Calendar of Events

Exhibition

Letters and Photographs from the Battle Country

Massachusetts Women in WWI. 12 June 2014 to 24 January 2015

Details

August

MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 3 August 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the ...

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

details
Teacher Workshop, Public Programbegins Battle Road: Crisis, Choices, and Consequences 5 August 2013.Monday, 9:00AM - 5:00PM This workshop includes sessions in Boston, Concord, and Lexington Using historical documents, landscapes, buildings and artifacts as investigative tools, participants ...

Using historical documents, landscapes, buildings and artifacts as investigative tools, participants will examine the concerns, conflicts, dilemmas, decisions, and dramatic confrontations of people along the road to revolution. Presented by the Massachusetts Historical Society and partnering organizations, the workshop takes place in locations throughout Boston, Lexington, Lincoln and Concord. An outstanding group of historians, educators, and site interpreters will work with the group over the course of the four day workshop.

This workshop is open to teachers and the general public, and is funded in part by a grant from the Massachusetts Society of the Cincinnati. Educators can earn PDPs and 2 graduate credits (for an additional fee) through Framingham State University.

Registration

$125 ($100 for teachers and MHS fellows/members)

Workshop fee includes:

  • Four-day program (daytime, plus one Thursday evening) with additional half day for educators
  • Admission to all partnering sites
  • Packet of reading materials
  • Welcome breakfast on Monday at the Massachusetts Historical Society, lunches on Tuesday (Concord Museum), Wednesday (Lexington Historical Society) and Thursday (Old Manse), and a final evening with living history characters, colonial entertainment, and dessert in Minute Man National Park

To register, complete this registration form and send the form with your payment to:

Kathleen Barker
Massachusetts Historical Society
1154 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02215
education@masshist.org

Complete directions for public transportation options, parking, and special lodging rates in Concord will be sent to all registrants. Questions? Call workshop directors Jayne Gordon (617) 646-0519 or Kathleen Barker (617) 646-0557.

Workshop Schedule

MONDAY, August 5: in Boston
Morning:

  • Welcome breakfast at the Massachusetts Historical Society Introductions of participants, partners, places, and theme
  • The Curious Newspaper Collections of Harbottle Dorr 
  • Documenting the Coming of the American Revolution

Afternoon:

  • Lunch on your own in Boston
  • Background walking tour with Historian Bill Fowler (from the Common to the North End)

TUESDAY, August 6: in Concord
Morning:

  • The Characters and the Community with Historian Bob Gross/ Part 1 (Concord Museum)
  • “Reading” the artifacts in the “Why Concord?” gallery (Concord Museum)

Afternoon:

  • Lunch at the Concord Museum
  • The Characters and the Community with Bob Gross/ Part 2 (Concord Museum)
  • “Reading” the Landscape: the world and worries of the Concord farmer with historian Brian Donahue (Minute Man National Park, Battle Road Farm fields)

WEDNESDAY, August 7: in Lexington
Morning:

  • Paul Revere Capture Site and The Road to Revolution film (Minute Man National Park)
  • Who Shot First 1? Depositions and other accounts with NPS Education Coordinator Jim Hollister (Lexington Green)

Afternoon:

  • Lunch at Munroe Tavern (Lexington Historical Society)
  • The experience of the British soldier (at Munroe Tavern)

THURSDAY, August 8: in Concord and Lincoln

Morning:

  • Using primary source documents to (re)construct lost lives with Historian Mary Fuhrer (Major John Buttrick House, Minute Man National Park)
  • Who Shot First 2? Depositions and other accounts with Jim Hollister (North Bridge)

Afternoon:

  • Lunch and tour of Old Manse: William Emerson, Ralph Waldo Emerson and the Legacy of Revolution
  • Research/Writing workshop: “People at a Crossroads” with Mary Fuhrer and Educator Joanne Myers (on the grounds of the Old Manse)
  •  Break for supper on your own in Concord

Evening:

  • Special living history program “Battle Road Heroes” (Hartwell Tavern historic area, Minute Man National Park)
  • Dessert and colonial entertainment in the Hartwell Barn

FRIDAY, August 9: in Boston

  • Optional morning for educators to work on lesson plans with teacher-facilitator Duncan Wood (MHS)
details
Brown Bag Private Lives and Public Spaces: John Banister and Colonial Consumers 7 August 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Marian Desrosiers, Salve Regina University Tourists stream into shops and restaurants on Banister's Wharf in Newport, purchasing products from ...

Tourists stream into shops and restaurants on Banister's Wharf in Newport, purchasing products from Rhode Island and around the globe. When merchant John Banister (1707-1767) owned this wharf in the 1740s, he imported luxury apparel, tools, household items, and foods from many places. For nearly thirty years Banister's ships traded goods from and to other American colonies, the West Indies, and Europe. The Banister account books provide a focus on this golden era of trade. Lists of commodities provide information about the lives of consumers and producers in the public marketplace. The transactions reveal a merchant's family expenses and income. Banister's careful delineation of profit, loss, commissions, taxes, and ownership shares provides insight into his roles as merchant, retailer, ship owner, broker, and as a trade and industry leader of Newport. These details of mid-eighteenth-century Rhode Island reveal how Banister, as an adventurous capitalist, influenced the economy of pre-Revolutionary America.

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Teacher Workshop, Public Programends Battle Road: Crisis, Choices, and Consequences 8 August 2013.Thursday, 9:00AM - 5:00PM This workshop includes sessions in Boston, Concord, and Lexington Using historical documents, landscapes, buildings and artifacts as investigative tools, participants ...

Using historical documents, landscapes, buildings and artifacts as investigative tools, participants will examine the concerns, conflicts, dilemmas, decisions, and dramatic confrontations of people along the road to revolution. Presented by the Massachusetts Historical Society and partnering organizations, the workshop takes place in locations throughout Boston, Lexington, Lincoln and Concord. An outstanding group of historians, educators, and site interpreters will work with the group over the course of the four day workshop.

This workshop is open to teachers and the general public, and is funded in part by a grant from the Massachusetts Society of the Cincinnati. Educators can earn PDPs and 2 graduate credits (for an additional fee) through Framingham State University.

Registration

$125 ($100 for teachers and MHS fellows/members)

Workshop fee includes:

  • Four-day program (daytime, plus one Thursday evening) with additional half day for educators
  • Admission to all partnering sites
  • Packet of reading materials
  • Welcome breakfast on Monday at the Massachusetts Historical Society, lunches on Tuesday (Concord Museum), Wednesday (Lexington Historical Society) and Thursday (Old Manse), and a final evening with living history characters, colonial entertainment, and dessert in Minute Man National Park

To register, complete this registration form and send the form with your payment to:

Kathleen Barker
Massachusetts Historical Society
1154 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02215
education@masshist.org

Complete directions for public transportation options, parking, and special lodging rates in Concord will be sent to all registrants. Questions? Call workshop directors Jayne Gordon (617) 646-0519 or Kathleen Barker (617) 646-0557.

Workshop Schedule

MONDAY, August 5: in Boston
Morning:

  • Welcome breakfast at the Massachusetts Historical Society Introductions of participants, partners, places, and theme
  • The Curious Newspaper Collections of Harbottle Dorr 
  • Documenting the Coming of the American Revolution

Afternoon:

  • Lunch on your own in Boston
  • Background walking tour with Historian Bill Fowler (from the Common to the North End)

TUESDAY, August 6: in Concord
Morning:

  • The Characters and the Community with Historian Bob Gross/ Part 1 (Concord Museum)
  • “Reading” the artifacts in the “Why Concord?” gallery (Concord Museum)

Afternoon:

  • Lunch at the Concord Museum
  • The Characters and the Community with Bob Gross/ Part 2 (Concord Museum)
  • “Reading” the Landscape: the world and worries of the Concord farmer with historian Brian Donahue (Minute Man National Park, Battle Road Farm fields)

WEDNESDAY, August 7: in Lexington
Morning:

  • Paul Revere Capture Site and The Road to Revolution film (Minute Man National Park)
  • Who Shot First 1? Depositions and other accounts with NPS Education Coordinator Jim Hollister (Lexington Green)

Afternoon:

  • Lunch at Munroe Tavern (Lexington Historical Society)
  • The experience of the British soldier (at Munroe Tavern)

THURSDAY, August 8: in Concord and Lincoln

Morning:

  • Using primary source documents to (re)construct lost lives with Historian Mary Fuhrer (Major John Buttrick House, Minute Man National Park)
  • Who Shot First 2? Depositions and other accounts with Jim Hollister (North Bridge)

Afternoon:

  • Lunch and tour of Old Manse: William Emerson, Ralph Waldo Emerson and the Legacy of Revolution
  • Research/Writing workshop: “People at a Crossroads” with Mary Fuhrer and Educator Joanne Myers (on the grounds of the Old Manse)
  •  Break for supper on your own in Concord

Evening:

  • Special living history program “Battle Road Heroes” (Hartwell Tavern historic area, Minute Man National Park)
  • Dessert and colonial entertainment in the Hartwell Barn

FRIDAY, August 9: in Boston

  • Optional morning for educators to work on lesson plans with teacher-facilitator Duncan Wood (MHS)
details
MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 10 August 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the ...

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

details
Brown Bag Rebelling Subjects, Revealing Objects: The Material and Visual Culture of Making and Remembering the American Revolution 12 August 2013.Monday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Zara Anishanslin, College of Staten Island, CUNY This project considers how women, Loyalists, slaves, and Native Americans, as well as Patriots, ...

This project considers how women, Loyalists, slaves, and Native Americans, as well as Patriots, experienced, made, and remembered the American Revolution from 1763 to 1791, with a coda about historical memory arranged around General Lafayette’s Jubilee Tour. In an effort to get past the binaries that often still characterize the historiography on the Revolution, it uses objects and images to narrate how ideology, politics, and war—and their material practices—were ambivalent and fluid in the revolutionary era.

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Teacher Workshop, Public Programbegins Old Towns/New Country: The First Years of a New Nation 13 August 2013.Tuesday, 8:30AM - 3:30PM This workshop will take place at Coolidge Point in Manchester, Massachusetts This two-day workshop will focus on how to use local resources – documents, artifacts, ...

This two-day workshop will focus on how to use local resources – documents, artifacts, landscapes and the rich expertise in every town – to examine historical issues with a national focus. We will concentrate on the period just after the Revolution and the concerns and conflicts, hopes and fears, experiences and expectations of the people living in the Boston area at a time of uncertainty, fragility, and possibility. We will investigate such questions as: What was it like to live in a town that had been around for a long time in a country that was new? When the nation was first forming after the Revolution, what were people in our town/region worried about? How much did the geography, economy, culture, and social makeup of our region influence those concerns? How can we find out? What resources/pieces of evidence does our community have that relate to this time period and the people living in it? How can we best present this evidence and allow people of all ages to discover answers to some of these questions? How does our local focus add a crucial dimension to our understanding of a key period in American history?

The workshop is open to teachers, librarians, archivists, members of local historical societies, and all interested local history enthusiasts. Workshop faculty will include Jayne Gordon and Kathleen Barker of the MHS Department of Education and Public Programs, Historian Christian Samito, MHS Teacher Fellow Dean Eastman, andLaura Lowell, MHS Manuscript Processor. Worksho ppartners include Salem Maritime National Historic Site and The Trustees of Reservations. There is a $25 charge to cover lunches both days; program and material costs have been generously funded by the Saltonstall Foundation. Educators can earn 14 PDPs and 1 Graduate Credit (for an additional fee) from Framingham State University.

Additional two-day workshops will be held in Boston on July 15/16, Freedom’s Way National Heritage Area towns of Leominster and Lancaster (central Massachusetts) on July 30/31, and in Pittsfield (Berkshires) on November 8/9.

To Register: Please complete this registration form and send it with your payment to: Kathleen Barker, Massachusetts Historical Society, 1154 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02215.

For Additional Information: Contact the Education Department: 617-646-0557 or education@masshist.org.

details
Teacher Workshop, Public Programends Old Towns/New Country: The First Years of a New Nation 14 August 2013.Wednesday, 8:30AM - 3:30PM This workshop will take place at Coolidge Point in Manchester, Massachusetts This two-day workshop will focus on how to use local resources – documents, artifacts, ...

This two-day workshop will focus on how to use local resources – documents, artifacts, landscapes and the rich expertise in every town – to examine historical issues with a national focus. We will concentrate on the period just after the Revolution and the concerns and conflicts, hopes and fears, experiences and expectations of the people living in the Boston area at a time of uncertainty, fragility, and possibility. We will investigate such questions as: What was it like to live in a town that had been around for a long time in a country that was new? When the nation was first forming after the Revolution, what were people in our town/region worried about? How much did the geography, economy, culture, and social makeup of our region influence those concerns? How can we find out? What resources/pieces of evidence does our community have that relate to this time period and the people living in it? How can we best present this evidence and allow people of all ages to discover answers to some of these questions? How does our local focus add a crucial dimension to our understanding of a key period in American history?

The workshop is open to teachers, librarians, archivists, members of local historical societies, and all interested local history enthusiasts. Workshop faculty will include Jayne Gordon and Kathleen Barker of the MHS Department of Education and Public Programs, Historian Christian Samito, MHS Teacher Fellow Dean Eastman, andLaura Lowell, MHS Manuscript Processor. Worksho ppartners include Salem Maritime National Historic Site and The Trustees of Reservations. There is a $25 charge to cover lunches both days; program and material costs have been generously funded by the Saltonstall Foundation. Educators can earn 14 PDPs and 1 Graduate Credit (for an additional fee) from Framingham State University.

Additional two-day workshops will be held in Boston on July 15/16, Freedom’s Way National Heritage Area towns of Leominster and Lancaster (central Massachusetts) on July 30/31, and in Pittsfield (Berkshires) on November 8/9.

To Register: Please complete this registration form and send it with your payment to: Kathleen Barker, Massachusetts Historical Society, 1154 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02215.

For Additional Information: Contact the Education Department: 617-646-0557 or education@masshist.org.

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Brown Bag Working to Become: Women, Work, and Literary Legacy in American Women’s Postbellum Literature 14 August 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Kristin Allukian, University of Florida This project is interdisciplinary in nature and has foundations in both 19th-century American ...

This project is interdisciplinary in nature and has foundations in both 19th-century American women’s history and literature. It focuses on literary representations of career women by late 19th-century American women writers. By reimagining the intertwinings and interconnections of society and women’s paid labor, the project shows that work, and women’s work in particular, was no longer a fixed entity that showed up in the lives of those living during the 19th-century but rather was a shaping force.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 17 August 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the ...

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

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Brown Bag Our Peculiar Family: The Massachusetts Schools for Idiotic Children, 1848-1900 21 August 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Kathryn Irving, Yale University In 1848, the first American institutions for children with intellectual disability opened in ...

In 1848, the first American institutions for children with intellectual disability opened in Massachusetts. The state school in Boston was the project of prominent reformers; the private school in Barre was founded by an entrepreneurial physician. Despite their differences, the trajectories of both schools were grounded in the state's social and political climate. This project explores the schools, their staff and pupils, from their antebellum origins up to the Eugenics movement.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 24 August 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the ...

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

details
Exhibitionends "Estlin Cummings Wild West Show" 30 August 2013.Friday, 10:00AM - 4:00PM Monday through Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm “Estlin Cummings Wild West Show” features a selection of E.E. Cummings’s childhood ...

Estlin Cummings Wild West Show“Estlin Cummings Wild West Show” features a selection of E.E. Cummings’s childhood writings and drawings, showcasing the young poet’s earliest experiments with words and illustrations. Drawings and paintings include ink blots, watercolors, and sketches in pen and pencil of cowboys and Indians, boats, the “world’s tallest tower,” wild west shows, hunting expeditions, locomotives, zoos, circuses, elephants, and house plans.

Image: “Estlin Cummings Wild West Show,” drawing by E. E. Cummings. From the Cummings-Clarke family papers. Artwork by E.E. Cummings. Used by permission of the Trustees for the E. E. Cummings Trust.

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Building Closed Labor Day 31 August 2013.Saturday, all day The MHS will be closed Saturday, 31 August, and Monday, 2 September, in observance of Labor Day. The MHS will be closed Saturday, 31 August, and Monday, 2 September, in observance of Labor Day.

The MHS will be closed Saturday, 31 August, and Monday, 2 September, in observance of Labor Day.

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September
Building Closed Labor Day 2 September 2013.Monday, all day The MHS will be closed Saturday, 31 August, and Monday, 2 September, in observance of Labor Day. The MHS will be closed Saturday, 31 August, and Monday, 2 September, in observance of Labor Day.

The MHS will be closed Saturday, 31 August, and Monday, 2 September, in observance of Labor Day.

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Brown Bag Brahmin Capitalism: Bankers, Populists, and the Making of the Modern American Economy 4 September 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Noam Maggor, Vanderbilt University This project charts the business and politics of Boston’s late-nineteenth-century ...

This project charts the business and politics of Boston’s late-nineteenth-century transformation from an anchor of an industrial region into the second largest banking center in North America. It explores how a vanguard of financiers from the city’s old elite created a wide-ranging network of capital flows that funded railroads, mines, agriculture, and industry across the continent, and how this process of capital migration, in turn, redefined urban politics on the local level. Far from seamless, this transformation triggered an array of political controversies over the priorities of city government, and more broadly, over the future shape of American capitalism.

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Exhibitionends "The Education of Our Children Is Never out of My Mind" 7 September 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 4:00PM Monday through Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm From 13 June through 7 September, the Society will display letters written by John and Abigail ...

Letter from John Adams to Abigail, August 28, 1774From 13 June through 7 September, the Society will display letters written by John and Abigail Adams to each other, to their children, and to friends and family regarding their views on education.

In a letter to his wife, Abigail, dated August 28, 1774, John Adams writes: “The Education of our Children is never out of my Mind. Train them to Virtue, habituate them to industry, activity, and Spirit. Make them consider every Vice, as shamefull and unmanly: fire them with Ambition to be usefull-make them disdain to be destitute of any usefull, or ornamental Knowledge or Accomplishment. Fix their Ambition upon great and solid Objects, and their Contempt upon little, frivolous, and useless ones.”

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Exhibitionends The Object of History: 18th-Century Treasures from the Massachusetts Historical Society 7 September 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 4:00PM Monday through Saturday, 10 AM to 4 PM What is the meaning of historical objects? Why are they preserved, and why have they survived? Are ...

What is the meaning of historical objects? Why are they preserved, and why have they survived? Are they valued for their associations with notable historical figures or landmark events, as objects of beauty, as the survival of relics from a distant past, or for the stories they convey? The exhibition explores these questions through the display of 18th-century portraits and objects from the Society's collections, along with rarely seen engravings, needlework, maps, weapons, furniture, clothing, scientific instruments, and silver.

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Public Program, Author Talk The Great Dissent: How Oliver Wendell Holmes Changes His Mind & Changed the History of Free Speech in America 9 September 2013.Monday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Thomas Healy Free speech as we know it comes less from the First Amendment than from a most unexpected source: ...

Free speech as we know it comes less from the First Amendment than from a most unexpected source: Supreme Court justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. Law professor Thomas Healy reconstructs Holmes’s journey from free-speech opponent to First Amendment hero. It is the story of a remarkable behind-the-scenes campaign by a group of progressives to bring a legal icon around to their way of thinking—and a deeply touching human narrative of an old man saved from loneliness and despair by a few unlikely young friends.

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Brown Bag Friendship in Colonial New England, 1750-1775 11 September 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Jill Bouchillon, University of Stirling This talk will examine the different types of friendships presented in New England's print culture ...

This talk will examine the different types of friendships presented in New England's print culture during the pre-Revolutionary era. Although there is a continuity of interpersonal elements inherently understood about friendship, it is the normative social construction that is particular to time and place. This is perceptible in the popularity of certain texts and characters, in how they were received by New England colonists and how they represented nuances of friendship during the period.

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Public Program, Author Talk History Matters: Reflections on Efforts to Make It Come out Right 12 September 2013.Thursday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Bernard Bailyn, Harvard University A talk by Bernard Bailyn, Adams University Professor and James Duncan Phillips Professor of Early ...

A talk by Bernard Bailyn, Adams University Professor and James Duncan Phillips Professor of Early American History emeritus at Harvard University. His books include The Barbarous Years: The Peopling of British North America: The Conflict of Civilizations, 1600–1675; The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution, which received the Pulitzer and Bancroft Prizes; The Ordeal of Thomas Hutchinson, which won the National Book Award for History; and Voyagers to the West, which won the Pulitzer Prize.

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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Brown Bag Manufacturing Advantage: Boston Merchant-Industrialists and the Federal Government, 1790-1840 18 September 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Lindsay Schakenbach, Brown University This project examines the process by which the federal government made possible the rise of the ...

This project examines the process by which the federal government made possible the rise of the Waltham-Lowell system, the first integrated factory system in the United States. While this predecessor to modern industry is typically viewed as a product of merchant wealth and innovative entrepreneurship, it also benefited from federal support in the form of diplomacy, national expansion, and patent legislation. This research is part of her dissertation, which seeks to explain the early republican transition from merchant to industrial capitalism by analyzing the development of the New England arms and textile industries in the context of federal patronage and expanding U.S. geopolitical dominance in the Americas.

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Smuggler Nation Public Program, Author Talk Smuggler Nation: How Illicit Trade Made America 18 September 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Peter Andreas, Brown University Providing a sweeping narrative history from colonial times to the present, Smuggler Nation ...

Smuggler NationProviding a sweeping narrative history from colonial times to the present, Smuggler Nation is the first book to retell the story of America as a series of highly contentious battles over clandestine commerce. As Peter Andreas demonstrates, smuggling has played a pivotal role in America's birth, westward expansion, and economic development, while anti-smuggling campaigns have enhanced the federal government's policing powers.

Peter Andreas is Professor of Political Science and International Studies at Brown University. His research focuses on the intersection between security, political economy, and cross-border crime in comparative and historical perspective. His books include, Blue Helmets and Black Markets: The Business of Survival in the Siege of Sarajevo (2008); Policing the Globe: Criminalization and Crime Control in International Relations (2006); and Border Games: Policing the U.S.-Mexico Divide (2nd edition 2009).

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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Graduate Student Reception 19 September 2013.Thursday, 6:00PM - 8:00PM Calling all graduate students and faculty! Please plan to join us for our fourth annual Graduate ...

Calling all graduate students and faculty! Please plan to join us for our fourth annual Graduate Student Reception. This is a wonderful opportunity for students in history, American Studies, and related fields to meet people from other universities, enjoy great refreshments, and learn about the resources that the MHS has to offer. Last year students from more than a dozen universities participated. This event is free of charge; RSVP required: phone 617-646-0568 or email kviens@masshist.org.

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City Water, City Life Public Program, Author Talk City Water, City Life: The Infrastructure of Ideas in Urbanizing Boston 23 September 2013.Monday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Carl Smith, Northwestern University This talk will discuss how a city is more than a massing of citizens, a layout of buildings and ...

City Water, City LifeThis talk will discuss how a city is more than a massing of citizens, a layout of buildings and streets, or an arrangement of political, economic, and social institutions. It is also an infrastructure of ideas, an embodiment of the beliefs, values, and aspirations of the people who created it. In no instance was this more the case than in the construction of Boston’s first comprehensive public waterworks, the Cochituate aqueduct system, which opened on 25 October 1848.

Carl Smith is the Franklyn Bliss Snyder Professor of English & American Studies at Northwestern University where he teaches American literature and cultural history. He is the author of numerous books, including Chicago and the American Literary Imagination, 1880-1920 (1984) and of Urban Disorder and the Shape of Belief: The Great Chicago Fire, the Haymarket Bomb, and the Model Town of Pullman (1994), which won the Urban History Association's prize for Best Book in North American Urban History and the Society of Midland Authors' first prize for non-fiction. His most recent book, The Plan of Chicago: Daniel Burnham and the Remaking of the American City (2006), won the Lewis Mumford Prize for Best Book in Planning History, given by the Society of American City, Regional, and Planning History.

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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Public Program, Author Talk Amy Lowell Anew 24 September 2013.Tuesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Carl Rollyson, Baruch College The controversial American poet Amy Lowell (1874–1925) excelled as the impresario for the ...

The controversial American poet Amy Lowell (1874–1925) excelled as the impresario for the “new poetry” that became news across the U.S. in the years after World War I. This provocative new biography restores Amy Lowell to her full humanity in an era that, at last, is beginning to appreciate the contributions of gays and lesbians to America’s cultural heritage.

Carl Rollyson, professor of journalism at Baruch College, will focus on the discovery of letters in the Society’s collections that altered his understanding of the shape and significance of the poet’s life. Rollyson has published more than 40 books ranging in subject matter from biographies of Marilyn Monroe, Lillian Hellman, Martha Gellhorn, Norman Mailer, Rebecca West, Susan Sontag, Jill Craigie, Dana Andrews, Sylvia Plath, and Amy Lowell to studies of American culture, genealogy, children's biography, film and literary criticism.

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Immigration and Urban History Seminar Emergent Ghettos: Black Neighborhoods in New York and Chicago, 1880-1940 24 September 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required John Logan, Brown University Comment: William Julius Wilson, Harvard University Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568. Authors ...

Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

Authors will not read their essays but will offer brief remarks; please read the paper ahead of time and come prepared to join in the discussion. If you are not a subscriber to the series (subscribers receive online advance access to the papers) you may pick up a copy at the MHS front desk on the day of the program. Please phone 617-646-0568 with any questions.

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Brown Bag Narrative of a Journey: Louisa Catherine Adams and the Vexed Question of Identity 25 September 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Louisa Thomas, author of Conscience: Two Soldiers, Two Pacifists, One Family--A Test of Will and Faith in World War I (2011) This program will present research from a forthcoming biography of Louisa Catherine Johnson Adams, ...

This program will present research from a forthcoming biography of Louisa Catherine Johnson Adams, especially focusing on new evidence about her background. It will also explore tensions in her writings, in an attempt to understand her better as a Johnson, as an Adams, and simply as herself. 

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October
Early American History Seminar Town Hall Meeting with the New Director of the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture 1 October 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required Karin A. Wulf, College of William and Mary and Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568. Authors ...

Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

Authors will not read their essays but will offer brief remarks; please read the paper ahead of time and come prepared to join in the discussion. If you are not a subscriber to the series (subscribers receive online advance access to the papers) you may pick up a copy at the MHS front desk on the day of the program. Please phone 617-646-0568 with any questions.

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Brown Bag “New Englands Teares, for Old England's Feares”: Comparing Attitudes Toward Infertility in Early Modern England and Colonial New England 2 October 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Marisa Benoit, University of Oxford This project is a comparative study of attitudes toward infertility in early modern England and ...

This project is a comparative study of attitudes toward infertility in early modern England and colonial New England from c.1650 to 1750 through analysis of a wide variety of contemporary sources. To compare early modern England with its own “child,” colonial New England, is to examine two societies linked by cultural and religious norms but facing different challenges. These challenges are explored by analyzing infertility’s representation in popular, religious, and medical literature and personal writing from both societies. As the two societies’ relationship was often described through reproductive language, analyzing representations of infertility provides a different angle through which to view the links between “Old” and New England while highlighting the connections between the sources themselves. The topic of infertility provides the opportunity to untangle the web of emerging anatomical discoveries, social ideas about gender relations, the family, and the importance of children, and religious ideas about generation that characterized attitudes toward reproduction in the early modern period.

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Notice Library Closing @ 3:30PM 3 October 2013.Thursday, all day details
Desk and bookcase Special Event, Member Event The Cabinetmaker & the Carver - Preview Reception 3 October 2013.Thursday, 6:00PM - 8:00PM Please RSVP   This event is open only to MHS Fellows and Members. MHS Fellows and Members are invited to a special preview and reception for the Society’s fall ...

Desk and bookcaseMHS Fellows and Members are invited to a special preview and reception for the Society’s fall exhibition. The Cabinetmaker & the Carver provides visitors with an opportunity to view nearly 50 examples of rarely seen furniture borrowed from distinguished private collections in the greater Boston area. Ranging in date from teh late-17th century to about 1900, these privately held treasures, generously lent by their owners, provide a look at the trajectory of cabinetmaking in the Hub.

To Reserve: Tickets are $25 (no charge for MHS Fund Giving Circle members). Please click on the registration link to purchase tickets.

The exhibition is presented as part of Four Centuries of Massachusetts Furniture a collaborative project of the Massachusetts Historical Society and ten other institutions that features exhibitions, lectures, demonstrations and publications to celebrate the Bay State's legacy of furniture-making. Visit fourcenturies.org

Image: Desk and bookcase, carving attributed to John Welch, Boston, Mass. ca. 1750-1755, private collection. Photograph by Laura Wulf

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Public Program, Exhibition New Thoughts on Old Things: Four Centuries of Furnishing the Northeast 4 October 2013.Friday, 10:00AM - 5:30PM Location: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston Co-sponsored by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Colonial Society of Massachusetts, and the ...

Co-sponsored by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Colonial Society of Massachusetts, and the Massachusetts Historical Society, this day-long symposium is devoted to new scholarly research on the design, production, and circulation of furnishings in New England. New Thoughts on Old Things will feature keynote speaker Glenn Adamson, Head of Research at the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) in London, along with a select group of emerging scholars. The event is associated with Four Centuries of Massachusetts Furniture—a collaborative of 11 institutions celebrating furniture and furniture-making in Massachusetts. For more information on the Four Centuries initiative and events, please visit: http://www.fourcenturies.org/.

To Reserve: The symposium is free with admission to the museum. Advanced ticketing recommended. For information, please contact Lauren Spengler at lspengler@mfa.org.

Event Details

Keynote Speaker: Glenn Adamson, Head of Research, V&A Museum, Furniture History: The View from Old England

Speakers

  • Tania Batley, E. W. Vaill Patent Chair Manufacturer (Worcester, MA)
  • Nicole Belolan, Aunt Patty's Furniture: Adult Cradles and the History of Physical Mobility Impairment in Early America
  • Louisa Brouwer, “Vanishable Antiques”: The Story of Israel Sack, Inc., and the Building of an American Industry
  • Ben Colman, Between Memory and Antiquity:The Circulation of Seventeenth-Century Furniture in 18th-Century Plymouth
  • Philippe Halbert, Noblesse in New France: Furnishing the Hôtel de Vaudreuil and the Chateau Saint-Louis 1725-1760
  • Marissa S. Hershon, The Egyptian Revival in the 1870's: The Reception Room at Cedar Hill (Warwick, RI)
  • Jennifer N. Johnson, Patterns of Gentility: Pictorial Needlework Upholstery of Eighteenth-Century Newport
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Exhibitionbegins The Cabinetmaker & the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections 4 October 2013.Friday, 10:00AM - 4:00PM Monday through Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm This exhibition provides visitors with a rare opportunity to see nearly 50 examples of significant ...


This exhibition provides visitors with a rare opportunity to see nearly 50 examples of significant furniture borrowed from distinguished private collections in the greater Boston area. Ranging in date from the late-17th-century to about 1900, these privately held treasures, generously lent by their owners, provide a look at the trajectory of cabinetmaking in the Hub. They are supplemented with documents, portraits, and other material from the Society's collections that help place the furniture into historical context.

The exhibition is part of Four Centuries of Massachusetts Furniture a collaborative project of the Massachusetts Historical Society and ten other institutions that features exhibitions, lectures, demonstrations and publications to celebrate the Bay State's legacy of furniture-making. Visit fourcenturies.org.

Image: Desk and bookcase, carving attributed to John Welch, Boston, Mass., ca. 1750–1755, private collection. Photo by Laura Wulf.

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Teacher Workshop Painless: A Survival Guide to the "Dreaded" History Project 5 October 2013.Saturday, 9:00AM - 3:00PM WHO: For teachers, students, librarians, archivistsWHAT: A FREE ...
WHO: For teachers, students, librarians, archivists
WHAT: A FREE hands-on workshop
WHEN: Saturday, October 5, 2013 9:00 am – 3:00 pm
WHERE: Massachusetts Historical Society

 

Using the broad theme of “Rights and Responsibilities” as a springboard, you’ll explore how to approach primary source research in special libraries and archives, the Massachusetts Historical Society & the National Archives, through a range of historical documents, including letters, diaries, songs, petitions, and government records.

You’ll collect evidence, analyze information, draw conclusions, assemble your findings into an historical narrative, and design a history project as a paper, website, exhibit, documentary, or performance.

By applying National History Day methodologies, the “dreaded” history project is transformed into the creation of imaginative, engaging, and meaningful history experiences. Representatives from Massachusetts History Day will share how the program works.

This free workshop is open to students, teachers, librarians, and archivists. Lunch will be provided. Teachers can earn 10 Professional Development Points.

For more information, or to register, please contact Kathleen Barker at the Massachusetts Historical Society: education@masshist.org or (617) 646-0557.

This workshop is presented by the Massachusetts Historical Society and the National Archives at Boston in collaboration with Massachusetts History Day.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 5 October 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the ...

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

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Environmental History Seminar From Wilderness Environments to Well-Ordered Plantations: The Gifts of God Perfected by Industry 8 October 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required John Lauritz Larson, Purdue University Comment: Joyce Chaplin, Harvard University Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568. Authors ...

Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

Authors will not read their essays but will offer brief remarks; please read the paper ahead of time and come prepared to join in the discussion. If you are not a subscriber to the series (subscribers receive online advance access to the papers) you may pick up a copy at the MHS front desk on the day of the program. Please phone 617-646-0568 with any questions.

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Brown Bag An Empire of Fakes: Counterfeit Goods in Eighteenth-Century America 9 October 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Catherine Cangany, University of Notre Dame This project investigates the market, commodities, producers, suppliers, vendors, and consumers of ...

This project investigates the market, commodities, producers, suppliers, vendors, and consumers of spurious merchandise in early Anglo-America. In so doing, it reclaims forgotten commercial actors and networks and downplays the primacy of mercantilism to emphasize individualism (defined by counterfeits' propensity to subvert legal commerce for personal gain). Given that the underground economy constituted half of all economic transactions in this period, individualism may have been the more important commercial doctrine, a full century earlier than most scholarship suggests.

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Public Program Behind the Scenes at the Museum: The Curator’s View of "Boston Furniture from Private Collections" 9 October 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Gerald W. R. Ward, Museum of Fine Arts Boston This program is part of the Massachusetts Furniture Series Boston’s history is written not only in documents and manuscripts but in the three-dimensional ...

Boston’s history is written not only in documents and manuscripts but in the three-dimensional objects that its craftsmen and factories have made, and its citizens have used, since 1630. This presentation will offer an opportunity to learn about and tour this loan exhibition of more than 40 rarely seen examples of Boston furniture from ca. 1690 to ca. 1900 with guest curator Gerald W. R. Ward.

Gerald W. R. Ward is the Katherine Lane Weems Senior Curator of American Decorative Arts and Sculpture, Art of the Americas, at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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History of Women and Gender Seminar "Qualified Women": Women, Performance and Political Labor in the New Deal 10 October 2013.Thursday, 5:30PM - 7:00PM RSVP required Location: Schlesinger Library Kate Dossett, University of Leeds Comment: Susan Ware, General Editor, American National Biography Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568. Authors ...

Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

Authors will not read their essays but will offer brief remarks; please read the paper ahead of time and come prepared to join in the discussion. If you are not a subscriber to the series (subscribers receive online advance access to the papers) you may pick up a copy at the MHS front desk on the day of the program. Please phone 617-646-0568 with any questions.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 12 October 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the ...

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

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Special Event, Public Program MHS Open House 14 October 2013.Monday, 10:00AM - 3:00PM This event is free and open to the public. Join us as part of the Fenway Cultural District’s Opening Our Doors, Boston’s largest ...

Join us as part of the Fenway Cultural District’s Opening Our Doors, Boston’s largest single day of free arts and cultural events. Visit the MHS and view The Cabinetmaker & the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections and enjoy a demonstration related to furniture on display by craftsmen from the North Bennet Street School.

This event is free and open to the public.

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Library Closed Columbus Day 14 October 2013.Monday, all day The MHS library will be closed on Monday, 14 October in observance of Columbus Day. The exhibition ...

The MHS library will be closed on Monday, 14 October in observance of Columbus Day. The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open as part of the Fenway Alliance's Opening Our Doors event.

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Public Program, Author Talk Capital of the World: The Race to Host the United Nations 16 October 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Charlene Mires, Rutgers University In 1945–1946, Bostonians pursued an ambitious dream: to become not only “the Hub” ...

In 1945–1946, Bostonians pursued an ambitious dream: to become not only “the Hub” but also the Capital of the World—the headquarters site for the new United Nations. Drawing from her book, Charlene Mires will present an illustrated talk about the dramatic, surprising, and often comic story of civic boosterism awakened by the UN ’s search for a home.

Charlene Mires is Associate Professor of History and Director of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Center for the Humanities at Rutgers University—Camden. She is the author of Independence Hall in American Memory, editor-in-chief of The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia, and a co-recipient of a Pulitzer Prize in journalism.

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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Public Program, Author Talk Book of Ages: The Life and Opinions of Jane Franklin 17 October 2013.Thursday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM Location: Boston Public Library, Copley Square Jill Lepore, Harvard University Jane Franklin, the sister of Benjamin Franklin, was a constant presence and influence in her brother ...

Jane Franklin, the sister of Benjamin Franklin, was a constant presence and influence in her brother's life. Like her brother, Jane Franklin was a passionate reader, a gifted writer, and an astonishingly shrewd political commentator. Making use of a collection of little-studied material, including documents, objects, and recently discovered portraits, author Jill Lepore brings Jane Franklin to life. Lepore provides a revelatory portrait of Benjamin Franklin’s youngest sister and a history of history itself.

Jill Lepore is the David Woods Kemper '41 Professor of American History at Harvard University and a staff writer at The New Yorker.

To Reserve: This event is free and open to the public. Visit the Boston Public Library's website for additional information and directions.

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Public Program, Exhibition The Call of Classicism: Boston Furniture from the Early 19th Century 18 October 2013.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM Exhibition Spotlight Irfan Ali The early 19th century was a time of prosperity for the City of Boston and produced some ...

The early 19th century was a time of prosperity for the City of Boston and produced some extraordinary furniture. Irfan Ali, a collector of American furniture, will examine Boston’s answer to the call of classicism by looking at furniture made by craftsmen such as Thomas Seymour, Isaac Vose, and Archibald and Emmons.

To Register: This program is free and open to the public.

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Brown Bag Reviving a Spirit of Controversy: Early American Catholicism and the Separation of Church and State, 1633-1839 23 October 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Nicholas Pellegrino, University of Nevada, Las Vegas This project explores the ways in which American Catholics fought to establish, preserve, reclaim, ...

This project explores the ways in which American Catholics fought to establish, preserve, reclaim, and expand conceptions of religious liberty in early America. Virtually ignored in church-state historiography until the 1840s, Catholics played a heretofore overlooked role in challenging and redefining America's ideal church-state relationship during the colonial period and in the early Republic. By paying closer attention to how Catholics interacted with the laws and culture around them, this project offers fresh insights into questions pertaining to church-state relations and the history of religious freedom.

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Public Program, Exhibition “Newest Fashion” Furniture in Boston, 1690–1730: A Transatlantic View 23 October 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Edward S. Cooke, Jr., Yale University This event is part of the Massachusetts Furniture Series This program will explore how the influx of English cabinetmakers and chairmakers and the ...

This program will explore how the influx of English cabinetmakers and chairmakers and the fashionable desires of a new Boston elite combined to transform the furniture trade in Boston in the period after the establishment of the new Charter in 1691. Producers and consumers collaborated to invent a new Boston that was a commercial center more than a providential city on a hill. 

Edward S. Cooke, Jr., the Charles F. Montgomery Professor of American Decorative Arts in the Department of the History of Art at Yale University, has published extensively on both historical and contemporary furniture. Prior to returning to Yale in 1992, he was a curator at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and taught at Boston University.

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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Biography Seminar Telling Lives: Megan Marshall Interviews George E. Vaillant about the Harvard Grant Study 24 October 2013.Thursday, 5:30PM - 7:30PM RSVP required George E. Vaillant, Harvard Medical School, author of Triumphs of Experience: The Men of the Harvard Grant Study Moderator: Megan Marshall, author of Margaret Fuller: A New American Life Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 26 October 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the ...

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

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Immigration and Urban History Seminar Dynamic Tensions: Charles Atlas, Immigrant Bodybuilders, and Eugenics, 1920-45 29 October 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required Dominique Padurano, Scarsdale High School Comment: E. Anthony Rotundo, Phillips Academy Andover Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568. Authors ...

Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

Authors will not read their essays but will offer brief remarks; please read the paper ahead of time and come prepared to join in the discussion. If you are not a subscriber to the series (subscribers receive online advance access to the papers) you may pick up a copy at the MHS front desk on the day of the program. Please phone 617-646-0568 with any questions.

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Round About the Earth Author Talk, Public Program Around the World in 500 Years 30 October 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Joyce Chaplin, Harvard University Are we more "global" today than people in the past were, better able to span and understand the ...

Round About the EarthAre we more "global" today than people in the past were, better able to span and understand the entire planet?  Planetary consciousness, our awareness of living on a globe with finite resources, did not begin with those luminous, exquisitely beautiful Apollo 8 photographs of the Earth taken from space in 1968, as is often asserted. Rather, it began with the now-500-year-old tradition of going around the world, the longest human activity done on a planetary scale. Around-the-world travelers' long and self-aware tradition of engagement with the planet questions our sense of uniqueness and may teach us something worth knowing about why we think of the Earth the way we do.

Joyce E. Chaplin is the James Duncan Phillips Professor of Early American History at Harvard University and author of Round About the Earth: Circumnavigation from Magellan to Orbit.

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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More events
MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 3 August 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM this event is free

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

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Teacher Workshop, Public Program Battle Road: Crisis, Choices, and Consequences 5 August 2013 to 8 August 2013 registration required This workshop includes sessions in Boston, Concord, and Lexington

Using historical documents, landscapes, buildings and artifacts as investigative tools, participants will examine the concerns, conflicts, dilemmas, decisions, and dramatic confrontations of people along the road to revolution. Presented by the Massachusetts Historical Society and partnering organizations, the workshop takes place in locations throughout Boston, Lexington, Lincoln and Concord. An outstanding group of historians, educators, and site interpreters will work with the group over the course of the four day workshop.

This workshop is open to teachers and the general public, and is funded in part by a grant from the Massachusetts Society of the Cincinnati. Educators can earn PDPs and 2 graduate credits (for an additional fee) through Framingham State University.

Registration

$125 ($100 for teachers and MHS fellows/members)

Workshop fee includes:

  • Four-day program (daytime, plus one Thursday evening) with additional half day for educators
  • Admission to all partnering sites
  • Packet of reading materials
  • Welcome breakfast on Monday at the Massachusetts Historical Society, lunches on Tuesday (Concord Museum), Wednesday (Lexington Historical Society) and Thursday (Old Manse), and a final evening with living history characters, colonial entertainment, and dessert in Minute Man National Park

To register, complete this registration form and send the form with your payment to:

Kathleen Barker
Massachusetts Historical Society
1154 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02215
education@masshist.org

Complete directions for public transportation options, parking, and special lodging rates in Concord will be sent to all registrants. Questions? Call workshop directors Jayne Gordon (617) 646-0519 or Kathleen Barker (617) 646-0557.

Workshop Schedule

MONDAY, August 5: in Boston
Morning:

  • Welcome breakfast at the Massachusetts Historical Society Introductions of participants, partners, places, and theme
  • The Curious Newspaper Collections of Harbottle Dorr 
  • Documenting the Coming of the American Revolution

Afternoon:

  • Lunch on your own in Boston
  • Background walking tour with Historian Bill Fowler (from the Common to the North End)

TUESDAY, August 6: in Concord
Morning:

  • The Characters and the Community with Historian Bob Gross/ Part 1 (Concord Museum)
  • “Reading” the artifacts in the “Why Concord?” gallery (Concord Museum)

Afternoon:

  • Lunch at the Concord Museum
  • The Characters and the Community with Bob Gross/ Part 2 (Concord Museum)
  • “Reading” the Landscape: the world and worries of the Concord farmer with historian Brian Donahue (Minute Man National Park, Battle Road Farm fields)

WEDNESDAY, August 7: in Lexington
Morning:

  • Paul Revere Capture Site and The Road to Revolution film (Minute Man National Park)
  • Who Shot First 1? Depositions and other accounts with NPS Education Coordinator Jim Hollister (Lexington Green)

Afternoon:

  • Lunch at Munroe Tavern (Lexington Historical Society)
  • The experience of the British soldier (at Munroe Tavern)

THURSDAY, August 8: in Concord and Lincoln

Morning:

  • Using primary source documents to (re)construct lost lives with Historian Mary Fuhrer (Major John Buttrick House, Minute Man National Park)
  • Who Shot First 2? Depositions and other accounts with Jim Hollister (North Bridge)

Afternoon:

  • Lunch and tour of Old Manse: William Emerson, Ralph Waldo Emerson and the Legacy of Revolution
  • Research/Writing workshop: “People at a Crossroads” with Mary Fuhrer and Educator Joanne Myers (on the grounds of the Old Manse)
  •  Break for supper on your own in Concord

Evening:

  • Special living history program “Battle Road Heroes” (Hartwell Tavern historic area, Minute Man National Park)
  • Dessert and colonial entertainment in the Hartwell Barn

FRIDAY, August 9: in Boston

  • Optional morning for educators to work on lesson plans with teacher-facilitator Duncan Wood (MHS)
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Brown Bag Private Lives and Public Spaces: John Banister and Colonial Consumers 7 August 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Marian Desrosiers, Salve Regina University

Tourists stream into shops and restaurants on Banister's Wharf in Newport, purchasing products from Rhode Island and around the globe. When merchant John Banister (1707-1767) owned this wharf in the 1740s, he imported luxury apparel, tools, household items, and foods from many places. For nearly thirty years Banister's ships traded goods from and to other American colonies, the West Indies, and Europe. The Banister account books provide a focus on this golden era of trade. Lists of commodities provide information about the lives of consumers and producers in the public marketplace. The transactions reveal a merchant's family expenses and income. Banister's careful delineation of profit, loss, commissions, taxes, and ownership shares provides insight into his roles as merchant, retailer, ship owner, broker, and as a trade and industry leader of Newport. These details of mid-eighteenth-century Rhode Island reveal how Banister, as an adventurous capitalist, influenced the economy of pre-Revolutionary America.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 10 August 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM this event is free

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

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Brown Bag Rebelling Subjects, Revealing Objects: The Material and Visual Culture of Making and Remembering the American Revolution 12 August 2013.Monday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Zara Anishanslin, College of Staten Island, CUNY

This project considers how women, Loyalists, slaves, and Native Americans, as well as Patriots, experienced, made, and remembered the American Revolution from 1763 to 1791, with a coda about historical memory arranged around General Lafayette’s Jubilee Tour. In an effort to get past the binaries that often still characterize the historiography on the Revolution, it uses objects and images to narrate how ideology, politics, and war—and their material practices—were ambivalent and fluid in the revolutionary era.

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Teacher Workshop, Public Program Old Towns/New Country: The First Years of a New Nation 13 August 2013 to 14 August 2013 registration required This workshop will take place at Coolidge Point in Manchester, Massachusetts

This two-day workshop will focus on how to use local resources – documents, artifacts, landscapes and the rich expertise in every town – to examine historical issues with a national focus. We will concentrate on the period just after the Revolution and the concerns and conflicts, hopes and fears, experiences and expectations of the people living in the Boston area at a time of uncertainty, fragility, and possibility. We will investigate such questions as: What was it like to live in a town that had been around for a long time in a country that was new? When the nation was first forming after the Revolution, what were people in our town/region worried about? How much did the geography, economy, culture, and social makeup of our region influence those concerns? How can we find out? What resources/pieces of evidence does our community have that relate to this time period and the people living in it? How can we best present this evidence and allow people of all ages to discover answers to some of these questions? How does our local focus add a crucial dimension to our understanding of a key period in American history?

The workshop is open to teachers, librarians, archivists, members of local historical societies, and all interested local history enthusiasts. Workshop faculty will include Jayne Gordon and Kathleen Barker of the MHS Department of Education and Public Programs, Historian Christian Samito, MHS Teacher Fellow Dean Eastman, andLaura Lowell, MHS Manuscript Processor. Worksho ppartners include Salem Maritime National Historic Site and The Trustees of Reservations. There is a $25 charge to cover lunches both days; program and material costs have been generously funded by the Saltonstall Foundation. Educators can earn 14 PDPs and 1 Graduate Credit (for an additional fee) from Framingham State University.

Additional two-day workshops will be held in Boston on July 15/16, Freedom’s Way National Heritage Area towns of Leominster and Lancaster (central Massachusetts) on July 30/31, and in Pittsfield (Berkshires) on November 8/9.

To Register: Please complete this registration form and send it with your payment to: Kathleen Barker, Massachusetts Historical Society, 1154 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02215.

For Additional Information: Contact the Education Department: 617-646-0557 or education@masshist.org.

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Brown Bag Working to Become: Women, Work, and Literary Legacy in American Women’s Postbellum Literature 14 August 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Kristin Allukian, University of Florida

This project is interdisciplinary in nature and has foundations in both 19th-century American women’s history and literature. It focuses on literary representations of career women by late 19th-century American women writers. By reimagining the intertwinings and interconnections of society and women’s paid labor, the project shows that work, and women’s work in particular, was no longer a fixed entity that showed up in the lives of those living during the 19th-century but rather was a shaping force.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 17 August 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM this event is free

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

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Brown Bag Our Peculiar Family: The Massachusetts Schools for Idiotic Children, 1848-1900 21 August 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Kathryn Irving, Yale University

In 1848, the first American institutions for children with intellectual disability opened in Massachusetts. The state school in Boston was the project of prominent reformers; the private school in Barre was founded by an entrepreneurial physician. Despite their differences, the trajectories of both schools were grounded in the state's social and political climate. This project explores the schools, their staff and pupils, from their antebellum origins up to the Eugenics movement.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 24 August 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM this event is free

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

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Exhibition "Estlin Cummings Wild West Show" 30 August 2013.Friday, 10:00AM - 4:00PM this event is free Monday through Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm

Estlin Cummings Wild West Show“Estlin Cummings Wild West Show” features a selection of E.E. Cummings’s childhood writings and drawings, showcasing the young poet’s earliest experiments with words and illustrations. Drawings and paintings include ink blots, watercolors, and sketches in pen and pencil of cowboys and Indians, boats, the “world’s tallest tower,” wild west shows, hunting expeditions, locomotives, zoos, circuses, elephants, and house plans.

Image: “Estlin Cummings Wild West Show,” drawing by E. E. Cummings. From the Cummings-Clarke family papers. Artwork by E.E. Cummings. Used by permission of the Trustees for the E. E. Cummings Trust.

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Building Closed Labor Day 31 August 2013.Saturday, all day The MHS will be closed Saturday, 31 August, and Monday, 2 September, in observance of Labor Day.

The MHS will be closed Saturday, 31 August, and Monday, 2 September, in observance of Labor Day.

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Building Closed Labor Day 2 September 2013.Monday, all day The MHS will be closed Saturday, 31 August, and Monday, 2 September, in observance of Labor Day.

The MHS will be closed Saturday, 31 August, and Monday, 2 September, in observance of Labor Day.

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Brown Bag Brahmin Capitalism: Bankers, Populists, and the Making of the Modern American Economy 4 September 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Noam Maggor, Vanderbilt University

This project charts the business and politics of Boston’s late-nineteenth-century transformation from an anchor of an industrial region into the second largest banking center in North America. It explores how a vanguard of financiers from the city’s old elite created a wide-ranging network of capital flows that funded railroads, mines, agriculture, and industry across the continent, and how this process of capital migration, in turn, redefined urban politics on the local level. Far from seamless, this transformation triggered an array of political controversies over the priorities of city government, and more broadly, over the future shape of American capitalism.

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Exhibition "The Education of Our Children Is Never out of My Mind" 7 September 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 4:00PM this event is free Monday through Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm

Letter from John Adams to Abigail, August 28, 1774From 13 June through 7 September, the Society will display letters written by John and Abigail Adams to each other, to their children, and to friends and family regarding their views on education.

In a letter to his wife, Abigail, dated August 28, 1774, John Adams writes: “The Education of our Children is never out of my Mind. Train them to Virtue, habituate them to industry, activity, and Spirit. Make them consider every Vice, as shamefull and unmanly: fire them with Ambition to be usefull-make them disdain to be destitute of any usefull, or ornamental Knowledge or Accomplishment. Fix their Ambition upon great and solid Objects, and their Contempt upon little, frivolous, and useless ones.”

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Exhibition The Object of History: 18th-Century Treasures from the Massachusetts Historical Society 7 September 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 4:00PM this event is free Monday through Saturday, 10 AM to 4 PM

What is the meaning of historical objects? Why are they preserved, and why have they survived? Are they valued for their associations with notable historical figures or landmark events, as objects of beauty, as the survival of relics from a distant past, or for the stories they convey? The exhibition explores these questions through the display of 18th-century portraits and objects from the Society's collections, along with rarely seen engravings, needlework, maps, weapons, furniture, clothing, scientific instruments, and silver.

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Public Program, Author Talk The Great Dissent: How Oliver Wendell Holmes Changes His Mind & Changed the History of Free Speech in America 9 September 2013.Monday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Thomas Healy

Free speech as we know it comes less from the First Amendment than from a most unexpected source: Supreme Court justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. Law professor Thomas Healy reconstructs Holmes’s journey from free-speech opponent to First Amendment hero. It is the story of a remarkable behind-the-scenes campaign by a group of progressives to bring a legal icon around to their way of thinking—and a deeply touching human narrative of an old man saved from loneliness and despair by a few unlikely young friends.

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Brown Bag Friendship in Colonial New England, 1750-1775 11 September 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Jill Bouchillon, University of Stirling

This talk will examine the different types of friendships presented in New England's print culture during the pre-Revolutionary era. Although there is a continuity of interpersonal elements inherently understood about friendship, it is the normative social construction that is particular to time and place. This is perceptible in the popularity of certain texts and characters, in how they were received by New England colonists and how they represented nuances of friendship during the period.

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Public Program, Author Talk History Matters: Reflections on Efforts to Make It Come out Right 12 September 2013.Thursday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   registration required Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Bernard Bailyn, Harvard University

A talk by Bernard Bailyn, Adams University Professor and James Duncan Phillips Professor of Early American History emeritus at Harvard University. His books include The Barbarous Years: The Peopling of British North America: The Conflict of Civilizations, 1600–1675; The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution, which received the Pulitzer and Bancroft Prizes; The Ordeal of Thomas Hutchinson, which won the National Book Award for History; and Voyagers to the West, which won the Pulitzer Prize.

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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Brown Bag Manufacturing Advantage: Boston Merchant-Industrialists and the Federal Government, 1790-1840 18 September 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Lindsay Schakenbach, Brown University

This project examines the process by which the federal government made possible the rise of the Waltham-Lowell system, the first integrated factory system in the United States. While this predecessor to modern industry is typically viewed as a product of merchant wealth and innovative entrepreneurship, it also benefited from federal support in the form of diplomacy, national expansion, and patent legislation. This research is part of her dissertation, which seeks to explain the early republican transition from merchant to industrial capitalism by analyzing the development of the New England arms and textile industries in the context of federal patronage and expanding U.S. geopolitical dominance in the Americas.

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Public Program, Author Talk Smuggler Nation: How Illicit Trade Made America 18 September 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   registration required Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Peter Andreas, Brown University Smuggler Nation

Smuggler NationProviding a sweeping narrative history from colonial times to the present, Smuggler Nation is the first book to retell the story of America as a series of highly contentious battles over clandestine commerce. As Peter Andreas demonstrates, smuggling has played a pivotal role in America's birth, westward expansion, and economic development, while anti-smuggling campaigns have enhanced the federal government's policing powers.

Peter Andreas is Professor of Political Science and International Studies at Brown University. His research focuses on the intersection between security, political economy, and cross-border crime in comparative and historical perspective. His books include, Blue Helmets and Black Markets: The Business of Survival in the Siege of Sarajevo (2008); Policing the Globe: Criminalization and Crime Control in International Relations (2006); and Border Games: Policing the U.S.-Mexico Divide (2nd edition 2009).

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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Graduate Student Reception 19 September 2013.Thursday, 6:00PM - 8:00PM this event is free

Calling all graduate students and faculty! Please plan to join us for our fourth annual Graduate Student Reception. This is a wonderful opportunity for students in history, American Studies, and related fields to meet people from other universities, enjoy great refreshments, and learn about the resources that the MHS has to offer. Last year students from more than a dozen universities participated. This event is free of charge; RSVP required: phone 617-646-0568 or email kviens@masshist.org.

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Public Program, Author Talk City Water, City Life: The Infrastructure of Ideas in Urbanizing Boston 23 September 2013.Monday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   registration required Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Carl Smith, Northwestern University City Water, City Life

City Water, City LifeThis talk will discuss how a city is more than a massing of citizens, a layout of buildings and streets, or an arrangement of political, economic, and social institutions. It is also an infrastructure of ideas, an embodiment of the beliefs, values, and aspirations of the people who created it. In no instance was this more the case than in the construction of Boston’s first comprehensive public waterworks, the Cochituate aqueduct system, which opened on 25 October 1848.

Carl Smith is the Franklyn Bliss Snyder Professor of English & American Studies at Northwestern University where he teaches American literature and cultural history. He is the author of numerous books, including Chicago and the American Literary Imagination, 1880-1920 (1984) and of Urban Disorder and the Shape of Belief: The Great Chicago Fire, the Haymarket Bomb, and the Model Town of Pullman (1994), which won the Urban History Association's prize for Best Book in North American Urban History and the Society of Midland Authors' first prize for non-fiction. His most recent book, The Plan of Chicago: Daniel Burnham and the Remaking of the American City (2006), won the Lewis Mumford Prize for Best Book in Planning History, given by the Society of American City, Regional, and Planning History.

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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Public Program, Author Talk Amy Lowell Anew 24 September 2013.Tuesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Carl Rollyson, Baruch College

The controversial American poet Amy Lowell (1874–1925) excelled as the impresario for the “new poetry” that became news across the U.S. in the years after World War I. This provocative new biography restores Amy Lowell to her full humanity in an era that, at last, is beginning to appreciate the contributions of gays and lesbians to America’s cultural heritage.

Carl Rollyson, professor of journalism at Baruch College, will focus on the discovery of letters in the Society’s collections that altered his understanding of the shape and significance of the poet’s life. Rollyson has published more than 40 books ranging in subject matter from biographies of Marilyn Monroe, Lillian Hellman, Martha Gellhorn, Norman Mailer, Rebecca West, Susan Sontag, Jill Craigie, Dana Andrews, Sylvia Plath, and Amy Lowell to studies of American culture, genealogy, children's biography, film and literary criticism.

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Immigration and Urban History Seminar Emergent Ghettos: Black Neighborhoods in New York and Chicago, 1880-1940 24 September 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to received advance copies of the seminar papers.
John Logan, Brown University Comment: William Julius Wilson, Harvard University

Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

Authors will not read their essays but will offer brief remarks; please read the paper ahead of time and come prepared to join in the discussion. If you are not a subscriber to the series (subscribers receive online advance access to the papers) you may pick up a copy at the MHS front desk on the day of the program. Please phone 617-646-0568 with any questions.

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Brown Bag Narrative of a Journey: Louisa Catherine Adams and the Vexed Question of Identity 25 September 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Louisa Thomas, author of Conscience: Two Soldiers, Two Pacifists, One Family--A Test of Will and Faith in World War I (2011)

This program will present research from a forthcoming biography of Louisa Catherine Johnson Adams, especially focusing on new evidence about her background. It will also explore tensions in her writings, in an attempt to understand her better as a Johnson, as an Adams, and simply as herself. 

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Early American History Seminar Town Hall Meeting with the New Director of the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture 1 October 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to received advance copies of the seminar papers.
Karin A. Wulf, College of William and Mary and Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture

Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

Authors will not read their essays but will offer brief remarks; please read the paper ahead of time and come prepared to join in the discussion. If you are not a subscriber to the series (subscribers receive online advance access to the papers) you may pick up a copy at the MHS front desk on the day of the program. Please phone 617-646-0568 with any questions.

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Brown Bag “New Englands Teares, for Old England's Feares”: Comparing Attitudes Toward Infertility in Early Modern England and Colonial New England 2 October 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Marisa Benoit, University of Oxford

This project is a comparative study of attitudes toward infertility in early modern England and colonial New England from c.1650 to 1750 through analysis of a wide variety of contemporary sources. To compare early modern England with its own “child,” colonial New England, is to examine two societies linked by cultural and religious norms but facing different challenges. These challenges are explored by analyzing infertility’s representation in popular, religious, and medical literature and personal writing from both societies. As the two societies’ relationship was often described through reproductive language, analyzing representations of infertility provides a different angle through which to view the links between “Old” and New England while highlighting the connections between the sources themselves. The topic of infertility provides the opportunity to untangle the web of emerging anatomical discoveries, social ideas about gender relations, the family, and the importance of children, and religious ideas about generation that characterized attitudes toward reproduction in the early modern period.

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Notice Library Closing @ 3:30PM 3 October 2013.Thursday, all day close
Special Event, Member Event The Cabinetmaker & the Carver - Preview Reception 3 October 2013.Thursday, 6:00PM - 8:00PM Please RSVP   registration required This event is open only to MHS Fellows and Members. Desk and bookcase

Desk and bookcaseMHS Fellows and Members are invited to a special preview and reception for the Society’s fall exhibition. The Cabinetmaker & the Carver provides visitors with an opportunity to view nearly 50 examples of rarely seen furniture borrowed from distinguished private collections in the greater Boston area. Ranging in date from teh late-17th century to about 1900, these privately held treasures, generously lent by their owners, provide a look at the trajectory of cabinetmaking in the Hub.

To Reserve: Tickets are $25 (no charge for MHS Fund Giving Circle members). Please click on the registration link to purchase tickets.

The exhibition is presented as part of Four Centuries of Massachusetts Furniture a collaborative project of the Massachusetts Historical Society and ten other institutions that features exhibitions, lectures, demonstrations and publications to celebrate the Bay State's legacy of furniture-making. Visit fourcenturies.org

Image: Desk and bookcase, carving attributed to John Welch, Boston, Mass. ca. 1750-1755, private collection. Photograph by Laura Wulf

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Public Program, Exhibition New Thoughts on Old Things: Four Centuries of Furnishing the Northeast 4 October 2013.Friday, 10:00AM - 5:30PM registration required at no cost Location: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Co-sponsored by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Colonial Society of Massachusetts, and the Massachusetts Historical Society, this day-long symposium is devoted to new scholarly research on the design, production, and circulation of furnishings in New England. New Thoughts on Old Things will feature keynote speaker Glenn Adamson, Head of Research at the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) in London, along with a select group of emerging scholars. The event is associated with Four Centuries of Massachusetts Furniture—a collaborative of 11 institutions celebrating furniture and furniture-making in Massachusetts. For more information on the Four Centuries initiative and events, please visit: http://www.fourcenturies.org/.

To Reserve: The symposium is free with admission to the museum. Advanced ticketing recommended. For information, please contact Lauren Spengler at lspengler@mfa.org.

Event Details

Keynote Speaker: Glenn Adamson, Head of Research, V&A Museum, Furniture History: The View from Old England

Speakers

  • Tania Batley, E. W. Vaill Patent Chair Manufacturer (Worcester, MA)
  • Nicole Belolan, Aunt Patty's Furniture: Adult Cradles and the History of Physical Mobility Impairment in Early America
  • Louisa Brouwer, “Vanishable Antiques”: The Story of Israel Sack, Inc., and the Building of an American Industry
  • Ben Colman, Between Memory and Antiquity:The Circulation of Seventeenth-Century Furniture in 18th-Century Plymouth
  • Philippe Halbert, Noblesse in New France: Furnishing the Hôtel de Vaudreuil and the Chateau Saint-Louis 1725-1760
  • Marissa S. Hershon, The Egyptian Revival in the 1870's: The Reception Room at Cedar Hill (Warwick, RI)
  • Jennifer N. Johnson, Patterns of Gentility: Pictorial Needlework Upholstery of Eighteenth-Century Newport
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Exhibition The Cabinetmaker & the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections 4 October 2013 to 17 January 2014 Monday through Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm


This exhibition provides visitors with a rare opportunity to see nearly 50 examples of significant furniture borrowed from distinguished private collections in the greater Boston area. Ranging in date from the late-17th-century to about 1900, these privately held treasures, generously lent by their owners, provide a look at the trajectory of cabinetmaking in the Hub. They are supplemented with documents, portraits, and other material from the Society's collections that help place the furniture into historical context.

The exhibition is part of Four Centuries of Massachusetts Furniture a collaborative project of the Massachusetts Historical Society and ten other institutions that features exhibitions, lectures, demonstrations and publications to celebrate the Bay State's legacy of furniture-making. Visit fourcenturies.org.

Image: Desk and bookcase, carving attributed to John Welch, Boston, Mass., ca. 1750–1755, private collection. Photo by Laura Wulf.

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Teacher Workshop Painless: A Survival Guide to the "Dreaded" History Project 5 October 2013.Saturday, 9:00AM - 3:00PM registration required at no cost
WHO: For teachers, students, librarians, archivists
WHAT: A FREE hands-on workshop
WHEN: Saturday, October 5, 2013 9:00 am – 3:00 pm
WHERE: Massachusetts Historical Society

 

Using the broad theme of “Rights and Responsibilities” as a springboard, you’ll explore how to approach primary source research in special libraries and archives, the Massachusetts Historical Society & the National Archives, through a range of historical documents, including letters, diaries, songs, petitions, and government records.

You’ll collect evidence, analyze information, draw conclusions, assemble your findings into an historical narrative, and design a history project as a paper, website, exhibit, documentary, or performance.

By applying National History Day methodologies, the “dreaded” history project is transformed into the creation of imaginative, engaging, and meaningful history experiences. Representatives from Massachusetts History Day will share how the program works.

This free workshop is open to students, teachers, librarians, and archivists. Lunch will be provided. Teachers can earn 10 Professional Development Points.

For more information, or to register, please contact Kathleen Barker at the Massachusetts Historical Society: education@masshist.org or (617) 646-0557.

This workshop is presented by the Massachusetts Historical Society and the National Archives at Boston in collaboration with Massachusetts History Day.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 5 October 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM this event is free

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

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Environmental History Seminar From Wilderness Environments to Well-Ordered Plantations: The Gifts of God Perfected by Industry 8 October 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to received advance copies of the seminar papers.
John Lauritz Larson, Purdue University Comment: Joyce Chaplin, Harvard University

Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

Authors will not read their essays but will offer brief remarks; please read the paper ahead of time and come prepared to join in the discussion. If you are not a subscriber to the series (subscribers receive online advance access to the papers) you may pick up a copy at the MHS front desk on the day of the program. Please phone 617-646-0568 with any questions.

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Brown Bag An Empire of Fakes: Counterfeit Goods in Eighteenth-Century America 9 October 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Catherine Cangany, University of Notre Dame

This project investigates the market, commodities, producers, suppliers, vendors, and consumers of spurious merchandise in early Anglo-America. In so doing, it reclaims forgotten commercial actors and networks and downplays the primacy of mercantilism to emphasize individualism (defined by counterfeits' propensity to subvert legal commerce for personal gain). Given that the underground economy constituted half of all economic transactions in this period, individualism may have been the more important commercial doctrine, a full century earlier than most scholarship suggests.

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Public Program Behind the Scenes at the Museum: The Curator’s View of "Boston Furniture from Private Collections" 9 October 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   registration required Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Gerald W. R. Ward, Museum of Fine Arts Boston This program is part of the Massachusetts Furniture Series

Boston’s history is written not only in documents and manuscripts but in the three-dimensional objects that its craftsmen and factories have made, and its citizens have used, since 1630. This presentation will offer an opportunity to learn about and tour this loan exhibition of more than 40 rarely seen examples of Boston furniture from ca. 1690 to ca. 1900 with guest curator Gerald W. R. Ward.

Gerald W. R. Ward is the Katherine Lane Weems Senior Curator of American Decorative Arts and Sculpture, Art of the Americas, at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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History of Women and Gender Seminar "Qualified Women": Women, Performance and Political Labor in the New Deal 10 October 2013.Thursday, 5:30PM - 7:00PM Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to received advance copies of the seminar papers.
Location: Schlesinger Library Kate Dossett, University of Leeds Comment: Susan Ware, General Editor, American National Biography

Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

Authors will not read their essays but will offer brief remarks; please read the paper ahead of time and come prepared to join in the discussion. If you are not a subscriber to the series (subscribers receive online advance access to the papers) you may pick up a copy at the MHS front desk on the day of the program. Please phone 617-646-0568 with any questions.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 12 October 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM this event is free

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

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Special Event, Public Program MHS Open House 14 October 2013.Monday, 10:00AM - 3:00PM this event is free This event is free and open to the public.

Join us as part of the Fenway Cultural District’s Opening Our Doors, Boston’s largest single day of free arts and cultural events. Visit the MHS and view The Cabinetmaker & the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections and enjoy a demonstration related to furniture on display by craftsmen from the North Bennet Street School.

This event is free and open to the public.

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Library Closed Columbus Day 14 October 2013.Monday, all day

The MHS library will be closed on Monday, 14 October in observance of Columbus Day. The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open as part of the Fenway Alliance's Opening Our Doors event.

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Public Program, Author Talk Capital of the World: The Race to Host the United Nations 16 October 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   registration required Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Charlene Mires, Rutgers University

In 1945–1946, Bostonians pursued an ambitious dream: to become not only “the Hub” but also the Capital of the World—the headquarters site for the new United Nations. Drawing from her book, Charlene Mires will present an illustrated talk about the dramatic, surprising, and often comic story of civic boosterism awakened by the UN ’s search for a home.

Charlene Mires is Associate Professor of History and Director of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Center for the Humanities at Rutgers University—Camden. She is the author of Independence Hall in American Memory, editor-in-chief of The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia, and a co-recipient of a Pulitzer Prize in journalism.

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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Public Program, Author Talk Book of Ages: The Life and Opinions of Jane Franklin 17 October 2013.Thursday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM this event is free Location: Boston Public Library, Copley Square Jill Lepore, Harvard University

Jane Franklin, the sister of Benjamin Franklin, was a constant presence and influence in her brother's life. Like her brother, Jane Franklin was a passionate reader, a gifted writer, and an astonishingly shrewd political commentator. Making use of a collection of little-studied material, including documents, objects, and recently discovered portraits, author Jill Lepore brings Jane Franklin to life. Lepore provides a revelatory portrait of Benjamin Franklin’s youngest sister and a history of history itself.

Jill Lepore is the David Woods Kemper '41 Professor of American History at Harvard University and a staff writer at The New Yorker.

To Reserve: This event is free and open to the public. Visit the Boston Public Library's website for additional information and directions.

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Public Program, Exhibition The Call of Classicism: Boston Furniture from the Early 19th Century 18 October 2013.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM this event is free Exhibition Spotlight Irfan Ali

The early 19th century was a time of prosperity for the City of Boston and produced some extraordinary furniture. Irfan Ali, a collector of American furniture, will examine Boston’s answer to the call of classicism by looking at furniture made by craftsmen such as Thomas Seymour, Isaac Vose, and Archibald and Emmons.

To Register: This program is free and open to the public.

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Brown Bag Reviving a Spirit of Controversy: Early American Catholicism and the Separation of Church and State, 1633-1839 23 October 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Nicholas Pellegrino, University of Nevada, Las Vegas

This project explores the ways in which American Catholics fought to establish, preserve, reclaim, and expand conceptions of religious liberty in early America. Virtually ignored in church-state historiography until the 1840s, Catholics played a heretofore overlooked role in challenging and redefining America's ideal church-state relationship during the colonial period and in the early Republic. By paying closer attention to how Catholics interacted with the laws and culture around them, this project offers fresh insights into questions pertaining to church-state relations and the history of religious freedom.

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Public Program, Exhibition “Newest Fashion” Furniture in Boston, 1690–1730: A Transatlantic View 23 October 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   registration required Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Edward S. Cooke, Jr., Yale University This event is part of the Massachusetts Furniture Series

This program will explore how the influx of English cabinetmakers and chairmakers and the fashionable desires of a new Boston elite combined to transform the furniture trade in Boston in the period after the establishment of the new Charter in 1691. Producers and consumers collaborated to invent a new Boston that was a commercial center more than a providential city on a hill. 

Edward S. Cooke, Jr., the Charles F. Montgomery Professor of American Decorative Arts in the Department of the History of Art at Yale University, has published extensively on both historical and contemporary furniture. Prior to returning to Yale in 1992, he was a curator at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and taught at Boston University.

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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Biography Seminar Telling Lives: Megan Marshall Interviews George E. Vaillant about the Harvard Grant Study 24 October 2013.Thursday, 5:30PM - 7:30PM Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to received advance copies of the seminar papers.
George E. Vaillant, Harvard Medical School, author of Triumphs of Experience: The Men of the Harvard Grant Study Moderator: Megan Marshall, author of Margaret Fuller: A New American Life

Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 26 October 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM this event is free

Join us for a tour of the Society's public rooms. Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the tour touches on the history and collections of the MHS and lasts approximately 90 minutes.

The tour is free and open to the public. No reservation is required for individuals or small groups. Parties of 8 or more should contact the MHS prior to attending a tour. For more information please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

Free and open to the public.

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Immigration and Urban History Seminar Dynamic Tensions: Charles Atlas, Immigrant Bodybuilders, and Eugenics, 1920-45 29 October 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to received advance copies of the seminar papers.
Dominique Padurano, Scarsdale High School Comment: E. Anthony Rotundo, Phillips Academy Andover

Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568.

Authors will not read their essays but will offer brief remarks; please read the paper ahead of time and come prepared to join in the discussion. If you are not a subscriber to the series (subscribers receive online advance access to the papers) you may pick up a copy at the MHS front desk on the day of the program. Please phone 617-646-0568 with any questions.

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Author Talk, Public Program Around the World in 500 Years 30 October 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   registration required Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Joyce Chaplin, Harvard University Round About the Earth

Round About the EarthAre we more "global" today than people in the past were, better able to span and understand the entire planet?  Planetary consciousness, our awareness of living on a globe with finite resources, did not begin with those luminous, exquisitely beautiful Apollo 8 photographs of the Earth taken from space in 1968, as is often asserted. Rather, it began with the now-500-year-old tradition of going around the world, the longest human activity done on a planetary scale. Around-the-world travelers' long and self-aware tradition of engagement with the planet questions our sense of uniqueness and may teach us something worth knowing about why we think of the Earth the way we do.

Joyce E. Chaplin is the James Duncan Phillips Professor of Early American History at Harvard University and author of Round About the Earth: Circumnavigation from Magellan to Orbit.

To Register: Tickets are $10 per person (no charge for Fellows and Members). Please call 617-646-0560 or register online by clicking the ticket icon above.

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