All Things Grinnell
Destruction and Rebirth: The Cyclone of 1882

Destruction and Rebirth: The Cyclone of 1882

October 31, 2019
You know the name of the College yearbook, but do you know the story of where it came from? On this episode, we dive into the archives with Allison Haack to explore the impact of the 1882 cyclone that tore through town, leaving 39 people dead and dozens of homes destroyed. J.B. Grinnell led the recovery effort and the town and College came back stronger than before. The buildings that rose up in the immediate aftermath of the cyclone are now gone, but the legacy of this important turning point in the College’s history remains. We also talk with Chris Jones, the College archivist, about what he's learned about the College from the basement of Burling Library.
 
Edith Renfrow Smith ‘37

Edith Renfrow Smith ‘37

October 17, 2019

Edith Renfrow Smith '37, the first African American woman to graduate from the College, shares her memories of growing up in Grinnell, her family's history of slavery, and her incredible life.

Smith received an honorary degree at the 2019 Commencement ceremony. After graduating from Grinnell with a major in psychology and minors in history and economics, Smith then moved to Chicago, where she has lived since, working as a stenographer and public school teacher. Smith is now 105 years old and is part of a Northwestern University study of "superagers." In the episode, Smith discusses the importance of education in her family as they went from slavery to college graduates in two generations, and reflects on lessons learned from her long life.

Empower People: Grinnell Prize Winner Shafiq Khan

Empower People: Grinnell Prize Winner Shafiq Khan

October 3, 2019

On this special episode of All Things Grinnell, we talk with Shafiq Khan, the winner of the 2019 Grinnell College Innovator for Social Justice Prize. Khan is the founder and CEO of EMPOWER PEOPLE, an organization in northern India that works to eradicate bride trafficking and empower and liberate the women and girls who are victimized.