EDUCATION

New academic journal aims to stoke interest in history of Midwest and Plains

  • FILE - In this file photo from March 7, 2014, historians and members of the Midwest History Working Group from left to right, John Miller, Mike Allen, Jon Lauck, Kurt Leichtle and Catherine Cocks  attend a meeting in Omaha, Neb., Friday, March 7, 2014. One of the ideas they came up with was to publish an online journal on a shoestring budget. But the University of Nebraska Press expressed interest in publishing a printed journal, and the group jumped at the chance. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

    FILE - In this file photo from March 7, 2014, historians and members of the Midwest History Working Group from left to right, John Miller, Mike Allen, Jon Lauck, Kurt Leichtle and Catherine Cocks attend a meeting in Omaha, Neb., Friday, March 7, 2014. One of the ideas they came up with was to publish an online journal on a shoestring budget. But the University of Nebraska Press expressed interest in publishing a printed journal, and the group jumped at the chance. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this file photo from March 7, 2014, Jon Lauck attends a meeting of historians and members of the Midwest History Working Group in Omaha, Neb., Friday, March 7, 2014. One of the ideas that came up in the meeting was to publish an online journal on a shoestring budget. But the University of Nebraska Press expressed interest in publishing a printed journal, and the group jumped at the chance. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

    In this file photo from March 7, 2014, Jon Lauck attends a meeting of historians and members of the Midwest History Working Group in Omaha, Neb., Friday, March 7, 2014. One of the ideas that came up in the meeting was to publish an online journal on a shoestring budget. But the University of Nebraska Press expressed interest in publishing a printed journal, and the group jumped at the chance. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this photo from Sept. 17, 2014, which was provided by Rachel Bohlmann, Director of Continuing Education at the Newberry Library, Jon Lauck, chairman of the Midwest History Working Group poses in Chicago with a copy of the Middle West Review. (AP Photo/The Newberry Library, Rachel Bohlmann)

    In this photo from Sept. 17, 2014, which was provided by Rachel Bohlmann, Director of Continuing Education at the Newberry Library, Jon Lauck, chairman of the Midwest History Working Group poses in Chicago with a copy of the Middle West Review. (AP Photo/The Newberry Library, Rachel Bohlmann)  (The Associated Press)

When a group of historians gathered last spring in Omaha to discuss the revival of teaching Middle America's history, among their plans had been to start an online Midwest history journal.

Instead, this week they saw the University of Nebraska Press send out the inaugural print editions of the Middle West Review, an academic journal devoted to the history of the Midwest and Plains.

The 180-page issue features eight peer-reviewed articles, 18 book reviews and an interview with a 94-year-old former University of Wisconsin-Madison history professor it deemed "the last prairie historian."

University of Iowa graduate student Paul Mokrzycki, the journal's editor-in-chief, says it will help preserve the region's history and provide a place for historians to publish their work, helping them get college tenure, grant funding and book deals.