By Delaney Conner
Welcome to Appalachian Aspects, the Robert C. Byrd Center for Congressional History and Education’s first student-developed podcast. I conceptualized, researched, and produced the podcast as part of my public history internship at the Byrd Center this summer. I hope that this initial episode, which focuses on the development and construction of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Conservation Training Center (NCTC) during the 1990s, will be the first of a limited series of podcasts that explore West Virginia’s deep and varied history, primarily since the beginning of the 20th century.
Writing about one of West Virginia’s hidden gems has been very rewarding, and I’ve gathered a better understanding of the impact that federal appropriations and federal agencies have had in West Virginia. My initial interest in the NCTC was sparked in the spring of 2017 when my ‘Introduction to Historical Preservation’ class helped preserve a cemetery located on the campus. I later worked briefly as an intern and volunteer at the facility, and I quickly grew attached to the buildings’ construction and the surrounding campus grounds. The integration of environmental-conservation history into the décor made it even more appealing to me, an aspiring historian. I hope you enjoy the podcast, and I look forward to creating more content in the future.