Reviewing Secondary Sources

September 27th, 2007

The secondary source I reviewed  was a biography of the founder of Heifer Project.

Yoder, Glee. Passing on the Gift: The Story of Dan West. Elgin, IL: Brethren Press, 1978.

1. Provide some information about the author.

            Glee Yoder was involved with the early stages of the Heifer Program and claims that her life was ever changed from meeting and working with Dan West. Her husband, Gordon also approved of the Heifer Project. Dan West had been their church camp councilor when they were teenagers. Later in life he visited the Yoders often on trips. They have a great passion for the program and for the man who began it all.

2. Why did the author write this book? What’s the author’s perspective?

            Yoder believes that his account of Dan West’s life is both a history and a heritage, Which “celebrates a heritage to be received, enjoyed, and passed on.” She wishes to pass on the ideas of Dan West and give readers a grasp of how important faith, peace, pacifism, and dreaming were to Dan West and also the foundation of his program. Yoder was involved in the Program so obviously her own personal feelings were similar to those of Dan West.

3. What is the author’s methodology? What sources does the author use? What is the book’s thesis?

            The book is written mostly chronologically, but in a few cases topically due to Dan West’s complicated life. Yoder also provides calendars of events to help keep dates straight for the reader. The sources used were;

Dan West’s own personal booklets and pamphlets – The Coming Brotherhood, 1938. Brethren Community Service, 1943. Thinking Together, 1948. Peace Education in Homes, 1956. and Peace Education in Churches, 1957.

A Historical Survey entitled Brethren Social Policy from 1908- 1958 published in 1961.

Kermit Eby’s book The God in You, 1954.

Interviews with the West Family themselves as well as many other individuals who knew Dan along his journey.

Personal recollections of her work with the program.

4. When was the book written?

This book was written in 1978 only a few years after Dan West passed away.

5. How will you use the source for your paper?

            I will consider Dan West’s ideology and life as a glimpse into the Heifer Project’s founding principles. As a pacifist, a Christian, and an avid volunteer, Dan West founded Heifer Project to start a revolutionary program providing more practical foreign aid.

            I also hope to find more people, acts, and events to research in relation to the UNRRA and the Heifer Project, as well as Foreign Philanthropy on the whole.

6. What are some of the problems that you foresee in using this source for your paper?

            There is obviously a fair amount of bias involved in this telling of Dan West’s story. Yoder is a friend of the West’s and an avid supporter so her opinions are not that of the average Jane who might review someone else’s life.

            This book focuses only on Dan West’s life. That might serve as blinders to the other parts of my topic I hope to find information on.


Note taking or chicken scratch?

September 25th, 2007

I have to admit my way of note taking is just write down everything that could be relevant and maybe the page its on, leaving a post-it there to remind me to go back later. I hadn’t even realized how sub par my notes really are until I read this part of TUR. A template would be much more helpful and easy to use while writing. I guess the reason I haven’t developed an effective way of note taking yet is that my notes have always been from lecture, not from sources. For lectures I write down EVERYTHING i can and then review and organize by date/importance later. I guess that is a bit different than reading from specific sources, which you will eventually have to go back to again to get quotes or more detail. It would be even better if as we read our sources for this project we can take notes on everything we need and already choose quotes and things to paraphrase to help us. Unfortunately with the evolution of thesis’s and focus still going on [at least for me personally] it is hard to get all the information you will use on the first read. This is where good citation of information comes in so you don’t have to scramble and re-read TONS of pages to find the one thing that is relevant all over again. So – hopefully I can change my ways and be more systematic. If nothing else i will at least think a little bit more of agreeing with a source and disagreeing, because I hadn’t thought about the helpfulness of disagreeing or the problem with agreeing completely with one.


Tips from L

September 23rd, 2007

So being the completely computer savvy lady that I am, I thought heck yeah! Let’s help some people out by telling my tricks of the trade…. These may or may not be things that help or are particularly not well known…. but since i am not sure ill just share what I have.

1. bookmarks of the best things can be put into your toolbar – I have blackboard, webmail, our blog sites, facebook and google as little toolbar buttons that save me a lot of time. Its easy to do – click bookmarks or CONTROL D and chose bookmark toolbar as opposed to the scroll down list of bookmarked pages.

2. I use CONTROL F a lot – its the easiest way to find specific things in a long page of information. Just type in the key word youre looking for and it will find it for you.

3. The last thing I want to share is another toolbar function. I have a new tab icon in my toolbar. If I want more than one webpage open it is easy to just click on new tab instead of reopening firefox or right clicking to get the same thing done. It saves time and is one of the options in the toolbar setup that is helpful and everyone should use.

Hope someone learned something – These are all things that I find helpful.


Good and Bad Websites for my topic

September 18th, 2007

Good Website – www.Heifer.org

– gives brief history, mission and current happenings

Bad Website – http://www.zentralstelle-kdv.de/euro06.htm

-not just because this  website details more about european COs rather than American ones of WWII, but also the evidence to back up their information is not given, the site has no author listed, and it seems sloppy in its composition.


primary source evaluation

September 16th, 2007
  1. When was the source composed? – April 1946
  2. Who composed the source? – Heifer Project Committee, New Windsor Maryland.
  3. What do we know about the author? – The Committee was in charge of advertising and spreading the word about Heifer Project.
  4. Under what conditions was the source composed? – This was the pamphlet distributed at the Dedication Service for Heifers which took place on Roger Roop’s Farm in New Windsor, MD. on April 6, 1946, 3pm. It listed the days events and gave a brief history and low down about frequently asked questions.
  5. Was the source constructed based on legal or other formulae? – i dont know exactly what this question refers to in regards to my source – It is a source of propaganda of sorts of the HP.
  6. Was it written at the time of the event? After the event? Years later? – This source was written at the time the HP began, which is valuable because it describes the projects goals as they were in the beginning and lists important names like Dan West, Roger Roop, etc.
  7. Does the source allude to other works? Events? Spanish Civil War, World War II. People? Dan West, Roger Roop, The Westminster Church of the Brethren. Ideas? The War Emergency Act, ideas behind aiding world hunger. Are you familiar with them? Yes I have researched all of these ideas.
  8. How might the author’s perspective on the event or issue differ from that of other authors? The Heifer Committee will obviously have a clear idea of exactly what the ideas of Heifer Project is wanting to portray. There won’t be any negative protrayal of the program from this source, but it will establish a clear message of what is next with the Heifer Project.
  9. How will you use the source to prove your argument? It gives background information about the program but also identifies how unique a solution they have come up with to solve such a complex problem overseas. It also addresses a desire to aid countries at war currently – and how they plan to do so in the near future because “hungry women and children everywhere should be fed.” Also the quote “Let us reclaim some of the damage that was done by war” takes some responsibility and proposes a solution. “Christians of America can save Europe” also empowers Americans to take a role in the lives of others not in their country, and at the same time introduces the agenda that the HP began with – hard core Christianity.
  10. What are some of the limitations of this source? It is a very short source and does not address the UNRRA at all besides crediting it for the photos attached. It is also a pamphlet straight from the source – there is no negative light or other opinions included, just straight facts.
  11. Knowing those limitations, what other sources may be necessary to complete your paper? Obviously I need much more information on the logistics of UNRRA and more first hand accounts. I will compile more newspaper articles, research the development of philanthropy over seas, and more background information about the UNNRA and how it effected this situation. I hope to find a general account of the goals of the UNRRA and how it evolved and helped HP get up and running internationally.

Monday’s class

September 12th, 2007

I am not the most computer savvy in all the land. I thought it was helpful to know which sites to go to and how to use them effectively. Having Mr. Bales there was really nice for support. I need to visit him individually it seems. I think that any time a group of 15 people are trying to do things on computers at the same time and do about the same thing it is tricky to keep everyone on the same page. I feel like the pace wasn’t too fast that we were leaving folks behind, [no not even i got too terribly lost] and I enjoyed getting to take a swing at someone else’s topic instead of my own illusive one for a while. That said, I think I found some interesting sites for my partner – and she found a few things for me. If nothing else this exercise helped me feel less worthless in the searching for resources department because no one else found much on my topic either. ) so long as it isn’t just me… right?


Preliminary bibliography of books/websites/databases consulted etc.

September 9th, 2007

I have only consulted Professor Moon thus far and plan to speak with at least one other this week before the proposal is due.

So far I have found the following sources:

Livestock for a small earth: the role of animals in a just and sustainable world – Jerry Aaker and James Devries

The gift: a world solution to hunger and poverty – Matt Bradley and Susan Bradley

From Relief to Development: the evolving mission of Heifer Project International, Inc.

This service of love: an introduction to the early years of the Heifer Project, with emphasis on the contribution of Benjamin G. Bushong – Bushong, M. Rebecca

Pragmatic Prophet: The life of Michael Robert Zigler – Donald F. Durnbaugh [Review: untitled – Paul R. Dekar]

Passing on the Gift: The Story of Dan West – Glee Yoder

Heifer.org –> history

Interview with Olive Roop

Diary of Roger Roop about his role in the Heifer Program

Possible search terms:

Carol County Times/Hanover Evening Sun

“Heifers for Relief”

Dan West – founder

Ben Bushong

UNRA UN Rehabilitation Agency

New Winser Center

Bretheren Church, Union Bridge MD -pastor Samuel Harley

CPS – Civilian Public Service

York PN Fair Grounds

John Metzler and M.R. Zigler

volunteer agriculture 1944-1949

Heifer Project/Program/International/Incorporated

And hopefully much more to come…


My Topic

September 6th, 2007

The topic I decided to write about for our research project this year is the Heifer Project. The Heifer Project is a volunteer organization that collects and sends cattle to families in need over seas. It started during and after WWII.

This is a very personal topic for me. My Great Grandparents were immensely involved  – their farm was a holding ground for the cattle and my Great Grandfather Roger worked with the Heifer Project cattle for 4 years, instead of his usual farmer duties. My Great Grandmother Olive is still alive and is a wonderful story teller, she has records of these years, her own personal stories, a newscast interview of her and Roger, and a dictation of Rogers that she typed for him before he died and countless other ties to the program to share.

Bigger idea questions and narrowing it all down will probably be the hard part for me. I am thinking of looking at this as a case study to how average Americans at home felt about the bloodshed abroad. I also wanted to take a look at the broad picture of volunteer efforts by Americans to help Germans, even in this time of obvious distaste for each others countries. If anyone has any ideas I am open to any suggestions.


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