Department of History > Faculty & Staff > Pamela Riney-Kehrberg

Pamela Riney-Kehrberg



653 Ross Hall
Dept. of History
Iowa State University
Ames, IA 50011-1202
Phone: (515) 294-1451


1991     Doctor of Philosophy, History, University of Wisconsin – Madison.

1986     Master of Arts, History, University of Wisconsin – Madison.

1985     Bachelor of Arts, History, The Colorado College.

Current Research

“Routledge History of Rural America.”  Edited volume under contract.

“Unlikely Survivors:  Long-Term Sustainability in Iowa’s Very Small Towns.”  Under development.


The Nature of Childhood:  An Environmental History of Growing Up in America since 1865.  Lawrence:  University Press of Kansas, 2014.

Always Plenty to Do:  Growing Up on a Farm in the Long Ago.  Lubbock:  Texas Tech University Press, 2011.

Childhood on the Farm: Work, Play and Coming of Age in the Midwest.  Lawrence:  University Press of Kansas, 2005.  Second printing, cloth bound, 2006.  Awarded Certificate of Recognition for contributions to Iowa History from the State Historical Society of Iowa.

Editor.  Waiting on the Bounty: The Dust Bowl Diary of Mary Knackstedt Dyck.  Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 1999.  Second printing, paper, 2005.

Rooted in Dust:  Surviving Drought and Depression in Southwestern Kansas.  Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 1994.  Second printing, paper, 1997.  Third printing, paper, 2005.

Recent Articles and Chapters

“Historians’ Reaction to the Documentary The Dust Bowl:   Some Thoughts about Social History and Ken Burns’ The Dust Bowl.”  Agricultural History 88, 2 (Spring 2014): 263-269.

Presidential Address.  “Persistence, Change, and Thinking Big about Small Places:
Some Thoughts about the Practical Applications of Rural and Agricultural History.”  Agricultural History 88, 1 (Winter 2014):  3-17.

Interview.  “Agricultural History talks to Pamela Riney-Kehrberg.”  Agricultural History 88, 1 (Winter 2014):  18-21.

“Childhood in the Rural Midwest since 1945.”  In J.L. Anderson, editor, The Rural Midwest Since 1945.  DeKalb:  Northern Illinois University Press, 2014:  183-203.

“Farm Youth and Progressive Agricultural Reform: Dexter D. Mayne and the Farm Boy Cavaliers of America.” Agricultural History, 85, 4 (Fall 2011):  437-459.

Invited essay.  “Some Reflections on Graduate Mentoring.”  Agricultural History, 85, 2 (Spring 2011): 195-203.

Invited essay.  “Wholesome, Home Baked Goodness:  Kansas, the Wheat State.” Kansas History 33 (Spring 2011):  60-69.

“Environment.” In Ray Hiner and Joseph Hawes, editors.  A Cultural History of Childhood and Family, vol. 6, In the Modern Age. Oxford:  Berg, 2010):  77-98.

“Building Historical Imagination with Three Potatoes, a Carrot and an Onion.” Teaching History, 35, 1 (Spring 2010): 12-22.

“Her Story and History:  Journeys with Laura Ingalls Wilder.” In  Roberta Seelinger Trites and Betsy Hearne, editors.  A Narrative Compass: Stories that Guide Women’s Lives.  Urbana:  University of Illinois Press, 2009, 96-101.

“Foundations of the People’s College.”  In Dorothy Schwieder and Gretchen Van Houten, editors, Tradition and Transformation:  A Sesquicentennial History of Iowa State University (Ames: Iowa State University Press, 2007), 11-32.

Courses Taught

Undergraduate:  U.S. History, 1865-Present; U.S. in the Twentieth Century, 1900-1945; Agricultural History of the United States; History of Rural America; History of the American Family;  The Family in History; The American West; America Eats; The Great Depression.

Graduate: Women in Rural Life; Women’s History and Feminist Theory; American Rural Life; American Agriculture; U.S. in the 20th Century; Midwestern Rural Societies.

Selected Consulting

Humanities Advisory Group. World Food Prize Foundation, Des Moines, Iowa.  Appointed Summer 2011.

Historical consultant.  NEH production grant, and featured historian.  “The Dust Bowl Film,” a Ken Burns Film, written by Dayton Duncan, under development with  Florentine Films.  Release date:  Fall 2012.

Historical consultant.  “Harvesting the High Plains,” an Inspirit Creative Production, Jay Kriss, director.

Historical consultant.  “Main Streets of Linn County.”  Carl & Mary Koehler History Center, Cedar Rapids, Iowa.  Humanities Iowa Grant, 2011.

Content advisor.  “Listening to the Prairie:  Farming in Nature’s Image,” National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution.  Opened November 2000.

Historical advisor.  “Surviving the Dust Bowl,” a documentary film prepared by Steward-Gazit Productions for PBS, The American Experience.  Initial broadcast date, March 3, 1998.

Significant Service, Professional Organizations

Vice President/President Elect, Agricultural History Society, 2011-2012.

Member, Executive Committee, Agricultural History Society, 2007-2010.

Member, Journal Sites Committee, Agricultural History Society, 2009-2010.

Chair, Local Arrangements Committee, Agricultural History Society Annual Meeting, 2007.

Member, Program Committee, Agricultural History Society Annual Meeting, 2007.

Chair, Publications Committee, Rural Women’s Studies Association, 2003-2006.

Member, Nominating Committee, Agricultural History Society, 2003-2006, Chair, 2006.

Member, Program Committee, Western History Association Annual Meeting, 2005.