EMMA K. SPENCER PHOTOGRAPHY
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When Emma Spencer realized that many American Vietnam veterans have seldom had the opportunity to tell their stories due to public disdain towards the war, she decided to give veterans a platform to share, and civilians a way to understand the truths of this war. She was inspired by the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War and her own grandfather, Naval Officer Scott Wilson, Sr.. While attending Amherst College, Spencer was awarded the Davis Foundation's Projects for Peace Grant to execute her project, Vietnam War Veterans: Then and Now, on a national scale. In 2022, Spencer began her Senior Honors Thesis, So, What's a Nice Girl Like You Doing in a Place Like This? Working with Diane Carlson Evans, founder of the Vietnam Women's Memorial in Washington, D.C., Spencer created one of the first ever Women Vietnam Veterans' archives. Spencer was awarded Amherst College's Engaged Research Grant and Alpha Delta Phi Grant, enabling her to travel throughout the United States to interview and photograph these women. The culmination of this work is presented in Spencer's Senior Thesis Exhibition, So, What's a Nice Girl Like You Doing in a Place Like This?, in which she was awarded Summa Cum Laude from Amherst College's Art and History of Art Department. All oral histories on this website are archived in the Library of Congress's Veteran's History Project. Organizations that formally support the project include Vietnam Veterans of America, Associates of Vietnam Veterans of America, Vietnam Veterans Against the War, The United States Vietnam War Commemoration, and The Witness to War Foundation. Spencer hopes to continue this project for many years. If you are a Vietnam veteran and would like to share your story, please click here. To see more of Spencer's work, click here.