Introducing Jill Seapker

Jill Seapker

Hi – my name is Jill Seapker and I am a new student worker in the Hawaiʻi Congressional Papers Collection at UH Mānoa. I am in my first year in the MLIS program, and after twenty years of teaching, working in a calm, quiet place feels pretty magical. My undergraduate degree from Antioch College is in History, Philosophy, and Religion, so it feels like I am getting back to my roots here. I am new to archiving, and I am new to Hawaiʻi, so I feel very lucky to have this opportunity to learn about the history of Hawaiʻi and archival processes by working with Senator Daniel K. Inouye’s papers

I am working on correcting Optical Character Recognition (OCR) in Inouye’s speeches, so I wanted to learn more about his life. I started by looking at the Daniel K. Inouye Institute website. I was surprised to learn that he gave the speech at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago in 1968. Those were tumultuous times, and I was curious about his development of that speech, so I started by looking at the finding aid.  I went to the Collection Organization on the right hand side of the page, and under speeches I clicked the year 1968. I was able to access the PDFs of his original speeches stored in Box SP2 Folder 4 through eVols. 

In the box Speeches and messages: 1968 (1 of 2), I learned that Inouye gave many speeches in Hawaiʻi before his keynote speech at the DNC in Chicago in 1968. In these speeches, he confronts the problems of racism, high housing costs, gun control, and the war in Vietnam. I was impressed at the detailed research he did on both the causes and solutions to these problems, as well as his courage to speak the truth.  

My favorite quote said by Inouye in this box is “The great tragedy of man is his inability to conquer hate and violence and to replace these traits with love and understanding.” This quote stood out to me because violence and hate normally just breed more of the same. If people would care to find out why people think and feel the way they do and care for other people, I think they would find that it is easier and leads to more positive results, both for themselves and others.

Last page of speech by Senator Daniel K. Inouye, testimonial dinner, Hilo, Hawaiʻi, August 8, 1968

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