On Thursday The Center for Research on Vermont released a new book, Green Mountain Scholar: Samuel B. Hand, Dean of Vermont Historians, a collection of important scholarly writing on Vermont. The book's namesake, Samuel B. Hand (1931-2012), wrote eloquently about a wide range of Vermont subjects and served as mentor to many young colleagues and scholars during his career at the University of Vermont. The Vermont Historical Society, the UVM Department of History and the Center for Research on Vermont co-hosted an evening book launch party February 8 in UVM's Waterman Memorial Lounge to mark the occasion.
In conjunction with the book release, Governor Phil Scott has issued a proclamation declaring February 8 Legal Records Appreciation Day in honor of Hand’s role in establishing the modern legal records archival collection process and procedures. Secretary of State Jim Condos presented the proclamation at the Thursday event.
The 450-page book includes 30 separate articles on subjects ranging from U.S. Senator George Aiken’s role in ending the Vietnam War, Vermont state politics and the civil rights movement, and other aspects of the Green Mountain experience. In additional to several essays by Hand, authors include Hand's colleagues Marilyn Blackwell, Deborah Clifford, David Donath, Paul Gillies, Michael Sherman, Steve Terry, Mark Stoler, Arthur Kunin, Gregory Sanford, Jeffrey Marshall, Paul Searls, Nicholas Muller and Jeffrey Potash. The editors of Green Mountain Scholar are H. Nicholas Muller, III, who joined the UVM history faculty in 1966; Kristin Peterson-Ishaq, former coordinator for the Center for Research on Vermont; Kevin Graffagnino, director of the William L. Clements Library at the University of Michigan; and Richard Watts, current director of the Center for Research on Vermont.
As a history professor at the University of Vermont from 1961 to 1994, Hand taught hundreds of UVM undergraduate and graduate students about the state’s heritage. His leadership in state, regional and national historical organizations included terms as president of the Vermont Historical Society and president of the National Oral History Association. He was a founding member of and twice directed UVM’s Center for Research on Vermont.