What was it like to live in a town that had existed for years (if not a full century or more) before becoming part of a new nation in 1776? Designed for educators and local history enthusiasts, this workshop will explore some of the social, cultural, economic, and political concerns expressed by New England towns as the United States was attempting to form a new government in the 1780s and 1790s. We will discuss the truly participatory, well-informed conversations taking place in town halls and meeting places throughout the new colonies-turned-states. By turning an eye towards local politics and events we will rediscover the ways in which “ordinary people” contributed to America’s creation story.
Participants will have the opportunity to:
- investigate what it was like to live in an old town in a new country and discover what changed for the inhabitants of different towns as new government structures were implemented.
- discuss the concerns (both local and national) expressed by Massachusetts & New Hampshire residents in various towns while the American government was being created in the years after the revolution.
- explore the ways in which geography, economy, and social/cultural practices influenced local concerns.
- discover evidence of local concerns, and discussions of national policies, in primary sources held by local repositories and the Massachusetts Historical Society.
- explore new ways of engaging students and local communities in their history.
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 14 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.
Additional two-day workshops will be held in Searsport, Maine, August 6-7; in Falmouth, Massachusetts, August 13-14; and in Framingham, Massachusetts, September 26-27.close