Voice Staff - March 9, 2017
MITCHELL – Earlier this month, Jody Lamp of Mitchell and her American Doorstep Project partner Melody Dobson of Billings, Mont. announced the title of their new Nebraska book, “A History of Nebraska Agriculture: A Life Worth Living.”
The timing of the release on March 1 coincided with Nebraska’s 150th Sesquicentennial Statehood day celebrations.
“As we celebrate Nebraska’s statehood for years to come, we honor all who contributed to Nebraska’s agriculture advancement,” Lamp and Dobson said in a press release. “This Nebraska agricultural history book is not all-inclusive of farming, ranching or the significant role Nebraskans have played in the success of technological and biological advancements in the past 150 years. But it is with utmost integrity and desire that we bring attention and recognition to what we refer to as the “SPICE” (spaces, places, inventions, commodities, events) and the people of the Cornhusker State who helped us to narrow and identify the stories that were selected.”
Lamp, who grew up in Scotts Bluff County and graduated from Minatare High School, signed a multiple-book publishing agreement with The History Press in 2016 to produce a series of agriculture history books, beginning with “A History of Nebraska Agriculture: A Life Worth Living," which debuts in retail outlets, book stores, museums and similar venues throughout Nebraska in early June.
She met Dobson while she and her husband Mike and their children Mark and Jessie lived in Billings, Mont., from 1997 to early 2015. They began working together in 2012.
The Lamps moved to Mitchell in 2015, but she has continued to work closely with Dobson through the American Doorstep Project. She and Dobson will do similar books on agriculture history in Montana and North Dakota in 2018 and 2019.
Lamp has a journalism degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and when she is not busy working as an independent consultant and national project director for the books, she owns Lamp Public Relations and Marketing, LLC.
The cover art and illustrations on Lamp and Dobson’s new book was done by nationally-renowned Nebraska artist, Gene Roncka.
The book’s front cover image, Sunset on the Sandahl Home Place; was a commissioned piece Roncka painted for the Dean Sandahl family farm near Wakefield, northeast of Norfolk. The back cover image, River Bottom, tells a story of several generations that have lived and continue to live in a typical Midwestern farm house.
Both prints and other examples of Roncka’s work are featured at Willow Point Gallery/Museum at 1431 Silver Street, in Ashland, the town where Roncka and his wife, Mary, live.
“We are honored and humbled to have the opportunity to work with Gene and Mary Roncka and to feature someone of Gene’s stature in the art world in our first book,” Lamp and Dodson said. “We’ve been fans of his work since we stumbled upon the Willow Point Gallery and believe the Ronckas’ to be as much a treasure to the community of Ashland and the state of Nebraska, as Gene’s beautiful illustrations.”