spring 2018 Public History Practicum course, taught by Dr. Tracy Teslow and doctoral student Anne Delano Steinert, created the New Deal Neighbors oral history project.
Seven UC students each interviewed three of Greenhills’ earliest residents about growing up in the Village. From these interviews, students developed research essays based on a topic of their choice.
Working together with community elders was rewarding for the students. They experienced hands-on learning, made inter-generational connections, and gained a deeper understanding of growing up during the New Deal and WWII eras. Through their interviews, students explored similarities and differences of youth and childhood across time. Their conversations with current and former Greenhills residents prompted them to think about what is shared, what is not, what can we learn from that.
Nate is a graduate student interested in United States history and historic preservation. He received a bachelor’s degree in history from American University in Washington, DC, in 2012 then returned to UC for certificates in historic preservation and heritage studies. He is working on his Master’s degree in public history, planning to graduate in the winter of 2018.
Robbie is a first year MA student studying public history and will be graduating in the spring of 2019. He was born in Cincinnati and was raised in Northern Kentucky. He is planning on continuing his research into the history of Greenhills for his Master’s paper.
Casey Huegel is a PhD student specializing in American environmental history and a museum technician at Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park. In his free time, he enjoys parks, museums, and college basketball.
Rebekah is an undergraduate student majoring in archaeology and minoring in history. She is originally from Medina, Ohio. She will be graduating in May of 2018 and will be continuing to do work similar to this project as she continues toward a Masters in public history.
Fuwei is a first year MA student from China. Though his area of study is the history of minorities and modern Chinese, working on this project has also furthered his academic progress. Interviewing Greenhills residents in person allowed him to explore Greenhills from many perspectives, and gave him an unprecedented hands-on historical experience.
Kevin is a history MA student specializing in public history. He is local to Southeastern Ohio and has been connected to Greater Cincinnati since his undergraduate years. He plans to continue studying oral history for his Master’s paper. In the summer of 2018 Kevin will be marrying his fiancee Sara.
Maria will be graduating in April of 2018 with an MA in history. Her primary research has been on the advertising industry of the late German Empire, so this project was an exciting trek outside of her area of expertise. She expects to return to her native Louisville in the summer with her black cat, Eve, and looks forward to figuring out what the future holds.
This project was funded through grants from the W.E. Smith Family Charitable Fund
and the Greenhills Historical Society Tilford Computer Fund