From the Ponca City News, Sunday, September 29, 1996
Historical Association Receives National Award for History Book
By KATHY ZEHR
News Staff Writer
Eight members of the North Central Oklahoma Historical Association Inc.,
traveled to Nashville, Tenn., during the second week of September to accept the
national AASLH certificate of commendation for their two-volume book, "North Central Oklahoma:
Rooted In The Past - Growing For The Future."
The special award from the American Association for State and Local History, is
presented at an annual meeting each year to recognize hard work, determination, and
excellence in the field of state and local history in the United States. First
nominated by the Oklahoma Historical Association in early 1996, members of NCOHA
were notified in June of the award, and made plans to attend the national meeting.
AASLH celebrated its 51st anniversary of the awards program this year with the
theme "The Place of History - The History of Place." Attending from Ponca City
were Paula Denson, NCOHA president; Graydon Brown, NCOHA vice-president; Darlene
Platt, historical researcher for the book; Charles Hays and Keith Barley, board
members; and Robert Denson, Marquetta Brown, and Nancy Hays. Bart Roselli, AASLH
awards Committee chair, and master of ceremonies for the banquet said,
"None of the award winners tonight set out to follow their callings to
preserve local history with the aim of receiving an award. Their accomplishments
were gifts they awarded their communities and the profession at large. Their value
More than 400 persons from across the U.S. participated in the event. Prior to the
banquet and awards ceremony, a part of the attendees were escorted to the Museum of
Tobacco Art and History for a viewing of exhibits of art and antiques and others
visited Centennial Park, where they entered The Parthenon, a full-scale replica of
the Parthenon, which houses a 42-foot statue of Athena, the largest piece of indoor
sculpture in the western world.
After those tours, both groups toured the Belle Meade Plantation, the 1853 mansion
of the Harding and Jackson families, and were fed a typical southern dinner under a
huge outdoor tent on the grounds. Terry L. Davis, executive director and CEO for
the American Association for State and Local History, and Donna Russell, director
of Belle Meade Plantation, welcomed guests and made introductions.
A dinner performance was presented by Alan Birkemeier, winner of the National
History Day competition for Senior Individual Performance. Guest speaker for the
evening was W. Richard West, founding director of the National Museum of the
American Indian, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., a native of Oklahoma,
and member of the Southern Cheyenne tribe. During their stay, the Oklahoma
delegation visited an exhibit where they collected valuable information about
collecting and presenting oral histories. Some members of the Oklahoma delegation
also made trips to the home of Andrew Jackson; Prime Time Country at Opryland, the
Tennessee State Capitol building and Tennessee archives; and Jack Daniel's
Distillery in Lynchburg, Tenn. before returning to Ponca City.
Future plans by NCOHA members include a booth display at the Standing Bear Statue
dedication Oct. 25-26; and exhibiting and selling the two-volume sets each
Wednesday, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., Nov. 6-Dec. 18, in the Commercial Federal Bank Building. For more information, interested persons may call Paula Denson at 765-7169 or any of the other local board member.
Thanks for your visit.