Events

Wednesday, July 5, 2017 10:00 AMFriday, September 1, 2017 4:00 PM
The Old Colony History Museum announces a new collaborative museum program. Passport to History is a joint effort of nine local museums, spearheaded by Old Colony History Museum, to share and explore the fantastic and diverse history of southeastern Massachusetts. At each participating museum, guests can pick up a passport and complete a location-specific activity to earn a passport stamp. Altogether, visitors will have a chance to explore and learn about the exciting and varied history of the Old Colony region. The participating museums are the Old Colony History Museum, The Fuller Craft Museum, the Carpenter Museum, the Hanover Historical Society, the Freetown Historical Society, the Middleborough Historical Association, The Robbins Museum, the Duxbury Rural and Historical Society, and the Attleboro Area Industrial Museum. Many of the listed museums are offering free admission for those on their first visit with the passport. Additionally, to celebrate the launch of the passport, we are holding a raffle for those who post photos from each location by September 1, 2017 with #PassportToHistory.
Friday, August 25, 2017 3:00 PM4:30 PM
From the fifties through the seventies, the Music Inn was the happening place in Lenox. Join us for a lively celebration of this unique piece of Berkshire history. Bring your story to share!
Saturday, August 26, 2017 11:00AM
Join the Jamaica Plain Historical Society to explore this National Historic District which includes one of the finest collections of Victorian houses in the area. Sumner Hill includes the ancestral home of the Dole Pineapple Company founder and the homes of progressives who were active as both abolitionists and women suffragists. Tours last between 60 and 90 minutes and are canceled in case of heavy rain. No reservations are required, just meet the guide at the location listed
Sunday, August 27, 2017 2:00 PM3:30 PM
Is there a more hip and happening place in Boston than SoWa right now? This area of the South End (the bit that is SOuth of WAshington Street) is experiencing yet another reboot. The neighborhood first came into being when the South Cove was filled in the 1830s. Then the area saw a massive transformation in the 1950s when Boston's first major urban redevelopment project obliterated the area called the New York Streets. Now with another redevelopment of the area (formerly occupied by the Boston Herald) into the "Ink Block" this enclave is remodeling itself once again. This tour explores all of these various pivotal events. We will visit the new buildings of the Ink Block but also seek out some vestiges of the old neighborhood too. Sundays afternoons feature the increasingly popular SoWa Open Market ??"
Monday, August 28, 2017 7:00 PM
The Harvard Square Book Circle, our in-store book club, discusses Peter Pomerantsev's critically acclaimed book, "Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible: The Surreal Heart of the New Russia." Dazzling yet piercingly insightful, Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible is an unforgettable voyage into a country spinning from decadence into madness. This month's Book Circle is co-sponsored by Mass Humanities.
Thursday, August 31, 2017 4:00 PM5:30 PM
Edith Wharton called her classic 1917 romance Summer "The Hot Ethan Frome." Celebrate the centennial of her classic novel's publication with a multi-actor staged reading of Carl Sprague's screenplay adaptation. A visual presentation of Berkshire locations and period inspiration will accompany the reading.
Saturday, September 2, 2017 11:00AM
Join the Jamaica Plain Historical Society to explore a fascinating industrial area at the geographic heart of Boston that includes 19th-century tannery and brewery buildings, the homes of early German settlers, and today's Boston Beer Company, the brewers of Samuel Adams. In the 1970s, a coalition of community groups joined together to block construction of the Southwest Expressway through Jamaica Plain and other Boston neighborhoods. Today, the Southwest Corridor Park that runs through the Stony Brook neighborhood stands as a testament to the power of community activism. Tours last between 60 and 90 minutes and are canceled in case of heavy rain. No reservations are required, just meet the guide at the location listed.
Saturday, September 2, 2017 Sunday, September 3, 2017
Life and Labor Guided Tours, at 11:00, 1:00 & 2:00 both days, will explore the work and labor history at The House of the Seven Gables.
  • The House of the Seven Gables, 115 Derby Street
  • Salem, Essex County, MA (Northeast)
  • contact: (978) 744-0991 x152
  • web: www.7Gables.org
  • email: jarrison@7Gables.org
  • cost: included with general admission; Free for Salem residents
  • funded by Mass Humanities
Wednesday, September 6, 2017 6:00 PM8:00 PM
This lecture will illustrate the diversity of domestic service in New England over the 19th and 20th centuries by focusing on three Historic New England properties. Period domestic manuals, ephemera, and other general material will also bring the lives of servants and relationships with their employers to the foreground.
  • The House of the Seven Gables, 115 Derby Street
  • Salem, Essex County, MA (Northeast)
  • contact: (978) 744-0991 x152
  • web: www.7Gables.org
  • email: jarrison@7Gables.org
  • cost: $7; free for Gables and Historic New England members
  • funded by Mass Humanities
Friday, September 8, 2017 5:00 PM6:30 PM
Poets Vijay Seshadri, Rosanna Warren, and Major Jackson reflect on how poetry has guided and given them a voice during times of great social turmoil and uncertainty. Public discussion following.
Saturday, September 9, 2017 11:00AM
Join the Jamaica Plain Historical Society to learn about 1840s Hyde Square when German and Irish immigrants transformed the neighborhood with their businesses, schools, and institutions. See how in the early 1960s, Hyde Square changed again when Cuban, Puerto Rican, and Dominican immigrants transformed it into Boston's first predominantly Hispanic neighborhood. This tour also takes us to the home of Maud Cuney Hare, a prominent music historian and one of only two black women students at the New England Conservatory of Music in 1890. You will also learn about the property currently housing the MSPCA's Angell Animal Medical Center which was once a site of the Perkins School for the Blind. The tour will also walk through the Sunnyside neighborhood, the site of homes built by philanthropist Robert Treat Paine from 1889 to 1899 as a "worker's utopia" for working families. Tours last between 60 and 90 minutes and are canceled in case of heavy rain. No reservations are required, just meet the guide at the location listed.
Thursday, September 14, 2017 6:00 PM7:30 PM
Salem State University's Avi Chomsky returns for her second Community Conversation to share the diverse stories about labor and work in the Point neighborhood of Salem. This neighborhood represents an ever-changing fabric of newly arriving immigrants to Salem.
  • The House of the Seven Gables, 115 Derby Street
  • Salem, Essex County, MA (Northeast)
  • contact: (978) 744-0991 x152
  • web: www.7Gables.org
  • email: jarrison@7Gables.org
  • cost: free
  • funded by Mass Humanities
Thursday, September 14, 2017 5:30 PM6:30 PM
Community Access to the Arts (CATA) presents its annual poetry reading with selected works from the CATA Writers Workshop. These poems are funny, poignant, and reflect the unique perspective of writers with disabilities.
Friday, September 15, 2017 5:00 PM6:00 PM
Andrew Motion, former poet laureate of the United Kingdom, reads a selection of his work. The Independent describes the stalwart poet as the "charming and tireless defender of the art form." This event is sponsored by the Amy Clampitt Fund, a fund of the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation.
Saturday, September 16, 2017 11:00AM
Join the Jamaica Plain Historical Society to tour Green Street. Laid out in 1836, the street played a key role in Jamaica Plain's development, functioning as a residential, commercial, and transportation conduit in the lives of the district's residents. Although Green Street was subdivided as early as 1851 for stores, factories and houses, it was not extensively developed until the late 1870s with construction continuing until the early 1900s. The Bowditch School was completed in 1892, and early in the 20th century the United States Post Office moved from its location on Call Street at Woolsey Square to its new location at the corner of Green and Cheshire Streets. Tours last between 60 and 90 minutes and are canceled in case of heavy rain. No reservations are required, just meet the guide at the location listed.
Sunday, September 17, 2017 1:00 PM2:30 PM
This talk and discussion will focus on Boston's Hidden Sacred Spaces.
Thursday, September 21, 2017 6:30 PM8:00 PM
Perhaps women need to be reminded of how far we've come in order to see how far we still can go. Discover what life was really like for New England's colonial women - because we've always been curious about: menstruation, sex & birth control, childbirth, sickness & medicine. The Not-So-Good Life of the Colonial Goodwife not only makes audience members laugh and grimace, but it also honors our foremothers. It's not about quilting bees and spinning wheels - it's an interactive presentation about the little-known issues faced by New England's colonial women. Ms. Jancz-Urban has traveled throughout the east coast presenting at libraries, historical societies, women's groups, conferences, universities, book festivals, and women's history month events. Refreshments will be served at 6:30 pm with the talk to begin at 7 pm.
Saturday, September 23, 2017 11:00AM
?Join the Jamaica Plain Historical Society? to tour this part of the JP neighborhood which developed from 19th-century summer estates into a model suburban enclave. It contains examples representative of New England architecture with designs by local architects and builders. It also contains an unusual garden city model housing development by the Boston Dwelling House Company which was founded in 1912. Tours last between 60 and 90 minutes and are canceled in case of heavy rain. No reservations are required, just meet the guide at the location listed.??
Saturday, September 23, 2017 1:00 PM3:00PM
Are you interested in music? Poetry? Storytelling? Do you want to learn more about these things? Join us for an afternoon program featuring local artists who will be sharing their songs, poems, stories, and artwork in a casual, friendly setting. You can come and just listen, or if you would like to participate, let us know as there are a limited number of open mic slots to share your work. This is our second event following a successful June launch and we hope you can join us to continue to expand. Please contact us to reserve a performance slot.
Saturday, September 23, 2017 1:00 PM2:30 PM
Dr. Kevin Stokesbury, Professor and Chair at School for Marine Science and Technology's Department of Fisheries Oceanography, will discuss the history, present, and future sustainability of the fisheries of George's Bank. As a coastal city, sustainable fisheries greatly impact our community and economy, as many residents live along or earn a living from the ocean. Dr. Stokesbury will share lessons learned from his research on what our individual and community roles are in maintaining sustainable oceans. Following the lecture there will be a facilitated discussion exploring what actions we can take to affect change locally and globally, how we can we look to the past to learn from our mistakes or find solutions, what our ethical duty is to ourselves and future generations, and more. Seaport Art Walk artists will be on hand to discuss their concerns turned inspiration regarding the problems and solutions, globally, facing our oceans and waterways.
Sunday, September 24, 2017 1:00 PM
This is a walking tour of Salem's Point Neighborhood focusing on the work in the mills and in the homes. What has made this neighborhood of enclaves for immigrant families function through the years? Join us to find out! This program is free as part of Essex National Heritage Area's Trails and Sails events. Space is limited and registration is required. The meeting location will be sent with the reservation confirmation.
  • The House of the Seven Gables, 115 Derby Street
  • Salem, Essex County, MA (Northeast)
  • contact: (978) 744-0991 x152
  • web: www.7Gables.org
  • email: jarrison@7Gables.org
  • cost: free with preregistration
  • funded by Mass Humanities
Thursday, September 28, 2017 3:00 PM4:30 PM
How we can join together across "borders" of all kinds to build vibrant communities? This question is at the heart Naomi Shihab Nye's poems. It is also the question that will serve as the focus of No Human is Illegal, a community conversation with Naomi Shihab Nye. Assumption Professor Lucia Knoles will open the discussion by inviting Naomi Shihab Nye to share her poems and thoughts on immigrants, border crossings, and how we can learn to live as true neighbors. In the second part of the session, the conversation will be broadened to include comments and questions from the audience. Following this discussion there will be a free community dinner with Naomi Shihab Nye at Trinity Lutheran Church (across the street from the museum) followed by group discussions. All welcome. This event is sponsored by The Clemente Course in the Humanities, Worcester, with support from Mass Humanities and the Worcester Art Museum. Now in its fourth year serving Worcester, Clemente offers accredited college-level instruction to educationally and economically disadvantaged adults at no cost. Participants study literature, art history, moral philosophy, and U.S. History in a welcoming community setting.
Thursday, September 28, 2017 4:00 PM5:00 PM
Celebrated royal writer Sally Bedell Smith discusses her "New York Times" best-selling biography, "Prince Charles: The Passions and Paradoxes of an Improbable Life."
Thursday, September 28, 2017 4:00 PM6:00 PM
Join us to hear readings by Hollis Watkins from his new memoir. Hollis will take your questions and discuss the lessons he has learned over his seven decades of organizing.
Friday, September 29, 2017 5:30 PM8:30 PM
Join us for a panel discussion about the history and future of organzing for civil rights. Panelists: Hollis Watkins (SNCC Veteran & founder of Southern Echo), Carl Williams (Staff attorney the ACLU of Massachusetts), and Olmis Sanchez (REEP Adult Coordinator at Alternatives for Community & Environment) Moderated by: Rev. Mariama White-Hammond (Minister at Bethel AME Church)
  • Bruce Bolling Building, 2300 Washington St, 2nd Floor School Committee Room
  • Boston, Suffolk County, MA (Greater Boston)
  • contact: (617) 971-6815
  • email: eric.leslie@unioncapitalboston.com
  • cost: Free
  • funded by Mass Humanities
Saturday, September 30, 2017 11:00AM
Travel around the Pond with the Jamaica Plain Historical Society?. Once a district that only included the houses of Boston's elite, the Pond later was put to industrial use as tons of ice were harvested there each winter. Learn about the movers and shakers such as Francis Parkman and James Michael Curley who made their homes on the Pond's shores. Discover how the Pond was transformed from private estates and warehouses into the parkland we know today. Tours last between 60 and 90 minutes and are canceled in case of heavy rain. No reservations are required, just meet the guide at the location listed.
Thursday, October 5, 2017 7:00 PM9:00 PM
Columbia University Proffesor of Journalism and Staff Writer for The New Yorker magazine, Jelani Cobb, will address issues of freedome and enslavement in today's world.
  • African Meeting House, 46 Joy Street
  • Boston, Suffolk County, MA (Greater Boston)
  • contact: (617) 725-0022 x24
  • web: www.maah.org
  • email: charrington@maah.org
  • cost: TBD, please check website
  • funded by Mass Humanities
Tuesday, October 10, 2017 6:00 PM8:00 PM
Humanities Scholar and social justice activist Mimi Jones will lead a community reading and discussion called "Reflections on Race in America: Then and Now" The evening will feature a shared reading of Rev. Martin Luther King's speech "Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence," also known as the Riverside Church Speech, and discussion.
  • UU Urban Ministry, 10 Putnam Street
  • Roxbury, Suffolk County, MA (Greater Boston)
  • contact: (617) 318-6010 x205
  • web: www.uuum.org/
  • email: astubbs@uuum.org
  • cost: Free
  • funded by Mass Humanities
Sunday, October 15, 2017 2:30 PM4:30 PM
So-called fake news is not a new phenomenon. It's been around since the beginning of the Republic. And yet there is something different and more insidious going on when we have officials in the highest reaches of our government attempting to delegitimize the mainstream media by labeling stories that run counter to their preferred narratives as "fake news." Yet there is fake news. Lots of it. Conspiracy theories abound like weeds in the garden and persist despite repeated debunking. What does this tell about ourselves and what are the implications for our democracy?
Sunday, October 15, 2017 5:00 PM
Join Mass Humanities in conferring the Governor's Award upon three exemplary honorees whose public actions have been grounded in an appreciation of the humanities and have enhanced civic life in the Commonwealth. The honorees: Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Sacha Pfeiffer, and David Starr. Reception begins at 5:00 PM, followed by dinner and The Governor's Awards in the Humanities.
Sunday, October 15, 2017 4:00 PM8:00 PM
This documentary, written and directed by Boston filmmaker Clennon L. King, tells the story of the violent and bloody civil rights campaign in deeply segregated St. Augustine, Florida. A discussion facilitated by King following the film will include comments from Mimi Jones, whose early activism is featured in the film.
  • UU Urban Ministry, 10 Putnam Street
  • Roxbury, Suffolk County, MA (Greater Boston)
  • contact: (617) 318-6010 x205
  • web: www.uuum.org
  • email: astubbs@uuum.org
  • cost: Free
  • funded by Mass Humanities
Thursday, October 19, 2017 6:30 PM8:00 PM
Help us celebrate Archaeology Month with archaeologist and author Dan Sivilich as he traces the history of musket balls and small shot, and explores their uses as lethal projectiles and in nonlethal alterations. Sivilich asks, and answers, a variety of questions to demonstrate how a musket ball found in a military context can help to interpret the site: Was it fired? What did it hit? What type of gun is it associated with? Has it been chewed, and if so, by whom or what? Was it hammered into gaming pieces? By equipping historians and archaeologists with the information necessary for answering these questions, Sivilich's accessible work opens new views into firing lines, casualty areas, and military camps. It dispels long-held misperceptions about lead shot having been bitten by humans, offers examples of shot altered to improve lethality, and discusses balls made of materials other than lead, such as pewter. Refreshments will be served at 6:30 pm with the talk to begin at 7 pm.
Saturday, October 21, 2017 12:00 PM4:00 PM
Liberty and Union Weekend is an annual celebration of the unique role that the City of Taunton played in our nation's founding. The Weekend is held each fall to commemorate the events of October 1774, when Taunton became the first community in the American colonies to raise a flag the "Liberty and Union" flag in opposition to British rule. Liberty and Union Weekend 2017 will feature a tavern tour on Friday, October 20 and a festival on Saturday, October 21, with activities for residents and visitors of all ages. Programs will include 18th century re-enactors and artisans, farming and livestock displays, a ceremonial flag-raising, and free pumpkin decorating for children. There will be food, fun, and lots to see and do. You won't want to miss it!
Saturday, October 28, 2017 10:00 AM4:00 PM
Come celebrate Halloween at the Museum! All visitors in costume will receive free admission for a guided tour of the Museum.
Saturday, October 28, 2017 1:30 PM3:00PM
John F. Gallagher served over thirty years on the Boston Police Department and retired at the rank of superintendent. As a command staff member, he was the department's chief of detectives. His interest in history and genealogy and his background in criminal investigation motivated him to write about these century-old murders on the South Shore. John and his wife, Jeanne, live in Hanover, Massachusetts. Gallagher published his third book, "A Monument to Her Grief: The Sturtevant Murders of Halifax, Massachusetts." Nearly 150 years ago, the Massachusetts state constabulary launched an investigation into the brutal murders of three elderly people at their farmhouse on Thompson Street in rural Halifax. The story of the murders and the aftermath has been passed down through the generations and has become part of local lore. Until now, no comprehensive, definitive account has been published. Refreshments will be served at 1:30 pm with the talk to begin at 2 pm.
Wednesday, November 1, 2017 7:00 PM9:00 PM
Join us for the screening of a new documentary film, "The Harvest" co-produced by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist/historian Douglas Blackmon. The film explores the legacy of public school integration in Blackmon's home town of Leland, Mississippi. The film will be followed by a panel discussion.
Thursday, November 2, 2017 6:00 PM8:00 PM
Historical novelist William Martin's next book, "The Mother Lode," is due out in the fall of 2017. This work continues his lifelong epic of American history with the further adventures of Boston rare-book dealer Peter Fallon and his girlfriend, Evangeline Carrington. This time, they are headed to California, where their search for a lost journal takes them into the history of the Gold Rush and gets them into plenty of trouble, too. The journal follows a group of young men who journey by sea from staid Boston to wild San Francisco, then travel up into the gold country, where they confront greed, racism, and themselves in an epic tale of adventure. Join the author for the final lecture in the Seven Lectures at Seven Gables and learn about his research and writing process. A book signing will follow the lecture.
  • The House of the Seven Gables, 115 Derby Street
  • Salem, Essex County, MA (Northeast)
  • contact: (978) 744-0991 x152
  • web: www.7Gables.org
  • email: jarrison@7Gables.org
  • cost: $7, free for Gables members
  • funded by Mass Humanities
Saturday, November 11, 2017 1:00 PM4:00 PM
Members of the Taunton Area Vietnam Veterans Association will share a slideshow presentation at 2pm and memories of their experiences during the Vietnam War. They will also bring military memorabilia as well as items from their time in Vietnam, including a Montagnard crossbow and sword, shrapnel from a 122mm rocket, and a piece of a Skycrane helicopter. The Taunton Area Vietnam Veterans Association (TAVVA) will never let anyone forget the sacrifices made by those that served their country in Vietnam. This program is a wonderful way of remembering "those that gave some and those that gave all." TAVVA is a non-profit organization. Based in Taunton Massachusetts, it was officially founded in January of 1983 by five Vietnam Veterans and one Korean Veteran.

Exhibits

Friday, April 7, 2017 Saturday, September 30, 2017
This annual exhibition will examine life and labor over four centuries and the work roles of those that have worked in the buildings on our site ranging from the slaves to settlement workers. The Seven Lectures at Seven Gables series will welcome authors from around the country to speak on topics that related to work and how it has impacted American culture. The popular Community Conversation series will open up dialogue about the impact of labor on modern American immigrants. Besides these signature programs, Gables staff will be offering themed tours, family programs, and theatrical experiences in the coming year.
  • National Historic Landmark District museum campus at The House of the Seven Gables, 115 Derby Street
  • Salem, Essex County, MA (Northeast)
  • contact: (978) 744-0991 x152
  • web: www.7Gables.org
  • email: jarrison@7Gables.org
  • cost: free
  • funded by Mass Humanities
Thursday, May 4, 2017 1:00 PMSaturday, September 30, 2017 4:00 PM
The Framingham History Center's current exhibition of its extensive costume collection with fashions ranges from tea-gowns to flapper dresses to an elaborate kimono representing the influence of Japanese design on ladies' salons across the country. These styles and the stories of the women who wore them will provide a fascinating glimpse into their lives, their times, and their town. Parking: Please park on 3 Oak St. (street parking available) or in the Village Hall lot (2 Oak St.) Hours: 1:00-4:00 p.m., Wednesday through Saturday, October 28, 2016 - September 30, 2017.
Wednesday, May 31, 2017 1:00 PMSunday, September 3, 2017 4:00 PM
See the progression of bridal gown designs from 1870 to the present. The gowns all come from a private collection and are accompanied by headpieces. The exhibit will run until Labor Day during regular museum opening hours Wednesday-Sunday from 1-4 PM
Thursday, September 7, 2017 1:00 PMSaturday, December 23, 2017 4:00 PM
The Chair City Oral History Book Series honors the people who made the product that defines Chair City, while bringing the community together to celebrate the legacy, values, and skills of furniture workers. In this project, first-hand accounts from furniture workers are made into hand-crafted books using a vintage letterpress and hand-binding techniques. The books are all made by volunteers right in downtown Gardner at the Chair City Community Workshop. This exhibit focuses on the stories of people who worked at Nichols & Stone, the last large furniture factory to close in Gardner in 2008. The exhibit also shows examples of the antique tools and old-fashioned techniques that are used to print and bind the books. The exhibit runs during regular museum opening hours Wednesday-Sunday 1-4 pm.

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