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  • 28 May 2020 1:41 PM | ALHFAM Webmaster (Administrator)

    The COVID Chronicles

    When we last left our intrepid museum staff, they were trying to discern the person who had pronounced the ancient Chinese curse “May you live in interesting times.” Perhaps there would be a way to reverse the curse if the source was located. After nearly two months of quarantine status, there was desperation on their part to resume life as it had been.

    As they were grappling with this problem, word came down from on high that there was a light at the end of the tunnel. This caused great joy in the staff as they hoped it would be the headlight of an oncoming locomotive. This would indicate a miracle as the train had stopped coming to town nearly 40 years before and the tracks had been torn up for decades. If miracles were in the works, perhaps they could get in line for one.

    Alas, this was not the case. As they investigated further, it was found that the ghost of Diogenes of Sinope had brought his lamp to town, still looking for an honest man, but having found the task too overwhelming in this day and age, had hung the lamp on the Rough Rider monument in the courthouse plaza and left town. County officials, fearing that the presence of the lamp would cause a social distancing nightmare, removed it and in so doing, extinguished it. Thinking that the lamp looked old and hoping that it might contain a genie with an unused wish, rubbed it until most of the patina was gone. Not getting their wish, they took it to the museum because it “looked old.”

    At the museum, they found the gates closed and a sign that indicated that you needed to call to make a delivery. This they did, summoning a close relative of a genie, a museum curator. Upon telling the curator their story, the curator indicated that it not only had most of the original finish removed, but also that the attribution was dubious and thus it did not fit within the museum’s collections mission statement. Learning this, the county officials left the lamp at the gate and went their way, thus creating a Corona “dump and run.”

    While all of this was transpiring, the other staff received word from on high that a sacrifice must be made to facilitate reopening the facilities to the public. Wondering if a mouse might satisfy the edict, since mice were known to make their way into some of the buildings, a search was made for traps. It was then brought up that this was the wrong time of year for mice to come indoors. This came as a disappointment to the chief curator as he wanted to extract vengeance from all mice for one having eaten the emergency chocolate bar imported from Canada. Someone mentioned that a chicken might suffice and that two of the living history interpreters were known to have chickens.

    While trying to decide whom to ask for a chicken, word came down from on high that this was an important sacrifice and that it demanded everyone’s attention. The staff wondered if it would be one of them.

    And so, we leave our museum staff to ponder the question of what the sacrifice might be. Come back next week for the continuing saga of our museum staff in The COVID Chronicles.

    Unfortunately, dear reader, there is no next issue. The staff learned that the sacrifice was events and that among them was hosting the 2020 ALHFAM Western Region meeting in October. We hope that 2021 will see better times with less uncertainty. With that in mind, we would hope to host the meeting next year.

    Mick Woodcock

    Chief Curator and ALHFAM Western Region Rep.

  • 06 Apr 2020 12:30 PM | ALHFAM Webmaster (Administrator)

    Due to the current unprecedented circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, the ALHFAM Board regrets to announce the cancellation of the 2020 Annual Meeting and Conference scheduled for June 21-25 in Boston.

    Although anticipated, this was a decision reached with a heavy heart, and we would like  to acknowledge the incredible work that was put into the planning by Tom Kelleher, Deb Friedman, Lauren McCormack, Sue Hanson, Melissa Vickers, Victoria Haynes, Rhys Simmons, and Dave Hruska. Thank you also to those who submitted session proposals and contributed to the development of an exceptional program.  We look forward to hearing from you in the future.

    Refunds and cancellations for those who registered for the conference will be processed over the next few weeks. We appreciate your patience as we work through that process. In addition, the Board will be exploring options to conduct a virtual Business Meeting as per our by-laws and creative strategies that will provide us with an opportunity to commemorate and celebrate our 50th Anniversary.

    Although it is difficult to break the tradition of seeing ALHFAM “return home” to Old Sturbridge Village every decade, for various financial and administrative reasons the Board and this year’s planning committee have decided to maintain the conference calendar as it currently stands. We look forward to gathering again in person at the 2021 Conference at Sauder Village.


  • 20 Mar 2020 4:24 PM | ALHFAM Webmaster (Administrator)

    ADVOCACY ALERT: SUPPORT ECONOMIC RELIEF FOR THE MUSEUM COMMUNITY 

    The American Alliance of Museums reached out to its affiliates on March 19 to share their action plan during the COVID-19 crisis. Congress is moving swiftly to pass a massive economic relief package in response and the Alliance is working to ensure the museum community is included. ALHFAM past president, and our longtime “Museum Advocacy Day” representative Pete Watson confirmed ALHFAM’s support of this advocacy initiative and thanked the AAM for their leadership in advancing it. The AAM also encourages you to reach out directly to your legislators. You can use their online action center to find your state and federal legislator information, and personalize your message to Congress in just a few clicks. You can use the same messaging with your state and local legislators. 

    Similarly in Canada the Canadian Museums Association is advocating for the well-being of the sector by requesting a dedicated museum relief fund to support lost revenues and many provincial museum associations are offering pandemic response resources.


  • 12 Mar 2020 6:03 PM | ALHFAM Webmaster (Administrator)

    Due to concerns with COVID19, Middlesex County has made the decision to cancel the ALHFAM Regional Conference taking place at East Jersey Old Town Village on March 28, 2020. Conference organizers will be looking into the possibility of rescheduling.

    The ALHFAM Board is also monitoring any situation that may impact the ALHFAM Annual Meeting and Conference scheduled for June. We know that our ALHFAMily is looking forward to gathering in Boston for our 50th Anniversary, and many of you have registered  to date.  The current plan is to proceed as scheduled, but we are in regular communication with the conference planning committee, who will be taking direction from host venues and public health authorities. We will provide timely updates to our membership as information becomes available. 

    I know that many of you will be dealing with this evolving situation at your own sites. The American Alliance of Museums has provided access to resources on COVID-19 on their website, which you can access here. The ALHFAM-L listserv and social media outlets also provide a means of staying in touch with your colleagues.

    Keep well,

    Susan Reckseidler
    President, ALHFAM


  • 12 Mar 2020 4:19 PM | ALHFAM Webmaster (Administrator)

    Due to concerns with COVID19, Middlesex County has made the decision to cancel the ALHFAM Regional Conference taking place at East Jersey Old Town Village on March 28, 2020. 

    We will look into the possibility of rescheduling. 

    We apologize for any inconvenience, and hope that registrants are able to change any travel plans that have been made.


  • 01 Mar 2020 3:44 PM | ALHFAM Webmaster (Administrator)

    REGISTER NOW FOR THE 2020 ALHFAM ANNUAL MEETING AND CONFERENCE

    Click on the image below to view and download the conference program


    We invite historical interpreters, farmers, scholars, craftspeople, curators, educators, administrators and everyone interested in Living History to Boston, Massachusetts for ALHFAM’s annual conference and 50th  anniversary celebration. 

    REGISTER HERE

    Early Bird Registration is available through April 30

    Conference questions? Please ask

    Registration questions? Please ask

    See you in Boston!


  • 26 Feb 2020 12:23 PM | ALHFAM Webmaster (Administrator)

    The ALHFAM 2020 Conference Committee is offering advertising space to ALHFAM members and others in their electronic and print publications.

    Electronic ads will be placed in online publications on the ALHFAM website as they are received. They will also appear in the print publications handed out to conference attendees.

    Prices:

    • Full Page 6.75” X 9” $100.00
    • Half Page 3.25” X 9” $55.00
    • Half Page 6.75” X 4.375” $55.00
    • Third Page 6.75” X 3” $43.50
    • Quarter Page 3.25” X 4.375” $37.50
    • Eighth Page 3.25” X 2” $26.50

    Reserve your ad space today!


  • 10 Feb 2020 1:49 PM | ALHFAM Webmaster (Administrator)

    We invite historical interpreters, farmers, scholars, craftspeople, curators, educators, administrators and everyone interested in Living History to Boston, Massachusetts for ALHFAM’s annual conference and 50th  anniversary celebration, June 21-25.

    Fellowships are available that will cover basic registration plus $300. For more information, and to apply, follow this link. Fellowship applications are now due by March 9.

    More conference information is available here.

  • 04 Feb 2020 10:59 AM | ALHFAM Webmaster (Administrator)

    The Skills Training and Preservation Committee (STP) is requesting information from ALHFAM members about skills workshops open to ALHFAM members, living history professionals, and/or the general public that they would like listed on the ALHFAM website. 

    Workshops can be on any subject relating to historic trades and skills, professional museum skills, living history interpretation skills, as well as similar hands-on learning opportunities. The workshops may be part of a larger local, regional, national or international conference. 

    The subject matter must be of interest to ALHFAM members and the organization or individual hosting the workshop must be an individual, institutional or business member of ALHFAM.  Workshops that do not meet these criteria will not be posted, and ALHFAM reserves the right to decline to post information. 

    To have your workshop listed on the ALHFAM website, please send the following information to webmasteralhfam@gmail.com:

    • Workshop Subject/Title
    • Brief Workshop Description
    • Date(s) / Time(s)
    • Price 
    • Location (including full address)
    • Website address for registration information (registration itself can be available either online or via regular mail)
    • Contact information, including phone number


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