History Space: A Collaborative Project
History Space is an intellectual center for programming at both the Newport and Rhode Island Historical Societies that supports the practice of public history. Three main endeavors are included:
- The production of high-quality living history programs and events
- The fostering of traditional trades and crafts through demonstrations and workshops
- Programs and seminars that assist practitioners of public history and inform the public about topics and issues in the field.
Examples of the work included are reenactment events and other forms of costumed interpretation and living history, the fostering of traditional crafts and trades through hosting visiting craftspeople who demonstrate for the public and conduct workshops for practitioners, and the recent Anarchists’ Lunch which asked four experts in the field to talk about issues around mission and audiences for historic sites.
The inclusion of additional partners is planned, and we expect to create opportunities for partner institutions to leverage resources and project mutual priorities, creating fresh, synergistic perspectives to shape the future of public history in New England and beyond.
Upcoming events include:
July 15, 2017 – Life in 1777 Newport
An interactive set of living history programs designed to challenge the way guests think about the experience of the American Revolution as we celebrate the artisanal skills that keep that experience alive.
- 10am – 2pm: Open House at the Revolution House and leatherworking demonstration with Roy Najecki
- 11am: British in Newport walking tour
August 26, 2017 – 1777 British Occupation of Newport
- Noon-5pm: Living History event featuring the 1777 British Occupation
- 3pm Walking Tour: “The Revolution in Newport: With a “Tot” of Rum
Saturday, September 16th, 2017
- Recreated 19th century Culinary Adventure — join Newport’s Ida Lewis as she dines with President Ulysses S. Grant in Newport.
Saturday October 7, 2017
- Pop-up living history program at the Wanton-Lyman-Hazard House during Newport’s Broadway Street Fair.
- A community conversation, bringing together scholars and the public, on “Myth, Memory, History, and Heritage.” In Newport.
- A discussion of Rhode Island and the Revolution: What we know, and what public history sites need to know. In Providence.
We invite other collaborators throughout the region to join us as we build History Space as a network of forward-thinking practitioners who want to create sustainable, robust public history. To learn more, please watch this space, and email Ruth Taylor, Elizabeth Sulock or Taylor Stoermer.