July

Back to today
MHS Tour, Public Program The History and Collections of the MHS 22 July 2017.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led ...

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.

While you're here you will also have the opportunity to view our current exhibition: The Irish Atlantic: A Story of Famine Migration and Opportunity.

More
Teacher Workshopbegins America in World War I 25 July 2017.Tuesday, 9:00AM - 4:00PM Registration fee: $35 per person This is a two-day workshop that takes place on non-consecutive days: July 25 and 27. ...

This is a two-day workshop that takes place on non-consecutive days: July 25 and 27.

How did Massachusetts men and women experience World War I? Participants will immerse themselves in the letters, diaries, and photographs created by soldiers, Red Cross volunteers, and relief workers, among others. Whether they were at home or abroad, these individuals provide a glimpse of the challenges and occasional pleasures of life during times of war. We will also examine the role of government propaganda campaigns in recruiting volunteers, financing war efforts, and promoting national unity and nativism.

This program is open to all K-12 educators. Teachers can earn 45 PDPs or two graduate credits (for an additional fee).

For more information, or to register, contact the Center for the Teaching of History at MHS: education@masshist.org; 617-646-0557.

Image: Croix de Guerre. France, 1914-1918. Eleanor Saltonstall received this Croix de Guerre on 28 November 1918, for evacuating civilians from the Noyon and Lassigny regions of France during German attacks in March 1918.

More
Teacher Workshopends America in World War I 27 July 2017.Thursday, 9:00AM - 4:00PM Registration fee: $35 per person This is a two-day workshop that takes place on non-consecutive days: July 25 and 27. ...

This is a two-day workshop that takes place on non-consecutive days: July 25 and 27.

How did Massachusetts men and women experience World War I? Participants will immerse themselves in the letters, diaries, and photographs created by soldiers, Red Cross volunteers, and relief workers, among others. Whether they were at home or abroad, these individuals provide a glimpse of the challenges and occasional pleasures of life during times of war. We will also examine the role of government propaganda campaigns in recruiting volunteers, financing war efforts, and promoting national unity and nativism.

This program is open to all K-12 educators. Teachers can earn 45 PDPs or two graduate credits (for an additional fee).

For more information, or to register, contact the Center for the Teaching of History at MHS: education@masshist.org; 617-646-0557.

Image: Croix de Guerre. France, 1914-1918. Eleanor Saltonstall received this Croix de Guerre on 28 November 1918, for evacuating civilians from the Noyon and Lassigny regions of France during German attacks in March 1918.

More
Public Program, Author Talk Gerry Studds: America's First Openly Gay Congressman 27 July 2017.Thursday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30pm. Mark Robert Schneider         Gerry Studds, America’s first openly gay congressman, fought ...

 

 

 

 

Gerry Studds, America’s first openly gay congressman, fought in Congress to allow gays to serve in the military, fund AIDS research, and enact marriage equality. He was a champion of coastal and ocean environmental issues and helped to protect the American fishing industry. He was among the leading congressional opponents of President Reagan’s wars in Central America. Perhaps most importantly, he left a vivid unpublished memoir of his life as a closeted gay man in the public eye. Mark Schneider used this memoir and other items from the collection of the MHS to write the first biography of this important leader.

More
Public Program, Walking Tour Fabricated Fenway: The Mixed Legacy of our Invasive Urban Environment 29 July 2017.Saturday, 3:00PM - 4:30PM Harper Grace Mills The river-choking, horizon-blocking phragmites of the Fens are not the only alien life forms to have ...

The river-choking, horizon-blocking phragmites of the Fens are not the only alien life forms to have overwhelmed the natural landscape of Boston. From the early 19th century Mill Dam that “made” Back Bay out of tidal marshland (currently buried beneath Beacon Street), to the landmark advances of the Esplanade, Storrow Drive, Emerald Necklace, and Kenmore Square, Boston's made environments have been riddled with surprising and sometimes perplexing consequences—for both our physical and social spaces.

Join us for the Fabricated Fenway tour, an overview of urban invasion by every species of good intentions.

This tour is co-sponsored by the Emerald Necklace Conservancy 

More
August
Teacher Workshopbegins Teaching LGBTQ History 2 August 2017.Wednesday, 9:00AM - 4:00PM Registration fee: $50 per peson This is a three-day workshop that takes place on August 2, 3, and 4. ...

This is a three-day workshop that takes place on August 2, 3, and 4.

LGBTQ is a relatively modern acronym, but history is brimming with examples of individuals who participated in same-sex relationships or tested the boundaries of gender norms. This workshop will explore ideas about sexual orientation and gender identity through the lives of New Englanders. Our investigations will take us from the Puritan era through the twenty-first century, as well as to local repositories and historic sites. Participants will also work with primary sources and curricular materials that will help contextualize current debates over LGBTQ rights.

This program is open to all K-12 educators. Teachers can earn 45 PDPs or two graduate credits (for an additional fee).

For more information, or to register, contact the Center for the Teaching of History at MHS: education@masshist.org; 617-646-0557.

Image: Herman Mann, The Female Review: or, Memoirs of an American Young Lady ... Dedham, [MA]: 1797.

More
Brown Bag The Year 1800: The Union of the Personal and the Political 2 August 2017.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Paul Gilje, University of Oklahoma This project focuses on the elections of 1800 to reveal the extensive intrigues of a year ...

This project focuses on the elections of 1800 to reveal the extensive intrigues of a year that historians have often reduced to a single political contest. The personal and the political were inseparable among women and men in New York, Pennsylvania, and South Carolina, where power, prejudice, servitude, insiders, and foreigners converged in illicit unions that rocked individuals and families and altered electoral outcomes.

More
Teacher Workshopends Teaching LGBTQ History 4 August 2017.Friday, 9:00AM - 4:00PM Registration fee: $50 per peson This is a three-day workshop that takes place on August 2, 3, and 4. ...

This is a three-day workshop that takes place on August 2, 3, and 4.

LGBTQ is a relatively modern acronym, but history is brimming with examples of individuals who participated in same-sex relationships or tested the boundaries of gender norms. This workshop will explore ideas about sexual orientation and gender identity through the lives of New Englanders. Our investigations will take us from the Puritan era through the twenty-first century, as well as to local repositories and historic sites. Participants will also work with primary sources and curricular materials that will help contextualize current debates over LGBTQ rights.

This program is open to all K-12 educators. Teachers can earn 45 PDPs or two graduate credits (for an additional fee).

For more information, or to register, contact the Center for the Teaching of History at MHS: education@masshist.org; 617-646-0557.

Image: Herman Mann, The Female Review: or, Memoirs of an American Young Lady ... Dedham, [MA]: 1797.

More
Public Program, MHS Tour The History and Collections of the MHS 5 August 2017.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led ...

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.

While you're here you will also have the opportunity to view our current exhibition: The Irish Atlantic: A Story of Famine Migration and Opportunity.

More
Teacher Workshop Food in American History 9 August 2017.Wednesday, 9:00AM - 4:00PM This workshop is FULL. Please contact the Center for the Teaching of History at MHS for more information: education@masshist.org; 617-646-0570. This is a three-day workshop that takes place on August 9, 10, and 11. ...

This is a three-day workshop that takes place on August 9, 10, and 11.

Experience food through historical accounts and field trips to local producers and providers! From the coffee, tea, and chocolate of the colonial era to the fusion cuisine of today, examinations of foodways can often reveal broader social, cultural, and political trends. We will taste our way through 400 years of American history while discussing ways to share this (mostly) delicious past with students. Offsite sessions will also provide us with opportunities to consider Boston’s contributions to American cuisine and dining habits.

This program is open to all K-12 educators. Teachers can earn 45 PDPs or two graduate credits (for an additional fee).

Image: Banquet to the Ambassadors of Japan, by Members of the Boston Board of Trade: Bill of Fare. Broadside on silk, 2 August 1872.

More
Public Program, MHS Tour The History and Collections of the MHS 12 August 2017.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led ...

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.

While you're here you will also have the opportunity to view our current exhibition: The Irish Atlantic: A Story of Famine Migration and Opportunity.

More
Public Program, MHS Tour The History and Collections of the MHS 19 August 2017.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led ...

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.

While you're here you will also have the opportunity to view our current exhibition: The Irish Atlantic: A Story of Famine Migration and Opportunity.

More
MHS Tour, Public Program The History and Collections of the MHS 26 August 2017.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led ...

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.

While you're here you will also have the opportunity to view our current exhibition: The Irish Atlantic: A Story of Famine Migration and Opportunity.

More
September
Library Closed, Galleries Open Labor Day 2 September 2017.Saturday, all day The MHS library is CLOSED; the exhibition galleries are OPEN, 10:00AM-4:00PM.

The MHS library is CLOSED; the exhibition galleries are OPEN, 10:00AM-4:00PM.

More
Building Closed Labor Day 4 September 2017.Monday, all day The MHS library and exhibition galleries are CLOSED for Labor Day.

The MHS library and exhibition galleries are CLOSED for Labor Day.

More
Brown Bag The Liberator’s Legacy: Memory, Abolitionism, and the Struggle for Civil Rights, 1865-1965 6 September 2017.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Donald Yacovone, Harvard University The Liberator’s Legacy explores popular memory of William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick ...

The Liberator’s Legacy explores popular memory of William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass, and their fellow abolitionists in the decades following the Civil War and reveals how that legacy influenced the rise of the modern Civil Rights Movement. Through the lens of collective memory, this book will examine the changing meaning of the Civil War in American thought.

More
Public Program, Author Talk The Selected Letters of John Kenneth Galbraith 13 September 2017.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30pm. Richard P.F. Holt $10 registration fee per person. (No Charge for MHS Members or Fellows) In his long, cosmopolitan life, Galbraith wrote thousands of letters. Richard P. F. Holt has ...

In his long, cosmopolitan life, Galbraith wrote thousands of letters. Richard P. F. Holt has selected the most important of these and made them available in print for the first time. The letters provide an intimate account of the three main political goals to which Galbraith devoted his professional life: ending war, fighting poverty, and improving quality of life by achieving a balance between private and public goods in an affluent capitalist society.

More
Public Program, Author Talk Expelling the Poor: Atlantic Seaboard States & the Nineteenth-Century Origins of American Immigration Policy 14 September 2017.Thursday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30pm. Hidetaka Hirota, City College of New York This groundbreaking work reinterprets the origins of immigration restriction in the U.S. Faced with ...

This groundbreaking work reinterprets the origins of immigration restriction in the U.S. Faced with the influx of Irish immigrants over the first half of the 19th century, nativists in Massachusetts and New York developed policies for prohibiting the landing of destitute foreigners and deporting those already resident. These state-level policies laid the foundations for federal immigration law. Expelling the Poor fundamentally revises the history of American immigration policy by locating the roots of immigration control in cultural and economic nativism against the Irish on the 19th-century Atlantic seaboard.

More
Brown Bag Exploring Conflict, Collaboration, and Conciliation in Colonial Families before the American Revolution 20 September 2017.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Nina Sankovitch, Independent Researcher The Quincy, Adams, and Hancock families represent three different social classes all living in the ...

The Quincy, Adams, and Hancock families represent three different social classes all living in the small village of Braintree, MA before the American Revolution. This talk considers how the men and women of the families interacted, especially in their attitudes towards England in the late colonial era, and the different roles the families played in fomenting agitation against English rule.

More
Public Program, Conversation John McCormack and David K. Niles: How Two Reinvented Bostonians Altered American Politics and Foreign Policy 20 September 2017.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30pm. Garrison Nelson, University of Vermont; Michael Dukakis, Northeastern University; and Peter Drummey, MHS $20 registration fee per person. (No Charge for MHS Members or Fellows) John McCormack and David Niles came from large and poor families within religious minority ...

John McCormack and David Niles came from large and poor families within religious minority communities. With no formal education, they reinvented themselves and moved into political circles eventually rising to be the Speaker of the House and high level White House advisor. While less well known than some of Boston’s more recent political stars, both became central to the shaping of modern American political parties and politics.

 

The program is co-sponsored by the Northeastern University Political Science Department

More
Exhibitionends The Irish Atlantic 22 September 2017.Friday, 10:00AM - 4:00PM Open Monday through Saturday from 10 AM to 4 PM Explore 175 years of the Irish in Boston from the founding of the Charitable Irish Society in 1737, ...

Explore 175 years of the Irish in Boston from the founding of the Charitable Irish Society in 1737, through famine relief efforts led by Capt. Robert Bennet Forbes at the helm of the Jamestown, to a mass migration movement, decades of community and institutional building, and a rise in political power. The exhibition is co-sponsored by the MHS and the Forbes House Museum.

See the exhibit’s companion website for an overview, timeline, and more videos about the Irish in Boston.

Watch this video for an overview of the exhibit by guest curator William M. Fowler, Distinguished Professor of History at Northeastern University.

More
Modern American Society and Culture Seminar Lost Cities of Chicago's South Side 26 September 2017.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required Carlo Rotella, Boston College Comment: Samuel Zipp, Brown University Any city is composed of many layers, including superseded and could-have-been versions of itself: ...

Any city is composed of many layers, including superseded and could-have-been versions of itself: lost cities. This essay is drawn from Rotella’s current book project on South Shore, a neighborhood of Chicago’s South Side. Over the past half-century, the area has gradually shifted toward a class system of haves and have-nots separated by an increasing divide. Its fallen orders, which include factory complexes and ethnic urban villages, nevertheless exert a persistent pull today.

To RSVP: email seminars@masshist.org or call (617) 646-0579.

More
Brown Bag The Constitution of Disability in the Early United States 27 September 2017.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Laurel Daen, MHS-NEH Fellow Disability emerged in the Early Republic as a meaningful bureaucratic, legal, institutional, and ...

Disability emerged in the Early Republic as a meaningful bureaucratic, legal, institutional, and cultural category. It was rooted in ideas about work, social worth, and economic independence and increasingly determined by the expert discourse of medicine. This project examines this development and considers its consequences for the new nation and its citizens.

More
Public Program, Author Talk Sargent's Women: Four Lives Behind the Canvas 27 September 2017.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30pm. Donna Lucey, Virginia Foundation for the Humanities $10 registration fee per person. (No Charge for MHS Members or Fellows)   This biography, based on original letters and diaries, illuminates four extraordinary women ...

 

This biography, based on original letters and diaries, illuminates four extraordinary women painted by the iconic high-society portraitist John Singer Sargent. With uncanny intuition, Sargent hinted at the mysteries and passions that unfolded in his subjects’ lives. Like characters in an Edith Wharton novel, these women challenged society’s restrictions, risking public shame and ostracism. These compelling stories of female courage connect our past with our present and remind us that while women live differently now, they still face obstacles to attaining full equality.

More
Special Event Graduate Student Reception 28 September 2017.Thursday, 6:00PM - 8:00PM Calling all graduate students and faculty in history, American Studies, or any related field! ...

Calling all graduate students and faculty in history, American Studies, or any related field! Please join us for our eighth annual Graduate Student Reception.

Starting at six pm, you can enjoy free drinks and hors d’oeuvres as you meet students and professors from other universities working in your fields. At 6:30 or a little later, set down your glass and take a behind-the-scenes tour to learn more about the Society's collections as well as the resources available to support your scholarship, from research fellowships to our five different seminar series.

Faculty, bring your graduate students! Graduate students, bring your cohort! This reception is free, but we ask that you RSVP by September 27, by emailing seminars@masshist.org or calling (617) 646-0579.

More
October
Early American History Seminar John Marshall, Slaveowner and Jurist 3 October 2017.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required Paul Finkelman, University of Pittsburgh School of Law Comment: R. Kent Newmyer, University of Connecticut This chapter from Finkelman’s forthcoming book examines the personal and professional life of ...

This chapter from Finkelman’s forthcoming book examines the personal and professional life of Chief Justice John Marshall in the context of his relationship to slavery. Though previous studies downplay Marshall’s slavery jurisprudence and his slaveholding, this paper argues that Marshall as a Supreme Court justice always favored slavery over freedom, and that this reflected his personal investment, emotionally and economically, in slavery.

To RSVP: email seminars@masshist.org or call (617) 646-0579.

More
Brown Bag Commerce and the Material Culture of the Maritime Atlantic World 4 October 2017.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM J. Ritchie Garrison, University of Delaware This talk considers the maritime economy in the early modern Atlantic World, focusing on the ...

This talk considers the maritime economy in the early modern Atlantic World, focusing on the infrastructure of commercial exchanges as port cities adapted to larger ships, increased consumer goods, and productivity challenges in environments that included bays, rivers, and estuaries. The argument is grounded on historical documents, maps, objects, and archaeological fieldwork to show that people—from dock workers to financiers—sought to stabilize local variables to accommodate rapid market shifts.

More
Public Program How Boston Became the 'West': George Ticknor and the Arrival of Spanish Culture to the United States 6 October 2017.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM Ricardo Miguel Alfonso, University of Castilla-La Mancha   George Ticknor, William H. Prescott, and other New Englanders wrote about Spain and the ...

 

George Ticknor, William H. Prescott, and other New Englanders wrote about Spain and the Spanish people in the early- to mid 19th century. Boston became a center for publishing Spanish literature and discussing Spanish culture as well as creating and perpetuating stereotypes as the Spanish empire came to be replaced by the American one. This helped to shape U.S.–Spain cultural relations until the Spanish-American War and helped to define America as the West.

 

Image: Thomas Sully, George Ticknor, 1831, oil on canvas. Hood Museum of Art at Dartmouth College

More
Public Program MHS Open House 9 October 2017.Monday, 10:00AM - 3:00PM There is limited street parking and several garages nearby. The use of public transportation is highly recommended. MHS Staff   Visit the MHS and view Yankees in the West, an exhibition of letters, diaries, photographs, ...

 

Visit the MHS and view Yankees in the West, an exhibition of letters, diaries, photographs, drawings, and artifacts that explores the ways New Englanders experienced the trans-Mississippi west in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Free and open to the public, the open house is part of the Opening Our Doors celebration in the Fenway Cultural District.

More
Library Closed, Galleries Open Columbus Day 9 October 2017.Monday, all day The MHS library is CLOSED; the exhibition galleries are OPEN, 10:00AM-4:00PM.

The MHS library is CLOSED; the exhibition galleries are OPEN, 10:00AM-4:00PM.

More
Environmental History Seminar Early American Environmental Histories 10 October 2017.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM RSVP required James Rice, Tufts University Comment: Christopher Parsons, Northeastern University This essay speaks to questions raised in a recent workshop at the Huntington on early American ...

This essay speaks to questions raised in a recent workshop at the Huntington on early American environmental history. How do timespan and scale change our understanding of historical relationships between people and their environments? What new light does environmental history shed on topics such as race, gender, or law? What can early Americanists contribute to the field of environmental history as a whole?

To RSVP: email seminars@masshist.org or call (617) 646-0579.

More
Public Program, Author Talk Steam Titans: Cunard, Collins and the Epic Battle for Commerce on the North Atlantic 12 October 2017.Thursday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30pm. William M. Fowler, Jr., Northeastern University $20 registration fee per person. (No Charge for MHS Members or Fellows)     Steam travel transformed the Atlantic into a pulsating highway, dominated by ports ...

 

 

Steam travel transformed the Atlantic into a pulsating highway, dominated by ports in Liverpool and New York. American raw materials flowed eastward, while goods, capital, people, and technology crossed westward. Steam Titans tells the story of a transatlantic fight to seize control of the globe’s most lucrative trade route. Two men—Samuel Cunard and Edward Knight Collins—and two nations wielded the tools of technology, finance, and politics to compete for control of a commercial lifeline that spanned the North Atlantic.

More
History of Women and Gender Seminar Panel Discussion: Gender, Sexuality, and the New Labor History 17 October 2017.Tuesday, 5:30PM - 7:45PM RSVP required Location: Fay House, Radcliffe Institute Anne G. Balay, Haverford College; Aimee Loiselle, University of Connecticut; Traci L. Parker, UMass-Amherst Moderator: Seth Rockman, Brown University The “New Labor History” is highly gendered, global, and often situated in spaces that ...

The “New Labor History” is highly gendered, global, and often situated in spaces that are transitory or obscured. This session will consider the new directions that the path-breaking work of these three scholars indicates: on female, trans, and intersex truck drivers and state surveillance (Balay), on Puerto Rican needleworkers and the global working class (Loiselle), and on African American women workers in the post-Civil Rights Era (Parker). Note: There are no pre-circulated essays for this session.

To RSVP: email seminars@masshist.org or call (617) 646-0579.

More
Brown Bag Palatable Slavery: Food, Race, and Freedom in the British Atlantic, 1620-1838 18 October 2017.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Heather Sanford, Brown University This project uses food in the British Atlantic to understand ideas about the body, race, and freedom ...

This project uses food in the British Atlantic to understand ideas about the body, race, and freedom. In New England, the Caribbean, and the Gold Coast of Africa, supplies of foodstuffs sustained colonization and slavery. Food allowed for survival, and also demarcated hierarchies of class, gender, and especially race. However, subjugated populations often used food-related practices to negotiate degrees of freedom within (and in defiance of) oppressive systems of colonization and slavery.

More
Biography Seminar Chasing Your Subject: Traveling Biographers, Traveling Subjects 19 October 2017.Thursday, 5:30PM - 7:45PM RSVP required Paul Fisher, Wellesley College; Charlotte Gordon, Endicott College; Sue Quinn, author Moderator: Carol Bundy, Civil War biographer What do biographers learn when they travel to distant parts and foreign countries in pursuit of ...

What do biographers learn when they travel to distant parts and foreign countries in pursuit of their subjects? Is travel a necessary component to writing biography? And what challenges does a traveling subject present to a biographer? This panel will include Paul Fisher, who has traveled extensively to research his work in progress, The Grand Affair: John Singer Sargent, His Patrons, and Sexuality in the Art World of the Belle Epoque; Charlotte Gordon, whose latest book, Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley, also took her all over Europe; and Sue Quinn, author of Eleanor and Hick: The Love Affair that Shaped a First Lady and earlier biographies of Marie Curie and Karen Horney, who has pursued her subjects from Hyde Park to Warsaw and Tokyo.

To RSVP: email seminars@masshist.org or call (617) 646-0579

More
Public Program Looking West from the East 20 October 2017.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM Da Zheng, Suffolk University     Artist, poet, lecturer, and best selling author Chiang Yee is best known for his ...

 

 

Artist, poet, lecturer, and best selling author Chiang Yee is best known for his Silent Traveler books, which offered a Chinese perspective of London, Paris, New York, San Francisco, and Boston. Chiang was also good friends with historian, author, and Boston Athenaeum librarian Walt Whitehill, whose papers are at the MHS. This biographical sketch offers a unique perspective on America and the immigrant experience as well as a glimpse into the life of the Silent Traveler through one of his closest friendships.

More
More events
MHS Tour, Public Program The History and Collections of the MHS 22 July 2017.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.

While you're here you will also have the opportunity to view our current exhibition: The Irish Atlantic: A Story of Famine Migration and Opportunity.

close
Teacher Workshop America in World War I 25 July 2017 to 27 July 2017 Registration fee: $35 per person

This is a two-day workshop that takes place on non-consecutive days: July 25 and 27.

How did Massachusetts men and women experience World War I? Participants will immerse themselves in the letters, diaries, and photographs created by soldiers, Red Cross volunteers, and relief workers, among others. Whether they were at home or abroad, these individuals provide a glimpse of the challenges and occasional pleasures of life during times of war. We will also examine the role of government propaganda campaigns in recruiting volunteers, financing war efforts, and promoting national unity and nativism.

This program is open to all K-12 educators. Teachers can earn 45 PDPs or two graduate credits (for an additional fee).

For more information, or to register, contact the Center for the Teaching of History at MHS: education@masshist.org; 617-646-0557.

Image: Croix de Guerre. France, 1914-1918. Eleanor Saltonstall received this Croix de Guerre on 28 November 1918, for evacuating civilians from the Noyon and Lassigny regions of France during German attacks in March 1918.

close
Public Program, Author Talk Gerry Studds: America's First Openly Gay Congressman 27 July 2017.Thursday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30pm. Mark Robert Schneider

 

 

 

 

Gerry Studds, America’s first openly gay congressman, fought in Congress to allow gays to serve in the military, fund AIDS research, and enact marriage equality. He was a champion of coastal and ocean environmental issues and helped to protect the American fishing industry. He was among the leading congressional opponents of President Reagan’s wars in Central America. Perhaps most importantly, he left a vivid unpublished memoir of his life as a closeted gay man in the public eye. Mark Schneider used this memoir and other items from the collection of the MHS to write the first biography of this important leader.

close
Public Program, Walking Tour Fabricated Fenway: The Mixed Legacy of our Invasive Urban Environment 29 July 2017.Saturday, 3:00PM - 4:30PM Harper Grace Mills

The river-choking, horizon-blocking phragmites of the Fens are not the only alien life forms to have overwhelmed the natural landscape of Boston. From the early 19th century Mill Dam that “made” Back Bay out of tidal marshland (currently buried beneath Beacon Street), to the landmark advances of the Esplanade, Storrow Drive, Emerald Necklace, and Kenmore Square, Boston's made environments have been riddled with surprising and sometimes perplexing consequences—for both our physical and social spaces.

Join us for the Fabricated Fenway tour, an overview of urban invasion by every species of good intentions.

This tour is co-sponsored by the Emerald Necklace Conservancy 

close
Teacher Workshop Teaching LGBTQ History 2 August 2017 to 4 August 2017 Registration fee: $50 per peson

This is a three-day workshop that takes place on August 2, 3, and 4.

LGBTQ is a relatively modern acronym, but history is brimming with examples of individuals who participated in same-sex relationships or tested the boundaries of gender norms. This workshop will explore ideas about sexual orientation and gender identity through the lives of New Englanders. Our investigations will take us from the Puritan era through the twenty-first century, as well as to local repositories and historic sites. Participants will also work with primary sources and curricular materials that will help contextualize current debates over LGBTQ rights.

This program is open to all K-12 educators. Teachers can earn 45 PDPs or two graduate credits (for an additional fee).

For more information, or to register, contact the Center for the Teaching of History at MHS: education@masshist.org; 617-646-0557.

Image: Herman Mann, The Female Review: or, Memoirs of an American Young Lady ... Dedham, [MA]: 1797.

close
Brown Bag The Year 1800: The Union of the Personal and the Political 2 August 2017.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Paul Gilje, University of Oklahoma

This project focuses on the elections of 1800 to reveal the extensive intrigues of a year that historians have often reduced to a single political contest. The personal and the political were inseparable among women and men in New York, Pennsylvania, and South Carolina, where power, prejudice, servitude, insiders, and foreigners converged in illicit unions that rocked individuals and families and altered electoral outcomes.

close
Public Program, MHS Tour The History and Collections of the MHS 5 August 2017.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.

While you're here you will also have the opportunity to view our current exhibition: The Irish Atlantic: A Story of Famine Migration and Opportunity.

close
Teacher Workshop Food in American History 9 August 2017.Wednesday, 9:00AM - 4:00PM This workshop is FULL. Please contact the Center for the Teaching of History at MHS for more information: education@masshist.org; 617-646-0570.

This is a three-day workshop that takes place on August 9, 10, and 11.

Experience food through historical accounts and field trips to local producers and providers! From the coffee, tea, and chocolate of the colonial era to the fusion cuisine of today, examinations of foodways can often reveal broader social, cultural, and political trends. We will taste our way through 400 years of American history while discussing ways to share this (mostly) delicious past with students. Offsite sessions will also provide us with opportunities to consider Boston’s contributions to American cuisine and dining habits.

This program is open to all K-12 educators. Teachers can earn 45 PDPs or two graduate credits (for an additional fee).

Image: Banquet to the Ambassadors of Japan, by Members of the Boston Board of Trade: Bill of Fare. Broadside on silk, 2 August 1872.

close
Public Program, MHS Tour The History and Collections of the MHS 12 August 2017.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.

While you're here you will also have the opportunity to view our current exhibition: The Irish Atlantic: A Story of Famine Migration and Opportunity.

close
Public Program, MHS Tour The History and Collections of the MHS this event is free 19 August 2017.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.

While you're here you will also have the opportunity to view our current exhibition: The Irish Atlantic: A Story of Famine Migration and Opportunity.

close
MHS Tour, Public Program The History and Collections of the MHS this event is free 26 August 2017.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.

While you're here you will also have the opportunity to view our current exhibition: The Irish Atlantic: A Story of Famine Migration and Opportunity.

close
Library Closed, Galleries Open Labor Day 2 September 2017.Saturday, all day

The MHS library is CLOSED; the exhibition galleries are OPEN, 10:00AM-4:00PM.

close
Building Closed Labor Day 4 September 2017.Monday, all day

The MHS library and exhibition galleries are CLOSED for Labor Day.

close
Brown Bag The Liberator’s Legacy: Memory, Abolitionism, and the Struggle for Civil Rights, 1865-1965 this event is free 6 September 2017.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Donald Yacovone, Harvard University

The Liberator’s Legacy explores popular memory of William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass, and their fellow abolitionists in the decades following the Civil War and reveals how that legacy influenced the rise of the modern Civil Rights Movement. Through the lens of collective memory, this book will examine the changing meaning of the Civil War in American thought.

close
Public Program, Author Talk The Selected Letters of John Kenneth Galbraith registration required 13 September 2017.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30pm. Richard P.F. Holt $10 registration fee per person. (No Charge for MHS Members or Fellows)

In his long, cosmopolitan life, Galbraith wrote thousands of letters. Richard P. F. Holt has selected the most important of these and made them available in print for the first time. The letters provide an intimate account of the three main political goals to which Galbraith devoted his professional life: ending war, fighting poverty, and improving quality of life by achieving a balance between private and public goods in an affluent capitalist society.

close
Public Program, Author Talk Expelling the Poor: Atlantic Seaboard States & the Nineteenth-Century Origins of American Immigration Policy registration required at no cost 14 September 2017.Thursday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30pm. Hidetaka Hirota, City College of New York

This groundbreaking work reinterprets the origins of immigration restriction in the U.S. Faced with the influx of Irish immigrants over the first half of the 19th century, nativists in Massachusetts and New York developed policies for prohibiting the landing of destitute foreigners and deporting those already resident. These state-level policies laid the foundations for federal immigration law. Expelling the Poor fundamentally revises the history of American immigration policy by locating the roots of immigration control in cultural and economic nativism against the Irish on the 19th-century Atlantic seaboard.

close
Brown Bag Exploring Conflict, Collaboration, and Conciliation in Colonial Families before the American Revolution this event is free 20 September 2017.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Nina Sankovitch, Independent Researcher

The Quincy, Adams, and Hancock families represent three different social classes all living in the small village of Braintree, MA before the American Revolution. This talk considers how the men and women of the families interacted, especially in their attitudes towards England in the late colonial era, and the different roles the families played in fomenting agitation against English rule.

close
Public Program, Conversation John McCormack and David K. Niles: How Two Reinvented Bostonians Altered American Politics and Foreign Policy registration required 20 September 2017.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30pm. Garrison Nelson, University of Vermont; Michael Dukakis, Northeastern University; and Peter Drummey, MHS $20 registration fee per person. (No Charge for MHS Members or Fellows)

John McCormack and David Niles came from large and poor families within religious minority communities. With no formal education, they reinvented themselves and moved into political circles eventually rising to be the Speaker of the House and high level White House advisor. While less well known than some of Boston’s more recent political stars, both became central to the shaping of modern American political parties and politics.

 

The program is co-sponsored by the Northeastern University Political Science Department

close
Exhibition The Irish Atlantic this event is free 22 September 2017.Friday, 10:00AM - 4:00PM Open Monday through Saturday from 10 AM to 4 PM

Explore 175 years of the Irish in Boston from the founding of the Charitable Irish Society in 1737, through famine relief efforts led by Capt. Robert Bennet Forbes at the helm of the Jamestown, to a mass migration movement, decades of community and institutional building, and a rise in political power. The exhibition is co-sponsored by the MHS and the Forbes House Museum.

See the exhibit’s companion website for an overview, timeline, and more videos about the Irish in Boston.

Watch this video for an overview of the exhibit by guest curator William M. Fowler, Distinguished Professor of History at Northeastern University.

close
Modern American Society and Culture Seminar Lost Cities of Chicago's South Side Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to receive advance copies of the seminar papers.
26 September 2017.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Carlo Rotella, Boston College Comment: Samuel Zipp, Brown University

Any city is composed of many layers, including superseded and could-have-been versions of itself: lost cities. This essay is drawn from Rotella’s current book project on South Shore, a neighborhood of Chicago’s South Side. Over the past half-century, the area has gradually shifted toward a class system of haves and have-nots separated by an increasing divide. Its fallen orders, which include factory complexes and ethnic urban villages, nevertheless exert a persistent pull today.

To RSVP: email seminars@masshist.org or call (617) 646-0579.

close
Brown Bag The Constitution of Disability in the Early United States this event is free 27 September 2017.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Laurel Daen, MHS-NEH Fellow

Disability emerged in the Early Republic as a meaningful bureaucratic, legal, institutional, and cultural category. It was rooted in ideas about work, social worth, and economic independence and increasingly determined by the expert discourse of medicine. This project examines this development and considers its consequences for the new nation and its citizens.

close
Public Program, Author Talk Sargent's Women: Four Lives Behind the Canvas registration required 27 September 2017.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30pm. Donna Lucey, Virginia Foundation for the Humanities $10 registration fee per person. (No Charge for MHS Members or Fellows)

 

This biography, based on original letters and diaries, illuminates four extraordinary women painted by the iconic high-society portraitist John Singer Sargent. With uncanny intuition, Sargent hinted at the mysteries and passions that unfolded in his subjects’ lives. Like characters in an Edith Wharton novel, these women challenged society’s restrictions, risking public shame and ostracism. These compelling stories of female courage connect our past with our present and remind us that while women live differently now, they still face obstacles to attaining full equality.

close
Special Event Graduate Student Reception this event is free 28 September 2017.Thursday, 6:00PM - 8:00PM

Calling all graduate students and faculty in history, American Studies, or any related field! Please join us for our eighth annual Graduate Student Reception.

Starting at six pm, you can enjoy free drinks and hors d’oeuvres as you meet students and professors from other universities working in your fields. At 6:30 or a little later, set down your glass and take a behind-the-scenes tour to learn more about the Society's collections as well as the resources available to support your scholarship, from research fellowships to our five different seminar series.

Faculty, bring your graduate students! Graduate students, bring your cohort! This reception is free, but we ask that you RSVP by September 27, by emailing seminars@masshist.org or calling (617) 646-0579.

close
Early American History Seminar John Marshall, Slaveowner and Jurist Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to receive advance copies of the seminar papers.
3 October 2017.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Paul Finkelman, University of Pittsburgh School of Law Comment: R. Kent Newmyer, University of Connecticut

This chapter from Finkelman’s forthcoming book examines the personal and professional life of Chief Justice John Marshall in the context of his relationship to slavery. Though previous studies downplay Marshall’s slavery jurisprudence and his slaveholding, this paper argues that Marshall as a Supreme Court justice always favored slavery over freedom, and that this reflected his personal investment, emotionally and economically, in slavery.

To RSVP: email seminars@masshist.org or call (617) 646-0579.

close
Brown Bag Commerce and the Material Culture of the Maritime Atlantic World this event is free 4 October 2017.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM J. Ritchie Garrison, University of Delaware

This talk considers the maritime economy in the early modern Atlantic World, focusing on the infrastructure of commercial exchanges as port cities adapted to larger ships, increased consumer goods, and productivity challenges in environments that included bays, rivers, and estuaries. The argument is grounded on historical documents, maps, objects, and archaeological fieldwork to show that people—from dock workers to financiers—sought to stabilize local variables to accommodate rapid market shifts.

close
Public Program How Boston Became the 'West': George Ticknor and the Arrival of Spanish Culture to the United States registration required at no cost 6 October 2017.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM Ricardo Miguel Alfonso, University of Castilla-La Mancha

 

George Ticknor, William H. Prescott, and other New Englanders wrote about Spain and the Spanish people in the early- to mid 19th century. Boston became a center for publishing Spanish literature and discussing Spanish culture as well as creating and perpetuating stereotypes as the Spanish empire came to be replaced by the American one. This helped to shape U.S.–Spain cultural relations until the Spanish-American War and helped to define America as the West.

 

Image: Thomas Sully, George Ticknor, 1831, oil on canvas. Hood Museum of Art at Dartmouth College

close
Public Program MHS Open House this event is free 9 October 2017.Monday, 10:00AM - 3:00PM There is limited street parking and several garages nearby. The use of public transportation is highly recommended. MHS Staff

 

Visit the MHS and view Yankees in the West, an exhibition of letters, diaries, photographs, drawings, and artifacts that explores the ways New Englanders experienced the trans-Mississippi west in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Free and open to the public, the open house is part of the Opening Our Doors celebration in the Fenway Cultural District.

close
Library Closed, Galleries Open Columbus Day 9 October 2017.Monday, all day

The MHS library is CLOSED; the exhibition galleries are OPEN, 10:00AM-4:00PM.

close
Environmental History Seminar Early American Environmental Histories Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to receive advance copies of the seminar papers.
10 October 2017.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM James Rice, Tufts University Comment: Christopher Parsons, Northeastern University

This essay speaks to questions raised in a recent workshop at the Huntington on early American environmental history. How do timespan and scale change our understanding of historical relationships between people and their environments? What new light does environmental history shed on topics such as race, gender, or law? What can early Americanists contribute to the field of environmental history as a whole?

To RSVP: email seminars@masshist.org or call (617) 646-0579.

close
Public Program, Author Talk Steam Titans: Cunard, Collins and the Epic Battle for Commerce on the North Atlantic registration required 12 October 2017.Thursday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30pm. William M. Fowler, Jr., Northeastern University $20 registration fee per person. (No Charge for MHS Members or Fellows)

 

 

Steam travel transformed the Atlantic into a pulsating highway, dominated by ports in Liverpool and New York. American raw materials flowed eastward, while goods, capital, people, and technology crossed westward. Steam Titans tells the story of a transatlantic fight to seize control of the globe’s most lucrative trade route. Two men—Samuel Cunard and Edward Knight Collins—and two nations wielded the tools of technology, finance, and politics to compete for control of a commercial lifeline that spanned the North Atlantic.

close
History of Women and Gender Seminar Panel Discussion: Gender, Sexuality, and the New Labor History Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to receive advance copies of the seminar papers.
17 October 2017.Tuesday, 5:30PM - 7:45PM Location: Fay House, Radcliffe Institute Anne G. Balay, Haverford College; Aimee Loiselle, University of Connecticut; Traci L. Parker, UMass-Amherst Moderator: Seth Rockman, Brown University

The “New Labor History” is highly gendered, global, and often situated in spaces that are transitory or obscured. This session will consider the new directions that the path-breaking work of these three scholars indicates: on female, trans, and intersex truck drivers and state surveillance (Balay), on Puerto Rican needleworkers and the global working class (Loiselle), and on African American women workers in the post-Civil Rights Era (Parker). Note: There are no pre-circulated essays for this session.

To RSVP: email seminars@masshist.org or call (617) 646-0579.

close
Brown Bag Palatable Slavery: Food, Race, and Freedom in the British Atlantic, 1620-1838 this event is free 18 October 2017.Wednesday, 12:00PM - 1:00PM Heather Sanford, Brown University

This project uses food in the British Atlantic to understand ideas about the body, race, and freedom. In New England, the Caribbean, and the Gold Coast of Africa, supplies of foodstuffs sustained colonization and slavery. Food allowed for survival, and also demarcated hierarchies of class, gender, and especially race. However, subjugated populations often used food-related practices to negotiate degrees of freedom within (and in defiance of) oppressive systems of colonization and slavery.

close
Biography Seminar Chasing Your Subject: Traveling Biographers, Traveling Subjects Seminars are free and open to the public; RSVP required.
Subscribe to receive advance copies of the seminar papers.
19 October 2017.Thursday, 5:30PM - 7:45PM Paul Fisher, Wellesley College; Charlotte Gordon, Endicott College; Sue Quinn, author Moderator: Carol Bundy, Civil War biographer

What do biographers learn when they travel to distant parts and foreign countries in pursuit of their subjects? Is travel a necessary component to writing biography? And what challenges does a traveling subject present to a biographer? This panel will include Paul Fisher, who has traveled extensively to research his work in progress, The Grand Affair: John Singer Sargent, His Patrons, and Sexuality in the Art World of the Belle Epoque; Charlotte Gordon, whose latest book, Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley, also took her all over Europe; and Sue Quinn, author of Eleanor and Hick: The Love Affair that Shaped a First Lady and earlier biographies of Marie Curie and Karen Horney, who has pursued her subjects from Hyde Park to Warsaw and Tokyo.

To RSVP: email seminars@masshist.org or call (617) 646-0579

close
Public Program Looking West from the East registration required at no cost 20 October 2017.Friday, 2:00PM - 3:00PM Da Zheng, Suffolk University

 

 

Artist, poet, lecturer, and best selling author Chiang Yee is best known for his Silent Traveler books, which offered a Chinese perspective of London, Paris, New York, San Francisco, and Boston. Chiang was also good friends with historian, author, and Boston Athenaeum librarian Walt Whitehill, whose papers are at the MHS. This biographical sketch offers a unique perspective on America and the immigrant experience as well as a glimpse into the life of the Silent Traveler through one of his closest friendships.

close

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