Preserving and protecting the artifacts, structures, and documents of the past while making them accessible and understandable to the public is a concern for those operating historical sites and museums. Representatives of more than a dozen regional organizations will gather at Historic Fort Steuben on Saturday, April 1, to address some of those concerns as part of the Ohio Local History Alliance Region 5 meeting.
The Alliance is an organization under the sponsorship of the Ohio History Connection that meets to develop and share ideas, methods, and best practices among its members. The Alliance’s mission is to inspire, connect, and provide educational opportunities for these communities of local historians in Ohio. There are ten regions that have annual meetings covering many issues that history organizations face. The theme for this year’s meetings is “History as Necessity.”
“I really like the theme for this year. We can only understand and make good decisions in the present if we have knowledge of the past,” explained Judy Bratten, Director of Historic Fort Steuben. “And the work of historical organizations such as Fort Steuben is to be sure we are presenting accurate and unbiased information to our visitors. We need the support of historians and experts that the Ohio History Connection provides through the Alliance.”
The meeting on Saturday will cover topics such as how to do research on an historical home or property and how to find grants for preserving local history from the Ohio Humanities Council. There is a time for sharing and networking as well as a tour of Historic Fort Steuben. Attendees include representatives from the McKinley Presidential Library & Museum, Dennison Railroad Depot Museum, Fort Laurens, Magnolia Area Historical Society, Reeves Victorian Home & Carriage House Museum, Historic Zoar Village, and the Jefferson County Historical Association. The meeting will begin with registration at 9am and run through 4pm. The cost is $30 for members of the OLHA, $35 for non-members, and includes lunch.
“This is a wonderful opportunity to learn from others who have been keeping history alive and relevant here in Ohio,” Bratten noted. “I encourage anyone who would like to become involved in preserving and presenting the past to attend the meeting.”
For more information or to make reservations call Historic Fort Steuben at 740.283.1787.