What I Do: Lincoln Bramwell

Jennifer Reut, June 2013

Lincoln Bramwell, historian for the US Forest Service is our first guest on What I Do: Historians Talk about Their Work. Bramwell's career trajectory began with his volunteer work as a firefighter, which he pursued in parallel with his graduate degree, never imagining that his two interests would intersect.  Bramwell describes his daily work at the Forest Service and the surprising ways in which he was able to bring his training in history and passion for firefighting together at the Forest Service.

Bramwell explains that advocating for the role of history throughout the Forest Service is a big part of his job. The Forest Service is charged with managing public lands in national forests and grasslands, and Bramwell is help his coworkers recognize that "history is valuable, it has a direct impact on what we do." Bramwell's work ranges widely, from research and writing to education and training, and his career path demonstrates that a history education "can be richly rewarding ... and it might lead you in a different path that's not as predictable as academic history." Interview conducted on May 21, 2013.