About this collection

“Places & Events” is a collection of digital “historical markers” of environmentally significant places and events. Designed to be browsed on the Environment & Society Portal’s map or timeline, these brief summaries were written by doctoral candidates at the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society at LMU Munich. Places & Events represented the Portal’s first content when it launched in 2012.

As a pilot project from 2014-2015, we invited three RCC alumni fellows (at LMU Munich, Bucknell University, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison) to use Places & Events as a project in their environmental history courses. These instructors guided students (and reviewed their work) in the research and production of these born-digital micro-histories. In his essay for Ant Spider Bee, Bucknell Professor Andrew Stuhl reflects on the project:

As a piece of writing that does not exceed 200 words, it is no substitute for the nuance and depth of the historical essay or the historiographical review. And because the items are published digitally, they have requirements that at first seemed idiosyncratic to students in a history class—like copyright licenses and metadata, for instance. Like other historians teaching digitally have demonstrated, however, these constraints can be opportunities. The entries forced students to be concise, to write for a public audience, and to curate (and not just collect) examples. Surely other assignments meet these learning outcomes. Perhaps none are as engaging for non-History majors tasked with learning about global environmental history.

- Andrew Stuhl

At the end of the pilot project, Places & Events boasted more than 350 thoughtfully composed digital markers with texts, images, and links. Although the Portal now concentrates on peer-reviewed born-digital publications, Places & Events remains an inviting gateway to environmental history for students, instructors, and armchair travelers.

To browse Places & Events, click on either the map or timeline icons below, or explore the list by theme.

1996 Oakfield F5 Tornado 18/7/1996
Agricola’s De re metallica 1556
Agreement on the Conservation of the Porcupine Caribou Herd in the “1002 Area” 17/7/1987
Albert National Park in Belgian Congo 1925
Alberta Tar Sands 1967
Aleppo Earthquake 10/10/1138
Alfred Wegener’s Theory of Continental Drift 6/1/1912
Amazon rubber boom 1879
Antarctic Treaty 1959
Air Pollution and Acid Rainfall Damage the Ecosystem in Mount Mitchell 1988
"Architecture at the Crossroads" conference 1993
Arne Næss’ The Shallow and the Deep 1973
Arno River Flood 3/11/1966
Arrhenius anticipates the greenhouse effect 4/1896
"Ash Wednesday" bushfires 16/2/1983