Category Archives: Events

Save the Date! Quilt Documentation Day

Dresdent Plate signature quilt

Detail, signature quilt in the Dresden Plate pattern, part of the Charlemont Historical Society Collection

The Charlemont Historical Society will host a Quilt Documentation Day on Saturday, September 10, 2016 in Charlemont (location t.b.a.). Volunteers from the Massachusetts Quilt Documentation Project will spend the day documenting pre-1950 quilts brought in by local residents. The volunteers also will document the quilts in the Charlemont Historical Society collection.

Each person who brings in a quilt for documentation will receive a report that includes information about the quilt’s design, age, and proper care. Details about the documented quilts will go into the national Quilt Index database.

According to the Massachusetts Quilt Documentation Project website, this organization was founded in 1994. Since then it

“has documented over 7,000 pre-1950 quilts originating or currently owned in this state. Dozens of historical societies and hundreds of private owners have been served.
MassQuilts encourages the study and preservation of quilts and demonstrates that these textiles convey important insights about the lives of Massachusetts women from the colonial period to the present. “

This event is part of the Charlemont Historical Society’s year-long focus on the theme of textiles.

More details about this event will be posted here soon. In the meantime, if you have any questions about this event, please be in touch.

Betsy Ross and the Making of America

FlagStar

Join us on Flag Day – Tuesday, June 14 – for “Betsy Ross and the Making of America,” a talk by Marla Miller based on her book of the same title. Marla’s talk will focus on how the Philadelphia upholsterer and flagmaker Elizabeth Griscom Ross Ashburn Claypoole become the iconic “Betsy Ross” of American popular culture.

Marla’s book on Betsy Ross was a finalist for the Cundill Prize in History (“the world’s largest non-fiction historical literature prize”) and was included on The Washington Post’s “Best of 2010” list.

Marla is a history professor at UMass-Amherst, where she also directs the Public History program. Her research focuses on the work lives of women before industrialization. She received the Organization of American Historians’ Lerner- Scott Prize for best dissertation in Women’s History and the 1998 Walter Muir Whitehill Prize in Colonial History.

The event will also include a mini-exhibit of flags from the Charlemont Historical Society collection.

Event details:

Betsy Ross and the Making of America, a talk by Marla Miller
Tuesday, June 14, 2016 at 7:00pm
Hawlemont Elementary School
10 School Street
Charlemont, MA 01339

Valley Gives update

Thank-you

Thank you to everyone who supported the Charlemont Historical Society yesterday through Valley Gives!

This year marked our first time participating in the online day of philanthropy, and we were very pleased with the results. We raised a total of $710 through the event, including $210 in individual donations and another $500 “golden ticket” gift through Valley Gives.

We were raising funds to help with the following:

  • proper care for and display of the textiles in the Society’s collection;
  • hosting a public talk on a textile-related theme;
  • digitizing our textile collection, so that it is available online for anyone, anywhere;
  • organizing a community quilting bee to create a new quilt for the Historical Society’s collection.

More information about how we are using the Valley Gives funds to support these projects will be coming along in the next few weeks. In the meantime, if you would like to volunteer to help with any of these activities, please be in touch. We would love to hear from you.

On Tuesday, May 3 support textile projects through Valley Gives

ValleyGives

As we mentioned in a recent post, the Charlemont Historical Society is focusing on the theme of textiles this year. The activities we are pursuing related to this theme are:

  • proper care for and display of the textiles in the Society’s collection;
  • hosting a public talk on a textile-related theme;
  • digitizing our textile collection, so that it is available online for anyone, anywhere;
  • organizing a community quilting bee to create a new quilt for the Historical Society’s collection.

We are raising funds for these efforts through Valley Gives, a one-day festival of philanthropy that benefits nonprofits in the Pioneer Valley region of western Massachusetts. Valley Gives is coming up on Tuesday, May 3 — and we would appreciate your support!

For more information about our current projects and to make a gift to support them, please go to:

https://valleygives.razoo.com/us/story/Charlemont-Historical-Society

Thank you in advance for your support!

Focus on textiles

Quilt3

Detail from a quilting bee quilt in the Charlemont Historical Society collection. Some of the quilt blocks have handwritten information about the women who made the quilt, including their names, the towns where they lived, and dates.

 

The Charlemont Historical Society currently is focusing on the theme of textiles. To that end, we are working on:

  • proper care for and display of the textiles in our collection;
  • hosting a public talk by Marla Miller, author of Betsy Ross and the Making of America on Flag Day, Tuesday, June 14
  • making information about, and photographs of, our textile collection available online;
  • organizing a community quilting bee to create a new quilt for the Historical Society’s collection.

We are participating in Valley Gives Day Tuesday, May 3 – to help raise funds for these projects. Please consider making a gift to the Charlemont Historical Society for Valley Gives on Tuesday, May 3. Thank you!

This Sunday: Tom Wessels on “Reading the Forested Landscape”

Please join us this Sunday, May 1 at 2:00pm for a workshop by Tom Wessels, “Reading the Forested Landscape: A Natural History of New England.” The event, which the Charlemont Historical Society is co-sponsoring with the Tyler Memorial Library, will be held at Hawlemont Regional Elementary School, 10 School Street, Charlemont, MA. 
wesselstomTom Wessels is an ecologist and founding director of the master’s degree program in Conservation Biology at Antioch University New England. Based on Tom’s book, Reading the Forested Landscape: A Natural History of New England, this workshop introduces approaches used to interpret a forest’s history. Using evidence such as the shapes of trees, scars on their trunks, the pattern of decay in stumps, the construction of stone walls, and the lay of the land, it is possible to unravel complex stories etched into our forested landscape. This process could easily be called forest forensics, since it is quite similar to interpreting a crime scene.

Discover New England Stone Walls on April 9

Kevin

For more than forty years, Kevin Gardner has been a stone wall builder in a family business widely known for traditional New England stonework, particularly for historic restoration of antique structures. In 2001, Kevin published The Granite Kiss: Traditions and Techniques of Building New England Stone Walls.
On April 9, Kevin will give an informal talk, co-sponsored by the Charlemont Historical Society and the Tyler Memorial Library, covering a few of the main topics of his book, including history, technique, stylistic development, and aesthetics. He will explain how and why New England came to acquire its thousands of miles of stone walls, the ways in which they and other dry stone structures were built, how their styles emerged and changed over time, and their significance to the famous New England landscape. Other topics may include: differences in approach between historical and contemporary wall-builders, restoration tips and techniques, and information about design, acquisition of materials, preservation, and analysis.

There will be a generous question-and-answer period, during which listeners are encouraged to bring up specific problems or projects on their own properties. Along the way, Kevin will occupy himself building a miniature wall or walls on a tabletop, using tiny stones from a five-gallon bucket.

“Discover New England Stone Walls,” with Kevin Gardner
When: Saturday, April 9, 2014
Where: Hawlemont Elementary School, 10 School Street, Charlemont, MA
Time: 2pm-4pm

CHS at the Hobby Horse Bazaar on Saturday

The Charlemont Historical Society will have a table at this Saturday’s Hobby Horse Bazaar. This annual holiday fair, which is a fundraiser for the Hawlemont PTO, will be held in the gym at Hawlemont Elementary School, 10 School Street, Charlemont.

We will showcase items from the collection and share information about upcoming Society activities. We also will have books and other items for sale, as well as new membership forms. Proceeds from the sale items and memberships will benefit the Charlemont Historical Society’s work. Please stop by and say hello!