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Monumental Mistakes Rewriting the Hand of History -- John Ashbaugh
San Luis Obispo History Center
San Luis Obispo, CA
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Monumental Mistakes Rewriting the Hand of History -- John Ashbaugh
Tuesday August 13,  2019 10 am - 12 noon

History Center of San Luis Obispo

$5 for LLCC members, $10 for non-members

Register Soon for "Monumental Mistakes" on Brown Paper Tickets

All around us, if we bother to look, are monuments that honor the important persons and events of our shared history.

They exist in cities large and small, and sometimes on the forgotten roadsides of the two-lane highways long bypassed by the Interstate. Some are very celebrated and even appear on our nations currency or the vehicle license plates of the states that host them. Yet others are obscure, poorly-maintained, even despised. What is a monument anyway? Why do we build monuments  and just who is this WE, anyway? What monuments MIGHT be built in the future? By whom and why? And  what are some examples of Monumental Mistakes  where the hand of history has left us with an offensive graffiti that is almost impossible to erase?

This course will address those questions in the context of our nations evolving politics, the bitter tribalism of racial and religious intolerance, and our on-going debate about American greatness. Most of our monuments are designed to help us remember our proudest moments as Americans, or to honor individuals who have contributed so much to our history. What happens, then, when we look back with a more educated eye, and apply a new understanding of our history that embraces the roles of minorities, immigrants, and Native Americans?

We will not ignore the monuments in our local landscape, either.  What monuments do we have now in San Luis Obispo? We do in fact have MANY monuments in this community, some of which we may not even know about! Why were they developed? Who built them, and when? Most importantly, how do we avoid making any more Monumental Mistakes?

John Ashbaugh holds a doctorate from U.C. Santa Barbara, and teaches History at Hancock College in Santa Maria. In 1984, he founded the SLO County Land Conservancy, and has served on the San Luis Obispo Planning Commission and City Council. He is currently President of the History Center of San Luis Obispo. Ashbaugh is promoting a privately-funded monument in SLO to celebrate the Central Coast environmental movement and the 1903 appearance here by Theodore Roosevelt.

If you would like to have the password for the member price for this course, go to www.lifelearnerscc.org for information on how you can become a member.


San Luis Obispo History Center (View)
696 Monterey St.
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
United States


Education > Classes

Kid Friendly: No
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!


Owner: Lifelong Learners of the Central Coast
On BPT Since: Jun 04, 2012
Jeff Green

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