(c) Connecticut Explored Inc., Spring 2023
Frederick Douglass Film Installation
Isaac Julien. photo: Duncan McGlynn
Isaac Julien’s immersive, multi-screen film installation Lessons of the Hour, opening at the Wadsworth Atheneum on May 13, anchors the exploration of the visionary abolitionist Frederick Douglass. Marking 180 years since Douglass first visited Hartford—when he delivered a speech just outside the Wadsworth, on the grounds of Center Church on May 18, 1843—Julien’s narrative weaves Douglass’s writings and filmed reenactments of his travels with contemporary protest footage, underscoring Douglass’s relevance and resonance today. The 25-minute film presents images across multiple screens that converge as one visual and fragment into a montage. The most photographed individual of the 19th century, Douglass knew how powerfully images could influence cultural perspectives. This immersive art experience is accompanied by rarely seen 19th- century photography reflective of Frederick Douglass’s life and times, bringing the historical figure into clear focus. Presented in collaboration with The Amistad Center for Art & Culture.
Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, 600 Main Street, Hartford. thewadsworth.org; 860-278-2670
Wordie, n. a lover of words
Wordies wanted! The museum’s annual fundraiser Webster’s War of the Words returns this spring to pay homage to Father of American English Noah Webster and raise funds for his c. 1720 birthplace. Celebrity logophiles engage in a battle of words and wits in a game show hosted by Merriam-Webster’s Peter Sokolowski. Join the fun!
Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society, 227 South Main Street, West Hartford. noahwebsterhouse.org; 860-521-5362
Interactive Bicycle Game
The 1890s saw an unprecedented surge in the popularity of bicycles, and Connecticut – thanks to entrepreneur Albert Pope and the Hartford-based Pope Manufacturing Company – was a leader in bicycle production. The Bicycle Game explores this moment in history in an interactive and playful exhibition designed for visitors of all ages, in groups or on their own. In the galleries, visitors will find the history of the bicycle transformed by an angry villain into a series of games and puzzles that must be solved. From trivia to bicycle racing to shuffleboard, visitors will need to rely on a host of skills to make their way through the game and preserve this important moment in Connecticut history. Visit The Bicycle Game and take history for a ride!
This exhibition will be on view at the Connecticut Historical Society through Fall 2023. Learn more at chs.org.
Connecticut Historical Society Museum & Library, 1 Elizabeth Street, Hartford. chs.org; 860-236-5621
New Tours and Stories at The Ancient Burying Ground
The Ancient Burying Ground Association (ABGA) in Hartford is developing new tours to debut this summer. ABGA has expanded its colonial-era narrative to include fascinating stories of hardship, struggle, and the success of the people most likely to be buried here.
Tours will encourage participants to learn more about Hartford’s hidden histories from research projects such as Uncovering Their History. This project resulted in new scholarship about Native, African, and African American people who lived, worked, and died in Hartford. Current research conducted by Dr. Katherine Hermes, Telling New Stories, is documenting the lives of women in the Burying Ground, such as Ruth Moore. Moore left a will in 1696, the earliest of any woman of color in Hartford and perhaps in the colony. Another project led by Dr. Hermes illuminates the stories of people who built connections between Connecticut and the Caribbean, including women, enslaved people, and merchants.
The Ancient Burying Ground is a public historic site that is open to the public daily, located at the corners of Main and Gold Streets in downtown Hartford.
The Ancient Burying Ground, P.O. Box 347, Hartford. theancientburyingground.org; 860-337-1640
Maple Sugar Fest
Looking for a sweet end to the winter months? As the days get warmer but the nights remain cold, it’s the right condition for maple sugaring! On Saturday, March 11, at 11:00 join Institute for American Indian Studies (IAIS) staff for an event celebrating the gift of maple sugar. Throughout the day, IAIS museum educator and ecologist Susan Scherf will demonstrate various traditional techniques of collecting sap and boiling it down into syrup and sugar. For an enriching experience, listen to some traditional Native American stories and participate in family-friendly educational activities. Hungry? Enjoy pancakes topped with real maple syrup, along with coffee and orange juice. Pre-registration is requested; visit www.iaismuseum.org to register.
Institute for American Indian Studies, 38 Curtis Road, Washington. wigwamescape.org; 860-868-0510
Juneteenth is now a federal holiday! On June 19, 1865 the Union Army arrived in Galveston, Texas carrying news of the Emancipation Proclamation to more than 250,000 enslaved people in the city. The newly freed slaves proclaimed the day as “Juneteenth.” Today we celebrate Juneteenth not just to commemorate the end of slavery in the United States but to inspire our continued (to paraphrase Martin Luther King) “bending the arc of the moral universe toward Justice.” You can celebrate Juneteenth by visiting any of the sites along the Connecticut Freedom Trail, which tell the stories of slavery, emancipation, and the struggle for civil rights and social justice in our own communities. Find out more at facebook.com/CTFreedomTrail.
Connecticut Democracy Center at Connecticut’s Old State House, 800 Main Street, Hartford. CTOldStateHouse.org; 860-522-6766
Apply to Public History MA Program
Central Connecticut State University’s Public History program is working with a growing list of community partners, including CT Explored, to expand and reinterpret Connecticut history. Come be a part of it! Apply to the Public History M.A. program for first consideration for professional opportunities for grad students. Contact Leah Glaser, firstname.lastname@example.org, with questions.
History Department, Central Connecticut State University; ccsu.edu/history/
Watercolor Ocean Exhibition
Alexis Rockman: Oceanus is a major exhibition opening at Mystic Seaport Museum in May 2023. The show will feature 10 large-scale watercolors and an 8-by-24-foot panoramic painting, all commissioned by the museum to become part of its permanent collection. The project represents a shift in perspective at the museum to raise awareness and inspire conversations around the critical global issues that face our oceans due to the impacts of maritime activities as part of our collective cultural, social, and economic heritage.
The central work, Oceanus, takes the viewer on a journey of global discovery beneath the world’s changing seas, deftly weaving natural history, archeology, adventure, political analysis, and science into a story about the human condition. Oceanus features 21 vessels, 15 of which were inspired by models of watercraft in the museum’s collection.
Mystic Seaport Museum, 75 Greenmanville Avenue, Mystic. mysticseaport.org; 860-572-0711
A Revolutionary Tavern
When Lebanon tavern keeper John Alden (c. 1717-1766) died, his widow Elizabeth (1724-1789),who needed a way to support herself and their children, took over running the tavern. Throughout the American Revolution, Mistress Alden provided food, drink, and accommodations for the Council of Safety, French officers, military couriers, and merchants. Located across the Broad Street (now the Green) from Governor Trumbull’s house, Mrs. Alden’s tavern was a busy place.
The tavern building was torn down by 1870, but two photographs were taken by an unidentified photographer, one from the meeting house steeple and one at ground level. When the town of Lebanon acquired the site and planned to construct a community parking lot, an archaeological study was undertaken to ensure that key features were protected in the design.
Today visitors can visit a small park between the parking area and Trumbull Highway that has interpretive signage about Mrs. Alden and her tavern.
Lebanon Historical Society, 856 Trumbull Highway, Lebanon. historyoflebanon.org; 860-642-6579
Historical Children’s Books
The 18th and 19th centuries witnessed the emergence in England and America of new attitudes toward children and education at the same time that America was casting off its royal authority. One result was a booming market of print materials that, for the first time, contained text and illustrations geared toward a young audience. This exhibition draws upon such works found in the extraordinary Children’s Historical Collection in Pequot Library’s Special Collections to explore the ways that 18th- and early 19th-century children’s books reflect the changing political, economic, and social climate of America in the years following independence.
Alphabets, Bedtime Stories, and Cautionary Tales: Children’s Books and the Shaping of American Identity will be on view in the Pequot Library’s Perkin Gallery through May 6, 2023. Find details about the exhibition and associated programming at pequotlibrary.org.
Pequot Library, 720 Pequot Avenue, Southport. pequotlibrary.org; 203-259-0346
Join Connecticut Landmarks!
Connecticut Landmarks is excited to welcome visitors back to our sites as we introduce our new membership benefits. We spent the winter designing fresh and unique experiences for our members, including special talks and tours, along with access to other organizations through our participation in the North American Reciprocal Museum Association. Membership support is the foundation of Connecticut Landmarks and your gateway to exploring Connecticut history. Experience the richness of all of our historic properties as often as you wish, choose from more than 85 programs, special events, and tours each season, and enjoy discounts on program tickets and in our museum stores. Your membership helps Connecticut Landmarks remain an integral part of our communities, opening our doors to thousands of school children and visitors from around the world. If you are not currently a member, or if your membership has lapsed, please consider joining us to take advantage of the exciting new member benefits at ctlandmarks.org/memberships/.
Connecticut Landmarks; ctlandmarks.org
Gamechanger Keeler Tavern
Keeler Tavern Museum & History Center is a Game Changer! Thanks, CT Explored, for recognizing our innovative approach to interpreting themes of race and gender. To learn more about how we’re broadening narratives, amplifying underrepresented voices, and addressing complicated history in our site’s storytelling, read Director of Education Melissa Houston’s article in this issue.
Keeler Tavern Museum & History Center, 152 Main Street, Ridgefield. 203-438-5485; Keelertavernmuseum.org
Happy Birthday, Harriet!
On Saturday, June 11, the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center will celebrate Harriet’s 211th birthday with a free community day. From 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., visitors can enjoy interactive tours of the Stowe House, Seeing Is Revealing, a new neighborhood walking tour, or both, at no cost. Additional attractions on the Stowe Center’s historic grounds will include lawn games, art stations, and live music throughout the day–and free ice cream at 3 p.m.! Advance tour reservations are encouraged.
Harriet’s birthday celebration takes place on Connecticut Open House Day. The Stowe Center is excited for the opportunity to connect with neighbors and the Greater Hartford community.
Harriet Beecher Stowe Center, 77 Forest Street, Hartford. 860-522-9258; HarrietBeecherStoweCenter.org
Polaroid Portraits Exhibition
The New Haven Museum (NHM) recently added four portraits of distinguished community members to its collection: oversized Polaroid photographs by Linda Lindroth. The donated works, and others on loan, are included in the exhibition “Instants: Linda Lindroth’s Polaroid Portraits,” on view through Saturday, June 10, 2023.
In the 1980s and 1990s, working with a rare Polaroid 20 x 24 camera, Lindroth captured figures in visual art, education, architecture, and theatrical performance who contributed to the city of New Haven. As an art form, the Polaroid photographs differ from anything else in the NHM collection. But in terms of style, subject, and artistry, there are many parallels between the Polaroids and other works in NHM’s collection, so each Lindroth portrait is paired with an analogous work in the NHM Online Collection that visitors can access by QR code.
New Haven Museum, 114 Whitney Avenue, New Haven. newhavenmuseum.org; 203-562-4183
ASCH is for You!
Since 1970 the Association for the Study of Connecticut History (ASCH) has been promoting the study of the history of Connecticut via meetings and conferences. In 1974 ASCH began publishing Connecticut History, now Connecticut History Review, the only academic, peer-reviewed journal devoted to the history of Connecticut. Its meetings, conferences, and journal serve many constituencies: academic scholars, museum and historical society professionals, history buffs, graduate students, and educators.
Influential Illustrator on View
The whimsical world of Walter Wick has fascinated people of all ages since 1991, when his first children’s book series I SPY found its way onto the bookshelves of millions of American households. The success of Wick’s books has established him as one of the most celebrated photographic illustrators of all time. In March 2023, the NBMAA is thrilled to launch the largest survey of Wick’s work to date. Titled after his most recent book, Walter Wick: Hidden Wonders! will span 30 years of innovation, wonder, and imagination. The exhibition pairs iconic, beloved images with more than 15 never-before-seen works, together with numerous three-dimensional models upon which his photographs are based. Celebrating more than three decades of creativity and Wick’s indelible role in the development of photographic illustration, this exhibition, on view March 31 – September 3, 2023, is a must-see for art lovers of any age. Plan your visit today!
New Britain Museum of American Art, 56 Lexington Street, New Britain. Nbmaa.org; 860-229-0257
Cedar Hill Cemetery Walking Tours
Learn about Cedar Hill Cemetery’s world of art, history, and natural beauty by attending Cedar Hill Cemetery Foundation’s popular public programs. Seasonal activities begin in May and run through October.
For nature enthusiasts, there are bird, tree, and mushroom walks. Art and history lovers will enjoy thematic tours highlighting celebrated residents and renowned monuments.
Program information can be found at cedarhillfoundation.org.
If you are visiting Cedar Hill Cemetery on your own, quiet recreational activities, such as walking, birding, and photography, are permitted. A Guide for Visitors, A Guide to Notable Trees, and Guide by Cell Audio Tour are available for self-guided experiences.
Cedar Hill Cemetery, 453 Fairfield Avenue, Hartford. cedarhillfoundation.org; 860-956-3311
Children From Around the World
James Mollison, Indira, 7, Kathmandu, Nepal
In this series of beautiful and thought-provoking photographs of children and their sleeping spaces from around the world, photographer James Mollison documents young people in different countries and circumstances. Each studio-style portrait of a child is accompanied by a detailed study of their “bedroom,” ranging from large, decorated rooms to the barest spaces set aside for sleep. The photographs and stories examine childhood, family, cultural identity, hope, doubt, comfort, and inequity. Interested in rendering children within their own spaces, Mollison shares his work with potential subjects, noting the universality of curiosity. “Wherever I am, I discover that children are often enthralled to see how other children live around the world.” The exhibition is on view through April 30, 2023. Where Children Sleep: Photographs by James Mollison is organized and circulated by Curatorial Assistance Traveling Exhibitions, Pasadena, California.
Lyman Allyn Art Museum, 625 Williams Street, New London. 860.443.2545, lymanallyn.org
American Independence Realized at The Joseph Webb House
The Joseph Webb House (c. 1752) served as George Washington’s headquarters in May 1781, where he stayed for five nights. The Continental general strategized with the French commander, the Comte de Rochambeau in the house’s front parlor to plan the joint military campaign that led to the victory at Yorktown and to American independence.
Wealthy young merchant Joseph Webb hired Judah Wright in 1752 to build the gambrel-roofed Georgian mansion. Upon Webb’s death in 1761 the house was inherited by his son Joseph Jr. and his wife Abigail; it became known as “Hospitality Hall,” because of their penchant for entertaining. History was made here in 1781.
Now a National Historic Landmark, the Joseph Webb House is one of three preserved homes that make up the Webb Deane Stevens Museum, which is owned by The National Society of The Colonial Dames of America in the State of Connecticut.
Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum, 211 Main Street, Wethersfield. webb-deane-stevens.org; 860-529-0612
Immersive Theater Experience
Join the Wilton Historical Society and Escapism Productions in this immersive theatrical experience, FOR KING. FOR COUNTRY, set in Wilton during 1777. Witness and assist the local members of the community in uncovering a plot betwixt Loyalists and Patriots during a time of turmoil and strife in our country’s history. Inspired by true local events, this original production pulls audiences into the past to not only learn but engage with the 18th century as it was during an era when neighbors were pitted against neighbors and people were willing to commit desperate acts to protect what they felt was right. Audience members will move through the society’s c.1770 Sloan-Raymond-Fitch house and interact with actors to affect the outcome of the story. Shows will be held at 6:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. on April 14, 15, 21, and 22. Visit escapismproductions.com for tickets.
Wilton Historical Society, 224 Danbury Road, Wilton. wiltonhistorical.org; 203-762-7257
Sports! More than Just a Game
Poster, Greenwich Horse Show, 1947 Greenwich Historical Society, Gift of Hedda Windisch von Goeben.
A dynamic exhibition presenting an inclusive and insightful history of sporting culture, Sports! More than Just a Game features exclusive memorabilia, equipment, and personal effects from some of Greenwich’s most celebrated athletes. Reflecting the vibrant history of local sporting clubs and leagues and the notable legacy of prominent athletes making their homes in Greenwich, the exhibition and its related adult and family programs tells a rich story of athletes and athletic culture as viewed through a historical lens. On view in the Frank Family
Foundation Special Exhibitions Gallery from March 8 through September 3, 2023, the exhibition is curated by Kathy Craughwell-Varda and supported in part by grants from Connecticut Humanities. For details and a calendar of events visit greenwichhistory.org.
Greenwich Historical Society, 47 Strickland Road, Cos Cob. greenwichhistory.org; 203-869-6899
Preservation Connecticut Documents Green Book Sites
With the growing availability of affordable automobiles, Americans took to the road in greater numbers in the mid-20th century. But for African Americans, any freedom and mobility offered by cars was still limited by Jim Crow laws, pervasive racism, and violence. From 1938 to 1967, Victor Hugo Green, a mailman in New York, compiled and published The Negro Travelers’ Green Book, identifying hotels, restaurants, service stations, and other places where African Americans could be served without fear of harassment. The Architecture of the Negro Travelers’ Green Book is a volunteer project that seeks to document sites listed in the book.
Preservation Connecticut is currently compiling Connecticut’s Green book sites, such as The Elton Hotel in Waterbury. Two interns from SCSU and CCSU are working with staff to field check and document extant locations, conduct research, and write histories and prepare the resulting material for inclusion in the Green Book website community.village.virginia.edu/greenbooks. Stay tuned for updates!
Preservation Connecticut; PreservationCT.org
Connecticut’s Land Claim in Ohio
Imagine taking Connecticut’s northern and southern borders and extending them west to the Pacific Ocean. Under the terms of a royal charter given to the colony in 1662, Connecticut was to stretch from the “Narraganset-Bay on the East, to the South Sea on the West Part.” Following the model of other states, Connecticut gave most of its claimed land over to the federal government in 1786, but it “reserved” a territory in the northeast of present-day Ohio for its continued use and settlement. This became the Connecticut Western Reserve.
This April, the Litchfield Historical Society opens “To Come to a Land of Milk and Honey,” an exhibition telling the story of the Western Reserve using the voices of the people who experienced westward migration.
Litchfield Historical Society, 7 South Street, Litchfield. litchfieldhistoricalsociety.org; 860-567-4501
Art, History, and Science Programming
Join the Friends of Wood Memorial Library this spring as they explore art, history, and science. Learn about Isabella Stewart Gardner, the woman, the art, and the heist; witch hunts with Connecticut State Historian Emeritus Walt Woodward; and fuel cells, their impact in space and South Windsor. Programs for all ages. Visit woodmemoriallibrary.org for details.
Wood Memorial Library, 787 Main Street, South Windsor. 860-289-1783; WoodMemorialLibrary.org
Sunday Jazz Concerts
Ronnie Burrage. photo: Maurice Robertson
Hartford Public Library’s popular Baby Grand Jazz concerts will continue throughout March and April, held each Sunday (except Easter Sunday, April 9) at the Downtown Library at 3 p.m. Seating is first come, first served, beginning at 2 p.m. The free concerts will also be streamed on Hartford Public Library’s Facebook page and YouTube channel. Scheduled performers include Mixed Company (March 5), Zwelakhe-Duma Bell le Pere Quartet (March 12), Skyler Hagner Nonet (March 19), Simón Willson Quartet (March 26), Michael Feinberg (April 2), Blackman Murray Russo (April 16), Sarah LeMieux’s “Jazz for the End of the World” (April 23), and Matt Dwonszyk and the Dwonztet (April 30), The Kaman Foundation is the presenting sponsor of Baby Grand Jazz. The Hartford Jazz Society and WWUH 91.3 FM have been longtime partners of the series, which began in 2004.
Hartford Public Library, 500 Main Street, Hartford. 860-695-6300; hplct.org
Object Lessons in American Art
Rande Cook, Our Home, Princeton University Art Museum. © Rande Cook.
This summer, the Florence Griswold Museum is pleased to share a very special exhibition organized by Princeton University Art Museum. Object Lessons in American Art is drawn entirely from Princeton’s venerable collections and presents works of Euro-American, African American, and Native American art, created between the 18th century and today. The traveling exhibition, on view June 3 through September 10, asks fundamental questions about artistic significance and how meaning changes across time, place, and context.
Focusing in particular on race, gender, and the environment, the exhibition features 73 works in 20 discrete groups, each intended to provoke new considerations and raise timely questions about American history and culture. These juxtapositions serve as “object lessons”—gatherings of tangible artifacts that communicate an embodied idea or an abstract concept—to anchor debates about the country’s complex social, racial, and political history, thereby expanding our ideas about American art history.
Florence Griswold Museum, 96 Lyme Street, Old Lyme. 860-434-5542; florencegriswoldmuseum.org
A Student of Connecticut History
Henry S. Cohn, an attorney since 1970, has served in both state and federal positions. A graduate of Johns Hopkins University and UConn Law, he was named a Connecticut Superior Court judge in 1997 and a judge trial referee in 2015. As an avid student of Connecticut history, he makes frequent use of the Connecticut State Library archives for his scholarship.
Judge Cohn co-authored The Great Hartford Circus Fire: Creative Settlement of Mass Disasters. His numerous articles (some co-authored) also often have a wide-ranging emphasis on Connecticut history topics, including election law, divorce, flood insurance, a life insurance scandal, Prohibition, women’s suffrage, child protection, the Chinese Exclusion Acts, the Charter of 1662, the Constitution of 1818, and Mark Twain’s will. Joseph Hawley, Raymond Baldwin, T. Emmet Clarie, and Zephaniah Swift are just a few of the historical figures he’s written about to date. A Hartford native, Judge Cohn often includes Mark Twainisms in his pieces and has a creative annual submission to The Connecticut Lawyer on Abraham Lincoln. Truly a student of Connecticut history!
Connecticut State Library, 231 Capitol Avenue, Hartford. Ctstate.library.org; 860-757-6500
Explore New England’s Great River
Discover the history and environment of New England’s Great River at the Connecticut River Museum. Explore the exhibits. Climb aboard the Turtle submarine. Walk 410 miles of the r iver in our vertical gallery filled with aerial photos. Learn the stories of people and the r iver in our three floors of exhibits.
Connecticut River Museum, 67 Main Street, Essex. Ctrivermuseum.org; 860-767-8269
Protect our History, Our Present, Our Future
The fate of Brookfield’s Central and Laurel Hill cemeteries has been turned over to the courts following five years of declined merger and collaboration proposals. This continues a trend, reported on by The New York Times, of Connecticut’s abandoning its cemeteries.
The boards of both associations identified three key issues for the court’s consideration: business continuity, fiduciary oversight, and consumer protection. The volunteer association indicated to the court that institutional oversight is needed, oversight that can guarantee families the fulfillment of burial contracts made decades in advance of the need and that can help train professionals and provide cost effective access to modern technology.
Unlike other states, Connecticut has no clear authority over its death-care industry. There are no audits of fiduciaries, no standards of practice or enforcement, no continuing education or training requirements, no standardized information systems, no safeguarding of the public interest. It is a set of problems that needs to be addressed. Learn more at centralcemetery.net.
Central Cemetery Association, 490 Federal Road, Brookfield. 203-775-3278; centralcemetery.net
Alfred Pope: An Evolution of Ingenuity
Come visit Hill-Stead to see our new exhibition Alfred Pope: An Evolution of Ingenuity. The exhibition reunites the works that were once owned by Alfred Atmore Pope (1842-1913), who was the father of our founder, Theodate Pope Riddle. He was among the first American collectors to embrace the French Impressionists and collect their works.
Through artwork, objects, and archival documents, we present the man who made Hill-Stead possible, in celebration of its 75th anniversary as a museum. The exhibition, on view from November 17, 2022 to May 30, 2023, will be accompanied by a major publication.
Visit during regular museum hours (Wednesday-Sunday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.) and take advantage of free access to the grounds (every day, 7:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.).
Hill-Stead Museum, 35 Mountain Road, Farmington. hillstead.org; 860-677-4787
Slate Restoration at the Slater
In 2022 Slater Memorial Museum of Norwich Free Academy, dedicated in 1886, embarked on a restoration of its original 135-year-old roof. The project of its kind to be performed on the museum building, this will be a comprehensive restoration of the entire roofing system. Because of the nature of the project, the museum closed to the public on January 1, 2022 and aims to reopen March 2023. The museum’s collection and exhibitions will be preserved, and in some cases relocated, to maintain their safety and allow for a seamless restoration process. While the museum will be closed temporarily to visitors, the staff will be hard at work behind the scenes connecting with students and the public through digital means, and everyone is invited to join in this exciting journey. Visit slatermuseum.org to learn more and stay updated throughout the restoration!
Slater Memorial Museum, 108 Crescent Street, Norwich. 860-887-2506; slatermuseum.org
The Katharine Hepburn Museum, located in the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center in Old Saybrook, is the only museum dedicated to offering an authentic view of the cultural and historical impact of Katharine Hepburn and her family. Newly expanded and reopened, the museum showcases letters, costumes, and artifacts associated with the famed actress. Highlights include her childhood letter to Santa Claus, her earliest Actor’s Equity contract, her 1975 Primetime Emmy award, and a collection of her signature pants. “Classic Kate” films are shown on the big screen in the theater once a month. For a schedule of screenings visit thekate.org. The museum is open Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Museum admission is free; however, donations are gratefully accepted.
The Katharine Hepburn Museum, 300 Main Street, Old Saybrook. 860-510-0473; katharinehepburntheater.org/about/museum
Tours and Talks at Twain
The Mark Twain House & Museum is open for guided tours year round. The museum offers a general tour filled with family anecdotes and history; living history tours featuring costumed actors portraying butler George Griffin, the Clemens family’s gossipy maid Lizzie Wills, and woman-of-the-house Livy Clemens, and a kids’ tour about the everyday life of daughters Susy, Clara, and Jean Clemens. For a full schedule and tour options visit MarkTwainHouse.org.
For information about upcoming virtual and in-person author programs and special Twain-related lectures visit MarkTwainHouse.org/Events.
The Mark Twain House & Museum, 351 Farmington Avenue, Hartford. 860-247-0998 MarkTwainHouse.org
In the 1920s the United States entered the Machine Age. As cities and household interiors were shaped by new technology and became sleek and modern, a group of artists developed a style that captured the zeitgeist: Precisionism. Cutting Edge: Connecticut Artists Explore Precisionism, on view March 5 to April 30 at the Mattatuck Museum, explores the little-known artistic movement by focusing on the work of Connecticut artists who employed fine art and design to speak to these technological and social changes.
Mattatuck Museum, 144 West Main Street, Waterbury. 203-753-038, ext. 130; mattmuseum.org