Wisconsin Historical Society: Wisconsin Farms Oral History Project receives award

Whitewater, WI. – The Wisconsin Historical Society is excited to announce that Wisconsin Farms Oral History Project is the recipient of the 2020 Public Program Award for the Lands We Share Traveling Exhibition and Community Conversation Tour.

“The program had an impressive statewide scope and succeeded in reaching cross-cultural audiences, addressing racial, economic, and urban-rural divides,” said Christian Overland, Ruth and Hartley Barker Director & CEO of the Wisconsin Historical Society.

An outgrowth of the Wisconsin Farms Oral History Project, Lands We Share displayed an impressive scope of research, bringing together four years of primary source work that included archival collections, oral histories, artifacts, and photos into a traveling exhibition and accompanying statewide series of community dialogues. The management and organization of the program, as well as the path from consolidating research and creating the exhibition to using audience responses to the exhibition to inform community conversations built a more inclusive, comprehensive, and contemporarily relevant final program that connected Wisconsin’s history with its present.

This unique and innovative program has already displayed an impact beyond its start and end dates. Outside of the bounty of oral histories and other personalized responses that were recorded and collected, organizers also noted that the community conversations had led to new collaborations and projects. These included the installation of permanent exhibitions at locations around the state and requests for accompanying K–12 curriculum to bring the program to an even wider audience.

Each year, the Wisconsin Historical Society’s governing Board of Curators recognizes individuals and organizations for meritorious work in areas relating to the Society’s mission.  The Board of Curators is made up of thirty-seven elected and appointed members from across the state.

For information on award criteria, nominations and deadlines please visit www.wisconsinhistory.org.