Senior Capstone Students 2019
Senior Seminar Presentation 2013


The Western Oregon University History Department initiated the Senior Seminar in 1997 as a requirement for all history majors. The university provost had requested that each academic department develop a means to ascertain whether its majors had achieved the goals of its program. The history faculty quickly recognized that the research, interpretation, and writing were the goals and competencies we wished that our majors achieve. To this end, the faculty created the Senior Seminar. In this course students undertook research projects of their choice, worked closely with professors in developing the project, and then wrote journal-length articles.To help students develop their research, interpretive, and writing skills, the faculty also created a junior-level course titled, “History Research and Writing.” Furthermore, in all upper division courses faculty emphasize the above-mentioned competencies.

John L. Rector
Professor of History




All history majors at WOU engage in a capstone experience. Each student will apply the historical craft to a topic appropriate to their preparation in previous coursework in this discipline and produce, by the end of the senior year, a polished senior thesis/analytical paper that demonstrates their highest level of professional skill as graduates in this field. Each student is expected to initiate and nurture professional relationships with peers, advisors and critics as part of an academic process that will yield the student’s best work at this university in the field of history. Students will complete this process either working on a traditional senior thesis or through an internship experience coordinated through the Oregon State Archives in Salem.

Senior Capstone Papers:

Seminar papers since 2012 are posted online through the Digital Commons at Hamersly Library:


AUTHOR THESIS TITLE (and link to file)
Amanda Cirillo The Growth of Labor Relations during World War II: A Comparison of Henry Kaiser and Henry Ford
Josephine Colburn Gender and Salem Witch Trials of 1692
Greg Garcia Jr. Who put the “Cuba” in the Cuban Missile Crisis
Michael Granat Without Bread or Work In the New Millenium: Effects of Argentine Economic Policy in the Crash of 2001
Christopher Malmberg New England Order: A Discourse of the Society that Developed in the Massachusetts Bay Colony
Patrick Melby Insatiable Shipyards: The Impact of the Royal Navy on the World’s Forests, 1200 – 1850
Travis Robinson Red Cross: Results of Service
Jennifer Ross Projections of Complicity: Narratives of Rape Survivors in Wartime Bosnia 1992 – 1995
David Siewell The Riurikid Relationship with the Orthodox Christian Church in Kievan Rus
Dan Sprinkle Young Ernesto Guevara and the Myth of Che
Jessica Strawn Mount Taishan and its Pilgrims
Devan Walsh In Depth Analysis of Peter the Greats Social Reforms and the Justification of the Reactions from the General Public



AUTHOR THESIS TITLE (and link to file)
Robert Richards Colonization of Cryene: A Historiographic Perspective
Jaxon Saunders “Alexander the Great: A Lesson Taught by Roman Historians”
Andrew White “The Role of Marius’s Military Reforms in the Decline of the Roman Republic ”
Jeffrey Larson “A Fork in the Road: The Catilinarian Conspiracy’s Impact on Cicero’s Relationships with Pompey, Crassus, and Caesar”
Clara Scillian Kennedy “Caves, Water and Corn in Ancient Maya Myth”
Jennifer Newby “Jane Addams and Children: Educating the Future One Child at a Time”
Helen Chaffee “The Gaucho: Contradictions and the Construction of a National Symbol”
Jonathan Moch “Women in Nazi Propaganda”
Stephen L. Calkin “A Marriage of Convenience: the Prewar Relationship between Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia”
Emma Thomas China’s One-Child Policy: The Party’s Rationale and the People’s Response”
Melanie Pinard “Women in Oregon in the 1960s”
Sarah Goldsworthy Berry “Pancho Villa and the Lord of the Skies: Narcocorridos in the Mexican Corrido Tradition”



AUTHOR THESIS TITLE (and link to file)
Alexandra Chapman Transformation: Twilighting Forks
Austin Preller The Extinction of Bison Culture
Christopher Perkins “Descend, descend, and be damned throughout the ages.”: Pope Gregory VII and the Dictatus Papae
Hannah Marshall Voluntary Food Conservation: The United States Home Front in WWI
Heather Wright Roman Woman, Culture, and Law
James Holmes Julius Caesar’s Invasions of Britain
Jennifer Wright The Propaganda of Vespasian
Jordan Kasler “Say Uncle” Reagan Doctrine and Nicaragua
Kathryn Wagner The Political Position and Symbolism of Ancient Rome’s Vestal Virgin
Kira Noble Nationalism, Human Rights and John Paul II: The First Papal Pilgrimage to Poland, June 1979
Kristopher Schendel Stalin’s Collectivization: From an Idealistic View to a Defensive Stance, 1928-1934
Mary Katrina Shank The Meaning of the Reliefs at the Temple of Abu Simbel
Sam Dollarhide “In the Name of Almighty God” Gregory VII and the Investiture Controversy
Sammy Nordstrom Bittersweet Independence: The Influence of the United States on Cuba’s Independence
Sarah Hardy Temperance and Beyond: The Oregon Woman’s Christian Temperance Union and Progressive Reform during the First World War
Scott Hagensen Small Town Attitude
Stephanie di Bona Food and Dining in Etruscan Funerary Ritual: Foreign Influence and Cultural Exchange
Toni Rush The Role of Female Leadership within the Civil Rights Movement: Septima Clark and Fannie Lou Hamer
Zach Mintzer “Pancho Villa and the Lord of the Skies: Narcocorridos in the Mexican Corrido Tradition”



AUTHOR THESIS TITLE (and link to file)
Meagan (Poole) Button Livia Drusilla: Deciphering Between Traditional Views of Rome’s First Lady
Sarah Beisell Uranium Mining on Navajo Lands
Nolan Kinney Positivism in Poland
Anna Keaton Elizabethan Church Settlement: An Examination
Amber Ferris Bartolome de Las Casas Revisited
Joe Lovatt Sword and Spirit: Bushido in Practice from the Late Sengoku Era through the Edo Period
Ryan Brown Marius’ Military Reforms and the War Against Jugurtha
Joshua Hall Erythrean Sea Trade: The Origin of Rome’s Contact with China
Michael Myers Carl von Clausewitz’s Military Theory: An Examination
Vanessa Hancock Roanoke and Jamestown: A Comparative Analysis
Brandon Button Augustan Rome: The Transformation of the Eternal City
Holly Hartman Gender in Colonial America: Women and Witches
Bryan Smith Abraham Lincoln’s Presidential Run: How the Political Climate of the 1850s Impacted Lincoln’s Presidency
Danile Wilson The Jewish Question in the New Republic, 1919-1924
Kristin Johnson Oversimplified Men: A Striking Comparision to Society in the 21st Century
Bayard McLeod John C. Calhoun: One of America’s Most Influential and Misunderstood Politicians
Kelsey Hutchinson The “War on Coca” in Peru: An Examination of the 1980s and 1990s U.S. “Supply Side” Policies
Richard Mansker Augustan Propaganda: And Examination of the Ara Pacis Augustae
Betsy McDonald Museum and National Identity: The Case of the Parthenon Sculptures
Mary Wright Marius’ Mules: Paving the Way to Power
Phillip Myers Theocratic Centralism: The Politics of Boniface VIII in the Thirteenth Century
Jeffrey Thompson Sic Semper Tyrannis: Justification of Caesar’s Assassination
Beau Backman “Fat Man”: Modern Nuclear Thought on Tactical Weapon
Caleb Yankus Mao Zedong’s “Anarcho-Marxist” Vision Revisited
Cain Stoneking The Decline of the Tainos, 1492-1542: A Re-Vision
Jennifer Patterson “A Passionate Folly”: Alexander Hamilton’s Impact on the Election of 1800
Katherine Lankins Sir Francis Drake in the New World: 1577-1580



AUTHOR THESIS TITLE (and link to file)
Ashley Barnes Paintings in Roman Pompeii: Differences in Public and Private Areas of the Home
Jessica Bertling Woman Suffrage Movement in Oregon
Matt Bond Ivan the Terrible: Centralization in Sixteenth Century Muscovy
Rebecca Carlson Don Juan de Oñate’s Prosecution for “Crimes and Excesses” in the Provinces of New Mexico, 1614
Sarah Coelho Theoderic the Great vs . Boethius : Tensions in Italy in the Late 5 th and Early 6 th Centuries
Joshua Duder Fort de Caroline, 1562-64 & Fort Raleigh, 1585-1590: Periphery Victims of Spanish Religious Intolerance
Mark Lowry Boniface VIII and Philip IV: Conflict Between Church and State
Luke Martin TITLE
Mindy Nichols Did Ancient Romans Love Their Children?Infanticide in Ancient Rome
Jeffery Sawyer Torture and its Consequences in American History
Anthony Sutton Cuban Medicine through the 1990s
Jordan Wilde Ancient Greek Hoplites and their Origins
Josh Woods Homeland Insecurity: Truman, Hoover, and Intelligence



AUTHOR THESIS TITLE (and link to file)
Chris Breyer Culpability and Concealed Motives: An Analysis of the Parties Involved in the Diversion of the Fourth Crusade
Kevin O. Collins Expansionism and Religion: The Fatal Flaws of the Aztec Empire
Sarah Crocker Traditional Chinese Medicine and the Female Body
Nolan Doyle Rome’s Bloody Nose. The Pannonian Revolt, Teutoburg Forest and the Formation of Roman Frontiers
Lahia Marie Ellingson The Bastards of Bataan: General Douglas MacArthur’s Role in the Fall of the Philippines during World War II
Erin M. Fleener Peter the Great as a Constructive Revolutionary
Mark Haner Bob Marley’s Spiritual Rhetoric, the Spread of Jamaican Culture and Rastafarianism
Derick Handley Broadcasting a Revolution: Radio Free Europe and the Hungarian Revolution
Brian W. Jacque Piracy in a Mercantilist Society
Eli Kem The Making of Australian Federation: An Analysis of The Australasian Convention Debates, 1891, 1897-1898
Lindsay Kubin The Importance of Fashion in Early Modern England
Tyler Yung Laughlin The Controversy of Constantine’s Conversion to Christianity
Craig Lockhart The Lost Legions of Augustus
Francesca E. Morrison Paramilitaries, Propaganda, and Pipelines The NATO Attack on Kosovo and Serbia, 1999
Kelly Peterson In Grave Danger: How the United States Responds to Threats to the Nation through Foreign Policy and Propaganda
Jared Quinones Internment and the Economic Success of an Unwanted Minority Group
Austin Schulz Capitalism in the American West: The Dalles, Oregon Surviving the Boom and Bust Cycle
Brian A. Sprague The Parthenon Frieze: Viewed as the Panathenaic Festival Preceding the Battle of Marathon
Samuel Aubrey Summers Leninism: Pathway to Dictatorship?



AUTHOR THESIS TITLE (and link to file)
JP Johnson The 2nd Jewish Revolt: Cassius Dio Revisted
Matthew Jirges Akhenaten’s Religious Revolution
Robert Moore Charlemagne: A Frank Analysis of Imperialism in the 8th and 9th Centuries: An Examination of Charlemagne and The Frankish Empire
Janna Moser Westerns: Creating the American West
Andrew S. Erickson Fidel Castro and the Economic Dependence Cycle in Cuba
Justin Jacobs Mark Antony: A Revisit of the Civil War of 43-31 B.C.
Katie Gray Pope Gregory VII: A Church Reformer
Emily Holmes From Side Eddies to Main Stream: The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 Section 504 Sit-Ins
Mat Leslie Augustus Caesar and the City Plebs: How the Commoners of Rome Found Prosperity Under Augustus
Cory Minick Terrorism: A Journey of Self Recognition and Overcoming Taboo
Kevin P. Jeffries The Propaganda of Augustus Caesar: How Peace, Power and Stability was Achieved During the Age of Augustus
Jeffery Neal The Rise of Muscovy
Ron Vorderstrasse The Timber Industry and its Effects on the Pacific Northwest
Scott Seidler Unabashed Patriotism: How Thomas Mann Came to Embrace the Weimar Republic
Kristoffer R. Standish “We are the friends of the reform; but that is not reform”: The Conflicting Ideologies of Abolitionism and the Labor Movement in the Antebellum United States
Jessica Coltrin Women and Baseball?
Kimberly McKeever Women and the California Gold Rush
Travis Moore An American Response to the European Revolutions of 1848: John C. Calhoun v. Reformists and Revolutionaries



AUTHOR, THESIS TITLE (and link to file)
Ashley Bell           Neolin and Tenskwatawa: A Comparison of Two Nativist Prophets
Jeff Benson          The Olmecs: Where the Sidewalk Begins
Monica Fleener     The Significance of the Coronation of Charlemagne
Justin Gavette       The Mexican American War and Its Effects
Jenny George        Influenza Pandemic of 1918: Effects on the United States Military
Kathryn Horrocks    Where was the First Amendment? Trials Under the Espionage and Sedition Acts During World War I
Lucie Johnson       Influence of Returning Gods: Aztecs and Hawaiians
Katie Lane            Vikings in the East: Scandanavian Influence in Kievan Rus
Ronald Leslie        Hadrian’s Second Jewish Revolt: Political or Religious?
Shoshana Loos     Women and Unions During World War II
Lindsay McNeill     Romanization in Ancient Iberia: Religion and Ideology
David Meek          Return of the Judaeans
Sarah Rossos       Petticoats to Trousers: “True Womanhood” and California Gold Rush Women
Liz Saufley           Women in the German Democratic Republic: The Discrepancy Between Socialist Rhetoric and Daily Practice
Jonathan Tipton     Osama “The Terrorist”: A Shifting Silhouette
Ambera Tolbert      Merovingian and Carolingian Empires: An Analysis of Their Strengths and Weaknesses
Hiromi Uera         The 1947 Constitution of Japan: The Process of Democracy in Japanese Society
Daniel Van Winkle  An Examination of the Use of History in the Rise of Ethic Nationalism in the Former Socialist Federation of Yugoslavia



AUTHOR, THESIS TITLE (and link to file)

Paul Angove

“Pope Pius XII and the European Conflict”

James Callahan

“The Workingmen’s Party’s Role During the Great Strike of 1877 in St. Luis”

Bret Cochrun

“NAFTA: Assessing Ten Years of Failure”

Jennifer Cournoyer

“Jews and the Former Habsburg Empire: Joseph Roth, Franz Werfel, and the Concept of Nationalism in Interwar Europe (1918 – 1938)”


Jessica Ferguson

“The Navajo: A History of Continued Adaptation and Survival through the Arrival of the Uranium Mining Industry”


Toni Kelly

“She Left and America”: Hilda Satt Polacheck, Jewish Assimilation, and the Role of the Settlement House”

David Shewey

“Athenian Ambitions for the Delian League”

Katie Tipton

“Roman Iberia: Architecture in the Presence of Cultural Change”

Nicholas Tipton

“CIA Involvement in Nicaraguan Drug Running”

Clinton Trimmer

“The Salvation Army: A Case Study on how Industrialism Affected Charities”



UTHOR THESIS TITLE (and link to file)
Michael J. Anderson “Puppet Wars: The Nicaraguan Revolution in a Cold War Context”
Sam Burton “Paranoia and Popular Culture in Cold WarAmerica”
L. Benjamin Cushing “Paradigm Piracy: The EZLN and the Quest to Categorize”
Tara Dickey “Keystones in the Pacific: The Strategic Importance of Iwo Jima and Wake Island During WW II”
Leslie Erin Dooney “Radioactive Reindeer: The Effect of Chernobyl on the Saami People of Northern Europe”
Ellie Enos “U.S. Propaganda During World War II: Its Implementation, Portrayl, and Impact on Women in the Industrial and Agricultural Sector with Special Emphasis on the Oregon Farmfront”
Elizabeth Gifford “The Importance of Midwives and Healers, from Martha Ballard to Mary Peterson: An Examination of the History and Cultural Significance of Midwifery and Healing in Native, European and American Societies”
Bonnie Keady “The Good War and the Bad Peace: Conscientious Objectors in World War II”
Brian S. Kittel “The Evolution of Tactics: A Moral Look at the Decision to Target Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, Commander in Chief of Japan’s Combined Fleet”
Jesse Light “100 Percent Americans: A Hard Proven Fact”
Tim Melcher “On the Brink of Nuclear Destruction”
Erin Nickolson “The Southern Way of Life and Planter-Class Women’s Perceptions of the Civil War”
Kalah A. Paisley “Beyond Original Intent: The Reinvention of the Everson Ruling by Constitutional Historians”
McKenzie Powell “The Influence of the Central Intelligence Agency in the Formation of the Cold War; 1946-1949”
John H.T. Watkins “Truman: The Man Behind the Cold War”
Heath Wellman “Sex and Lots of Erotic Art to Prove It: The Erotic Art ofPompeii”
Kristin Williams “The Contradictory Mandate of the National Park Service:Crater LakeNational Park’s Distinctive Position”