In June, the winner of the Empire State Writing Competition, Kelli L. Huggins, presented research used in her paper – Flocks of Kittens and Litters of Chicks: Interspecies Adoption in New York, 1880-1920 – at the New York State Archives Conference in Plattsburgh, NY. In her presentation, Ms. Huggins drew a link between expressions and anxiety about human adoption and what some 19th century citizens were observing in animals. Moreover, Ms. Huggins talked about how the “morality” of animals illustrated kindness and care in their human counterparts.
In addition to the one thousand dollar prize, Ms. Huggins was presented a certificate from the director of the Northern New York Library Network, John Hammond. Ms. Huggins winning entry was judged for depth and quality of scholarship, originality of topic and treatment, and use of digital services as research resources.
Kelli Huggins works as the Education Coordinator at the Chemung County Historical Society in Elmira, NY since 2013. She earned a Master’s Degree in History and a Museum Studies Certificate from the University of Delaware. Ms. Huggins also researches and writes on the history of human-animal interactions and agricultural history and has a special fondness for quirky topics in cultural history.
The Empire State Writing Competition was established to encourage original research and publication around cultural, social, and political topics of New York history utilizing the digital collections developed by the Empire State Library Network: NYS Historic Newspapers and New York Heritage Digital Collections, as well as by use of New York’s many other scholarly resources.
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