I’m sure most of us history nerds read about the SPARK movement aided by Google’s Field Trip App. I think this is a great practice where professional and amateur historians can add women to the historical landscape. I would not call this a “herstory” movement, but rather an opportunity to gender our American landscape. Obviously there is a real deficit of women in our historical landscape, and this needs to be remedied.
The best thing about this app? The creators are making shared authority happen on a widespread scale! Now people do not have to wait for clearance and approval of a state committee to mark a site of significance in women’s history. The application process for a historical highway marker is not easy, and often overlooks women (and men) of local, not state, significance. This app has the opportunity to democratize history making for the people.
To those who contribute to the app, please consider how women are as normal of a part of history as men. Yes, women do extraordinary things and we should memorialize their actions. However, women make history just as other genders on an everyday basis. Institutions, like these college campuses featured in the video, regularly silence women’s everyday roles. Therefore, the action of marking women is currently extraordinary. When we have a balanced gender representation in our historical sites perhaps the public will realize how women’s history (amongst other minority groups) is as common as white men’s history.