This fall and winter the Latah County Historical Society is exploring the historic roots of contemporary global issues with a five-part series of public presentations. The “How It’s Going, How It Started” lecture series helps attendees understand how stories featured on the nightly news are more complex and enduring than they may seem. There is also a focus on the ways that historical context plays an essential role in finding solutions to our most pressing issues.

The series continues with part four on Thursday, February 17th with Washington State University Professor of History Dr. Jesse Spohnholz presenting “Refugee Crises and the Origins of America: A New History.” Spohnholz’s talk will consider how refugees were critical to the creation of America, but not only in the ways that people usually think. The very idea of America is embedded with ideas about European conquest of the lands of the Western Hemisphere, which sparked American and indigenous refugees across the Americas. By focusing on the hardships of the Puritans, Spohnholz shows, we miss far more significant stories of refugee crises in the origins of America.

All of the “How It’s Going, How It Started” events will be held at the Kenworthy Performing Arts Centre at 508 S. Main Street in Moscow. Doors will open at 6:30 for the 7:00pm program. The Kenworthy concession stand will be open for refreshments. Each program will also be available for live viewing online. Details about connecting virtually will be made available at

“How It’s Going, How It Started” is supported with funds from the Idaho Humanities Council. The final program is scheduled for Tuesday, March 22nd.