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February 2020

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    • Public Program, Author TalkStolen: Five Free Boys Kidnapped into Slavery and Their Astonishing...
      Public Program, Author TalkStolen: Five Free Boys Kidnapped into Slavery and Their Astonishing Odyssey Home
      6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Richard Bell, University of Maryland There is a $10 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members, EBT or ConnectorCare cardholders). More
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          • Public Program, Author TalkCivil War Monuments and the Militarization of America
            Public Program, Author TalkCivil War Monuments and the Militarization of America
            6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Thomas J. Brown, University of South Carolina There is a $10 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members, EBT or ConnectorCare cardholders). More
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                • History of Women, Gender and Sexuality Seminar“What the Women Can Do:” Doctors’ Wives and the American Medi...
                  History of Women, Gender and Sexuality Seminar“What the Women Can Do:” Doctors’ Wives and the American Medical Association’s Crusade Against Socialized Medicine
                  5:15PM - 7:30PM Kelly O’Donnell, Thomas Jefferson University Comment: Olivia Weisser, University of Massachusetts, Boston More
                • Public Program, Author TalkMother is a Verb: An Unconventional History
                  Public Program, Author TalkMother is a Verb: An Unconventional History
                  6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30.There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Sarah Knott, Indiana University There is a $10 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members, EBT or ConnectorCare cardholders). More
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                      • Public Program, Author TalkWe the People: The 500-Year Battle Over Who Is American
                        Public Program, Author TalkWe the People: The 500-Year Battle Over Who Is American
                        6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Benjamin Railton, Fitchburg State University There is a $10 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members, EBT or ConnectorCare cardholders). Register registration required More
                      Exhibition, Revolution 250 Fire! Voices From the Boston Massacre 31 October 2019 to 30 June 2020 Gallery hours are: Mon., Wed., Thu., Fri., and Sat.: 10:00 am to 4:00 pm and Tue.: 10:00 am to 7:00 pm.

                      On the evening of March 5, 1770, soldiers occupying the town of Boston shot into a crowd, killing or fatally wounding five civilians.

                      In the aftermath of what soon became known as the Boston Massacre, questions about the command to “Fire!” became crucial. Who yelled it? When and why? Because the answers would determine the guilt or innocence of the soldiers, defense counsel John Adams insisted that “Facts are stubborn things.”

                      But what are the facts? The evidence, often contradictory, drew upon testimony from dozens of witnesses. Come learn about the Boston Massacre and “hear” for yourself—through a selection of artifacts, eyewitness accounts, and trial testimony—the voices of ordinary men and women, and discover how this flashpoint changed American history.

                      Learn more about the Massacre on our companion website.

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                      MHS Tour The History and Collections of the MHS 1 February 2020.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM

                      The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led walk through our public rooms. The tour is free, open to the public, with no need for reservations. If you would like to bring a larger party (8 or more), please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

                       

                       

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                      Peter J. Gomes Memorial Book Prize Ceremony 3 February 2020.Monday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Christine DeLucia, Williams College Rae Gould, Brown University Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminars 2019-2020/Gomes.jpg

                      Watch the recording of this event, embedded below:

                      Please join us for a special evening in which historian Christine DeLucia will receive the 2019 Gomes Prize for Memory Lands: King Philip’s War and the Place of Violence in the Northeast. DeLucia will join Dr. Rae Gould in a conversation about the war’s effects on the everyday lives and collective mentalities of the region’s diverse Native and Euro-American communities over the course of several centuries, focusing on persistent struggles over land and water, sovereignty, resistance, cultural memory, and intercultural interactions

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                      Digital History Seminar Historical Datasets as Arguments: 21st Century Curations of 17th Century Records 4 February 2020.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Talya Housman, Digital Historian Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/Talya_image.jpg

                      Using Dr. Housman’s experience of curating a relational database on cases of sexual crime and gendered violence in England between 1642 and 1660 as a point of entry, this talk looks at some implicit editorial arguments we make in our historical research. This talk will outline the process of data collection, designing, and building the database (including software selection and database design choices) and discuss some of the issues posed by historical data itself, including standardization of spelling and how to document uncertainty.

                      Content warning: this talk discusses sexual violence

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                      Public Program, Author Talk Stolen: Five Free Boys Kidnapped into Slavery and Their Astonishing Odyssey Home 5 February 2020.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Richard Bell, University of Maryland There is a $10 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members, EBT or ConnectorCare cardholders). Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/stolen_wide-dd6a29b2f762b304e6ede4494d2c7cd6f7ada634.jpg

                      Philadelphia, 1825: five young, free black boys fall into the clutches of the most fearsome gang of kidnappers and slavers in the United States. Determined to resist, the boys form a tight brotherhood as they struggle to free themselves and find their way home. Their ordeal shines a glaring spotlight on the Reverse Underground Railroad, a black market network of human traffickers and slave traders who stole away thousands of free African Americans from their families in order to fuel slavery’s rapid expansion in the decades before the Civil War.

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                      MHS Tour The History and Collections of the MHS 8 February 2020.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM

                      The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led walk through our public rooms. The tour is free, open to the public, with no need for reservations. If you would like to bring a larger party (8 or more), please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

                       

                       

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                      Public Program, Author Talk Civil War Monuments and the Militarization of America 10 February 2020.Monday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Thomas J. Brown, University of South Carolina There is a $10 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members, EBT or ConnectorCare cardholders). Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/thumbnail_Brown_Civil_PB_9781469653747_FC.jpg

                      This new assessment of Civil War monuments unveiled in the United States between the 1860s and 1930s argues that they were pivotal to a national embrace of military values. Americans' wariness of standing armies limited construction of war memorials in the early republic and continued to influence commemoration after the Civil War. Professor Brown provides the most comprehensive overview of the American war memorial as a cultural form and reframes the national debate over Civil War monuments that remain potent presences on the civic landscape.

                       

                       

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                      Environmental History Seminar Northern Exposure: American Military Engineering in the Arctic Circle 11 February 2020.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Gretchen Heefner, Northeastern University Comment: Christopher Capozzola, MIT Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/ehs_banner.jpg

                      From the late 1940s through the 1960s, U.S. military engineers constructed and maintained a vast, though largely unknown, infrastructure of military facilities throughout the Far North. This paper examines how these engineers explored the Arctic regions, what sorts of information they accumulated about it, and ultimately what happened to that information once it was released from military constraints.

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                      Brown Bag Committees in Unexpected Places: Community Building in the American Revolution 12 February 2020.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Catherine Treesh, Yale University

                      In 1772 Samuel Adams and the Boston Town Meeting famously created a correspondence network to resist imperial policies. If we move away from that familiar scene, though, we find that the committee of correspondence was actually a common tool for community-building during the American Revolution. By highlighting committees in unexpected places — New Hampshire and Nova Scotia — this talk shows that committees can give us a better sense of how colonists understood their place in the Empire and on the Continent.

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                      MHS Tour The History and Collections of the MHS 15 February 2020.Saturday, all day

                      The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led walk through our public rooms. The tour is free, open to the public, with no need for reservations. If you would like to bring a larger party (8 or more), please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

                       

                       

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                      Building Closed Presidents' Day 17 February 2020.Monday, all day

                      The MHS is CLOSED in observance of Presidents' Day.

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                      History of Women, Gender and Sexuality Seminar “What the Women Can Do:” Doctors’ Wives and the American Medical Association’s Crusade Against Socialized Medicine 18 February 2020.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Kelly O’Donnell, Thomas Jefferson University Comment: Olivia Weisser, University of Massachusetts, Boston Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/wgs_banner.jpg

                      In the mid-twentieth century, the American Medical Association opposed attempts to create a national health program in this country, through lobbying and public outreach about the dangers of socialized medicine. Their most powerful weapon in this fight was a less conventional medical instrument: their wives. This paper examines the mobilization of the AMA Woman’s Auxiliary as the main “public relations firm” of organized medicine during these debates and their lingering influence on American health politics.

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                      Public Program, Author Talk Mother is a Verb: An Unconventional History 19 February 2020.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30.There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Sarah Knott, Indiana University There is a $10 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members, EBT or ConnectorCare cardholders).

                      Pregnancy, birth and the encounter with an infant: how have these experiences changed over time and cultures? Blending memoir and history, feminist Sarah Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/31yevAbe45L__SX331_BO1_204_203_200_.jpgKnott draws on the terrain of Britain and North America from the seventeenth century to the close of the twentieth. Knott searches among a range of past societies, pores over archives, and documents her own experiences to craft a new historical interpretation of maternity for our changing times.

                       

                       

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                      African American History Seminar POSTPONED: Emancipation In America, Seen Through One Man's Dreadlocks 20 February 2020.Thursday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Abigail Cooper, Brandeis University Comment: Kellie Carter Jackson, Wellesley College Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/banner_draft_2.jpg

                      This event has been postponed and will take place in the fall of 2020.

                      1864. A ship leaves its New England port carrying a USCT regiment to fight Confederates on the Louisiana front. But on the way, a showdown takes place when Pvt. John Green refuses his commanding officer's order to cut his hair, protesting that it was contrary to his religion. In the events that follow, a revealing picture of black self-assertion in the making of freedom emerges, one too often hidden by a Civil War master narrative. This paper tells John Green's story, and asks how we might look at emancipation differently when we view it through his dreadlocks.

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                      Public Program, MHS Tour, Revolution 250 FIRE! Voices of the Boston Massacre Gallery Talk this event is free 21 February 2020.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM Amanda Norton, the Adams Papers at MHS Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/0067bloodymassacre_lg.jpg

                      Amanda Norton of the Adams Papers will walk visitors through our exhibition of the Boston Massacre, which explores and reinterprets the events of March 5, 1770 and the courtroom drama that unfolded after the massacre through the archival material found in the MHS collection.

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                      MHS Tour The History and Collections of the MHS this event is free 22 February 2020.Saturday, all day

                      The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led walk through our public rooms. The tour is free, open to the public, with no need for reservations. If you would like to bring a larger party (8 or more), please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

                       

                       

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                      Modern American Society and Culture Seminar The Difference the Nineteenth Amendment Made: Southern Black Women and the Reconstruction of American Politics Register registration required at no cost 25 February 2020.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Liette Gidlow, Wayne State University Susan Ware, Schlesinger Library Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/masc_banner.jpg

                      Many scholars have argued that though the enfranchisement of women was laudable, not much changed after women got the vote: the suffrage coalition splintered, women’s voter turnout was low, and the progressive reforms promised by suffragists failed to materialize. This interpretation, however, does not fully account for the activities of aspiring African American women voters in the Jim Crow South at the time or more broadly across the U.S. in the decades since. This paper argues that southern Black women’s efforts to vote, successful and otherwise, transformed not only the mid-century Black freedom struggle but political parties, election procedures, and social movements on the right and the left.

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                      Public Program, Author Talk We the People: The 500-Year Battle Over Who Is American Register registration required 27 February 2020.Thursday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Benjamin Railton, Fitchburg State University There is a $10 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members, EBT or ConnectorCare cardholders). Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/We_the_People_high-res_cover-cropped.jpg

                      Ben Railton argues that throughout our history two competing yet interconnected concepts have battled to define our national identity and community: Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/thumbnail_We_the_People_high-res_cover.jpgexclusionary and inclusive visions of who gets to be an American. From the earliest moments of European contact with indigenous peoples, through the Revolutionary period's debates on African American slavery, 19th century conflicts over Indian Removal, Mexican landowners, and Chinese immigrants, 20th century controversies around Filipino Americans and Japanese internment, and 21st century fears of Muslim Americans, time and again this defining battle has shaped our society and culture.

                       

                       

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                      Brown Bag A Vast Consolidation: Agents of Empire, the United States Navy, and the Processes of Pacific Expansion, 1784-1861 this event is free 28 February 2020.Friday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Christopher T. Costello, University of California San Diego

                      This project explores the ways through which New England merchants, ship captains, sailors, and missionaries who were living and working throughout the Pacific’s oceanic space from 1784 to 1861 utilized the United States Navy to promote or safeguard their commercial, spiritual, and political interests to expand an American sphere of influence; promoting a nascent concept of American empire. 

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                      Teacher Workshop Lessons from the Boston Massacre: Media Literacy in the 18th Century & Today Please RSVP   registration required 29 February 2020.Saturday, 9:00AM - 4:00PM Registration Fee: $25

                      In honor of the 250th anniversary of the infamous Boston Massacre, we will explore the events leading up to it and the conflict's aftermath, which played out both in the courts and in public opinion. Using a variety of primary sources, we will examine the public narratives about the Massacre that were created and disseminated and connect our discussion to 21st-century sites of protest and challenges to authority, both violent and non-violent.

                      This program is open to all who work with K-12 students. Teachers can earn 22.5 PDPs or 1 graduate credit (for an additional fee).

                       

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                      MHS Tour Canceled:
                      The History and Collections of the MHS
                      this event is free 29 February 2020.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM

                      The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led walk through our public rooms. The tour is free, open to the public, with no need for reservations. If you would like to bring a larger party (8 or more), please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

                       

                       

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                        Key to event colors:
                      • MHS Tours
                      • Seminars
                      • Public Programs
                      • Brown Bags
                      • Special Events