Southern Plains Conference

UPDATE: View the proceedings from the 2020 Conference here.

You can also request a free physical copy of the proceedings (although donations are appreciated to help us continue offering such resources). Email requests and your mailing address to 


2020 Southern Plains Conference 

“Representing, Modeling, and Imagining Water on the Southern Plains” 

Brought to you by West Texas A&M University’s (WTAMU) Center for the Study of the American West (CSAW) and the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum (PPHM). 

Feb. 20-22, Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum, Canyon, TX  

The Center for the Study of the American West (CSAW) presented its second biennial Southern Plains Conference, “Representing, Modeling, and Imagining Water on the Southern Plains,” February 20-22, at the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum. The conference theme, which changes every two years, brings attention to how experts, including scientists, measure and understand the Ogallala Aquifer, and then how they help the general public see and understand it in turn.

Confirmed speakers included Merri Lisa Trigilio, geoscientist and filmmaker of Written on Water; Julene Bair, author of The Ogallala Road; and Kenna Lang Archer, environmental historian and co-author of Ogallala: Water for a Dry Land. West Texas A&M University faculty presenting at the conference included environmental engineer Nathan Howell, agricultural scientist Lal Almas, and environmental historian Byron Pearson. The program also included professionals and practitioners from the region.

Sponsors for the conference include WTAMU’s School of Engineering and Paul Engler College of Agriculture and Natural Sciences, the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum, the Texas Panhandle Audubon Society, and the Dixon Water Foundation.

View the press release here


SPC Proceedings Cover

2018 Southern Plains Conference

February 22-23, 2018--Shaping a Sense of Place

In February, CSAW partnered with nonprofit and leadership organization Ogallala Commons to bring back the Southern Plains Conference. The two-day conference, held at the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum in Canyon, Texas, invited speakers who considered the theme of "Shaping a Sense of Place on the Southern Plains" from various disciplinary and professional perspectives. 
CSAW would like to thank the Tecovas Foundation for their generous support of this event.