Equine History Collective
Annual Meeting Report
December 2, 2018
W.K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Center, Kellogg Room
Katrin Boniface, President
Janice Gunther Martin, Secretary
Kathryn Renton, Treasurer
Meeting called to order at 9:13 am.
President’s Welcome and Report:
Katrin Boniface presented and explained the goals and vision of the Equine History Collective: to make horses legible to other historians, bring people together to share research both in person and through our website and other social media, and to provide a point of contact for interdisciplinary collaboration. She noted that the EHC would not be possible without the scholarship and collaboration that have gone before. She then presented membership statistics: as of the meeting, the organization had over 90 members, with 16 countries represented, and many disciplines. The Facebook group, open to anyone who works in equine history, had 84 members. There is an active Twitter account, with 609 followers, used for research sharing, calls for papers, and as the EHC’s main way to reach people who are not equine history researchers. The Instagram account has 88 followers, and she welcomed volunteers to take over running the Instagram account. There are 144 subscribers to the website, greater than the number of members. The main features of the website are Member Mondays (profiling members), Source Saturdays, and Shelfie Sundays for book reviews. She welcomed submissions for any of these features to the website. The website also posts calls for papers, reviews exhibits and archives, and lists members. The conference resulted in a sharp increase in visits to the website in the month of November.
She added that we would like to sponsor talks and lecture series. As part of a W.K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Library lecture series aimed at undergraduates, she will be giving a talk based on their collections in the spring. Talks like these support the public-facing mission of the EHC.
Kathryn Renton presented on accomplishments of the Equine History Collective in the past year, funding sources, and needs going forward. She welcomed suggestions and ideas about organizations to whom the EHC should reach out. Kathryn had initially visited the W.K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Center, met its director, Jéanne Brooks, and considered having the conference in its Kellogg Room. Then the conference grew too big. The University Library at CalPoly Pomona provided space and logistical support, with special help from Katie Richardson in Special Collections– home of the W.K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Library, which we toured on Saturday. The Don B. Huntley College of Agriculture & W.K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Center supported the conference, and arranged the tour of the Horse Center following this meeting. The EHC also received grant funding from the Western History Association and research institutes at UCLA with which Kathryn had been affiliated. Equine-related corporate sponsors provided in-kind donations for the silent auction, like the SmartPak gift cards. The EHC has put together applications for large grants, and has been in contact with the American Historical Association and Agricultural History Association about building relationships, and we are open to other suggestions. Janice Gunther Martin organized the book table, and received a great response from publishers. The EHC set an ambitious fundraising goal in order to pay for travel costs for all speakers, and though we did not meet this goal, we were able to provide free registration. We have some money left over to cover travel costs for applicants, and will send out reimbursement paperwork. We started selling t-shirts in an inventory-free system, which we would like to promote. We opened a bank account at a credit union once we incorporated.
She reported that in the future we would like to fund an annual conference, run an open-access journal, sponsor panels at other conferences, and assist equine history research through research stipends. We are hoping to get industry or corporate sponsors for panels or side events, and suggestions are welcome for potential organizations. We would also like to update the WordPress account with additional capabilities, and use professional management systems to organize e-mail and social media.
In terms of capacity, she explained that right now the EHC is run by three people. We need to clarify membership structure going forward, which will have financial implications, and are interested in feedback about the types of items and features that people would be interested in paying for. We would also like to write staff compensation into large grant proposals. Feedback on any of these ideas is welcome.
Janice Gunther Martin provided background on the beginning of the organization. Kathryn, Kat, and Janice met over e-mail in May of 2016. After meeting other equine historians at Leeds, Kat created a website listing people interested in equine history and resources. We began discussing the idea of having a conference even back in May of 2016. Though the three of us had discussed other potential venues for the conference, Kat and Kathryn visited Cal Poly October 20, 2017 and the three decided to hold the conference there. Kat built the blog, we sent out the CFP, and had our first face-to-face meeting over Google Hangouts in January of 2018 to discuss the bylaws. The three met together in person for the first time March 16, 2018, and at this meeting Kat was officially voted the CEO, Kathryn the CFO, and Janice the secretary. The EHC gained official 501(c)(3) status in September, allowing us to open the bank account.
Going forward, Janice noted that we would like a more professional logo and seal. She said that the EHC would welcome suggestions of graphic designers, or a volunteer with graphic design experience. She also said that we will need legal counsel going forward. Though the bylaws have been approved, the organization has grown enough so that we need outside assistance, especially for taxes and finances, and for the possibility of international events in the future.
Questions and Discussion
The floor was opened for general discussion. Full minutes will be e-mailed to members in the new year. Topics included:
- Dates and locations of future conferences. The W.K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Library will once again host the 2019 conference, tentatively the week of November 11.
- Potential ways to expand partnerships with academics, the equine industry, and the general public.
- An EHC-sponsored panel for Living with Horses was proposed. It was since been submitted, and accepted.
- Nominations for President, Treasurer, and Secretary to serve 2020–2022 were opened. Nominations will close and a vote will be taken at Equine History 2019.
Meeting adjourned at 10:48 am.
Monica Rose Reilly Counihan
Amber Roberts Graham
Tobi Lopez Taylor