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NSHS Volunteer News

September/October 2000

Museum Store
Anniversary Sale

The Museum Store is celebrating its fifteenth anniversary during the week of September 10-16. A special booksigning, featuring Happy As a Big Sunflower: Adventures in the West, 1876-1880, by Rolf Johnson, edited and with an introduction by Richard E. Jensen, is scheduled for Wednesday, September 13, from 3:00-4:30 p.m., in Lincoln. Drawings for prizes are planned at each of the museum stores, as well as a free poster with every purchase. The sale will include twenty percent savings on items storewide. Some of the store merchandise is featured in the store catalog (see newsletter insert). Catalog orders placed during the week of the sale will receive the twenty-percent discount. Orders placed before or after the anniversary sale will receive the ten percent member discount.

Museum stores celebrating the anniversary are located at the Museum of Nebraska History in Lincoln; the Gerald R. Ford Conservation Center, Omaha; the Fort Robinson Museum Store, near Crawford; the Chimney Rock National Historic Site near Bayard; the Neligh Mill, Neligh, and the Senator George W. Norris State Historic Site, McCook. For further information about the stores or hours call 402-471-3447.

Join us for special savings and help to celebrate the work of the Society!


Paul Fees of Cody, Wyoming, will be the featured speaker at the Society's 122nd members' meeting, and will talk on the contrary relationship between Nebraska and Buffalo Bill. He will speak at a luncheon on Saturday, October 28, 2000, in Lincoln. Fees is the senior curator at the Buffalo Bill Historical Center.

The Society will also present several awards for historical achievement during the meeting. They include the Robert W. Furnas Award for outstanding contributions to the Nebraska State Historical Society; the Nebraska Preservation Awards to recognize significant achievements in historic preservation for "brick and mortar projects" or "individual or group achievements;" the Addison E. Sheldon Memorial Award for outstanding contributions to the preservation and interpretation of Nebraska history; and the James L. Sellers Memorial Award for the best article published in the preceding volume of Nebraska History.

In addition to the named awards, outgoing society trustees Martha Ellen Webb and E. Jane Graff will be recognized for their dedicated service to the Society during two, three-year terms on the board. Election results for new members of the board of trustees will be announced at the luncheon.

The Society Board of Trustees and the Nebraska State Historical Society Foundation Board of Trustees and Directors will also meet on October 28. Members of the Society, as well as non-members, are invited to attend the meeting. Preregistration is required. For further information contact the Society at 402-471-4955.

Archeology Focus for Volunteer Program

Jeanette Blackmar, archeological registrar for the Nebraska State Historical Society's Archeology Division, will provide the upcoming volunteer program. The program, Nebraska Archeology: A Behind the Scenes Tour, is scheduled for Wednesday, September 13, 2000. The program will begin with coffee at 10:00 and the program following from 10:30-11:30 a.m.

Please RSVP to Deb McWilliams at 471-4955 regarding your attendance, or if you have any questions.

Quilt Exhibit Opens September 11

Quilts from the museum collection will be featured in a new exhibit opening September 11, 2000, at the Museum of Nebraska History. Patchwork and Progress will showcase thirteen quilts dating from the 1840s through the 1960s. An additional ten quilts, many of them too fragile to be hung, will be displayed in drawer units. Some of the quilts are completely handmade, while others combine hand and machine sewing. Sewing machines from various time periods will complement the quilts on display.

Grace Snyder's famous Flower Basket Petit Point quilt, completed in 1943 and composed of more than 85,000 pieces, will again be on display. Snyder's quilt was selected as "One of the Twentieth Century's One-hundred Best Quilts" at the International Quilt Festival in Houston, Texas, last year.

Other quilts featured include a red and green Star and Plume, 1840-50, an all-silk Baby Blocks from about 1844, a Nine Patch (Postage Stamp), 1876-96, featuring American centennial print fabric from 1876, and a Century of Progress quilt shown at the 1933 Chicago World's Fair.

The exhibit continues through December 29, 2000.

Celebrate El Dia de los Muertos!

On Saturday, October 28, celebrate El Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) with the Hispanic Community Center and NSHS. Similar in some ways to Memorial Day, El Dia de los Muertos has been celebrated in Nebraska for many years and involves honoring and remembering loved ones and enjoying friends, family, and traditional foods. On Saturday, October 28, we hope you will take advantage of two opportunities to learn more about and celebrate this meaningful holiday. From 1-4p.m., the Museum of Nebraska History will feature a guest speaker, crafts, foods, and entertainment relating to El Dia de los Muertos. From 6:30-8p.m., the celebration continues with a community potluck, music, oral histories, and an El Dia de los Muertos exhibit at the Hispanic Community Center in Lincoln. Everyone is invited to this community celebration. For more information call 471-4757 or 1-800-833-6747.

Norris House Quilt Exhibit

The Sen. George W. Norris State Historic Site will be hosting its annual Pre-World War II Quilt Exhibit throughout the month of September. There will be several quilts made by Grace McCance Snyder in the exhibit. Two of her quilts were chosen by the National Quilting Association as among the top one hundred quilts of the Twentieth Century. The two were Flower Basket Petit Point, belonging to the Nebraska State Historical Society, and Mosaic, belonging to daughter Billie Snyder Thornburg.

Grace quilted Mosaic in 1940 after seeing a photo of a similar one quilted by a man in 1939. The quilt contains 58,640 tiny pieces and leaves the viewer with the impression of just having seen a stained glass window. Another quilt in the display will be a predecessor to the Petit Point, belonging to one of the granddaughters.

Hours at the Norris site are Tuesday through Sunday, 9:30 to noon and 1:00 until 5:00. Special tours can be arranged by calling Linda Hein at 308-345-8484.

Index to Census Completed

Ray DeVries, a Society volunteer with the Library/Archives Division, completed a new index to the Census of the German-Russian Population of Lincoln, Nebraska, by Hattie Plum Williams and Jacob J. Stroh. This census was taken in 1913 and 1914. The census is available in printed form, with plans to make it available on our website by the end of the year. The library/archives also provided a printed copy of this index to the American Historical Society of Germans from Russia headquarters in Lincoln. Thanks, Ray, for completing this worthwhile project.

State Fair 2000

Thanks to everyone who volunteered at the Nebraska State Fair. Each year volunteers are needed at the Cunningham Schoolhouse and Hudson Log Cabin in the Heritage Village area, and each year the Society's faithful volunteers assist to provide educational information about Nebraska and the Historical Society. The Nebraska State Fair continues in the new millenium, as in the previous. Please accept our sincerest thanks for your time and your talents. We couldn't do it without you!

New Museum Store Catalog Available

The 2000 Museum Store catalog is available and includes numerous publications and gifts available for purchase. The catalog has been provided to all Historical Society volunteers and members with the September/October newsletter. The catalog is also featured on the Society's website at

If you know someone who would like to receive a catalog, give us a call at 402-471-3447, and we will be happy to send one. Remember your twenty percent volunteer discount!

Brown Bag Lectures

Everyone is invited! On the third Thursday of each month, the NSHS hosts a free Brown Bag lecture series at the Museum of Nebraska History, Fifteenth and P Streets, Lincoln. The lecture begins at noon ­ so bring your lunch!

The September 21 lecture, "Patents from the Plains: Examples of Nebraska Ingenuity," will be presented by Mark Nelson, senior museum curator, Nebraska State Historical Society. On October 19 Pamela Riney-Kehrberg, professor of history, Iowa State University, Ames Iowa, will present "But What Kind of Work Do the Rest of You Do? Child Labor on Nebraska's Turn-of-the-Century Farms."

New Faces

Susan Curtis, library/archives

Bill McCloud, library/archives

Emily Riggle, administration

Kari Sawyer, museum store

Allison Simmons, library/archives

Jennifer Stewart, library/archives

Doreen Weed, library/archives

Calendar of Events

September 1-4: Nebraska State Fair
Call Marcia at 402-471-4746 to volunteer!

September 1-30: Quilt exhibit at Norris House
George W. Norris State Historic Site, McCook, Nebraska

September 4: Labor Day
In observance of Labor Day the Ford Conservation Center in Omaha will be closed Saturday, September 2, through Monday, September 4. Society headquarters will be closed September 4. The Museum of Nebraska History and all historic sites except Cather and Neihardt will be open regular hours on September 4. Call for holiday hours at the Neihardt Site (402-648-3388) and Cather Site (402-746-2653).

September 10-16: Museum Store's fifteenth birthday
20% discount storewide!!

September 11: Quilt exhibit opens
Museum of Nebraska History, Lincoln, Nebraska

September 13: Birthday booksigning
3:00-4:30 p.m., Museum of Nebraska History, Lincoln, Nebraska

September 13: Volunteer Program
10:00-11:30 a.m., Museum of Nebraska History, Lincoln, Nebraska

September 21: Brown Bag Lecture
12:00 noon, Museum of Nebraska History, Lincoln, Nebraska

September 28: Volunteer Bus Trip
For further information call Deb McWilliams, 402-471-4955

October 9: Columbus Day observed
In observance of Columbus Day the Ford Center will be closed Saturday, October 7, through Monday, October 9. Society headquarters will be closed October 9. The Museum of Nebraska History and all historic sites except Cather and Neihardt will be closed October 9. Call for holiday hours at the Neihardt Site (402-648-3388) and Cather Site (402-746-2653).

October 19: Brown Bag Lecture
12:00 noon, Museum of Nebraska History, Lincoln, Nebraska

October 21: Children's Museum Grand Opening
1420 P Street, Lincoln, Nebraska

October 28: Day of the Dead
1:00-4:00 p.m., Museum of Nebraska History, Lincoln, Nebraska

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!

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Last updated 31 October 2000

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