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APSU contributes to development of Wings of Liberty Museum

April 29, 2003

Austin Peay officials and faculty are working to raise funds to create a Chair of Military History position. The position would be associated with the Wings of Liberty Museum, projected to open in 2007 just off Fort Campbell Blvd.

The official title of the endowed faculty position could be The Wings of Liberty Chair of Military History, provided sufficient funds are raised with the assistance of the museum. Its inception would launch a military history graduate program that ultimately would be taught at the museum.
April 29, 2003

Austin Peay officials and faculty are working to raise funds to create a Chair of Military History position. The position would be associated with the Wings of Liberty Museum, projected to open in 2007 just off Fort Campbell Blvd.

The official title of the endowed faculty position could be The Wings of Liberty Chair of Military History, provided sufficient funds are raised with the assistance of the museum. Its inception would launch a military history graduate program that ultimately would be taught at the museum.

Dr. Dewey Browder, chair and professor of history as well as a member of the board of directors for the Fort Campbell Historical Foundation and museum, said funds are being solicited from the National Endowment of Humanities and APSU alumni as well as other grant sources. “The opportunity is there for anyone who wishes to contribute,” explained Browder.

“There is a perfect connection between Austin Peay and the museum. Austin Peay is a liberal arts university with a strong history faculty, and the museum will be an expanded institution dedicated to the preservation of military history. Museums capture and preserve history and universities teach it. It is a marriage made in heaven. The creation of this new Chair of Military History will tie it all together, but it is all contingent upon funds,” said Browder.

If funding is secured and the program approved by the Tennessee Board of Regents, Browder is confident the new graduate program could be up and running by Fall 2004.

“We would start out teaching at the University and then move into the museum once it is completed,” said Browder. It is expected that many of the graduate students would be from Fort Campbell, as the study of military history is both a pastime and a career-enhancing pursuit for professional military personnel. Military history at the undergraduate level would continue to be taught at the University.

In addition, for the past three years, Dr. Gregory Zieren, associate professor of history, has compiled an oral history archive filled with interviews with veterans associated with the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) and other units at Fort Campbell. He will continue to teach oral history and add to the archives.

The archive will be available at the museum to historians as well as the general public.

“We intend to have a deep and substantial connection between the Wings of Liberty Museum and Austin Peay,” said Browder. “It should be long term and mutually beneficial.”