The Pioneer Valley History Network (PVHN) is excited to announce its newest project, “Revolution Happened Here: Our Towns in the American Revolution.” Funded through a newly-awarded grant from Mass Humanities, the project will bring together a collaborative team of our region’s historical societies and museums to create an online exhibit and related programming that tells the story of the American Revolution as it unfolded in western Massachusetts. Visitors to the “Revolution Happened Here” web exhibit will discover how the American Revolution, while a globally transformative event, was fundamentally a grassroots movement – intrinsically local and intensely personal.
PVHN is a consortium of, and advocate for, the many small historical organizations in our region of western Massachusetts that archive and steward much of the region’s history. Frequently run by volunteers, these institutions often have limited public hours and few resources. The Revolution Happened Here project encourages and enables even the smallest organizations to participate and share their town’s unique stories and treasures with a wider audience to help tell a larger, region-wide history. Often unknown outside their communities, these compelling 18th century artifacts and documents will also give voice to myriad, diverse histories of individuals and groups often marginalized in traditional, top-down histories of the Revolution – people of color, both free and enslaved of indigenous and of African descent, indentured servants and apprentices, the poor; women, children, loyalists, and prisoners of war.
The “Revolution Happened Here” online exhibit will interpret artifacts and documents, grouped by topics and themes, and provide interactive opportunities for users to develop a deeper understanding of the American Revolution. An interactive map will enable visitors to locate each story and object as they explore what happened town by town. The database and website exhibit will be expandable to accommodate future participants and materials.
PVHN invites all historical institutions in the Pioneer Valley and surrounding areas to participate in the Revolution Happened Here project. To learn more contact PVHN at: email@example.com