Rod Howe |
Executive Director | Director@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 222
Carole West |
Educator, Eight Square Schoolhouse | EightSquare@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 229
Kayla Sewell |
Event Coordination & Visitor Services | Community@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 227
Karen Binder |
Bookkeeper & Administrative Services | Admin@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 225
The History Center has taught me many things during my few years here: the importance of organization, the responsibility of maintaining cultural heritage, the rewards of hard work, and the joys of collaboration, to name a few. As I head into my last month as an employee of the Center, I would like disclose the most valuable lesson the Center gave me: history matters for those who interpret and interact with it, so listen and share because positive change is interpersonal.
Under the direction of Rod Howe, The History Center is consciously and actively choosing to be on the right side of history. The right side of history being the side that engages, questions, listens, has patience and doesn't accept the dominant narratives we hear so often. Everyone has a story, a perspective, a vision and a truth that deserves to be heard. History is a collective effort, not something maintained by one person.
Connection and conversation can bring people together, helping them understand each other and the place in which they live. These interactions are invaluable for our community. Sharing our stories with one another not only captures life in Tompkins County at the turn of the 21st century, but simultaneously strengthens our community bonds as we live here today.
Even though I am leaving the Center and Ithaca, I will take this lesson with me wherever I go. Tompkins County will always have a special place in my heart. I hope that you will continue to engage with The History Center and spread the word that we all have a story to share.
Visitor & Administrative Services Manager
Boom and Bust: America's Journey on the Erie Canal (DVD)
Sons in the Shadow: Surviving the Family Business as an SOB* *Son of the Boss
We're mixing it up for Ithaca Festival! From June 1st until June 18th you can purchase two items from our bookstore with a 15% discount on each!
Boom & Bust: America's Journey on the Erie Canal
A meditation on economic cycles and the American Dream. This remarkable film tells the story of industrial expansion and decline along the Erie Canal, and examines its impact on the lives of workers in steel, grain, textiles and shipping. In the wake of economic collapse, can the people of America's cities find meaning and worth?
Sons in the Shadow: Surviving the Family Business as an SOB* *Son of the Boss
This book explores the dynamics of family relationships in businesses both large and small about which relatively little has been written. The book examines father-son relationships and what it's like to be the son of the self-made entrepreneur Roy H. Park.
Look for "Caesar" (The Ithaca Kitty) at our Ithaca Festival table and purchase your own!
Come Play With Us
Early Toys from the Collection
April 1 - August 20, 2016
Play is as natural to us as breathing. We begin playing with our first sight of a smiling face and wiggling fingers, and keep at it long after we are old enough to become parents and grandparents ourselves. Toys and games enhance our play, making it richer and more complex. This interactive exhibition features some of the many toys and games from The History Center's collections. Modern examples meant for hands-on exploration will accompany the artifacts to be featured. Photographs from the Sol Goldberg Collection will be on display as well, highlighting his whimsical portrayal of local people in their playful moments. This exhibition will examine the way play has changed - and stayed the same - over the years. It is a celebration of play and childhood, for the child in all of us.
Exploring Tompkins County
A Municipality Display Case
This display case is a collaborative effort between The History Center and the municipal historians of Tompkins County. Currently on display is a history of the Cargill Rock Salt Mine in Lansing.
Content loaned by Louise Bement, Town of Lansing Historian.
A Photo Exhibit Space
The History Center's new photo exhibit space,
Our Community, celebrates the diversity of Tompkins County's people, past and present, at work and play, and in service to each other.
The newest display features a history of the Grange Movement in Tompkins County. Founded in the post-Civil War era, Granges were designed to promote the social and economic needs of farmers in the United States. At the high point of their development there were more than 20,000 granges throughout the country. Several
Tompkins County communities had granges, including Groton, Ithaca, Ulysses, Enfield, East Lansing, Lansingville, Dryden, and others. Our display features images of the Enfield Valley Grange and the East Lansing Grange.
Special thanks to Enfield Town Historian Sue Thompson for photographs and history of the Enfield Valley Grange.
Friday, June 3rd, 2016 - 12:00 PM to 8:00 PM (Cayuga St. between Buffalo & Court St.)
Saturday, June 4th, 2016 - 12:00 PM to 8:00 PM (Cayuga St. between Buffalo & Court St.)
Find our table during the Ithaca Festival and stop by to say hello! We will have a variety of books and images for sale, as well as an interactive local music history timeline we hope you'll contribute towards! You'll also be able to purchase the Ithaca Kitty and two unique
Girls Explore! dolls: Harriet Tubman and Amelia Earhart.
The History Center in Tompkins County will not be hosting a First Friday Gallery Night on Friday June 3rd due to our staff involvement with the Ithaca Festival Parade. Come walk with us!
Thursday June 9, 2016 - 7:00 PM (at Cinemapolis) - $5.00 ticket
The evening will center around local screenwriters and producers discussing how they utilized local history resources to create documentaries. Each presenter will show clips from select films they have created to illustrate how the information they gathered from local historical documents was used. They will share their challenges, their sense of discovery, and engage the audience to discuss ongoing initiatives that highlight our rich local heritage.
Panelists will include: Gossa Tsegaye, Austin Bunn, Sue Perlgut, and Deborah Hoard.
You can purchase your ticket to this event for $5.00 by clicking
Let us know if you're coming via the
Facebook Event Page
and be sure to share the page with your friends!
Second Saturday Game Day!
Saturday June 11, 2016 - 12:00 PM to 4:00 PM (at the Eight Square Schoolhouse)
Turn off your computers, cell phones and TVs, and join us for an old fashioned day of play at The History Center's historic Eight Square Schoolhouse on Saturday June 11th, 2016. Done in conjunction with the exhibition "Come Play With Us: Early Toys from the Collection", this game day will happen whether it rains or shines, and we will have plenty of old time 'games of yore' to give you a taste of what life was like for children and adults in the 19th century! Play checkers, put puzzles together, and play indoor and outdoor games made from wood instead of plastic! Try out some stilts, play an old fashioned hoop game or a game of croquet, and join in a sack race!
The History Center's Annual Meeting
Thursday June 16, 2016 - 6:30 PM (at The History Center)
Join us for The History Center's annual meeting. We will give a brief overview of the past year. There will be presentations on the youth and elders involved with our pilot generation-to-generation oral history project, and an introduction to History Forge. We will also highlight upcoming initiatives.
Saturday June 18, 2016 - 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM
(Southside Community Center - 305 S. Plain St.)
This year's Juneteenth festival has something for everyone. As always, there will be food vendors and informational booths from local businesses and non-profit community organizations (including The History Center from 12:00pm to 4:00pm). There will be an array of outdoor and indoor activities, including a bounce castle, face painting, free workshops and more!
for more information!
Historic Ithaca's Seventh Annual That Old House Tour: Trumansburg
Saturday June 18, 2016 - 12:00 PM to 4:00 PM (Trumansburg)
What: A self-guided walk/drive/bike tour of selected houses in the historic village of Trumansburg.
Admission: $15 General / $12 Friends of Historic Ithaca, seniors, and students / $10 per person for groups of four or more / Free for children under 12
Day-of Ticket Sales: 11:30 AM - 2:00 PM at the Trumansburg Conservatory of Fine Arts - 5 McLallen Street, Trumansburg
Buy Tickets in Advance: Online: www.historicithaca.org By phone: (607) 277-3450 In person at our Significant Elements Store - 212 Center St., Ithaca
Historic Ithaca's 50th Anniversary Celebration
Monday June 20, 2016 - 5:00 PM (at the State Theatre)
Historic Ithaca is holding their 50th anniversary celebration commemorating the founding of Historic Ithaca on Monday June 20th at the State Theatre at 5pm. There will be an official proclamation of Historic Ithaca Day and wine, some food, and cake along with some remarks by past board members (Kent Diebolt, Charlie Pomada, Margaret Hobbie and Carol Travis).
Sharing Our Stories for Social Change
Saturday June 25, 2016 - 2:00 PM to 4:30 PM (at The History Center)
Join us on Saturday June 25th for the second event in the series "Sharing Our Stories of Action for Social Justice and Transformation." This series, done in partnership and collaboration with the Dorothy Cotton Institute, will focus on sharing personal narratives and oral histories that highlight individual contributions towards social change across a broad range of issues and social movements. At this event, three panelists will share their work for change and address what they had to overcome and what sustained them. After the panel, all will be invited to meet in small groups to share their personal stories of work for social change. Panelists: Nancy Bereano, Martha Ferger, and Gabe Shapiro.
Generation to Generation Oral History Capacity Building Series
Please RSVP for all events associated with the Oral History Capacity Building Series by emailing Community@TheHistoryCenter.net or calling (607) 273-8284 x 227.
Sharing Our Stories: Collecting the Oral Histories of LGBT Older Adults
Tuesday June 28, 2016 - 1:00 to 2:30 PM (at The History Center)
Lisa Holmes Director, Tompkins County Office for the Aging; Founder of Telling Our Stories: A Project of the Tompkins County Working Group on LGBT Aging
Important Notice: Closing Hours
Closed Saturday July 2, 2016.
The History Center will be closed on Saturday July 2, 2016 in honor of the Fourth of July. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. Have fun and stay safe!
Eight Square Schoolhouse 2016 Summer Programs
What's Hot on the Discovery Trail
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From the Collection
In 1988, The History Center received a generous donation from Janice Jacobs Currie, of Pittsford, NY. The collection, named for Currie's father, Lawrence H. Jacobs, includes this autoharp. It was used by Ada Marie Clapp Jacobs, Lawrence's mother, who lived in Ithaca from 1871 to 1933.
Lawrence Herbert Jacobs was born at 18 Esty St. in Ithaca, on Nov. 20, 1899, one of seven children born to Ada Marie and Albert Alonzo Jacobs. He attended the Ithaca public schools and was a member of the choir of the First Baptist Church. When he was in his late teens he worked as a printer's apprentice for The Ithaca Journal. His love of music (which had been fostered by Laura Bryant of the music department at Ithaca High School) led him to study the violin. He played in the orchestra formed by Ithaca music teacher David Mattern, and later became a violin teacher himself. After serving two years in the New York State Guard, he returned to the newspaper business in Syracuse in the early 1920s, spending almost five years there. He returned to Ithaca in 1925 and worked for both The Ithaca Journal and the Cornell Daily Sun. In 1928, Lawrence bought the Groton weekly newspaper, the Journal & Courier, and for the next 20 years served as its editor and publisher. Under Lawrence's stewardship the Journal & Courier received 15 certificates of merit from the New York Press Association and the National Editorial Association.
Sources: DHS/THC Accession records; Lawrence H. Jacobs,
Early Boyhood Days in Ithaca