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    • Public Program, Author Talk, Revolution 250The Boston Massacre: A Family History
      Public Program, Author Talk, Revolution 250The Boston Massacre: A Family History
      6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Serena Zabin, Carleton College THIS PROGRAM IS SOLD OUT. More
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          • Public Program, Author TalkInventing Boston: Design, Production, & Consumption, 1680–1720
            Public Program, Author TalkInventing Boston: Design, Production, & Consumption, 1680–1720
            6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Edward S. Cooke, Jr., Yale University There is a $10 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members, EBT or ConnectorCare cardholders). More
          • Environmental History Seminar, Pauline Maier Early American History SeminarThe Metabolism of Military Forces in the War of Independence: Envir...
            Environmental History Seminar, Pauline Maier Early American History SeminarThe Metabolism of Military Forces in the War of Independence: Environmental Contexts and Consequences
            5:15PM - 7:30PM David Hsiung, Juniata College Comment: James Rice, Tufts University More
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            • Building ClosedMHS closed
              Building ClosedMHS closed
              all day More
            • History of Women, Gender and Sexuality SeminarPOSTPONED Contesting Domesticity – a Panel Discussion
              History of Women, Gender and Sexuality SeminarPOSTPONED Contesting Domesticity – a Panel Discussion
              5:15PM - 7:30PM THIS EVENT HAS BEEN POSTPONED Kwelina Thompson, Cornell University; Shoniqua Roach, Brandeis University; Laura Puaca, Christopher Newport University Comment: Micki McElya, University of Connecticut More
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              • Building ClosedMHS closed
                Building ClosedMHS closed
                all day More
              • Public Program, ConversationPostponed: Jefferson: Then & Now
                Postponed:
                Public Program, ConversationJefferson: Then & Now
                6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Peter Onuf, University of Virginia and Annette Gordon-Reed, Harvard Law School There is a $20 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members, EBT or ConnectorCare cardholders). More
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                • Building ClosedMHS closed
                  Building ClosedMHS closed
                  all day More
                • Modern American Society and Culture SeminarPOSTPONED: The Pacific Railroads and the Pacific Ocean: American...
                  Modern American Society and Culture SeminarPOSTPONED: The Pacific Railroads and the Pacific Ocean: American Expansion, Asian Trade, and Terraqueous Mobility, 1869–1914
                  5:15PM - 7:30PM THIS EVENT HAS BEEN POSTPONED Sean Fraga, Princeton University Comment: David Armitage, Harvard University registration closed More
                Exhibition, Revolution 250 Fire! Voices From the Boston Massacre 31 October 2019 to 30 June 2020 Gallery hours are: Mon., Wed., Thu., Fri., and Sat.: 10:00 am to 4:00 pm and Tue.: 10:00 am to 7:00 pm.

                On the evening of March 5, 1770, soldiers occupying the town of Boston shot into a crowd, killing or fatally wounding five civilians.

                In the aftermath of what soon became known as the Boston Massacre, questions about the command to “Fire!” became crucial. Who yelled it? When and why? Because the answers would determine the guilt or innocence of the soldiers, defense counsel John Adams insisted that “Facts are stubborn things.”

                But what are the facts? The evidence, often contradictory, drew upon testimony from dozens of witnesses. Come learn about the Boston Massacre and “hear” for yourself—through a selection of artifacts, eyewitness accounts, and trial testimony—the voices of ordinary men and women, and discover how this flashpoint changed American history.

                Learn more about the Massacre on our companion website.

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                Public Program, Author Talk, Revolution 250 Canceled:
                John Adams Under Fire: The Founding Father’s Fight for Justice in the Boston Massacre Murder Trial
                2 March 2020.Monday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/0054johnadams_blyth_lg.jpg

                History remembers John Adams as a Founding Father and our country’s second president. But in the tense years before the American Revolution, he was a Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/book_cover.jpglawyer, fighting for justice in one of the most explosive murder trials of the era. On the night of March 5, 1770, shots were fired by British soldiers on the streets of Boston, killing five civilians. The Boston Massacre has often been called the first shots of the American Revolution. As John Adams would later remember, “On that night the formation of American independence was born.” Yet when the British soldiers faced trial, the young Adams was determined that they receive a fair one. He volunteered to represent them, keeping the peace in a powder keg of a colony, and in the process created some of the foundations of what would become United States law.

                 

                 

                 

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                Pauline Maier Early American History Seminar The 1621 Massasoit-Plymouth Agreement and the Genesis of American Indian Constitutionalism 3 March 2020.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Daniel R. Mandell, Truman State University Comment: Linford Fisher: Brown University Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/eahs_banner.jpg

                On March 22, 1621, Wampanoag sachem Massasoit agreed to a pact of mutual sovereignty and defense with Plymouth. At the same time, Massasoit promised to send his people who injured Englishmen to stand trial in their courts. While apparently contradictory, Plymouth’s acknowledgment of Wampanoag sovereignty and claim of the right to judge such conflicts reflected emerging international law and English legal norms, and created a constitution for Native-English relations that held for decades. Although King Philip’s War destroyed this agreement, similar political and jurisdictional arrangements continued to dominate British America and were reflected in U.S. Indian policy through the 1820s.

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                Public Program, Author Talk, Revolution 250 The Boston Massacre: A Family History 4 March 2020.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Serena Zabin, Carleton College THIS PROGRAM IS SOLD OUT. Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/518bOnzPqnL.jpg

                The story of the Boston Massacre is familiar to generations. But from the very beginning, most accounts have obscured a fascinating truth: the Massacre arose Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/book_cover_2_.jpgfrom conflicts that were as personal as they were political. Serena Zabin draws on original sources and lively stories to follow British troops as they are dispatched from Ireland to Boston in 1768 to subdue the increasingly rebellious colonists. She reveals a forgotten world hidden in plain sight: the many regimental wives and children who accompanied the armies. We see these families jostling with Bostonians for living space, finding common cause in the search for a lost child, trading barbs, and sharing baptisms. Becoming, in other words, neighbors. When soldiers shot unarmed citizens in the street, it was these intensely human and now broken bonds that fueled what quickly became a bitterly fought American Revolution.

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                MHS Tour The History and Collections of the MHS 7 March 2020.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM

                The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led walk through our public rooms. The tour is free, open to the public, with no need for reservations. If you would like to bring a larger party (8 or more), please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

                 

                 

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                Public Program, Author Talk Inventing Boston: Design, Production, & Consumption, 1680–1720 9 March 2020.Monday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Edward S. Cooke, Jr., Yale University There is a $10 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members, EBT or ConnectorCare cardholders). Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/wgbh_brightspotcdn.jpg

                During the late 17th and early 18th centuries, Boston was both a colonial capital and the third most important port in the British empire. Boston was also an independent entity that articulated its own identity while appropriating British culture and fashion. Edward Cooke examines period dwellings, gravestones, furniture, textiles, ceramics, and silver, revealing through material culture how the inhabitants of Boston were colonial, provincial, metropolitan, and global, all at the same time. This detailed account demonstrates how Bostonians constructed a distinct sense of local identity, a process of hybridization that exhibited a desire to shape a culture as a means to resist a distant power.

                 

                 

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                Environmental History Seminar, Pauline Maier Early American History Seminar The Metabolism of Military Forces in the War of Independence: Environmental Contexts and Consequences 10 March 2020.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM David Hsiung, Juniata College Comment: James Rice, Tufts University Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/ehs_banner.jpg

                In order to function during the War of Independence, armies and navies needed multiple sources of energy—food, firewood, work animals (which also needed food), ammunition, and more. How did specific natural environments, both proximate and distant, fuel those military metabolisms? How did such actions affect those environments in the decades and centuries that followed? This paper is the seed of a book proposal that, when watered by your feedback, will germinate come summertime.

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                Building Closed MHS closed 11 March 2020.Wednesday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED until further notice. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

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                Author Talk, Public Program Canceled:
                Canceled: City on a Hill: A History of American Exceptionalism
                11 March 2020.Wednesday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM THIS PROGRAM HAS BEEN CANCELED

                Abram Van Engen shows how the phrase “City on a hill,” from a 1630 sermon by Massachusetts Bay governor John Winthrop, shaped the story of American exceptionalism in the 20th Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/city_on_a_hill_book_cover.jpgcentury. By tracing the strange history of Winthrop’s speech, from total obscurity in its own day to pervasive use in modern politics, Van Engen reveals the way national stories take shape and shows us how those tales continue to influence competing visions of the country—the many different meanings of America that emerge from a preservation of its literary past.

                 

                 

                 

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                Building Closed MHS closed 12 March 2020.Thursday, all day Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED until further notice. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails. close

                Biography Seminar POSTPONED: Fashioning a Life: How Style Matters in Biography 12 March 2020.Thursday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM THIS EVENT HAS BEEN POSTPONED Caroline Weber, Barnard College; Channing Joseph, University of Southern California; Moderator: Natalie Dykstra, Hope College Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/NEBS_March_2020.jpg
                Is fashion art or commerce? Frivolous or full of meaning? Is fashion evidence? This panel brings together Caroline Weber, author of Queen of Fashion: What Marie-Antoinette Wore to the Revolution and Proust’s Duchess, and Channing Joseph, whose forthcoming book recovers the untold story of formerly enslaved William Dorsey Swann, who became, in the 1880s, a progenitor of ballroom and drag culture. They will join moderator Natalie Dykstra, author of Clover Adams: A Gilded and Heartbreaking Life, and now at work on a biography of Isabella Stewart Gardner, in a conversation about the ways biographers use fashion to decode lives and historical contexts.  

                *Images are used with the authors' permission and the permission of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum (ISG in Europe, mid-1890s, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston.)
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                Building Closed MHS closed 13 March 2020.Friday, all day Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED until further notice. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails. close

                Building Closed MHS closed 14 March 2020.Saturday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED through 28 March. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

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                Building Closed MHS closed 16 March 2020.Monday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED through 28 March. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

                close

                Building Closed MHS closed 17 March 2020.Tuesday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED through 4 April. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

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                History of Women, Gender and Sexuality Seminar POSTPONED Contesting Domesticity – a Panel Discussion 17 March 2020.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM THIS EVENT HAS BEEN POSTPONED Kwelina Thompson, Cornell University; Shoniqua Roach, Brandeis University; Laura Puaca, Christopher Newport University Comment: Micki McElya, University of Connecticut Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/wgs_banner.jpg

                The domestic realm has long captivated feminist scholars who have sought to understand the lives of women and the workings of gender. How have women experienced, challenged, leveraged, and shaped the domestic? This panel will consider these questions and discuss the domestic as a contested site of constraint and possibility. Shoniqua Roach theorizes the meanings of black domesticity as a deeply fraught space marked by anti-black sentiment and yet full of insurgent potential. Kwelina Thompson explores the history of the La Leche League – a Catholic mothers group that organized to support breastfeeding mothers in the mid-twentieth century. Finally, Laura Puaca tells the story of the expansion of post-WWII vocational rehabilitation programs to include disabled homemakers in the US.

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                Building Closed MHS closed 18 March 2020.Wednesday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED through 4 April. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

                close

                Building Closed MHS closed 19 March 2020.Thursday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED through 4 April. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

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                African American History Seminar POSTPONED: “Fighting the Dogs:” Fugitivity, Canine Hunters, and Slave Resistance in the Rural South 19 March 2020.Thursday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM THIS EVENT HAS BEEN POSTPONED Tyler D. Parry, University of Nevada, Las Vegas Comment: Harriet Ritvo, MIT Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/banner_draft_2.jpg

                As slavery expanded in the Americas, canine attacks were used as a particularly sadistic aspect of racist dehumanization. Through linked processes of breeding and training, slave hunters believed they had developed “natural” enemies between black people and the canines trained to hunt them. This paper investigates how fugitives responded to this interspecies violence by using various techniques of environmental resistance outside the plantation’s confines. By analyzing how fugitives used herbal combinations, waterways, and offensive weapons to subvert the canine's sensory advantage, this paper argues that enslaved communities should be understood as knowledge producers who studied their environments and used scientific awareness in their resistance.

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                Building Closed MHS closed 20 March 2020.Friday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED through 4 April. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

                close

                Building Closed MHS closed 21 March 2020.Saturday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED through 4 April. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

                close

                Building Closed MHS closed 23 March 2020.Monday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED through 4 April. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

                close

                Building Closed MHS closed 24 March 2020.Tuesday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED until further notice. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

                close

                Public Program, Conversation Postponed:
                Jefferson: Then & Now
                24 March 2020.Tuesday, 6:00PM - 7:00PM There is a pre-talk reception at 5:30. Peter Onuf, University of Virginia and Annette Gordon-Reed, Harvard Law School There is a $20 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members, EBT or ConnectorCare cardholders). Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Winter_2020/Jefferson_cropped.jpg

                The reputations of all of the founders have changed dramatically over the course of American history, none more than that of Thomas Jefferson. Historians Annette Gordon-Reed and Peter Onuf will discuss the implications of recent political and social developments for our image of the slave-owning author of the Declaration of Independence, emphasizing the importance of situating Jefferson in his own historical context for a better understanding of the history and future prospects of democracy in America.

                 

                 

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                Building Closed MHS closed 25 March 2020.Wednesday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED until further notice. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

                close

                Building Closed MHS closed 26 March 2020.Thursday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED until further notice. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

                close

                Building Closed MHS closed 27 March 2020.Friday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED until further notice. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

                close

                MHS Tour Canceled:
                The History and Collections of the MHS
                28 March 2020.Saturday, 10:00AM - 11:30AM

                The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led walk through our public rooms. The tour is free, open to the public, with no need for reservations. If you would like to bring a larger party (8 or more), please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or abentley@masshist.org.

                 

                 

                close

                Building Closed MHS closed 28 March 2020.Saturday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED until further notice. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

                close

                Building Closed MHS closed 30 March 2020.Monday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED until further notice. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

                close

                Building Closed MHS closed 31 March 2020.Tuesday, all day

                Due to the state of emergency in Massachusetts regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, the MHS is CLOSED until further notice. Please check the online calendar for programming updates. Library staff will monitor e-mails and voicemails.

                close

                Modern American Society and Culture Seminar POSTPONED: The Pacific Railroads and the Pacific Ocean: American Expansion, Asian Trade, and Terraqueous Mobility, 1869–1914 registration closed 31 March 2020.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM THIS EVENT HAS BEEN POSTPONED Sean Fraga, Princeton University Comment: David Armitage, Harvard University Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/masc_banner.jpg

                The transcontinental railroads reshaped the United States—its politics, economy, culture and environment. But as this talk argues, late-nineteenth-century Americans also saw these railroads in global terms, as commercial infrastructure that could link the United States with Asia and the Pacific World. This paper recovers the excitement many nineteenth-century white Americans felt about trade with Asia and shows how interest in Asian trade was woven into the transcontinental railroads from their very beginnings.

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