Events

Sunday, January 1, 2017 N/ATuesday, February 28, 2017 N/A
Who am I? Where am I? These are the fundamental questions proposed by the humanities. Inquiries related to local history, literature, and education, inspire us to think deeply about the places where we live and how our identity fits into the context of our community and the seasons. Learning Ahead: Cultural Itinerary for Western Massachusetts is a bimonthly publication produced by Hilltown Families that sheds light on embedded learning opportunities found in cultural resources that exist within the geography, history, and cultural traditions of Western Massachusetts. With these downloadable seasonal itineraries, self-directed teens, lifelong learners, and families are encouraged to engage together in cultural opportunities that support similar interests, resulting in a shared history, strengthening sense of place.
Friday, January 27, 2017 3:00 PM
Mass Humanities and Harvard Book Store welcome local historian and teacher WILLIAM F. QUIGLEY JR. for a discussion of his first book, "Pure Heart: The Faith of a Father and Son in the War for a More Perfect Union." William F. Quigley Jr. presents a narrative that remarkably encapsulates much of the North's experience of the war.
Friday, January 27, 2017 Saturday, January 28, 2017
Limited Run! Inspired by Edith Wharton’s life, love affair, marriage and writing, Leisure & Lust is a unique theater experience specifically directed to be performed in Wharton’s home. Leisure & Lust is a psychological journey through the ravages of poverty and the oppressions of affluence. This is the story of Grace Hunter, a brilliant woman with an insatiable hunger for romance, and her tortured husband Harry, a closeted man rapidly losing his grip on reality. This piece is inspired by Edith Wharton’s life, love affair, marriage and writing style. The weekend shows: FRIDAY, JANUARY 27 AT 7:00 PM – Opening Night with talkback and reception with the writer, director, and actors. SATURDAY, JANUARY 28 AT 11:00 AM, 2:00 PM, AND 5:00 PM
Sunday, January 29, 2017 2:00 PM3:00 PM
Presented by the Framingham History Center: Whether you’re an engineer, a river watcher, historian or generally interested in goings on about town, you will want to join us for a presentation of photographs documenting the reconstruction of the Main St. bridge over the Sudbury River. What took 8 months to build in 1878 took 4 years in modern times – 2005-2009. Cliff Henrickson lived in the historic house on the Sudbury River next to the bridge and had a perfect vantage point to document the tearing down and reconstructing of the old bow string pony truss. Town Historian Fred Wallace will provide a brief history on the original construction (General George Gordon oversaw the project) followed by Cliff’s photographs. Refreshments served.
Monday, January 30, 2017 7:00 PM9:30 PM
Boston 1915. African-American newspaper editor and activist William Monroe Trotter wages a battle against D.W. Griffith's groundbreaking blockbuster "The Birth of a Nation." A notoriously Ku Klux Klan-friendly reimagining of history, Griffith's motion picture unleashes a conflict that still rages today about race relations, representation, and the power of Hollywood. "Birth of a Movement" illuminates an untold story of the ongoing struggle over civil rights, freedom of speech, and a changing media landscape. Join us after the film - along with a panel of scholars, activists, and writers - for an open discussion re-examining the legacy of this film in today's challenging political climate. The discussion will also focus on Boston's role as an environment for direct action.
  • Somerville Theatre, 55 Davis Square
  • Somerville, Middlesex County, MA (Greater Boston)
  • contact: (617) 789-4344 x236
  • email: mwoluchem@nlprod.com
  • cost: free
  • funded by Mass Humanities
Tuesday, January 31, 2017 7:00 PM8:00 PM
You learned it in school, but what does it really mean in today’s world? In honor of its 225th anniversary, Dr. Shaheen Mozaffar, Professor of Political Science at Bridgewater State University, will discuss the history, content, and critical role of one of America’s most cherished documents.
Wednesday, February 1, 2017 6:00 PM7:30 PM
In the first decades of the 1800s, when Marblehead was a seafaring town, women were confined to roles as wives and mothers. Due to continuing high losses of men at sea, hundreds of women and children became dependent on charity to stay out of the Poor House and remain in the community. In 1816 the Female Humane Society was founded as a means for women to help other women and to serve the needy. "The Women of Marblehead," by Robert Booth, is an illustrated feminist history of Marblehead in the 19th Century. Booth will discuss the role of working-class women in Marblehead as a progression from oppression and invisibility to self-sufficiency and autonomy. In addition to tracing economic changes, Booth will look at the ways in which women transformed the social, religious, and architectural landscape of the town.
Saturday, February 4, 2017 7:00 PM10:00 PM
Saving Jamaica Bay tells the story of how one community fought government inaction and overcame Hurricane Sandy to clean up and restore the largest open space in New York City, which had become a dumping ground for garbage, sewage and bullet-riddled mobsters. Narrated by Academy-Award winning actress Susan Sarandon, Saving Jamaica Bay underscores the importance of citizen action and the role of urban nature in protecting our cities from the effects of climate change. Panelists will address recently raised concerns related to the planned restoration of the Herring River in Wellfleet & Truro. Moderated by Sean Corcoran of WCAI.
Saturday, February 4, 2017 2:00 PM4:00 PM
Join us for a cozy afternoon of free entertainment for a matinee showing of Lee Daniels’ film "The Butler." As Cecil Gaines serves eight presidents during his tenure as a butler at the White House, the civil rights movement, Vietnam, and other major events affect this man's life, family, and American society. Popcorn and drinks will be available.
Sunday, February 5, 2017 2:00PM
Join the Jamaica Plain Historical Society and the Eliot School to learn more about the fascinating history of JP's oldest institution from Nonie Gadsden, the Katharine Lane Weems Senior Curator of American Decorative Arts and Sculpture at the Museum of Fine Arts. The rapid rise of industrialization and immigration during the 19th century greatly affected American society, especially in major cities such as Boston. Faced with the prospect of an unskilled or semi-skilled work force, many reform leaders sought out ways to provide the craft training that could benefit the well-being of the individual and society at large. In the 1870s, after 200 years of academic instruction, the Trustees of the Eliot School decided to explore more experimental modes of education to meet the new needs of its community. The School provided manual arts training for students of many backgrounds—from young boys and girls, to upper and middle class hobbyists, to immigrants seeking vocational education. Gadsden will place the efforts of the Eliot School in a larger context, exploring how the School related to rise of manual arts training and the advent of the Arts and Crafts Movement. Light refreshments will be served.
  • The Footlight Club, 7A Eliot St
  • Jamaica Plain, Suffolk County, MA (Greater Boston)
  • web: www.jphs.org
  • cost: This event is free and open to the public.
Friday, February 10, 2017 3:00 PM
Chandra Manning, an American historian who gained her doctorate from Harvard, is a former professor of history at Georgetown University and is now a special advisor at Radcliffe discusses how escaped black women slaves were "contraband" and fled to the safety of the Union soldiers in order to keep their families safe - and together.
Saturday, February 11, 2017 11:00 AM4:00 PM
Join us for celebrations and explorations of African life and culture! We will dance, play, socialize, and more! Each Saturday will also have a special theme with activities for children and their families; this week, the theme is African Music.
Sunday, February 12, 2017 3:00 PM5:00 PM
As part of the celebration for Susan B. Anthony's birthday, the Susan B. Anthony Birthplace Museum will be welcoming Judith Black, potrraying Lucy Stone, giving insight into the woman herself who was "born in 1818 who changed the world she was born into. An active abolitionist and woman's rights advocate, Lucy Stone was one of the first women from MA to receive a college degree, keep her own name in marriage, and start and edit the longest-running woman's newspaper in the country."
Sunday, February 12, 2017 2:00 PM3:00 PM
Author Jennifer Wright will discuss her book, "It Ended Badly: 13 of the Worst Breakups in History," featuring a section on Edith Wharton and her own misadventures in love.
Thursday, February 16, 2017 3:30 PM5:30 PM
This informal discussion will feature speakers from the Leominster community who are in their 60s and 70s as well as high school students from area schools who have participated in an essay contest on the American dream. All participants will consider the questions, what is the American dream, and is it still achieveable for all?
  • Leominster Public Library, 30 West Street
  • Leominster, Worcester County, MA (Central)
  • contact: (978) 665-4844
  • email: jmoser1@fitchburgstate.edu
  • cost: free
  • funded by Mass Humanities
Thursday, February 23, 2017 6:00 PM8:00 PM
Let us help you share your story! The Berkshire Immigrant Stories Project help participants with the process of digitizing a chosen object, narrating their story, and uploading them to the "Your Story, Our Story" website. This is the first of three workshops this spring. Laptops, scanners, digital cameras provided on site. Food and drink provided. Writing help from BCC Writing Center, Athenaeum Literacy Volunteers, Translator help from BCC students will be available. The workshop is open to all. For more information on participating in the project or volunteering, see contact info below.
Saturday, February 25, 2017 11:00 AMMonday, February 27, 2017 4:00 PM
Join us for celebrations and explorations of African life and culture! We will dance, play, socialize, and more! Each Saturday will also have a special theme with activities for children and their families; this week, the theme is African Jewelry.
Saturday, February 25, 2017 2:00 PM4:00 PM
Join us for a friendly afternoon of free entertainment to wrap up school vacation week with a matinee showing of Disney’s Ruby Bridges. The true story of Ruby Bridges, an African-American girl who, in 1960 at age 6, helped to integrate and the segregarding of all-white schools of New Orleans. Popcorn and drinks will be available.
Thursday, March 2, 2017 6:00 PM8:00 PM
Let us help you share your story! The Berkshire Immigrant Stories Project help participants with the process of digitizing a chosen object, narrating their story, and uploading them to the "Your Story, Our Story" website. This is the second of three workshops this spring. Laptops, scanners, digital cameras provided on site. Food and drink provided. Writing help from BCC Writing Center, Athenaeum Literacy Volunteers, Translator help from BCC students will be available. The workshop is open to all. For more information on participating in the project or volunteering, see contact info below.
Friday, March 3, 2017 9:00 AM12:00 PM
This is a fourm for caregivers, both family and professional, to explore how art may serve as a means of communication and engagement for people with Alzheimer's and other dementia. Following a presentation by artist Michael James, there will be a panel discussion leading to an interactive audience discussion and reflection session. The program will conclude with refreshments and networking.
Thursday, March 9, 2017 3:00 PM
Vasco Pires, a Falmouth resident and Cape Verdean immigrant, discusses how Cape Verdean families helped shape the demographics and economics of the Upper Cape region.
Wednesday, March 15, 2017 7:00 PM
Dava Sobel, an Emmy Award winning author and former science writer for the New York Times, discusses how women working at Harvard in the 19th century changed the course of astronomical study, in spite of being ostracized in the process.
Saturday, March 18, 2017 7:00 PM10:00 PM
Wild Ways: Corridors of Life explores the cutting edge of Conservation Biology to discover how the world’s parks and preserves can be connected and better function as the last enclaves of wild nature. Today most wildlife remaining on Planet Earth are confined to designated parks and preserves. These protected areas, from the Serengeti Plains to Yellowstone National Park, are crucial – but they are fast becoming islands of nature in a sea of human development, which places these animals in danger of extinction. Wild Ways: Corridors of Life probes a promising solution to the world wide fragmentation of wildlife habitat – Connectivity Conservation. Wild Ways takes viewers around the world to some of the most dramatic natural areas on earth where conservation biologists are helping vanishing species with innovative solutions. We learn what elephants, lions, elk, grizzly bears, tigers, and jaguars need: room to roam, neighboring populations for genetic diversity, and connected ecosystems that allow migration and adaptation to a changing climate. Following the documentary, panelists from Mass Audubon will address the importance of wildlife corridors in protecting open space, moderated by Heather Goldstone of WCAI.
Saturday, March 18, 2017 2:00 PM3:30PM
Dave Dixon's new book, "The Lost Gettysburg Address" is a fast-paced narrative that tells the remarkable life story of Charles Anderson, who kept turning up at critical places and moments in the Civil War. The book features a complete printing of Anderson’s lost speech and his hand-drawn map of the Stones River Battlefield, both published for the first time. David Dixon likes nothing more than spending hours dumpster-diving in archives and throughout cyberspace. He has published numerous articles in scholarly journals and magazines. Most focus on Black history and on Union sympathizers in the Civil War South. He remains intrigued by the problem of defining “loyalty” in the context of the Civil War. Refreshments will be available at 1:30 p.m. and the lecture will begin at 2 p.m.
Sunday, March 19, 2017 1:00 PM2:30 PM
This program invites families in a too-busy world to stop and take time to be together to read beautiful picture books centered around the theme of community and discuss them.
Wednesday, March 22, 2017 3:00 PM5:00 PM
The 2017 Edith Wharton Writers-in-Residence – Christene Barberich, global editor in chief and co-founder of Refinery29, Donna M. Lucey author of "Archie and Amelie: Love and Madness in the Gilded Age," and Vanessa Manko, author of "The Invention of Exile" – will discuss their past and forthcoming works, their careers, and their experiences writing in the house where Edith Wharton penned many of her most popular works. They will also touch on how Edith Wharton’s literary legacy has shaped and inspired their own works, and how she continues to influence female writers in the 21st century. The discussion will be moderated by 2016 Writer-in-Residence and Mount Trustee, Claire McMillan.
Saturday, March 25, 2017 11:00 AM4:00 PM
Join us for celebrations and explorations of African life and culture! We will dance, play, socialize, and more! Each Saturday will also have a special theme with activities for children and their families; this week, the theme is African Toys.
Wednesday, March 29, 2017 3:00 PM4:00 PM
Paul K. Chappell graduated from West Point in 2002, was deployed to Iraq, and left active duty in 2009. He grew up in Alabama, the son of a half-black and half-white father who fought in the Korean and Vietnam wars, and a Korean mother. Paul now believes in nonviolence, and he is the author of the "Road to Peace" series, a seven-book series about waging peace, ending war, the art of living, and what it means to be human. Chappell serves as the Peace Leadership Director for the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation. Lecturing across the country and internationally, he also teaches courses and workshops on Peace Leadership.
Tuesday, April 4, 2017 11:00 AM3:00 PM
Several UMass Boston students from around the world will speak about their experiences having to leave their homeland and then face the challenges of adjusting to life in the United States. The William Joiner Institute has partnered with teachers from four schools in the Boston area (Boston Tech Academy, Cambridge Rindge and Latin, EMK Health Careers Academy, and Seekonk High School) who will bring students who would like to participate in the symposium. We are hoping the symposium will be a forum where stories of exodus and arrival can be told and heard by a diverse group of faculty and students.
Thursday, April 6, 2017 12:15 PM2:15 PM
Let us help you share your story! The Berkshire Immigrant Stories Project help participants with the process of digitizing a chosen object, narrating their story, and uploading them to the "Your Story, Our Story" website. This is the last of three workshops this spring. Laptops, scanners, digital cameras provided on site. Food and drink provided. Writing help from BCC Writing Center, Athenaeum Literacy Volunteers, Translator help from BCC students will be available. The workshop is open to all. For more information on participating in the project or volunteering, see contact info below.
Thursday, April 6, 2017 Thursday, April 27, 2017
Participate in a four-session book discussion of Jana Laiz's "Weeping Under This Same Moon." "Weeping" is the three time award winning novel, based on the true story of two teenage girls from different cultures, whose paths intertwine, dramatically altering the course of their lives. The final session is a special presentation by the author. Sessions are Thursdays from 2:30-3:30 PM on April 6, 13, 20, and 27. Books will be made available to participants.
Tuesday, April 11, 2017 7:00 PM
Nina Sankovitch, Connecticut author and graduate of Tufts University and Harvard Law School, discusses the Lowells, a remarkable family involved in the founding of a new nation and who shaped many aspects of it, including politics and religion. Among its family members was industrialist Francis Cabot Lowell, who essentially began the American Industrial Revolution; American Romantic poet James Russell Lowell; and Amy Lowell, the twentieth century poet who lived openly in a Boston Marriage with the actress Ada Dwyer Russell.
Friday, April 21, 2017 12:00 PM
Join us for a poetry reading and presentation by Martin Espada, a critically acclaimed poet and author. Espada has published almost twenty books as a poet, editor, essayist, and translator. He has dedicated much of his career to the pursuit of social justice, including fighting for Latino rights and reclaiming the historical record. His critically acclaimed collections of poetry have been finalists for both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award.The Jonathan Edwards Library will have copies of his books on reserve and for loan.
  • Koussevitzky Arts Center, Boland Theatre, Berkshire Community College 1350 West St
  • Pittsfield, Berkshire County, MA (Berkshire)
  • contact: 413-236-2103
  • email: laney@berkshirecc.edu
  • cost: Free and open to the public
Saturday, April 22, 2017 7:00 PM10:00 PM
There is an epidemic of extinction of silence on our planet. World renowned nature sound recordist and acoustic ecologist Gordon Hempton works to protect the few remaining quiet places from noise pollution so that we may listen to nature at its most natural. The film takes place on the Olympic Peninsula, the largest coniferous forest and only rain forest in the continental United States. It also features his world renowned and award-winning sound recordings. Nature sounds have been recognized as crucial indicators of environmental quality ever since the publication of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring. Traveling across the planet to every continent since the late 1960s, noted musician and soundscape ecologist Dr. Bernie Krause has recorded more than 15,000 species — marine and terrestrial. Panel Moderator: Mindy Todd, WCAI
Thursday, April 27, 2017 2:30PM3:45 PM
"Weeping" is the three time award winning novel, based on the true story of two teenage girls from different cultures, whose paths intertwine, dramatically altering the course of their lives. Participation in the library book discussion that began on April 6th is not necessary in order to attend this special presentation by the author. A reception will follow.
Saturday, April 29, 2017 11:00 AM4:00 PM
Join us for celebrations and explorations of African life and culture! We will dance, play, socialize, and more! Each Saturday will also have a special theme with activities for children and their families; this week, the theme is African Musical Instruments.
Saturday, May 6, 2017 7:00 PM
Allison Lange, assistant professor of history at Wentworth Institute of Technology, Ph.D. from Brandeis University, is an historian who focuses on gender, culture and politics. She completed her work on her doctorate by focusing on women's suffrage and the 19th Amendment. She discusses women's rights and women's suffrage movements to trace the development of modern political campaigns.
Thursday, June 1, 2017 6:00 PM8:00 PM
Sip a Tauntini and test your general knowledge during a night of trivia inspired by Taunton. Winners will receive a special prize. OCHM After Hours is a program for artists, aspiring artists, and young professionals (21 and older) looking for an evening for low-key, hands-on fun. Developed in conjunction with the Museum’s art and history collections and special exhibitions, each OCHM After Hours program will include a variety of live music, hands-on art-making, food, beer, wine, cocktails and more! Each one will be different and offer a new way for people to get involved.
Saturday, June 10, 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 is a limited number of open slots to share your work. Schedule: Ethel Fraga, poet Alan O’Hare, storyteller and more!

Exhibits

Saturday, February 27, 2016 Sunday, February 12, 2017
Natural Selections: Flora and the Arts explores through more than 20 objects how nature has inspired, impressed, and enlightened society long before the publication of Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species in 1859. Using three themes, the exhibition explores the subject of flora and how it inspired the decorative arts. “Botanizing” looks at the movement to classify, study, and teach though a selection of educational books and prints detailing floral anatomy and stages of life. “Art in Nature” delves into the museum’s rich collection of decorative arts to see how plants and flowers have influenced designers and craftspeople in fields as diverse as textiles, ceramics, furniture, and architecture. Finally, “Bringing the Outdoors In” showcases ceramic and glass vessels which literally brought colorful and fragrant flowers and plants indoors for personal enjoyment and study.
Friday, July 15, 2016 Wednesday, May 31, 2017
"Picturing Frederick Douglass," the first major exhibition of photographs of the famed abolitionist, promises to revolutionize our knowledge of race and photography in 19th-century America. Many were unpublished, forgotten for decades, and previously unseen by contemporary viewers. Several were taken in Boston. Together, the images trace Douglass's visual journey from self-emancipated man to firebrand abolitionist and elder statesman, and they narrate a photographic autobiography across a half-century of history. Douglass, who was in love with photography, sat for his portrait whenever possible, from his earliest known photograph in 1841 until his passing in 1895. As a result, he became the most photographed American of the 19th century; more photographed than President Abraham Lincoln. Picturing Frederick Douglass offers a visually stunning re-introduction to America's first black celebrity immediately recognizable in his own lifetime by millions.
  • 46 Joy St.
  • Boston, Suffolk County, MA (Greater Boston)
  • web: maah.org
  • cost: On July 15th cost will be admission by donation. After the 15th, admission will be $5 for Adults $3 for seniors, Free for members
Friday, October 28, 2016 1:00 PMSaturday, April 29, 2017 4:00 PM
The Framingham History Center is unveiling an exhibition of its extensive costume collection with fashions ranging 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 provides 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 – April 29, 2017

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