Upcoming Events at the Maine Historical Society
All programs are open to the public and free of charge, and take place at our facilities at 489 Congress Street in Portland, unless otherwise noted.
Saturday, June 22, 12:00 pm
In partnership with Cape Elizabeth Historical Preservation Society and South Portland Historical Society
Special Event: Vintage Baseball!
Featuring the Dirigo Base Ball Club & the Essex Base Ball Organization
Join us for 19th century baseball! Last year, more than 150 people attended the double-header Vintage Baseball event at Fort Williams, and it made the front page of the Portland Press Herald. This year we'll be at Southern Maine Community College’s baseball field on Fort Road in South Portland. We hope you’ll grab some friends, a picnic lunch, and come have some unique historical fun by the ocean.
The Dirigo Vintage Base Ball Club is a non-profit, educational and living history organization dedicated to preserving and promoting the game of Base Ball as it was played during its formative years in the mid-nineteenth century and other historic eras.
The Essex Base Ball Organization, a growing league based in Newbury, Massachusetts, also plays by rules and customs of the 19th century. They wear period uniforms and play on an open field. Like Dirigo, EBBO has a well-established outreach program that focuses on education and engagement as well as playing the games.
The teams will play two nine-inning games (60-90 minutes each). Between the games, team members will talk about baseball in that era, and provide opportunities for kids to run the bases, interact with players, and ask questions. The games are free and open to the public.
Thank you to our lead corporate sponsor, Investment Management and Consulting Group, for its generous support of this community event, and John Babin of Coldwell-Banker Realty, for additional support.
Thursday, June 27, 5:00 – 7:00 pm
Museum Exhibit Opening & Reception (Members Only)
This Rebellion: Maine and the Civil War
Members, join us to celebrate the opening of our 2013-2014 museum exhibit! This Rebellion showcases a rich array of MHS's Civil War collections—photographs, letters, artifacts, maps, and memorabilia--related to the Maine soldier's experience during and after the war.
For the first time ever, a database has been created of all Maine soldiers who died in the War (in battle or of war wounds or illness); the names will appear in a remembrance wall as part of the exhibit. The exhibit is a stop on the new 23-site Maine Civil War Trail.
Note: The exhibit opens to the public on June 28 and will be up through May 26, 2014.
Wednesday, July 3, 12:00 pm
Intro to MHS: Library Tour
Tour Guide: Nicholas Noyes, Library Director
NOTE: The July Library Tour is full. There will be another tour in September.
This 45-minute tour of the Brown Research Library, fully renovated in 2009, takes participants throughout the first floor reading room and behind-the-scenes into the archive, normally closed to the public. Library Director Nicholas Noyes covers the history of the building, architectural details, the basics of doing research in the library, and even shares a few treasures from the collection. (Monthly on the first Wednesday at 12PM; free; limited to 10. Sign up in advance by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Thursday, July 4, 12:00 pm
Celebrate the 4th of July!
A Public Reading of the the Declaration of Independence & Gettysburg Address
With Portland Mayor Michael Brennan and Former State Representative Herb Adams
An annual tradition not to be missed! Join MHS to celebrate the Fourth of July with a public reading, by former State Representative Herb Adams, of the Declaration of Independence in front of the Longfellow House at 489 Congress Street. And this year, in honor of the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg, Portland Mayor Michael Brennan will join us to read the Gettysburg Address. Lemonade and cookies will be served.
This half-hour event kicks off a series of July 4th Portland events. Visit www.july4thportland.org for a full schedule of activities.
MHS owns one of only 25 surviving copies of the rare 1776 Dunlap Broadside of the Declaration. See and zoom into Maine Historical's copy online.
Tuesday, July 9, 12:00 pm
Student Spotlight: When the Confederates Terrorized Maine: The Battle of Portland Harbor
Speaker: Carter Stevens, 2013 Colby College Graduate
Recent Colby College graduate Carter Stevens presents a talk based on his thesis about the Confederate raid on the city of Portland 150 years ago this June, during the Civil War. While the maritime battle ended with the Confederates surrendering, a U.S. Revenue Cutter was sunk. Stevens's research covers the details of the battle, how it was reported in local and national media, the reactions of Mainers to the raid, and how this small incident fits into the larger picture of the Civil War.
Wednesday, July 17, 5:30 pm
Centennial Serenade Band: Songs of the Civil War
The six-piece Serenade Band of Portland’s Centennial Brass Band, recreating a group of the 1850-1875 period, opens MHS’s new Longfellow Garden Series this July. They will play a variety of Civil War era music on horns of the period in honor of the War’s Sesquicentennial, and the opening of MHS’s new museum exhibit on the war (“This Rebellion”). Bandmaster Jon Hall will give a historical narrative between selections, talking about the role of music in that era, and during the Civil War in particular.
Join us for this special treat along the walkway in front of the Brown Library. Light refreshments will be provided. In case of rain, the event moves to the lecture hall.
Tuesday, July 23, 12:00 pm
Student Spotlight: A Land Without Peace: Indians, Colonists, Speculators, and the Struggle for Maine, 1688-1763
Speaker: Ian Saxine, Ph.D. Candidate, Northwestern University
In 2012, thanks to a Graduate Research Grant from Northwestern University, Ph.D. candidate Ian Saxine spent six months at the MHS library researching how different ideas about land ownership between Indians, colonists led to decades of violence in frontier Maine. In this "Student Spotlight" presentation, Ian will share the fruits of his research.
Wednesday, July 24, 5:30 pm
In partnership with Stonecoast MFA/Writers' Conference
The Poetry of Summer: Annie Finch and Her Favorite Poets in the Garden
Maine poet and Stonecoast MFA Director Annie Finch performs her own work along with some of her own favorite summer poems by poets including Keats, Millay, and of course, Longfellow. Part of the 2013 Longfellow Garden Series.
Annie Finch has published more than 20 books and chapbooks of poetry and poetics and performed across the U.S. and in France, Spain, Greece, Canada, Africa, and the U.K. Her collaborations with theater, music, and visual arts have been produced at numerous venues and her poetry has been featured on Def Poetry Jam, National Public Radio, and Voice of America, and has appeared in a number of publications.
Educated at Yale University and Stanford University, Annie is a Senior Fellow at the Black Earth Institute, artist-in-residence at Cherry Hill Seminary, and Director of the Stonecoast MFA program in Creative Writing at the University of Southern Maine. She is a featured columnist for The Huffington Post, and blogs at her website, anniefinch.com.
Wednesday, July 31, 5:30 pm
Maine's Favorite Birds
Speakers: Jeffrey V. Wells & Allison Childs Wells
Join us in the Longfellow Garden for a presentation by the authors of Maine's Favorite Birds (Tilbury House, 2012), who will share fascinating facts, fun stories, beautiful images, and more about some of Maine's best known and most loved feathered creatures. From lush forests and rocky coastlines to lakes, mountains, and rolling fields, spectacular natural beauty and diverse habitats make Maine a wonderful place for seeing and hearing some of North America's iconic birds. The talk will appeal to anyone who wants to know and better appreciate the birds they are most likely to see in their backyards, wild areas, parks, and nature preserves. A book sale and signing will follow the talk.
Jeffrey V. Wells and Allison Childs Wells are native Mainers and lifelong birders. After attending graduate programs at Cornell, both worked for the Cornell Lab of Ornithology; they returned to Maine in 2004. Independently and together, they have published widely in their field. Jeff is now senior scientist for the International Boreal Conservation Campaign and Allison is senior director of public affairs for the Natural Resources Council of Maine.
Wednesday, August 7, 5:30 pm
Hands-On Historic Gardening: A Workshop
Presenter: Jeff O’Donal, Owner, O’Donal’s Nursery
Join us for a hands-on exploration of the issues and opportunities in maintaining or re-creating an historic garden. Using the Longfellow Garden as a laboratory, participants will be introduced to a variety of locally-available plantings, consider which plant varieties are appropriate in a variety of settings, and identify specific plant varieties to introduce at home. This program is free but registration is required.
This event is held in partnership with the Longfellow Garden Club, and is part of the 2013 Longfellow Garden series.
Wednesday, August 7, 12:00 pm
Intro to MHS: Library Catalog Instruction
Facilitator: Jamie Kingman Rice
MHS Research Librarian Jamie Kingman Rice provides in-depth instruction of the MHS library catalog, Minerva, including how to search and access records, as well as other databases available for research. Program lasts about 45 minutes. (First Wednesdays in Feb, Apr, June, Aug, Oct, Dec, at 12PM; two Saturdays, May 4 and Sept 7, at 12PM; Brown Library conference room; free. Sign up in advance by sending an email to email@example.com.)
Wednesday, August 21, 12:00 pm
Intro to MHS: Maine Memory Network Demonstration
Facilitator: Kathy Amoroso, Director of Digital Projects
Director of Digital Projects, Kathy Amoroso, provides an in-depth review of content and search functions on Maine's premier statewide digital museum. Bring a laptop or tablet (optional) and search as you go. (Third Wednesdays in Feb, May, Aug, and Nov at 12PM; MHS lecture hall; free. Sign up in advance by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Thursday, August 22, 7:00 pm
Book Event: Art of Katahdin
Speaker: David Little
Artist David Little has produced a gorgeous new book on Maine’s beloved high peak. With more than 200 illustrations and 15 essays on its subject, Art of Katahdin (Downeast, 2013) is a chronicle of the many artists who have found inspiration in Katahdin including Marsden Hartley, Frederic Church, John Marin, and many others—including Little himself. The book includes early renderings and maps, as well as numerous contemporary views. The talk and slideshow will be followed by a book signing.
Portland resident David Little has been painting the Maine landscape since 1983, and has always been drawn to Katahdin and the surrounding wilderness. He attended the Skowhegan School in 1981-82, received the Carina House Fellowship on Monhegan in 1998, and his work has been included in exhibitions at the Blaine House, Bates College, and the Farnsworth Art Museum. An exhibit related to the book will be on display at the University of New England from July 31 - August 15.
Ongoing & Family Programs
This 45-minute tour of the Brown Research Library, fully renovated in 2009, takes participants throughout the first floor reading room and behind-the-scenes into the archive, normally closed to the public. Head of Library Services Nicholas Noyes covers the history of the building, architectural details, the basics of doing research in the library, and even shares a few treasures from the collection. (First Wednesdays in Jan, March, May, July, Sept, Nov, at 12PM. Sign up in advance by sending an email to email@example.com.)
Library Catalog Instruction (Library Conference Room)
MHS Research Librarian Jamie Kingman Rice provides in-depth instruction of the MHS library catalog, Minerva, including how to search and access records, as well as other databases available for research. Program lasts about 45 minutes. (First Wednesdays in Feb, Apr, Aug, Oct, Dec, at 12PM; two Saturdays, May 4 and Sept 7, at 12PM. Sign up in advance by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Maine Memory Network Demonstration (Lecture Hall)
A Maine Memory Network staff member provides an in-depth review of content and search functions on Maine's premier statewide digital museum. Bring a laptop or tablet (optional) and search as you go. (Third Wednesdays in Feb, May, Aug, and Nov, at 12PM. Sign up in advance by sending an email to email@example.com.)
Museum Collections: Recent Acquisitions and PastPerfect Online (Lecture Hall)
MHS Museum Registrar Holly Hurd-Forsyth provides a show-and-tell of recent or topical museum collection items, discusses how accessions are researched and processed, and trains participants how to search and use the MHS PastPerfect Online database. (Third Wednesdays in Jan, Apr, and Oct at 12PM; Limited to 12. Sign up in advance by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.)
CRUISE - 14-day Splendors of Italy: Rome, Tuscany, Venice and the Po River
October 13 - 27, 2013
Enjoy a truly unique experience as Maine Historical Society cruises for 14 days on Uniworld's River Countess through Italy.
Join us as we see Rome like you may have never seen it before, explore the beauty and magic of the Chianti region of Tuscany, followed by seven days on the River Countess exploring Venice and the heart of Italy along the Po River. Eric Baxter from AAA Northern New England and a MHS Trustee will once again serve as your escort throughout trip.
This Rebellion: Maine and the Civil War
(June 28, 2013 – May 26, 2014)
(June 28, 2013 – May 26, 2014)
This Rebellion showcases a rich array of MHS's Civil War collections—photographs, letters, artifacts, maps, and memorabilia—related to the Maine soldier's experience during and after the war.
For the first time ever, a database has been created of all Maine soldiers who died in the War (in battle or of war wounds or illness); the names will appear in a remembrance wall as part of the exhibit. Read More.
Vintage Maine Images: A Website Comes to Life
(Opens June 28, 2013)
Vintage Maine Images is more than a website; this exhibit of reproduction images explores its presentation of the human perspective, recorded through photographs, maps, postcards, and other historical materials. This exhibit is a component of the Vintage Maine Images redesigned website and launch. www.VintageMaineImages.com Bring a piece of history home! Read More
Maine Memory Network
Offers online access to numerous Web–based exhibits and a constantly growing collection of nearly 30,000 historical documents, images, and objects contributed by more than 270 organizations around Maine. New exhibits added regularly. Go to www.mainememory.net.