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NSHS Volunteer News

July/August 1998

Fall Tour for Volunteers and Members

Plans are being made for a one-day tour, October 28, to sites in the Omaha area. Stops include the Gerald R. Ford Conservation Center in Omaha, the Winter Quarters Visitors Center and Mormon Pioneer Cemetery in Florence, the Western Historic Trails Center in Council Bluffs, Iowa, and the Strategic Air Command Museum near Mahoney State Park. Watch future newsletters for details. Please contact Deb McWilliams at 402-471-4955 for further information.

Volunteer Programming

Come join us! All NSHS volunteers are invited to attend the upcoming volunteer program on Wednesday, July 8. The July program will focus on a new exhibit entitled, Nebraska Quilts: A Patchwork History, as well as the Basic Principles of Conservation, by conservator Debbie Long. Please RSVP to Deb McWilliams at 471-4955 regarding your attendance.

Wednesday, July 8, 1998
Museum of Nebraska History, 15th & P Streets, Lincoln

9:30-10:30 - Docent Training Program (This is not limited to just docents, however.)
Nebraska Quilts: A Patchwork History, by Paula Doe, NSHS exhibits
dept., and Pat Cole, NSHS volunteer.
11:00-12:00 - Volunteer Program
Basic Principles of Conservation, by Debbie Long, NSHS Ford
Conservation Center.

NSHS History Conference, October 2-3 in Valentine

You won't want to miss this year's annual meeting and history conference in Valentine. Centered in "Cowboy Country," the meeting features programs and tours relating to the history and landscapes of the Nebraska Sand Hills. Valentine will be holding its annual Old West Days the same weekend, providing additional opportunities to experience "Cowboy Country."

On Friday, conference attendees can explore the beauty of Nebraska's Niobrara River on a three-hour canoe trip from the Fort Niobrara Wildlife Refuge to Smith Falls State Park. At the park, we will visit scenic Smith Falls, Nebraska's highest waterfall, and learn more about the environmental and historical significance of the Niobrara Valley. The fully-catered river trip will include transportation from Valentine, all canoeing equipment, and a boxed lunch.

Other conference events will include an "in character" presentation of the lifestyles of the buffalo hide hunters by historian T. Lindsay Baker. Samples of the intriguing foods of the hide men will be available for tasting. A book-signing, featuring books by Society authors and conference speakers, is also on the agenda.

Saturday activities include talks about early Sand Hills photographers, Sand Hills archeology, the black 25th U.S. Infantry at Fort Niobrara, and the use of windmills on the Great Plains. Michael Allen, University of Washington-Tacoma, will present the keynote address at the luncheon entitled, "Politically Correct Rodeo Cowboys?" Society awards will also be presented.

The history conference concludes Saturday afternoon with tours of the site of Fort Niobrara (1880-1906), now a federal wildlife refuge, and Snake River Falls and the McKelvie Unit of the Nebraska National Forest.

Registration materials will be mailed to all Society members in September, but reserve the dates on your calendar now. The conference is open to the public. Please invite your friends.

Glass and Stained Glass Conservation Workshop

The Ford Conservation Center, a division of the Nebraska State Historical Society, announces a workshop on the restoration and conservation of three-dimensional and stained glass objects, July 26 - 31, 1998.

Designed for practicing objects conservators, stained glass artisans, and historic preservation professionals who work with stained glass, the seminar will cover current restoration and conservation techniques. The workshop will be offered at the Ford Conservation Center in Omaha.

For further information about the workshop, contact Lisa Metzger Grotrian at 402/595-1180 in Omaha.

1998 Nebraska State Fair

Don't miss your opportunity to volunteer at the 1998 Nebraska State Fair - this is a chance to help NSHS and have a lot of fun at the same time. Volunteers are needed to greet the public and provide information at the Cunningham Schoolhouse and Hudson Log Cabin in the Heritage Village area at the State Fair. Hudson Cabin volunteers also conduct the sale of merchandise.

The State Fair runs from August 28 through September 7. Volunteers may choose to work from the following three- or four-hour shifts: 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., 1:00-4:00 p.m., and 4:00-7:00 p.m. Parking and gate admission is provided by NSHS.

To sign up for the State Fair contact Deb McWilliams at 402/471-4955. Thank you for your generosity and commitment to this yearly project!


A new exhibit of quilts from museum collections opened July 1 at the Museum of Nebraska History. Nebraska Quilts: A Patchwork History features twelve quilts spanning a century of Nebraska history, dating from the 1840s through the 1940s. Some of the quilts came west with their makers, while others were made in Nebraska.

Displays include the oldest surviving quilt known to have been created in Nebraska, a Wreath of Roses pattern made by Martha Allis Hollins in 1860, as well as a selection of crazy quilts, patchwork, and applique designs.

The highlight of the exhibit is Grace Snyder's famous Flower Basket Petit Point quilt, completed in 1943 and composed of more than 85,000 pieces. Snyder's quilt work is nationally known for its skill and complexity. She was inducted into the Congress of Quilters Hall of Fame in Arlington, Virginia, in 1980, and into the Nebraska Quilters Hall of Fame in 1986.

The exhibit continues through October 31, 1998. For more information on the quilt exhibit, contact Jessica C. Stoner at the Museum of Nebraska History office, 1-800-833-6747 or 402-471-4757 in Lincoln.

New Faces at NSHS!

Eva Bachman, museum store

Ann Banks, museum store

Keith Blackledge, NSHS Board of Trustees

Herb Grandbois, NSHS Board of Trustees

Amelia Hunt, museum

Cathy Larson, kids workshops, museum

Tami Matson, museum

Meredith McWilliams, kids workshops, museum

Norman Monroe, library/archives

Thomas Mooney, library/archives

Brad Naber, museum

Ly Nguyen, museum

Susan Rice, kids workshops, museum

Matt Waldren, library/archives


June 1, 1998 - May 31, 1999
Trans-Mississippi Exposition exhibit

July 1 - October 31
Nebraska Quilts: A Patchwork History exhibit


July 8
Docent & Volunteer Programming

July 16
Brown Bag Lecture Series
"Film Making in Nebraska: The Early Years"


August 4, 6
Workshop for Kids: Quilting on the Prairie

August 9
Free Family Event: Quilt Day at the Museum

August 10, 11, 13
Workshop for Kids: Adventures in Architecture

August 12
Workshop for Kids: Haymarket Mystery

August 20
Brown Bag Lecture Series
"Nebraska Railroad Depots: Yesterday and Today"

August 28 - September 7
State Fair

Volunteer News is published bi-monthly for the world-class volunteers at the Nebraska State Historical Society. For information about volunteering with any of our divisions, or at any location across the state, contact:

Deb McWilliams, Volunteer Services
402-471-4955 or 1-800-833-6747

Apply for Volunteer Service today!

Volunteer News backissues


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Last updated 18 August 1998

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