A historical society is an organization of people with a common interest in local history. These societies preserve, interpret, and present the past and often work closely with museums. They usually involve volunteers, fundraisers, and programs, and they serve a variety of audiences.
Some historical societies focus on specific subjects or cultures. Others focus on particular events or locations. There are also historic preservation organizations that focus on buildings.
Historical societies are organizations that collect, archive, and preserve objects that have historical value. Their purpose is to generate public interest in local history. Many historical societies are connected to museums, but some are not. Whether you are a member of a historical society or not, it is important to know what it is that they do.
An example of a historical society is the Massachusetts Historical Society. This organization is one of the oldest in the United States. It began as a way to collect materials for American history. By the 1790s, it had national collections and was also working as a publisher. Today, the Society continues the legacy of its early years as the only national repository of American history.
The State Historical Society of Iowa is a trustee for the state’s historical legacy. It maintains eight historic sites and two research centers. In addition, it produces educational materials and holds lectures. For instance, it has produced publications highlighting its archives and produced a video about a Civil Defense fallout shelter.
Another example of a historical society is the Georgia Historical Society. It is the oldest continuously operated history society in the South. As a nonprofit, it has two main goals: to collect and preserve Georgia’s history and to teach Georgians about it.
A core group of volunteers works on the historical society. They research bus tours, organize newsletters, and participate in various events. During the Civil War, veterans were looking to share their mementos with the next generation.
After the war, many historical organizations were formed. Most of these are small and staffed with volunteer members. But they are a great way to learn about a community’s past.
Several historical societies also offer internships. These are opportunities for college students or young professionals to learn about the world of history and history-making. Often, internships bridge the fields of writing, editing, and preservation.
Other organizations include the Student History Society, which has collaborated with the National Archives and Records Administration and the American Society of Civil Engineers-National Capital Section. It has also sponsored speakers on campus.
The Historical Society of Baltimore County, which is a member of the Maryland Historical Trust, is a public institution that plays a crucial role in preserving local history. The Society is involved in all facets of local history, from genealogy to architectural preservation. Besides offering educational workshops and tours, it publishes periodic newsletters and educational materials.
One of the most interesting aspects of a historical society is its collection of artifacts. These can be free and can provide a glimpse of the culture of the area.