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NSHS Volunteer News

May/June 2000

Thanks NSHS Volunteers!

The NSHS staff wishes to extend our sincere thanks to our volunteers for the many ways that each of you assists us in preserving and interpreting Nebraska's history. As Winston Churchill once said, "We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give." 

Volunteer Appreciation

The NSHS invites all volunteers to an appreciation on May 8 at 1:00 p.m. at the headquarters building, 1500 R Street, Lincoln. The event will begin with refreshments and a program. Jim Potter, editor of Nebraska History, will briefly review the history of Memorial Stadium at UN-L. Dean Steinkuhler, former Husker offensive guard and Outland and Lombardi award winner, will join us to provide his recollections of playing at the stadium. A walking tour of Memorial Stadium will follow the program. We suggest you wear comfortable shoes.

The event is an opportunity to congratulate and thank the many volunteers who assist the Society in carrying out its mission "to safeguard and interpret Nebraska's past." Please RSVP to 402-471-4746.

May 10 Volunteer Program

Please join us on Wednesday, May 10, for a volunteer program at the Museum of Nebraska History, Fifteenth and P Streets, Lincoln.

The program is entitled, "How Volunteers should Respond to an Emergency," presented by Security Chief Pam Garland. Coffee will be served at 10:00, with the program to follow at 10:30.

Planning ahead? Future programs are scheduled for July 12, September 13, and November 8.

Please RSVP to Deb McWilliams at 402-471-4955 regarding your May 10 attendance, or if you have any questions.

KID'S EYE VIEW EXHIBIT TO OPEN JUNE 3

Find out what the Brownell Elementary fifth graders see in Lincoln in the new exhibit Lincoln: A Kid's Eye View. The grand opening will be on Saturday, June 3, at the Museum of Nebraska History. The Brownell Elementary fifth graders visited five of Lincoln's community centers and heard stories from people who immigrated to Lincoln from other countries or grew up as minorities in Lincoln. To share their new vision of their city, the students created Lincoln: A Kid's Eye View.

The first component of the exhibit is a kiosk and interactive computer featuring student artwork, poetry, models, interviews, a creative story, photographs, reflections, and objects. The second component will give the visitors a chance to learn more about the forty-eight curators of Lincoln: A Kid's Eye View. The students have chosen personal objects to exhibit and have written stories about themselves, their objects, and their heritages.

Come for the fun on Saturday, June 3, as we celebrate the grand opening of Lincoln: A Kid's Eye View from 1 to 4 P.M. at the Museum of Nebraska History. The afternoon will be filled with a special cultural presentation, music, multicultural door prizes, and foods. We hope to have many if not all of the forty-eight Brownell Elementary fifth grade curators on hand. The Lincoln: A Kid's Eye View exhibit will be on display through August 2000. Please call Jessica Stoner, 1-800-833-6747 or 471-4757 in Lincoln for more information.

The Nebraska Experiment

The Pioneer Gallery on second floor of the Museum of Nebraska History will be closing May 31, 2000, to make way for a new permanent exhibit. The Nebraska Experiment will record the successes and failures that have marked the settlement and development of Nebraska from 1867 to 1940. Through period settings, artifacts, documents, and photos, this third phase of the museum's permanent exhibits will illustrate the growth of Nebraska's towns, government, agriculture, ranching, industries, and inventions, along with changing technology, political and social movements, and the state's rich ethnic heritage.

Major components of the 5,000-square-foot gallery will include a new, more realistic 1880s sod house and an early twentieth-century recreation of the Goehner Brothers General Store in Seward, Nebraska. A sound station will feature audio clips of early radio broadcasts in Nebraska, pioneer folk songs, and music by famous Nebraskans. A video station will include early film footage from Omaha, excerpts from In the Days of '75 and '76, the first motion picture produced in Nebraska, the installation of the Sower on the capitol building, and other notable events in Nebraska history.

The Nebraska Experiment is slated to open in early 2002, so please bear with us during this construction phase. The new exhibit will provide better access for tours and school groups, allow more artifacts and photographs to be displayed, and emphasize visitor interaction with museum objects by utilizing Plexiglas cases and the latest trends in exhibit design. State-of-the art lighting and exhibit techniques will help safeguard and preserve the artifacts on exhibit, while providing a better viewing experience for the visitor. From time to time, we will bring you updates on the progress of the exhibit, and may ask for your help in acquiring specific objects needed to help tell the story of Nebraska's past.

Other exhibit news:
Just a reminder, Dearly Beloved: Gifts and Gowns from Nebraska Weddings closes May 31, 2000. A Kid's Eye View of Lincoln opens June 3, 2000. A selection of quilts from the museum collection will be on exhibit September through December 2000 on first floor at Fifteenth and P Streets, Lincoln.

Library of Congress/Ameritech Project Completed

For the first time in the Society's history, two of its prominent collections will be available for searching on the Internet: the Solomon Butcher photographs and the Uriah Oblinger family letters. These two collections tell the story of settlement on the Great Plains and we are very excited about making them available to patrons from across the globe. We could not have completed this project without the help of our volunteers. We really appreciate your continued efforts to help us make Nebraska's history available to a wide audience. Our sincere thanks to everyone who put so much time and energy into helping the Society complete this very important project.

History Day 2000

Celebrate and learn history from Nebraska's youngest historians! Attend the fourth annual History Day Celebration on Friday, May 12, at the state capitol. At the History Day Celebration, you can see and learn from exhibits, documentaries, and performances created by middle and high school students from across the state and join in the congratulations during the 4:00 p.m. awards ceremony.

Students showcasing their entries at the celebration have won at the district and state History Day contests and have been invited to the national History Day contest in June. Students can prepare for national History Day at the History Day Celebration, with a professional critique and workshops.

After the awards ceremony, the celebration continues at the Museum of Nebraska History with an entertaining lesson in history by Dan Holtz, professor of English at Peru State College. Dan's program, entitled "Nebraska through Song and Story," is sponsored by the Nebraska Humanities Council and will begin at 6:00 p.m. in the museum's auditorium. Everyone is welcome!

Board of Trustees to Meet in McCook

The NSHS Board of Trustees will meet in McCook on May 12 at 8:30 a.m., at the McCook National Bank. Board members will also visit the Senator George W. Norris State Historic Site in McCook.

Help Us Spread the Word!

One of the best ways to recruit new volunteers is through word-of-mouth. Naturally, people who enjoy what they do want to share it with others. We certainly hope you enjoy being a volunteer at the Historical Society, and hope you will share that good news with your family, friends, neighbors, and co-workers.

There are several opportunities for meaningful and rewarding volunteer work within the different divisions of the Historical Society. Encourage any one you know to give us a call to discuss these opportunities. Please contact Deb McWilliams at 402/471-4955. Thanks for your help!

Brown Bag Lecture Series

The Brown Bag Lecture Series is held on the third Thursday of each month, at 12 noon, in the Blackman auditorium, Museum of Nebraska History, Fifteenth and P Streets (131 Centennial Mall North), Lincoln. So bring your lunch and enjoy the lecture! The May and June programs are as follows:

May 18: The Halls of Hallmark - Bob Puschendorf, deputy state historic preservation officer, Historic Preservation Division, Nebraska State Historical Society

June 15 Grand Duke Alexis and the Buffalo Hunt of 1872 - Dr. Douglas Scott, Midwest Archeological Center, National Park Service, Lincoln

New Volunteer Faces

Ray Tiemeyer, archeology

Gerald Grauer, archeology

Sunny Beermann, museum store

Sandra Meslow, museum store


Calendar of Events

May 2-12: Pastimes and Playthings
Kennard House, 1627 "H" Street, Lincoln, Nebraska
(Kennard house will be closed, Monday, May 8)

May 8: Volunteer Appreciation
1:00 pm, NSHS Headquarters, 1500 "R" Street, Lincoln, Nebraska

May 10: Volunteer Program
10:00 a.m., Museum of Nebraska History, Lincoln, Nebraska

May 12: Board of Trustee Meeting
McCook, Nebraska

May 18: Brown Bag lecture
12:00 noon, Museum of Nebraska History, Lincoln, Nebraska

May 29: Memorial Day
All NSHS offices closed. Museum open regular hours.

May 31: Wedding and Pioneer exhibits close
Museum of Nebraska History, Lincoln, Nebraska

Throughout the months of June and August: Summer Workshops for Kids, for ages 7-12. For more information, call Jessica Stoner at the Museum of Nebraska History, 402-471-4757, or 1-800-833-6747.

June 3: Kid's Eye View exhibit opens
Museum of Nebraska History, Lincoln, Nebraska

June 15: Brown Bag lecture
12:00 noon, 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 19 June 2000

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