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‘South Dakota History’ features Hawaiian annexation, ranching memoir and physical therapy pioneer

A maverick South Dakota senator, a family of ranch entrepreneurs and a medical pioneer take center stage in the Spring 2017 issue of “South Dakota History,” the quarterly journal of the South Dakota State Historical Society.

Michael J. Mullin looks at the reasons behind opposition to the annexation of Hawaii in “‘I am ready to stake my reputation on my record’: Senator Richard F. Pettigrew’s Failed Crusade to Prevent Hawaiian Annexation, 1893–1898.” Mullin, a professor of history at Augustana University in Sioux Falls, examines the economic issues, Pettigrew’s own fact-finding mission to Hawaii and his increasing conviction that he had to oppose his own Republican Party on the issue, even at the risk of losing his Senate seat.

“Boyhood Days on the Glenheim Ranche: The Memoir of Maurice C. Haas,” edited and introduced by William D. Haas, is a firsthand account of how a family of farm and ranch entrepreneurs near Whitewood, S.D., embraced change in order to succeed between 1900 and 1930. Writing in the 1960s, Maurice Haas recalled his family as being among the first in the area to adopt innovations such as Siberian alfalfa, pedigreed livestock, irrigation and mechanized equipment. They also took time for adventure, exploring western South Dakota in their Model T. Editor William D. Haas is a retired engineer and a fourth-generation resident of Lawrence County.

This issue also examines how Veblen, S.D., native Nora Staael Evert, a 1929 graduate of what is now Northern State University in Aberdeen, landed in a medical career after first launching out into physical education and dance. David J. Grettler’s “Activity for Body and Mind: The Career of Nora Staael Evert, Physical Therapy Pioneer” examines how Evert’s involvement in the World War II effort to care for wounded soldiers led naturally to providing therapy for polio patients. Grettler teaches early American history at Northern State University.

“South Dakota History” is a benefit of membership in the South Dakota State Historical Society. For information on membership, call (605) 773-6000. To purchase individual issues, call (605) 773-6009.

About the South Dakota State Historical Society
The South Dakota State Historical Society is a division of the Department of Education. The State Historical Society, an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, is headquartered at the South Dakota Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre. The center houses the society’s world-class museum, the archives, and the historic preservation, publishing and administrative/development offices. Call (605) 773-3458 or visit for more information. The society also has an archaeology office in Rapid City; call (605) 394-1936 for more information.

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