13 Jun Getting Started!
My name is Heather Torres and I’ll be spending the summer on Staten Island working at the Gateway National Recreational Area. I am a rising senior at Cornell University studying History with minors in Anthropology and Science & Technology Studies. As a historical researcher at Gateway, I am looking for the stories behind the military bases the park is built around. I will be looking for information about the minority communities in the forts during the era of the Second World War. I am hoping to tie these stories to a bigger picture of military life for minorities at the time and turn the material into something for visitors and students to use in the future. While I have spent time in other national parks, the Gateway site is new to me. It is spread between three locations in New York and New Jersey but all are close to the surrounding communities. I am based at the Fort Wadsworth site but hope to see not only the rest of the Staten Island unit but also the units in Jamaica Bay and Sandy Hook. While my focus during my time here will be the research, I look forward to learning more about the park and the ways it interacts with the community it is embedded in.