The Ohio State University at Marion


Symposium looks at WWI and Harding’s return to normalcy

July 6, 2017

MARION, OHIO – The Ohio State University at Marion in collaboration with the Harding Home Presidential Site, the Ohio History Connection, Marion Technical College, the Marion Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the Marion Public Library, welcome presidential enthusiasts and historians from across the country to the 2017 Warren G. Harding Symposium, “The Great War: How America Came of Age,” July 14-16.

The United States played a crucial role in the outcome of World War I. One hundred years ago, in 1917, the U.S. entered into World War I, largely due to mounting German atrocities, the sinking of the Lusitania, and the need to protect our own economic interests. Dr. Michael Kazin of Georgetown University, Dr. David Steigerwald of The Ohio State University, Harding researcher and author Sherry Hall, and Dr. Andrew Huebner of the University of Alabama will each bring valuable insights into events leading up to our entry into the conflict, the domestic impact, and the “return to normalcy” following the “war to end all wars.”

This year’s symposium schedule of events includes tours of the Harding Home on Friday, July 14th, noon to 4 p.m. followed by an opening reception in the ballroom of Marion Country Club from 6 to 8 p.m. The opening reception will feature a display of unique World War I artifacts on loan from the Ohio History Connection.

On Saturday, July 15th, the day kicks off with tours of the Harding home at 9 a.m., followed by the official Presidential Wreath Laying Ceremony at the Harding Memorial at 10:30 a.m.

Workshop sessions will be held In the Marion Campus Health Technologies Building beginning at 1 p.m. on Saturday. Session one features Dr. Michael Kazin, Professor of History at Georgetown University. Dr. Kazin will present, “War Against War: the American Fight for Peace.” Session two is titled “Impact on the Home Front” with Dr. David Steigerwald. Dr. Steigerwald is a Professor of History at The Ohio State University. “The Real Return to Normalcy” is workshop session three, featuring Marion’s own Harding historian Sherry Hall of the Harding Home & Memorial.

Professor of History at the University of Alabama, Dr. Andrew Huebner will provide the keynote address at a special dinner on Saturday at 6 p.m. in Maynard Hall’s Guthery Community Room on the campus. Huber specializes in United States history and military and naval history. His research interests are focused on 20th century Social and Political History and War and American Culture. His current project (in manuscript) is titled, Love and Death in the Great War. Dr. Huebner’s keynote remarks will focus on how World War I dramatically changed the culture of our country.

New to the symposium in 2017, attendees will have the option to attend the annual Friends of the Harding Home Day event, Sunday, June 16th, at 11:30 a.m. in Maynard Hall’s Guthery Community Room. Following a brunch buffet and meeting, Harding researcher Jon Andersen will present a program titled, “Camping with Warren, Tom, Henry and Harvey.” Andersen will explore the famous camping trip in Maryland which included President Warren G. Harding, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford and Harvey Firestone and answer the question – “What really went on that weekend?”

For detailed registration information, speaker biographies, and the full weekend schedule, visit go.osu.edu/harding or call The Ohio State University at Marion Office of Community Relations & Development at 740-725-6340.


The Warren G. Harding Symposium is an academic, social, and cultural exploration of the life and times of America's 29th president. The Symposium presents in-depth analysis and research by authors, historians, researchers and experts on the Harding Era and related areas of interest.