Exploring the History and Legacy of Camp Mercer

Course Title: Exploring the History and Legacy of Camp Mercer

Course #19F06

Dates: October  8 -3.5 hours, October 15 _3.5 hours, October 17 -3.5 hours,

Time: Classroom instruction and field instruction 2:00 pm-5:30 pm

Class size: Limited to 14 participants.

Locations: Mercer Library and Camp Mercer CCC site

Objectives: Participant’s will:

1.) explore both written and digital historic sources regarding the Civilian Conservation Corps and 

   Camp Mercer.

2.) engage in field work analyzing historic sites (as participants are comfortable).

3.) collaboratively suggest stewardship plan and products that will overview of the historic  

   importance of both the CCC and Camp Mercer

4.) consult with Cynthia Stiles Archeologist who recorded Camp Mercer as a cultural site with the

   State of Wisconsin

 Course Structure:

 The course will be given in 3 session and each session is 3.5 hours, covering the following topics:

 Session 1 will be conducted in a classroom setting at Mercer Library and in the field at Camp Mercer. After introductions, specific goals for the course will be agreed upon.  Overview presentation by the instructor. Assign and handout readings for next week. Prepare for walking trip at Camp Mercer by reviewing our areas of focus on Google maps, along with the historic maps/images identifying the key areas of the camp. Drive to Camp Mercer and walk the entire site giving an overview of the entire property respecting laws and embracing best stewardship practices. Walking will be easy to moderate with some uneven ground and possible brush or trees.  Total distance about 1 mile. 2:00 PM to 5:30 PM

 Session 2 will be conducted in a classroom setting at Mercer Library and Camp Mercer. Discussion and analysis of the Camp Mercer readings and images. Ranking documents regarding importance for our project.  Begin to create a timeline regarding the Camp Mercer. Prepare for our field experience to review the eastern portion of the site. Guest speaker, Cindi Stiles will present and answer questions regarding archaeology and CCC camps. Travel to Camp Mercer and explore the eastern portion of the site with Jim Bokern and Cindi Stiles. Walking will be easy to moderate with some uneven ground and possible brush or trees.  Total distance about 1/2 mile. 2:00 PM to 5:30 PM

 Session 3 will be conducted in a classroom setting at Mercer Library and Camp Mercer. Discussion and analysis of the Camp Mercer readings and images. Review a PowerPoint presentation on the western portion of Camp Mercer. The group will participate in a poster board and post-it note workshop directing future advocacy and stewardship of the site.  Travel to Camp Mercer and exploring the western half of the site. Walking will be easy to moderate with some uneven ground and possible brush or trees. Total distance about 1 mile. 2:00 PM to 5:30 PM

 Requirements: Participants will NOT have to purchase any books or materials for this course.  Reading will be provided digitally and/or in paper copies. Bringing a laptop computer or other digital device is recommend, but not required.  Nor does a participant need to be proficient in computer and/or internet use. Though the instructor will use the internet and digital media often to teach the class. Home work will consist of reading documents, viewing maps, and creating questions    

 Physical requirements are described under the Course Structure above. Participants are NOT required to participate in field activities, but may instead do part of the field work OR choose to work on course readings at the Mercer Library to advance the goals of the course.

 Participants will be informed of state and federal laws protecting cultural sites and all must follow these laws when in the field. The mission of the course is to protect, preserve, and learn best stewardship practices regarding cultural sites like Camp Mercer.

 Instructor: Jim Bokern began teaching History at Oconto High School in 1981, and in 1986 he took the initiative to pursue a Master’s Degree in History at the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point. His thesis, History and the Primary Canoe Routes of the Six Bands of Chippewa from the Lac Du Flambeau District expanded Bokern’s interests in Native American culture. Bokern moved to a large high school in Marshfield, Wisconsin 1988, teaching AP US History, AP US Government, AP Comparative Government, team teaching with AP English Language and leading the AP program at Marshfield High School.  Bokern’s educational leadership includes past President of Wisconsin Association for Talented and Gifted, past Chairperson of the Wisconsin Advanced Placement Advisory Council, endorsed consultant for the College Board’s Advanced Placement Program, and textbook editor and contributor for numerous publishing companies. Bokern also has lead two archeological surveys on the Manitowish Waters Chain of Lakes, co-developed the Digital Time Traveler Program at the North Lakeland Discovery Center, worked as project historian on two grants with the Lac Du Flambeau Historic Preservation Office, documented the historically significant 6 Pause Portage in Iron County, leads as president of the Manitowish Waters Historical Society, and continues active historic research in the region.

 Permission: The FE University course, Exploring the History and Legacy of Camp Mercer has the support of John Broihahn Wisconsin State Archaeologist, Richard Kubicek Historic Preservation Officer for the Wisconsin DNR, and Craig Dalton NHAL Forest specialist. Lac Du Flambeau Historic Preservation Office archaeologist Cynthia Stiles will serve as a guest speaker and consultant for the course.

Fee: $45 with $5 discount if registration is received by Sept. 24.