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February 11, 2014

Young Historians, Living Histories- Today’s Stop: Oklahoma City, OK!

Special thanks to Paula Lee, Smithsonian Affiliations intern, for this guest post. This is the first of a five-part blog series she is writing as part of the Young Historians, Living Histories (YHLH) collaboration with the Asian Pacific American Center and our Affiliate network. 

Asian Pacific American youth representing the Young Historians, Living HIstory after completing a workshop

Asian Pacific American youth representing the Young Historians, Living History after completing a workshop

Early this August, I had an extraordinary opportunity to join Smithsonian Affiliations as an intern directly assisting with the Young Historians, Living Histories grant. After a few weeks of researching the project, I spoke with Leah Craig, Curator of Education at the Oklahoma History Center, an Affiliate in Oklahoma City. Oklahoma History Center is one of nine Affiliate museums selected to receive the YHLH grant funded by the Smithsonian’s Youth Access Grant program. Additional Affiliates include Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience (Seattle, WA), Institute of Texan Cultures (San Antonio, TX), Western Reserve Historical Society (Cleveland, OH), Pacific Aviation Museum (Honolulu, HI), Sonoma County Museum (Santa Rosa, CA), Greensboro Historical Museum (Greensboro, NC), Riverside Metropolitan Museum (Riverside, CA), and Historic Arkansas Museum (Little Rock, AR).

This program is an educational initiative designed to engage underserved youth in Asian Pacific American communities by incorporating the use of digital media to produce oral histories. Being an Asian American myself, I was particularly thrilled at the chance to be involved in a project that hit so close to home. The Affiliates have collaborated with the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center (APAC) and the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM) to provide essential curriculum guidelines that will be used to train educators to implement youth workshops. Participating Affiliates have recruited Asian Pacific American students to attend workshops at the museums. Middle and high school students will learn a variety of 21st-century skills, methods of community outreach, and digital storytelling to explore, contextualize, and deepen their understanding of Asian Pacific American history and culture.

Director Leah Craig leading one of many workshops on Asian American history

Curator Leah Craig leading one of many workshops on Asian American history

While the Affiliates were busy recruiting students, Craig had already begun to lead a team of 20 gifted and talented students from Norman High School through active learning workshops. The workshops covered essential editing, filming, interviewing and a lesson in Asian Pacific American history with the help of teachers Margaret Wadleigh, LaRadius Allen, and Moving Image Archivist Corey Ayers. Students that participated in the workshop came from diverse cultural backgrounds and were placed in groups that encouraged them to share their stories and ideas as they began their transformation into historians seeking stories within the Asian Pacific American community.  At only 1.9 percent, Oklahoma’s Asian American population isn’t large but according to the U.S. Census Bureau it includes a variety of Chinese, Korean, Pilipino, Burmese, and Hmong communities with significant Vietnamese and growing Indian communities. The program has enticed the young historians to become curious and research the immigration stories that attracted Asian Americans’ very first settlement into Oklahoma such as the Land Run in 1889.

Shoulder to Shoulder-- Oklahoman students eager to learn the film making processes of oral histries in a workshop led by Moving Image Archivist, Corey Ayers

Shoulder to Shoulder– Oklahoman students eager to learn the film making processes of oral histries in a workshop led by Moving Image Archivist, Corey Ayers

Craig boasts that “by conducting the oral histories students are helping us collect the history of our community from people with whom we may not have any other way to collect their stories.” Students were challenged to reveal the hidden struggles and accomplishments that Asian Pacific Americans in their own families/personal network had endured while en route, discovering a part of them that was never truly appreciated. Wadleigh, one of the two mentoring teachers, observed that the oral history element of this project engaged the students in a way that activated their “emotional” skills, skills that helped them discover powerful stories that couldn’t be told through any textbook.   Look forward to future posts under the YHLH Series as we begin to unravel the unique stories hidden across the nation “oh the places we’ll go” when we’re looking!

January 28, 2014

coming up in Affiliateland in February 2014

It may be chilly across the country, but the temperature is not stopping Affiliates from offering great programming in February!

NATIONWIDEnational_youth_summit
To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Freedom Summer, 12 Affiliates will join the National Museum of American History to hold a National Youth Summit, linking high school students across the U.S. in an engaging program on the history and legacy of the 1964 youth-led effort for voting rights and education, 2.5.

Participating Affiliates include:
African American Museum & National Museum of American Jewish History, Philadelphia, PA
American Jazz Museum, Kansas City, MO
Arab American National Museum, Dearborn, MI
History Colorado  Center, Denver, CO
Institute of Texan Cultures, San Antonio, TX
Japanese American National Museum, Los Angeles, CA
National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, Cincinnati, OH
Oklahoma History Center, Oklahoma City, OK
Senator John Heinz History Center, Pittsburgh, PA
Western Reserve Historical Society, Cleveland, OH
North Carolina Museum of History, Raleigh, NC

NEBRASKA

The Durham Museum opens The 1968 Exhibit featuring three Apollo 8 artifacts from the National Air and Space Museum, in Omaha, 2.8.

snakeThe University of Nebraska State Museum opens the Titanoboa: Monster Snake exhibition (SITES) in Lincoln, 2.22.
IOWA
The Putnam Museum opens Bittersweet Harvest: The Bracero Program, 1942-1964 (SITES) in Davenport, 2.15.

November 22, 2013

What to see at a Smithsonian Affiliate in your neighborhood

It’s the Friday before Thanksgiving break. We’re all excited about seeing friends and family and taking a little break from school and work. So here are a few ideas for including the Smithsonian in your holiday plans from our Affiliate partners across the country:

Midwest

The Lizzadro Museum of Lapidary Art in Elmhurt, Illinois, hosts Modern Designer Jewelry from the Smithsonian, an exhibition that features jewelry from American Jewelry designers from 1960 to 2009 from the collections of the National Museum of Natural History.

Mid-Atlantic

Take an in-depth look at Pennsylvania’s significant role during the Civil War at the Senator John Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh. In its new major exhibition, Pennsylvania’s Civil War, you can find a tintype camera and portable printing press on loan from the National Museum of American History.

Mountain Plains

Apollo Boilerplate Command Module on loan from the National Air and Space Museum.

Apollo Boilerplate Command Module on loan from the National Air and Space Museum.

More than 21 artifacts on loan from the National Air and Space Museum are on view at the New Mexico Museum of Space History in Alamagordo. Get an up-close look at an Apollo Boilerplate Command Module and see the training coveralls worn by New Mexico astronaut, Harrison Schmitt, the only scientist to walk on the moon.

If you’re in San Antonio, the Institute of Texan Cultures is currently displaying two exhibitions from the National Museum of the American Indian and organized for travel by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service (SITES). Native Words, Native Warriors tells the story of soldiers from more than a dozen tribes who used their Native languages while in service in the U.S. military. Ramp It Up: Skateboard Culture in Native America celebrates the vibrancy, creativity and history of American Indian skateboarding culture.

New England

It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without the rich tradition of gathering together at harvest time and celebrating the abundant joys of the season. At Plimoth Plantation in Plymouth, Massachusetts, visitors can learn all about the settlement of the Plymouth Colony in the 17th century.

Southeast

Go on safari at the Schiele Museum of Natural History in Gastonia, North Carolina. Fourteen specimens—from a tiny eastern mole to a mountain gorilla—are on loan from the National Museum of Natural History.

The Polk Museum of Art in Lakeland, Florida, includes five works of art from the National Air and Space Museum collection in its exhibition Paintings of the Space Age.

The Mennello Museum of American Art in Orlando, Florida, has Earl Cunningham’s painting Seminole Indian Summer Camp on view from the Smithsonian American Art Museum in its Earl Cunningham gallery. 

Seminole Indian Summer Camp, ca. 1963, Earl Cunningham, oil on fiberboard, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Michael and Marilyn Mennello.

Seminole Indian Summer Camp, ca. 1963, Earl Cunningham, oil on fiberboard, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Michael and Marilyn Mennello.

West

Arizona State Museum, in Tucson, celebrates the creative work of American Indian directors, producers, writers, and actors during the Native Eyes Film Showcase, in collaboration with the National Museum of the American Indian and many others.

If you’re in California, visit the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles and see I Want the Wide American Earth: An Asian Pacific American Story. Created by the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center and organized for travel by SITES, the exhibit tells the story of how Asian Pacific Americans have shaped and been shaped by the course of our nation’s history.

Check out the San Diego Air and Space Museum where you can see nearly 30 space-related artifacts on loan from the National Air and Space Museum.

 

Is the Smithsonian in your neighborhood? Find an Affiliate here.

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October 29, 2013

coming up in affiliateland in november 2013

PUERTO RICO
Museo y Centro de Estudios Humanísticos hosts Budget Planning for Museums, a workshop led by Affiliations director, Harold Closter in Gurabo, 11.2.

TEXAS
SITES exhibition Ramp It Up: Skateboard Culture in Native America opens at the Institute of Texan Cultures in San Antonio, 11.2.

SOUTH DAKOTA
As part of their ongoing Smithsonian Sunday series, the South Dakota State Historical Society will host a webcast from the National Air and Space Museum, 50 Years of Solar System Exploration: New Worlds, New Discoveries, in Pierre, 11.10.

PENNSYLVANIA
The National Museum of American Jewish History presents a lecture and book signing with Undersecretary Richard Kurin, author of The Smithsonian’s History of America in 101 Objects in Philadelphia, 11.12.

NEBRASKA
National Museum of Natural History curator, Hans Sues, will present a lecture at the University of Nebraska State Museum of Natural History in Lincoln, 11.14.

WASHINGTON, DC
Affiliate directors will be among the attendees of the Latino Partnership Forum, organized by the Smithsonian Latino Center and Smithsonian Affiliations, at the Smithsonian, 11.4-11.6.

15 Affiliates shared educational materials which will be available to educators as part of a rescheduled Smithsonian Teachers Night, Washington DC, 11.15.

National Museum of American History curators Nancy Davis and Peter Liebhold will participate in a panel discussion, Show me the Money: Museum Conversations of Debt and Commerce, with the director of the Museum of American Finance, David Cowen, in Washington DC, 11.23.

 

September 24, 2013

coming up in affiliateland in october 2013

NEW YORK
Smithsonian Regent David Rubenstein will be featured in the Titans of Industry seminar at the Center for Jewish History in New York City, 10.2.    

VIRGINIA 
George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate and Gardens will host a field trip and sessions as part of the International Museum Theater Alliance Global Conference in Mount Vernon, 10.8.   

FLORIDA
The Polk Museum of Art opens Paintings of the Space Age, featuring five paintings on loan from the
National Air and Space Museum, in Lakeland, 10.12.  

SOUTH DAKOTA
South Dakota State Historical Society will host a special webcast of the National Air and Space Museum entitled Star Trek’s Continuing Relevance, in Pierre, 10.13.

D.C.
wankel-rex-is-comingJack Horner, Curator of Paleontology at the Museum of the Rockies (Bozeman, MT) comes to Washington to discuss the bones of a Tyrannosaurus rex which was excavated near the Museum, but will be coming to the Smithsonian in 2019, in Washington, 10.16.  

Affiliations’ staff takes part in Smithsonian Teachers Night, distributing digital, educational materials from more than 15 Affiliates across the nation in Washington, 10.25.   

CONNECTICUT
The Mashantucket Pequot Museum hosts a conference on 17th Century Warfare, Diplomacy & Society in the American Northeast featuring James Ring Adams, a historian from the National Museum of the American Indian, and a historical theater presentation by Plimoth Plantation, in Mashantucket, 10.18-19.  

TEXAS
The Institute of Texan Cultures opens the Native Words, Native Warriors  (SITES) exhibition in San Antonio, 10.19.    
 

affiliates in the news! october 2013

Congrats to these Affiliates making news! Each month we highlight Affiliate-Smithsonian and Affiliate-Affiliate collaborations making headlines.  If you have a clipping highlighting a collaboration with the Smithsonian or with a fellow Affiliate you’d like to have considered for the Affiliate blog, please contact Elizabeth Bugbee.

trex

Sarah L. Voisin/The Washington Post – Kirk Johnson of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History, is pictured through the cast of a Tyrannosaurus rex head.

Denver Museum of Nature and Science (Denver, Colorado)
Meet the Smithsonian’s fossil guy
“Kirk Johnson, the museum’s director, isn’t your typical coat-and-tie Washingtonian. In fact, the paleontologist and former chief curator for the Denver Museum of Nature and Science is happiest when he’s digging in the dirt in search of fossils. Add a lasso and a hat, and you’d get something like Indiana Jones (only he’s a stickler for permits).”

Frost Museum of Art (Miami, Florida)
“Our America: The Latino Presence in American Art” Opens at the Smithsonian American Art Museum Oct. 25
“The exhibition will tour the U.S. after closing at the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Confirmed venues include The Patricia and Phillip Frost Art Museum at Florida International University in Miami (March 28, 2014 – June 22, 2014)…”

Plimoth Plantation (Plymouth, Massachusetts)
Mashpee Wampanoag dugout canoe on way to Smithsonian
“It’s huge,” Coombs said of the honor of having the Smithsonian accept the mishoon. “We’ve always been on the map, but a lot of people think of the Indians as only being in the West.”

Traditional Wampanoag canoe made at Plimoth Plantation headed to the Smithsonian
Darius Coombs, associate director of the Wampanoag Indigenous Program, came up with the idea of making a mishoon for donation to the Smithsonian. He calls the Smithsonian’s acceptance of the canoe an honor. 

PLIMOTH PLANTATION: Mishoon accepted by Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian
“It’s an honor that the Smithsonian will accept it, and we enjoy doing new work – it keeps the job challenging,” Coombs said. “It has been a fun and educational experience. The mishoon is an invaluable piece that will add depth to the Smithsonian’s already rich representation of Northeast Native life.”

Plimoth Plantation makes replica of Native American canoe for Smithsonian
Plimoth Plantation’s Wampanoag Indigenous Program has been creating mishoons, traditional Native American canoes, for the past 40 years, but this year the hard work is being recognized. On Thursday, a mishoon made this spring will be ready to leave for the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.

 

Japanese American laborers at Tule Lake War Relocation Center. (Library of Congress)

Japanese American laborers at Tule Lake War Relocation Center. (Library of Congress)

Smithsonian Accepts Dugout Canoe from Plimoth Plantation
“As a museum dedicated to the history and culture of Native American communities, we’re delighted to welcome a creation like this one that represents a living tradition among the Wampanoag,” said Kevin Gover (Pawnee) Director, National Museum of the American Indian

Institute of Texan Cultures (San Antonio, Texas)
Beloved Institute Of Texan Cultures Planning For The Future
“I think that’s one thing absolutely fantastic about the history of the United States is that you do not necessarily have to be from that place to make a difference. And I still think that continues today because we see it throughout the wonderful history of our country,” Docog said.

US Space and Rocket Center (Huntsville, Alabama)
Part 3: Barnhart Looks Ahead 5 Years, Talks about Da Vinci Exhibition
“We will have a world quality institution for life,” said Dr. Barnhart. “We are a Smithsonian affiliate, and it’s our job to tell the story of our region and the innovation and the place of invention that Huntsville is. My job is to make sure it’s strong, financially stable, and continues to tell that story well into the generations.”

Japanese American National Museum (Los Angeles, CA)
‘I Want the Wide American Earth: An Asian Pacific American Story’ Opens at JANM Sept. 14

August 27, 2012

coming up in affiliateland in september 2012

Ah.. it’s back-to-school time, and back to great events happening across the country at Affiliates! 

FLORIDA
The Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Museum will be hosting the exhibition Reflections Across Time: Seminole Portraits featuring loans from SAAM, NPG, and NMAI in Clewiston, 9.1.

The Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra will perform at The Museum of Arts & Sciences and give a workshop at Stetson Univeristy School of Music with an introduction from Harold Closter in Daytona Beach, 9.07.
MOAS will also host Richard Kurin to lecture on The Hope Diamond and book signing, 9.20.


TEXAS
The Institute of Texan Cultures will host SITES’ IndiVisible in San Antonio, 9.15.


OHIO
The Ohio Historical Society will host an Affiliations Announcement with Harold Closter in Columbus, 9.18.

The Springfield Museum of Art will be hosting the exhibition Jack Earl: A Modern Master-A Retrospective featuring loans from SAAM in Springfield, 9.22.


NATIONWIDE
:
10 Affiliates from across the country contributed educational materials for Smithsonian Teachers Night in Washington, D.C., 9.28.

35 Affiliates will open their doors for free as part of Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day, 9.29.

 

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