Calendar of Events

Exhibition

Letters and Photographs from the Battle Country

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

Details

November

MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 2 November 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.

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Early American History Seminar The Poison Plot 5 November 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required Elaine Crane, Fordham University Comment: Irene Q. Brown, University of Connecticut 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 Pursuing Respectability in the Cannibal Isles: Americans in Nineteenth-Century Fiji 6 November 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Nancy Shoemaker, University of Connecticut This project resurrects the history of the China Trade and the early nineteenth-century Pacific as ...

This project resurrects the history of the China Trade and the early nineteenth-century Pacific as key sites of American economic and political intervention. It explores the formation of an American sense of self through a study of several individuals, including a “beachcomber,” a sea captain’s wife, and a U.S. Consul.

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Library Closed Library Closed 7 November 2013.Thursday, all day In preparation for our annual gala event, Cocktails with Clio, the MHS library will be closed on ...

In preparation for our annual gala event, Cocktails with Clio, the MHS library will be closed on Thursday, 7 November.

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Cocktails with Clio 7 November 2013.Thursday, 6:00PM - 9:00PM The fourth annual Cocktails with Clio will take place on 7 November 2013. Named for the muse of ...

The fourth annual Cocktails with Clio will take place on 7 November 2013. Named for the muse of history, this festive evening celebrates American history and the 222-year-old mission of the Society. Following an elegant cocktail buffet at the Society’s building, guests will proceed to the nearby Harvard Club for dessert and a conversation with political commentator, author, and MHS Overseer Cokie Roberts. As the evening progresses, Ms. Roberts will discuss her approach to writing bestselling books about history and historical figures, her work as a political commentator, and how she has used MHS collections in her research.

Tickets cost $250 per person. All net proceeds from the event will support the Society's outreach efforts.


Become a sponsor of Cocktails with Clio

Our sponsors are crucial to the success of the event. As a result of their generosity, the Society’s outreach efforts have expanded. The additional funding has an important impact on our programming, and this year we hope to surpass last year’s goal in order to further enhance our exhibitions, public programs, and education initiatives. 

We are proud to offer sponsorship opportunities at the following levels:
$5,000 - Clio’s Circle
$2,500 - Patrons of the Muse
$1,000 - Friends of the Muse   

For more information about becoming a sponsor, please contact Carol Knauff at cknauff@masshist.org or 617-646-0554. 

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Building Closed Veterans Day 9 November 2013.Saturday, all day The MHS will be closed Saturday, 9 November, and Monday, 11 November, in observance of Labor Day.

The MHS will be closed Saturday, 9 November, and Monday, 11 November, in observance of Labor Day.

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Building Closed Veterans Day 11 November 2013.Monday, all day The MHS will be closed Saturday, 9 November, and Monday, 11 November, in observance of Labor Day.

The MHS will be closed Saturday, 9 November, and Monday, 11 November, in observance of Labor Day.

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Environmental History Seminar Making Land in Earthquake Country: Urban Development and Disaster in San Francisco 12 November 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required Joanna Dyl, University of South Florida Comment: Conevery Bolton Valencius, University of Massachusetts—Boston 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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Teacher Workshop, Public Programbegins Old Towns/New Country: The First Years of a New Nation 15 November 2013.Friday, 8:30AM - 3:30PM This program will take place in Pittsfield, Massachusetts This two-day workshop explores how to use local resources – documents, artifacts, landscapes ...

This two-day workshop explores 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 western Massachusetts 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 the MHS Department of Education and Public Programs, Gary Shattuck, author of Artful and Designing Men: The Trials of Job Shattuck and the Regulation of 1786-1787, MHS Teacher Fellow Dean Eastman, and the staff of the Berkshire Historical Society. The program will also include visits to the Berkshire Athenaeum and the Crane Museum of Papermaking. There is a $25 charge to cover lunches both days; program and material costs have been generously funded by the Richard Saltonstall Charitable Foundation. Educators can earn 15 PDPs and 1 Graduate Credit (for an additional fee) from Framingham State University.

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 The Urban Archival Regime in Trans-national Perspective: Roxbury, Africville, Hogan's Alley 15 November 2013.Friday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Karen Bridget Murray, Kennesaw State University and York University This talk discusses variations in archival regimes, their relationship to the writing of Black urban ...

This talk discusses variations in archival regimes, their relationship to the writing of Black urban history, and their implications for efforts to secure redress for past urban spatial injustices, such as school bussing in Boston, and the razing of African-Canadian communities in Vancouver and Halifax.

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Public Program, Exhibition Early Boston Furniture: Style, Construction, Materials, & Use 15 November 2013.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM Exhibition Spotlight John and Marie Vander Sande American furniture collectors John and Marie Vander Sande will discuss late 17th-century joined case ...

American furniture collectors John and Marie Vander Sande will discuss late 17th-century joined case pieces, early 18th-century cabinetwork, and pre-1730 chairs produced in Boston. The style, construction techniques, woods chosen, and motivation for the applied decoration, as well as the use of the pieces in the home, will be highlighted.

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

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Teacher Workshop, Public Programends Old Towns/New Country: The First Years of a New Nation 16 November 2013.Saturday, 8:30AM - 3:30PM This program will take place in Pittsfield, Massachusetts This two-day workshop explores how to use local resources – documents, artifacts, landscapes ...

This two-day workshop explores 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 western Massachusetts 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 the MHS Department of Education and Public Programs, Gary Shattuck, author of Artful and Designing Men: The Trials of Job Shattuck and the Regulation of 1786-1787, MHS Teacher Fellow Dean Eastman, and the staff of the Berkshire Historical Society. The program will also include visits to the Berkshire Athenaeum and the Crane Museum of Papermaking. There is a $25 charge to cover lunches both days; program and material costs have been generously funded by the Richard Saltonstall Charitable Foundation. Educators can earn 15 PDPs and 1 Graduate Credit (for an additional fee) from Framingham State University.

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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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 16 November 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 12:00PM 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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Public Program The Sullivan Brothers 19 November 2013.Tuesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Murray Forbes Governor James and General John Sullivan, two brothers who forged remarkable and versatile careers ...

Governor James and General John Sullivan, two brothers who forged remarkable and versatile careers during the American Revolution and early republic, were honored in their own time and remained remembered and respected through the 19th century. How should we remember them today? Join Murray Forbes as he discusses his work on the fascinating lives of these two men.

Today we remember James Sullivan as first Massachusetts Governor of Irish descent and as founder and first president of The Massachusetts Historical Society. Yet his achievements defending Irish immigrants, elucidating injustices in Irish history and his landmark legal defense of the Catholic Church against being taxed to support the Commonwealth's official Protestant religion, remain almost unknown. He was also a significant diplomat, a brilliant legal scholar, and historian who influenced the creation of the United States Constitution. He continued throughout his political career to be the principal voice in Massachusetts supporting popular rights.

His brother John Sullivan initiated hostilities of the American Revolution in New Hampshire, played a major role in the Siege of Boston, performed heroically at Long Island, Brandywine, and Germantown, brilliantly at Trenton and Princeton, and incomparably at Butte's Hill.  While serving in Canada he kept the American Army intact during the failed invasion of 1776, and in 1779, Sullivan led a massive campaign against the Iroquois who had sided with the British in the Revolution. As member of the Continental Congress he strengthened the French and Spanish alliances and allayed anti-Catholic prejudice. After the war, he served three terms as Governor of New Hampshire and, confronting hundreds of angry farmers, personally averted another Shays's rebellion. Yet Sullivan's military career has sometimes been downplayed, while his other accomplishments have been undervalued.

Their immigrant father, an indentured servant and dispossessed Chief of Clan O'Sullivan Beara, had extraordinary Irish forbears who rose to prominence in conditions partly presaging the American Revolution. He passed something extraordinary on to these sons.

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Brown Bag On a Bender with Uncle Sam: Freedom, Resources, and the Lure of Progress in the Early Republic 20 November 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM John Lauritz Larson, Purdue University How did the American Revolution change the colonial American economic culture and patterns of ...

How did the American Revolution change the colonial American economic culture and patterns of natural resource exploitation? How did the “release of energy” produced by the new political order contribute to new definitions of public and private acquisitiveness, wealth, and progress?

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Public Program, Exhibition Boston & Its Craft Community, 1650–1850 20 November 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm J. Ritchie Garrison, Winterthur This program is part of the Massachusetts Furniture Series J. Ritchie Garrison, the Director of the Winterthur Program in American Material Culture, will ...

J. Ritchie Garrison, the Director of the Winterthur Program in American Material Culture, will explore Boston’s craft community with a focus on three themes: production as part of a regional network, inequalities that drove artisans’ decisions, and the city’s furnituremakers’ adaptations to a number of factors.

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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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 23 November 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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John F. Kennedy Public Program, Author Talk JFK & His Enemies: A Profile in Power, 1946-1963 25 November 2013.Monday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Thomas Whalen, Boston University The famed 19th-century humorist Finley Peter Dunne once commented that life “would not be ...

The famed 19th-century humorist Finley Peter Dunne once commented that life “would not be worth living if we didn’t keep our enemies.” John F. Kennedy could certainly appreciated the wisdom behind this observation. At nearly every stage of his noteworthy political career, Kennedy collected his fair share of enemies. Some, like Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., or Richard Nixon, presented formidable political obstacles to his attaining public office. Others, like Nikita Khrushchev during the Cuban Missile Crisis, threatened the very survival of the human race. This lecture will focus on the complex and strained relationship Kennedy had with longtime FBI director J. Edgar Hoover and how their mutual hostility inadvertently led to his death at the hands of Lee Harvey Oswald on November 22, 1963.

Thomas J. Whalen is an associate professor of social science at Boston University and author of Kennedy versus Lodge: The 1952 Massachusetts Senate Race. His forthcoming book, JFK and His Enemies, will be published in March 2014. An expert in modern American politics, American foreign policy and the American presidency, Whalen's commentary has appeared in the New York Times, ABCNews.com, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times, and the AP. He has also appeared on several national broadcast outlets including CNN, NPR and Reuters TV.

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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Immigration and Urban History Seminar "A Place Reeking with Rottenness": The "Corpus Christi Situation" (1933) and Legacies of Abusive Immigrant Detention 26 November 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required David Hernández, Mount Holyoke College Comment: Daniel Kanstroom, Boston College Law School 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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Building Closed Thanksgiving 28 November 2013.Thursday, all day The MHS will be closed Thursday, 28 November, through Saturday, 30 November, in observance of ...

The MHS will be closed Thursday, 28 November, through Saturday, 30 November, in observance of Thanksgiving.

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Building Closed Thanksgiving 29 November 2013.Friday, all day The MHS will be closed Thursday, 28 November, through Saturday, 30 November, in observance of ...

The MHS will be closed Thursday, 28 November, through Saturday, 30 November, in observance of Thanksgiving.

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Building Closed Thanksgiving 30 November 2013.Saturday, all day The MHS will be closed Thursday, 28 November, through Saturday, 30 November, in observance of ...

The MHS will be closed Thursday, 28 November, through Saturday, 30 November, in observance of Thanksgiving.

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December
Early American History Seminar Occupying Boston: An Intimate History of the Boston Massacre 3 December 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required Serena Zabin, Carleton College Comment: Lisa Wilson, Connecticut College 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 "To Spread Liberty to the North": The Invasion of Canada and the Coming of American Independence, 1774-1776 4 December 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Amy Noel, Boston University This project seeks to explain the enormous changes taking place in American society between 1774 and ...

This project seeks to explain the enormous changes taking place in American society between 1774 and 1776 by examining the failed invasion of Canada. The campaign played a crucial role in shaping colonial attitudes toward Catholicism and Britishness, the escalation of rebellion into an imperial civil war, and the looming issue of American independence.

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Public Program, Exhibition Elegant Interiors in Early 19th-Century Boston 4 December 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Richard and Jane Nylander This program is part of the Massachusetts Furniture Series Early 19th-century Boston witnessed new styles of architecture and furniture. Homes were embellished ...

Early 19th-century Boston witnessed new styles of architecture and furniture. Homes were embellished by a wealth of imported goods such as paintings and sculpture, porcelain, and luxurious fabrics. This lecture will provide a glimpse of the interiors of the homes of some of the city’s wealthiest citizens, among them Nathan Appleton, Charles Russell Codman, Benjamin Bussey, Barney Smith, and David Hinckley.

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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St. Nicholas Special Event, Member Event MHS Fellows & Members Holiday Party 5 December 2013.Thursday, 6:00PM - 8:00PM Sold-out event. Please call 617-646-0552 to be added to the waiting list. MHS Fellows and Members are invited to celebrate the season with the Trustees and staff of the MHS ...

St. NicholasMHS Fellows and Members are invited to celebrate the season with the Trustees and staff of the MHS at a special year-end reception. The event is open only to MHS Fellows and Members.

Become a Member today.

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Public Program, Author Talk End of Days: The Assassination of John F. Kennedy 6 December 2013.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM James Swanson Fifty years ago, our country was jolted by tragedy: our 35th president was shot. In End of Days: ...

Fifty years ago, our country was jolted by tragedy: our 35th president was shot. In End of Days: The Assassination of John F. Kennedy, Edgar award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of the highly acclaimed Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase For Lincoln's Killer and historian James. L. Swanson, offers a comprehensive understanding of this historic day, lending edge-of-your seat, storyteller's mastery to the subject. With fascinating, colorful detail culled from vast historic resources, Swanson sets the stage for his central drama: the unfolding of the private final hours of John F. Kennedy and Lee Harvey Oswald as their destinies converge in a rifle's crosshairs-one man bound for infamy, the other for myth. Told in characteristic riveting narrative style, End of Days tracks the seemingly inevitable, and equally improbable, collision course between two men that would change history, devastate a hopeful generation, and spur one of our country's greatest national mysteries.

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

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 7 December 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 Panel Discussion: Telling Environmental History 10 December 2013.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required Brian Donahue, Brandeis University, Karl Haglund, Department of Conservation and Recreation, Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Megan Kate Nelson, Brown University, Aaron Sachs, Cornell University Moderator: Anthony N. Penna, Northeastern University Be sure to RSVP for this program by emailing seminars@masshist.org or phoning 617-646-0568. There ...

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

There are no precirculated papers for this program.

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Brown Bag The Memory Frontier: Memorializing King Philip's War in the Native Northeast 11 December 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Christine DeLucia, Mount Holyoke College The late 17th-century conflict known as King Philip's War has haunted colonial New Englanders and ...

The late 17th-century conflict known as King Philip's War has haunted colonial New Englanders and diverse tribal communities.  Their remembrances of this violence have taken shape in highly local ways, through material objects, performances, and stories about landscapes.  This study highlights the importance of such overlooked sources for understanding the persistent, widespread effects of warfare and settler colonialism in the Northeast.

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Public Program Making History: The Salem Witch Trials in Documents & Artifacts 11 December 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Presentation & Exhibition Viewing Facilitator: James H. Johnson, Boston University Students of the Boston University course “Making History” discuss the MHS exhibition ...

Students of the Boston University course “Making History” discuss the MHS exhibition that they have researched and compiled. The semester-long project on Salem and the wider fear of witches in England and colonial America includes work on letters and diaries, sermons, early printed books, and objects from the period. James H. Johnson, who teaches the course, is Professor of History and a prize-winning author.

To Register: This event is free and open to the public. Please call 617-646-0560 or email education@masshist.org to register.

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History of Women and Gender Seminar Women versus Connecticut: Insights from the Pre-Roe Abortion Battles 12 December 2013.Thursday, 5:30PM - 7:00PM RSVP required Amy Kesselman, SUNY at New Paltz Comment: Linda Gordon, New York 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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Public Program, Exhibition Patriotic Banding: Red, White, and Blue 13 December 2013.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM Exhibition Spotlight Michael Wheeler In the federal period (1790-1820), wealthy Boston merchants expanded trade to the West Indies and ...

In the federal period (1790-1820), wealthy Boston merchants expanded trade to the West Indies and China. As part of this trade, they imported rare and expensive lumber into Boston. Mechanical inventions and the harnessing of waterpower made sawing this lumber into thin veneers possible. New specialists, known as inlay makers, were able to dye, stack, and cut those veneers into decorative geometric bandings which cabinetmakers used as inlays in neoclassical furniture.

Guest speaker Michael Wheeler has recently discovered that red, white, and blue banding was made in Boston during the federal period of the new republic. In his presentation, he will take us through his discovery and research, followed by a gallery tour of the inlaid furniture in our exhibition and his example of modern patriotic banding.

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

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 14 December 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 tour ...

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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Library Closed Library closing at 4:45PM 17 December 2013.Tuesday, all day The MHS library will close at 4:45PM due to inclement weather.

The MHS library will close at 4:45PM due to inclement weather.

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Library Closed Library Closed 24 December 2013.Tuesday, all day The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  ...

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Library Closed Library Closed 25 December 2013.Wednesday, all day The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  ...

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Notice Exhibition Galleries Open 26 December 2013.Thursday, all day The MHS galleries, featuring our current exhibition The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston ...

The MHS galleries, featuring our current exhibition The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open to the public from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

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Library Closed Library Closed 26 December 2013.Thursday, all day The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  ...

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Notice Exhibition Galleries Open 27 December 2013.Friday, all day The MHS galleries, featuring our current exhibition The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston ...

The MHS galleries, featuring our current exhibition The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open to the public from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

details
Library Closed Library Closed 27 December 2013.Friday, all day The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  ...

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Notice Exhibition Galleries Open 28 December 2013.Saturday, all day The MHS galleries, featuring our current exhibition The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston ...

The MHS galleries, featuring our current exhibition The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open to the public from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

details
Library Closed Library Closed 28 December 2013.Saturday, all day The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  ...

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Library Closed Library Closed 29 December 2013.Sunday, all day The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  ...

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Notice Exhibition Galleries Open 30 December 2013.Monday, all day The MHS galleries, featuring our current exhibition The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston ...

The MHS galleries, featuring our current exhibition The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open to the public from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

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Library Closed Library Closed 30 December 2013.Monday, all day The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  ...

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Library Closed Library Closed 31 December 2013.Tuesday, all day The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  ...

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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January
Library Closed Library Closed 1 January 2014.Wednesday, all day The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  ...

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Building Closed MHS Closing 2 January 2014.Thursday, 12:00PM - 4:45PM The MHS will be closing at noon on Thursday due to inclement weather. The building will be closed ...

The MHS will be closing at noon on Thursday due to inclement weather. The building will be closed Friday, 3 January, 2014.

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Building Closed MHS Closed 3 January 2014.Friday, all day The MHS will be closed Friday due to inclement weather.

The MHS will be closed Friday due to inclement weather.

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Notice Building Open Saturday 4 January 2014.Saturday, all day Building is expected to reopen Saturday, but check here for any further updates.

Building is expected to reopen Saturday, but check here for any further updates.

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Brown Bag A Climatic Debate: Abolition and Climate in Eighteenth-Century Britain 8 January 2014.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Katherine Johnston, Columbia University Toward the end of the eighteenth century, as British Parliamentary debates over abolition in the ...

Toward the end of the eighteenth century, as British Parliamentary debates over abolition in the West Indies grew increasingly serious, the Board of Trade interrogated people familiar with plantation life. What sorts of health risks did plantation work pose for enslaved laborers? Could Europeans labor in the West Indian climate? This project examines some of the testimony that absentee planters provided to Parliament and contrasts these arguments with evidence taken from these same planters' private letters. Public testimony did not always match up with personal opinions, and this project explores some of the differences between the two.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 11 January 2014.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 tour ...

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 Out of the Blue: Nantucket and the Pacific World 14 January 2014.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required Edward D. Melillo, Amherst College Comment: Nancy Shoemaker, University of Connecticut 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 Americanizing America: Yankee Civilization and the U.S. State 15 January 2014.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Dylan Yeats, New York University Please join Loring Fellow Dylan Yeats to discuss his dissertation and the research he is conducting ...

Please join Loring Fellow Dylan Yeats to discuss his dissertation and the research he is conducting at the Massachusetts Historical Society and Boston Athenaeum. Yeats is charting the evolution of what he terms the Yankee Network, comprising academic, educational, missionary, and social reform organizations, and the ways in which this network sought to harness those organs of the state that it could over the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

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Special Event, Member Event An Evening Social 15 January 2014.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 8:00PM Please RSVP   This event is open only to MHS Associate Members MHS Associate Members (age 40 and under) are invited to an evening social with the Young Friends of ...

MHS Associate Members (age 40 and under) are invited to an evening social with the Young Friends of Historic New England. Guests will gather at the MHS for a reception followed by a scavenger hunt based on "The Cabinetmaker and the Carver" exhibition.

For more information please call 617-646-0543 or e-mail awolfe@masshist.org.

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Biography Seminar When Subjects Talk Back: Oral History, Contemporary Biography, and the Runaway Interview 16 January 2014.Thursday, 5:30PM - 7:30PM RSVP required Joyce Antler, Brandeis University, Claire Potter, New School for Public Engagement, Ted Widmer, Brown University Moderator: Carol Bundy, author of The Nature of Sacrifice: A Biography of Charles Russell Lowell, Jr., 1835-64 This program will feature a conversation with Joyce Antler, Professor of American Studies at ...

This program will feature a conversation with Joyce Antler, Professor of American Studies at Brandeis, who is currently writing a book on Jewish women active in the feminist movement; Claire Potter, Professor of History at the New School, who is writing on anti-pornography efforts in the 1980s; and Ted Widmer, senior advisor to former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.

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Exhibitionends The Cabinetmaker & the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections 17 January 2014.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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Building Closed Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 20 January 2014.Monday, all day The MHS is closed for Martin Juther King Jr. Day.

The MHS is closed for Martin Juther King Jr. Day.

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Public Program, Author Talk The Hub's Metropolis: Greater Boston's Development from Railroad Suburb to Smart Growth 22 January 2014.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   Pre-Talk Reception at 5:30pm James O'Connell, National Park Service The population of the Boston Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) is ranked tenth largest in the ...

The population of the Boston Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) is ranked tenth largest in the United States. The region’s sprawling scale, with 234 municipalities, can make it difficult to grasp its character. Urban historian James O’Connell will present an illustrated talk about how metropolitan Boston has been shaped by distinct eras of suburbanization, with each one producing a land use development pattern that is still apparent on the regional landscape. Drawing upon his recent book, The Hub’s Metropolis: Greater Boston’s Development from Railroad Suburbs to Smart Growth, O’Connell will explain how each period had specific characteristics related to modes of transportation, building types, commercial uses, and the treatment of open and public space. He will describe how Boston has been a national pace-setter for country estates, railroad suburbs, metropolitan parks, land use zoning, highway beltways, shopping centers, office parks, edge cities, and central city redevelopment. The presentation will conclude with a discussion of how the region’s development legacy is shaping current efforts to promote smart growth and sustainable development.

James O’Connell is a planner and historian for the Boston Regional Office of the National Park Service. He has a B.A. from Bates College and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Urban History from the University of Chicago. He has written five books, including Becoming Cape Cod: Creating a Seaside Resort, and has contributed chapters to A Landscape History of New England, Remaking Boston: An Environmental History of the City and Its Surroundings, and The Encyclopedia of New England.

To Register: Reservations Requested. Click here to register online or call the MHS reservations line at 617-646-0560.

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Immigration and Urban History Seminar Making a Workforce, Unmaking a Working Class: The Development of "Human Capital" in Houston, 1900-1980 28 January 2014.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required Bryant Etheridge, Harvard University Comment: John R. Harris, Boston 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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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 2 November 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.

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Early American History Seminar The Poison Plot 5 November 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.
Elaine Crane, Fordham University Comment: Irene Q. Brown, University of Connecticut

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 Pursuing Respectability in the Cannibal Isles: Americans in Nineteenth-Century Fiji 6 November 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Nancy Shoemaker, University of Connecticut

This project resurrects the history of the China Trade and the early nineteenth-century Pacific as key sites of American economic and political intervention. It explores the formation of an American sense of self through a study of several individuals, including a “beachcomber,” a sea captain’s wife, and a U.S. Consul.

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Library Closed Library Closed 7 November 2013.Thursday, all day

In preparation for our annual gala event, Cocktails with Clio, the MHS library will be closed on Thursday, 7 November.

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Cocktails with Clio 7 November 2013.Thursday, 6:00PM - 9:00PM registration required

The fourth annual Cocktails with Clio will take place on 7 November 2013. Named for the muse of history, this festive evening celebrates American history and the 222-year-old mission of the Society. Following an elegant cocktail buffet at the Society’s building, guests will proceed to the nearby Harvard Club for dessert and a conversation with political commentator, author, and MHS Overseer Cokie Roberts. As the evening progresses, Ms. Roberts will discuss her approach to writing bestselling books about history and historical figures, her work as a political commentator, and how she has used MHS collections in her research.

Tickets cost $250 per person. All net proceeds from the event will support the Society's outreach efforts.


Become a sponsor of Cocktails with Clio

Our sponsors are crucial to the success of the event. As a result of their generosity, the Society’s outreach efforts have expanded. The additional funding has an important impact on our programming, and this year we hope to surpass last year’s goal in order to further enhance our exhibitions, public programs, and education initiatives. 

We are proud to offer sponsorship opportunities at the following levels:
$5,000 - Clio’s Circle
$2,500 - Patrons of the Muse
$1,000 - Friends of the Muse   

For more information about becoming a sponsor, please contact Carol Knauff at cknauff@masshist.org or 617-646-0554. 

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Building Closed Veterans Day 9 November 2013.Saturday, all day

The MHS will be closed Saturday, 9 November, and Monday, 11 November, in observance of Labor Day.

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Building Closed Veterans Day 11 November 2013.Monday, all day

The MHS will be closed Saturday, 9 November, and Monday, 11 November, in observance of Labor Day.

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Environmental History Seminar Making Land in Earthquake Country: Urban Development and Disaster in San Francisco 12 November 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.
Joanna Dyl, University of South Florida Comment: Conevery Bolton Valencius, University of Massachusetts—Boston

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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Teacher Workshop, Public Program Old Towns/New Country: The First Years of a New Nation 15 November 2013 to 16 November 2013 registration required This program will take place in Pittsfield, Massachusetts

This two-day workshop explores 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 western Massachusetts 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 the MHS Department of Education and Public Programs, Gary Shattuck, author of Artful and Designing Men: The Trials of Job Shattuck and the Regulation of 1786-1787, MHS Teacher Fellow Dean Eastman, and the staff of the Berkshire Historical Society. The program will also include visits to the Berkshire Athenaeum and the Crane Museum of Papermaking. There is a $25 charge to cover lunches both days; program and material costs have been generously funded by the Richard Saltonstall Charitable Foundation. Educators can earn 15 PDPs and 1 Graduate Credit (for an additional fee) from Framingham State University.

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 The Urban Archival Regime in Trans-national Perspective: Roxbury, Africville, Hogan's Alley 15 November 2013.Friday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Karen Bridget Murray, Kennesaw State University and York University

This talk discusses variations in archival regimes, their relationship to the writing of Black urban history, and their implications for efforts to secure redress for past urban spatial injustices, such as school bussing in Boston, and the razing of African-Canadian communities in Vancouver and Halifax.

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Public Program, Exhibition Early Boston Furniture: Style, Construction, Materials, & Use 15 November 2013.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM this event is free Exhibition Spotlight John and Marie Vander Sande

American furniture collectors John and Marie Vander Sande will discuss late 17th-century joined case pieces, early 18th-century cabinetwork, and pre-1730 chairs produced in Boston. The style, construction techniques, woods chosen, and motivation for the applied decoration, as well as the use of the pieces in the home, will be highlighted.

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

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 16 November 2013.Saturday, 10:00AM - 12:00PM 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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Public Program The Sullivan Brothers 19 November 2013.Tuesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Murray Forbes

Governor James and General John Sullivan, two brothers who forged remarkable and versatile careers during the American Revolution and early republic, were honored in their own time and remained remembered and respected through the 19th century. How should we remember them today? Join Murray Forbes as he discusses his work on the fascinating lives of these two men.

Today we remember James Sullivan as first Massachusetts Governor of Irish descent and as founder and first president of The Massachusetts Historical Society. Yet his achievements defending Irish immigrants, elucidating injustices in Irish history and his landmark legal defense of the Catholic Church against being taxed to support the Commonwealth's official Protestant religion, remain almost unknown. He was also a significant diplomat, a brilliant legal scholar, and historian who influenced the creation of the United States Constitution. He continued throughout his political career to be the principal voice in Massachusetts supporting popular rights.

His brother John Sullivan initiated hostilities of the American Revolution in New Hampshire, played a major role in the Siege of Boston, performed heroically at Long Island, Brandywine, and Germantown, brilliantly at Trenton and Princeton, and incomparably at Butte's Hill.  While serving in Canada he kept the American Army intact during the failed invasion of 1776, and in 1779, Sullivan led a massive campaign against the Iroquois who had sided with the British in the Revolution. As member of the Continental Congress he strengthened the French and Spanish alliances and allayed anti-Catholic prejudice. After the war, he served three terms as Governor of New Hampshire and, confronting hundreds of angry farmers, personally averted another Shays's rebellion. Yet Sullivan's military career has sometimes been downplayed, while his other accomplishments have been undervalued.

Their immigrant father, an indentured servant and dispossessed Chief of Clan O'Sullivan Beara, had extraordinary Irish forbears who rose to prominence in conditions partly presaging the American Revolution. He passed something extraordinary on to these sons.

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Brown Bag On a Bender with Uncle Sam: Freedom, Resources, and the Lure of Progress in the Early Republic 20 November 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free John Lauritz Larson, Purdue University

How did the American Revolution change the colonial American economic culture and patterns of natural resource exploitation? How did the “release of energy” produced by the new political order contribute to new definitions of public and private acquisitiveness, wealth, and progress?

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Public Program, Exhibition Boston & Its Craft Community, 1650–1850 20 November 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   registration required Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm J. Ritchie Garrison, Winterthur This program is part of the Massachusetts Furniture Series

J. Ritchie Garrison, the Director of the Winterthur Program in American Material Culture, will explore Boston’s craft community with a focus on three themes: production as part of a regional network, inequalities that drove artisans’ decisions, and the city’s furnituremakers’ adaptations to a number of factors.

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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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 23 November 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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Public Program, Author Talk JFK & His Enemies: A Profile in Power, 1946-1963 25 November 2013.Monday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   registration required Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Thomas Whalen, Boston University John F. Kennedy

The famed 19th-century humorist Finley Peter Dunne once commented that life “would not be worth living if we didn’t keep our enemies.” John F. Kennedy could certainly appreciated the wisdom behind this observation. At nearly every stage of his noteworthy political career, Kennedy collected his fair share of enemies. Some, like Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., or Richard Nixon, presented formidable political obstacles to his attaining public office. Others, like Nikita Khrushchev during the Cuban Missile Crisis, threatened the very survival of the human race. This lecture will focus on the complex and strained relationship Kennedy had with longtime FBI director J. Edgar Hoover and how their mutual hostility inadvertently led to his death at the hands of Lee Harvey Oswald on November 22, 1963.

Thomas J. Whalen is an associate professor of social science at Boston University and author of Kennedy versus Lodge: The 1952 Massachusetts Senate Race. His forthcoming book, JFK and His Enemies, will be published in March 2014. An expert in modern American politics, American foreign policy and the American presidency, Whalen's commentary has appeared in the New York Times, ABCNews.com, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times, and the AP. He has also appeared on several national broadcast outlets including CNN, NPR and Reuters TV.

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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Immigration and Urban History Seminar "A Place Reeking with Rottenness": The "Corpus Christi Situation" (1933) and Legacies of Abusive Immigrant Detention 26 November 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.
David Hernández, Mount Holyoke College Comment: Daniel Kanstroom, Boston College Law School

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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Building Closed Thanksgiving 28 November 2013.Thursday, all day

The MHS will be closed Thursday, 28 November, through Saturday, 30 November, in observance of Thanksgiving.

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Building Closed Thanksgiving 29 November 2013.Friday, all day

The MHS will be closed Thursday, 28 November, through Saturday, 30 November, in observance of Thanksgiving.

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Building Closed Thanksgiving 30 November 2013.Saturday, all day

The MHS will be closed Thursday, 28 November, through Saturday, 30 November, in observance of Thanksgiving.

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Early American History Seminar Occupying Boston: An Intimate History of the Boston Massacre 3 December 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.
Serena Zabin, Carleton College Comment: Lisa Wilson, Connecticut College

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 "To Spread Liberty to the North": The Invasion of Canada and the Coming of American Independence, 1774-1776 4 December 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Amy Noel, Boston University

This project seeks to explain the enormous changes taking place in American society between 1774 and 1776 by examining the failed invasion of Canada. The campaign played a crucial role in shaping colonial attitudes toward Catholicism and Britishness, the escalation of rebellion into an imperial civil war, and the looming issue of American independence.

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Public Program, Exhibition Elegant Interiors in Early 19th-Century Boston 4 December 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   registration required Pre-talk reception at 5:30 pm Richard and Jane Nylander This program is part of the Massachusetts Furniture Series

Early 19th-century Boston witnessed new styles of architecture and furniture. Homes were embellished by a wealth of imported goods such as paintings and sculpture, porcelain, and luxurious fabrics. This lecture will provide a glimpse of the interiors of the homes of some of the city’s wealthiest citizens, among them Nathan Appleton, Charles Russell Codman, Benjamin Bussey, Barney Smith, and David Hinckley.

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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Special Event, Member Event MHS Fellows & Members Holiday Party 5 December 2013.Thursday, 6:00PM - 8:00PM registration closed Sold-out event. Please call 617-646-0552 to be added to the waiting list. St. Nicholas

St. NicholasMHS Fellows and Members are invited to celebrate the season with the Trustees and staff of the MHS at a special year-end reception. The event is open only to MHS Fellows and Members.

Become a Member today.

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Public Program, Author Talk End of Days: The Assassination of John F. Kennedy 6 December 2013.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM this event is free James Swanson

Fifty years ago, our country was jolted by tragedy: our 35th president was shot. In End of Days: The Assassination of John F. Kennedy, Edgar award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of the highly acclaimed Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase For Lincoln's Killer and historian James. L. Swanson, offers a comprehensive understanding of this historic day, lending edge-of-your seat, storyteller's mastery to the subject. With fascinating, colorful detail culled from vast historic resources, Swanson sets the stage for his central drama: the unfolding of the private final hours of John F. Kennedy and Lee Harvey Oswald as their destinies converge in a rifle's crosshairs-one man bound for infamy, the other for myth. Told in characteristic riveting narrative style, End of Days tracks the seemingly inevitable, and equally improbable, collision course between two men that would change history, devastate a hopeful generation, and spur one of our country's greatest national mysteries.

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

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 7 December 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 Panel Discussion: Telling Environmental History 10 December 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.
Brian Donahue, Brandeis University, Karl Haglund, Department of Conservation and Recreation, Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Megan Kate Nelson, Brown University, Aaron Sachs, Cornell University Moderator: Anthony N. Penna, Northeastern University

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

There are no precirculated papers for this program.

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Brown Bag The Memory Frontier: Memorializing King Philip's War in the Native Northeast 11 December 2013.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Christine DeLucia, Mount Holyoke College

The late 17th-century conflict known as King Philip's War has haunted colonial New Englanders and diverse tribal communities.  Their remembrances of this violence have taken shape in highly local ways, through material objects, performances, and stories about landscapes.  This study highlights the importance of such overlooked sources for understanding the persistent, widespread effects of warfare and settler colonialism in the Northeast.

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Public Program Making History: The Salem Witch Trials in Documents & Artifacts 11 December 2013.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM registration required at no cost Presentation & Exhibition Viewing Facilitator: James H. Johnson, Boston University

Students of the Boston University course “Making History” discuss the MHS exhibition that they have researched and compiled. The semester-long project on Salem and the wider fear of witches in England and colonial America includes work on letters and diaries, sermons, early printed books, and objects from the period. James H. Johnson, who teaches the course, is Professor of History and a prize-winning author.

To Register: This event is free and open to the public. Please call 617-646-0560 or email education@masshist.org to register.

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History of Women and Gender Seminar Women versus Connecticut: Insights from the Pre-Roe Abortion Battles 12 December 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.
Amy Kesselman, SUNY at New Paltz Comment: Linda Gordon, New York 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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Public Program, Exhibition Patriotic Banding: Red, White, and Blue 13 December 2013.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM this event is free Exhibition Spotlight Michael Wheeler

In the federal period (1790-1820), wealthy Boston merchants expanded trade to the West Indies and China. As part of this trade, they imported rare and expensive lumber into Boston. Mechanical inventions and the harnessing of waterpower made sawing this lumber into thin veneers possible. New specialists, known as inlay makers, were able to dye, stack, and cut those veneers into decorative geometric bandings which cabinetmakers used as inlays in neoclassical furniture.

Guest speaker Michael Wheeler has recently discovered that red, white, and blue banding was made in Boston during the federal period of the new republic. In his presentation, he will take us through his discovery and research, followed by a gallery tour of the inlaid furniture in our exhibition and his example of modern patriotic banding.

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

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 14 December 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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Library Closed Library closing at 4:45PM 17 December 2013.Tuesday, all day

The MHS library will close at 4:45PM due to inclement weather.

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Library Closed Library Closed 24 December 2013.Tuesday, all day

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Library Closed Library Closed 25 December 2013.Wednesday, all day

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Notice Exhibition Galleries Open 26 December 2013.Thursday, all day

The MHS galleries, featuring our current exhibition The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open to the public from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

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Library Closed Library Closed 26 December 2013.Thursday, all day

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Notice Exhibition Galleries Open 27 December 2013.Friday, all day

The MHS galleries, featuring our current exhibition The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open to the public from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

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Library Closed Library Closed 27 December 2013.Friday, all day

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Notice Exhibition Galleries Open 28 December 2013.Saturday, all day

The MHS galleries, featuring our current exhibition The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open to the public from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

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Library Closed Library Closed 28 December 2013.Saturday, all day

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Library Closed Library Closed 29 December 2013.Sunday, all day

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

close
Notice Exhibition Galleries Open 30 December 2013.Monday, all day

The MHS galleries, featuring our current exhibition The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open to the public from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

close
Library Closed Library Closed 30 December 2013.Monday, all day

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

close
Library Closed Library Closed 31 December 2013.Tuesday, all day

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

close
Library Closed Library Closed 1 January 2014.Wednesday, all day

The MHS library will be closed Tuesday, 24 December 2013, through Wednesday, 1 January 2014.  The library will return to regular business hours on Thursday, 2 January 2014.  The exhibition galleries, featuring The Cabinet Maker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections, will be open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Thursday, 26 December, through Saturday, 28 December, and Monday, 30 December. 

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Building Closed MHS Closing 2 January 2014.Thursday, 12:00PM - 4:45PM

The MHS will be closing at noon on Thursday due to inclement weather. The building will be closed Friday, 3 January, 2014.

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Building Closed MHS Closed 3 January 2014.Friday, all day

The MHS will be closed Friday due to inclement weather.

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Notice Building Open Saturday 4 January 2014.Saturday, all day

Building is expected to reopen Saturday, but check here for any further updates.

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Brown Bag A Climatic Debate: Abolition and Climate in Eighteenth-Century Britain 8 January 2014.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Katherine Johnston, Columbia University

Toward the end of the eighteenth century, as British Parliamentary debates over abolition in the West Indies grew increasingly serious, the Board of Trade interrogated people familiar with plantation life. What sorts of health risks did plantation work pose for enslaved laborers? Could Europeans labor in the West Indian climate? This project examines some of the testimony that absentee planters provided to Parliament and contrasts these arguments with evidence taken from these same planters' private letters. Public testimony did not always match up with personal opinions, and this project explores some of the differences between the two.

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MHS Tour MHS Tour: The History and Collections of the MHS 11 January 2014.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 Out of the Blue: Nantucket and the Pacific World 14 January 2014.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to received advance copies of the seminar papers.
Edward D. Melillo, Amherst College Comment: Nancy Shoemaker, University of Connecticut

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 Americanizing America: Yankee Civilization and the U.S. State 15 January 2014.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM this event is free Dylan Yeats, New York University

Please join Loring Fellow Dylan Yeats to discuss his dissertation and the research he is conducting at the Massachusetts Historical Society and Boston Athenaeum. Yeats is charting the evolution of what he terms the Yankee Network, comprising academic, educational, missionary, and social reform organizations, and the ways in which this network sought to harness those organs of the state that it could over the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

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Special Event, Member Event An Evening Social 15 January 2014.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 8:00PM Please RSVP   registration required at no cost This event is open only to MHS Associate Members

MHS Associate Members (age 40 and under) are invited to an evening social with the Young Friends of Historic New England. Guests will gather at the MHS for a reception followed by a scavenger hunt based on "The Cabinetmaker and the Carver" exhibition.

For more information please call 617-646-0543 or e-mail awolfe@masshist.org.

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Biography Seminar When Subjects Talk Back: Oral History, Contemporary Biography, and the Runaway Interview 16 January 2014.Thursday, 5:30PM - 7:30PM Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to received advance copies of the seminar papers.
Joyce Antler, Brandeis University, Claire Potter, New School for Public Engagement, Ted Widmer, Brown University Moderator: Carol Bundy, author of The Nature of Sacrifice: A Biography of Charles Russell Lowell, Jr., 1835-64

This program will feature a conversation with Joyce Antler, Professor of American Studies at Brandeis, who is currently writing a book on Jewish women active in the feminist movement; Claire Potter, Professor of History at the New School, who is writing on anti-pornography efforts in the 1980s; and Ted Widmer, senior advisor to former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.

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Exhibition The Cabinetmaker & the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private Collections 17 January 2014.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 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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Building Closed Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 20 January 2014.Monday, all day

The MHS is closed for Martin Juther King Jr. Day.

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Public Program, Author Talk The Hub's Metropolis: Greater Boston's Development from Railroad Suburb to Smart Growth 22 January 2014.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:30PM Please RSVP   registration required at no cost Pre-Talk Reception at 5:30pm James O'Connell, National Park Service

The population of the Boston Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) is ranked tenth largest in the United States. The region’s sprawling scale, with 234 municipalities, can make it difficult to grasp its character. Urban historian James O’Connell will present an illustrated talk about how metropolitan Boston has been shaped by distinct eras of suburbanization, with each one producing a land use development pattern that is still apparent on the regional landscape. Drawing upon his recent book, The Hub’s Metropolis: Greater Boston’s Development from Railroad Suburbs to Smart Growth, O’Connell will explain how each period had specific characteristics related to modes of transportation, building types, commercial uses, and the treatment of open and public space. He will describe how Boston has been a national pace-setter for country estates, railroad suburbs, metropolitan parks, land use zoning, highway beltways, shopping centers, office parks, edge cities, and central city redevelopment. The presentation will conclude with a discussion of how the region’s development legacy is shaping current efforts to promote smart growth and sustainable development.

James O’Connell is a planner and historian for the Boston Regional Office of the National Park Service. He has a B.A. from Bates College and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Urban History from the University of Chicago. He has written five books, including Becoming Cape Cod: Creating a Seaside Resort, and has contributed chapters to A Landscape History of New England, Remaking Boston: An Environmental History of the City and Its Surroundings, and The Encyclopedia of New England.

To Register: Reservations Requested. Click here to register online or call the MHS reservations line at 617-646-0560.

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Immigration and Urban History Seminar Making a Workforce, Unmaking a Working Class: The Development of "Human Capital" in Houston, 1900-1980 28 January 2014.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to received advance copies of the seminar papers.
Bryant Etheridge, Harvard University Comment: John R. Harris, Boston 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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