Hilltown Families

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Question and Answer What is your favorite way to discover and explore history with your child/ren? Abbe Laine Schiowitz writes: “We lovelovelove the Natural History Museum at Amherst College, admission is free and if there is a lecture or tour they have no problem with you listening in/following. We also enjoy our historical society, town cemeteries, and our library.” Wendy Somes writes: “The history museum at the Springfield Museums uses planes, motorcycles… Read More

Historic Deerfield: That Museum Town My mom and I had a little time on a sunny day a few weeks back and took the kids to Historic Deerfield. To be very honest, I felt like it might be a tough sell. I have three boys. They are 4½, 6 and 11½ years old.  My oldest has been very tween-y lately. My youngest has been very sleepy, running himself ragged at the Parent’s… Read More

Lives of the Valley: Meet Fannie Clary and Jessie Tarbox Beals Did you know that the Pioneer Valley was the home and inspiration for America’s first female photo-journalist?  Come to Williamsburg and find out more! To celebrate American Archives Month and kick off a year-long program celebrating biography and the stories of people here in the Pioneer Valley, the Meekins Library and the Williamsburg Historical Society present Fannie Clary and Jessie Tarbox… Read More

Grandparent’s Day Celebrated in the Hilltowns and Berkshires Join The Trustees of Reservations at four historic houses for Grandparents Day, Sunday September 12. Special activities for grandparents and grandchildren will be offered at the William Cullen Bryant Homestead in Cummington, the Naumkeag House & Gardens in Stockbridge, the Mission House in Stockbridge, and the Ashley House in Sheffield. On this day, Berkshires residents of all ages will receive free admission. On Sunday… Read More

Springfield Museums to Join Public Reading of Frederick Douglass Speech Wednesday, June 30th at Noon The Springfield Museums are participating in a communal reading of Frederick Douglass’s fiery 1852 speech, “The Meaning of the Fourth of July to the Negro.” The shared reading will take place at noon on June 30th in Court Square in Springfield and will be followed by a discussion at First Church. On July 5, 1852, Douglass, a… Read More

How It All Got Started Long before the advent of Christianity, plants and trees that remained green all year had a special meaning for people in the winter. Just as people today decorate their homes during the festive season with pine, spruce, and fir trees, ancient peoples hung evergreen boughs over their doors and windows. In many countries it was believed that evergreens would keep away witches, ghosts, evil spirits, and illness…. Read More

History of Halloween Halloween isn’t just costumes and candy; it’s a cultural holiday rich in tradition.  This three minute video by National Geographic give a outline of the history of Halloween:

Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Web site: teacher.scholastic.com. Scholastic presents a collection of material for homeschooling families, school teachers and students in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, September 15-October 15. WEB SITE FEATURES: An interactive map showing Hispanic history in the America An annotated listing of Latinos in history Interview transcripts with recent famous Latinos (such as astronaut Ellen Ochoa) Research guide on the Spanish missions in California Teacher guide, games and more!

500 Years of Female Portraits in Western Art My 4yo daughter and I have watched this video a couple dozen times. She is fascinated by it. I love it. The first time she saw it she asked, “Mommy, are they angels?” The video is truly other-worldly.  Cello music by Bach plays while portraits of women painted over the past 500 years by many great painters are morphed from one into the other:

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