20th Annual Fall Lecture Series
These events provide insights into the history of our region and are held on Thursdays during the month of October with the support of the Idaho Humanities Council. Lectures begin at 7:00 p.m. and end at 8:30 p.m. A Q&A session with the presenters follows the lectures. Light refreshments are provided. The events are held in the Johanna Room at Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude located at 465 Keuterville Road, Cottonwood, Idaho.

October 3, 2019 7:00 P.M.
Lin Tull Cannell presents “Intermediary: William Craig Among the Nez Perce”

Lin Tull Cannell will discuss her book The Intermediary: William Craig Among the Nez Perce that is now in its second printing. Her presentation will include photos and illustrations of some of the people William and Pahtissah Craig knew, as well as the country familiar to mountain men and the Nimiipuu during the settlement period of the interior northwest. Lin Tull Cannell was born in Coeur d’ Alene and raised in Lewiston. After retiring from working as a Senior Analyst in Yolo County, California, Lin and her husband, Merk, returned to Idaho and settled in Orofino. Returning to her roots jump-started a second career for Lin as a historian and author. She ultimately devoted more than 15 years researching the person for whom Craig Mountain is named.


October 10, 2019 7:00 P.M.
Cort Conley presents “Salmon River Story”

In 1943, Frederic and Sylvia Christian hired Salmon guides Clyde and Don Smith to boat them in a scow from Salmon City to Riggins. They created a 38-minute documentary of the trip called “River of No Return.” Their plan was to travel and lecture with the movie, and to this end they added footage of the Sawtooths, antelope and bears and mountain sheep, a rodeo, and some Shoshone-Bannock Indians encamped at a fair. After a screening of the film, Cort Conley will talk about how the film was found and what happened to the Christians before and after the film. Conley will open his presentation with a 10-minute film from a 1939 Middle Fork trip. Cort Conley was a river guide for more than 30 years on rivers throughout the West. He is an author and past recipient of the Esto Perpetua Award for distinguished service to Idaho history.


October 17, 2019 2:00 P.M. and 7:00 P.M. 
Lyle Wirtanen presents “Chinese in Idaho”

Nearly 300,000 Chinese, mostly men, immigrated to the U.S. after the California gold rush. Some helped construct transcontinental railroads. Most were miners or served mining communities as packers, cooks, doctors, launderers, and gardeners. Virtually every Idaho mining community had a large Chinese population, as did supply centers like Lewiston. Lyle Wirtanen will talk about the history of the Chinese in Idaho including the massacre of 34 Chinese miners in Hells Canyon. He will also show a 28-minute video produced by Oregon Public Television about the Chinese in the Northwest. Lyle was involved with education for 33 years. He served as director of the Historical Museum at St. Gertrude for 11 years (2000 to 2010) and is a past recipient of the Esto Perpetua Award for distinguished service to Idaho history.


October 24, 2019 7:00 P.M.
Keith Petersen presents “Straight Lines and Squiggles: How Idaho Got that Weird Shape”

The West is a land of rectangular states. And then we have Idaho. What happened? The story of Idaho’s borders begins with international intrigue and continues through the Civil War, when politicians who had never seen Idaho sealed its fate. It affects every Idahoan today, who live with consequences of an odd configuration. It is a story of diplomacy, politics, luck, and a congressional obsession with straight-line boundaries. Keith Petersen is the former Idaho State Historian and author of several books about Idaho and the Northwest. Along with his wife Mary Reed, since 2015 he has volunteered to assist the Historical Museum at St. Gertrude in its exhibit makeover project. He is a 2019 recipient of the Esto Perpetua Award for distinguished service to Idaho History.