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Scholars for Water/Ways Exhibit


Craig Colten is a professor of geography at LSU and the author of “Southern Waters: The Limits to Abundance.” He will discuss the common dilemmas that arise among upstream and downstream communities along rivers.  Different views about how to deal with pollution, fish, water supplies, and flooding give rise to divergent approaches to managing waterways.  An audience discussion will follow.


Florence Crowder is a resident of Denham Springs, LA.  She is a retired teacher and local historian.  She is also an expert on camellias and has traveled extensively sharing her knowledge on the subject.  She and her husband, Charles, are also the owners of Crowder’s Antiques at the Old Hotel in the Historic District of our city. She served as the project director for the Smithsonian exhibit “Journey Stories” when it visited our city in 2011.


Jules Lambert is a life-long resident of Livingston Parish.  He was born in French Settlement, reared in Denham Springs and lived in Watson for the last forty-five years.  He graduated from LSU in chemical engineering and worked/retired from Ethyl/Abermarle Corporation.  After retiring, Jules began working with Keith Felder of Denham Springs building traditional south Louisiana wooden boats.  That included pirogues, skiffs, bateaus and dugouts.  They learned designs and techniques from old time boat builders across south Louisiana.  These boat builders had never written plans.  They built the boats by hand and eye, using instructions from previous generations.  Jules and Keith primarily work with sinker cypress recovered from Lake Maurepas.  Sinker cypress is old growth cypress that was lost one hundred years plus years ago during the logging in the area.


Dietmar Rietschier is an engineer, originally from Germany and is currently the executor director of the Amite River Basin Commission.    Before taking this position, Deitmar worked for the city of Denham Springs.


Brenda Kabel Cason moved to Denham Springs as a child in 1969.  She received a BS and MSW degree from LSU.  She has studied geneaology for 45 years as a hobby and became interested in the history of Denham Springs through her dad, the late Lionel Kabel, Sr.  Her father always researched the history of whatever the subjects of his paintings were and shared it with Brenda.  She loved the stories he told.  When Mr. Kabel wrote his book on Benton’s Ferry, a civil war battle fought on the Amite River, Brenda did the proofing for him.   Brenda still regards Denham Springs as her hometown, even though she and her husband John now live in Houston, Texas.  She is a retired social worker and she and John have three adult children and seven grandchildren.


Adin Putnam arrived in south Louisiana in January, 1990, as an active duty Marine Corps officer.  After leaving active service and pursuing any number of alternative careers, he rediscovered his love for photography.  In 2011, he began a part time photography business, and in 2013, officially launched Puttknob Photography, LLP.  In 2014, he began his full time career as a professional photographer.  Originally raised in Oklahoma, Adin attended college at The Citadel at the Military College of South Carolina and graduated in 1980, with a degree in history.  At this time, he received his Marine Corps commission.  He and his family have lived in Denham Springs, Louisiana since the summer of 1999.


Clark Forrest is a life-long resident of Livingston Parish, with an interest in its history since childhood.  In 1976, he served as chairperson for the parish’s American Bicentennial Committee, which was converted into the Edward Livingston Historical Association.  He is a charter member and first president.  He is currently serving again as its president.  Forrest did his Master’s theses at LSU, entitled “The Changing Funeral Customs in Livingston Parish.  His doctorate, also from LSU, is entitled “The History of the Louisiana Extension Service.”


General Russel Honore, Ret. U.S. Army is a retired Lieutenant General. A native of Louisiana, he is best known as the commander of the Joint Task Force Katrina, responsible for coordinating military relief efforts for areas affected by the hurricane across the Gulf Coast, although his career included many assignments.  General Honore, is a popular author and speaker.


Jessica H. Schexnayder is a Louisiana native passionate about documenting the people, history, and culture of south Louisiana.  Her writing and photography have been featured by the Louisiana State Archives.  Louisiana Cultural Vistas, Country Roads, Heart of Louisiana, and Inside New Orleans.


Mary H. Manhein is author of The Bone Lady: Life as a Forensic Anthropologist; Trail of Bones: More Cases from the Files of a Forensic Anthropologist; Bone Remains: Cold Cases in Forensic Anthropology; and the mystery novel, Floating Souls: The Canal Murders.  She is the retired director of the Forensic Anthropology and Computer Enhancement Services (FACES) Laboratory at Louisiana State University.

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