18-21 March 2020, Atlanta Georgia
The raw materials of public history rest in communities, among people and their stories. Public historians encourage people to remember aloud, giving presence to intangibles of cultural memory not always captured or contextualized in formal spaces. From threads, fragments, and disparate materials, public historians create multi-layered quilts of historical meaning that reflect, frame, deconstruct, reassemble, and repurpose narratives. No matter the participants or where they learn their craft, the constant in this work is change. The celebration of NCPH’s 40th year in 2020 offers an ideal moment to recognize the totality of practitioners across the field. Public history work lives in museums, archives, publications, and historic places—but it’s also history as activism, history as storytelling, and history as healing. Our challenge is to reconnect to our local, activist roots, to forge new and stronger partnerships, and to incorporate new fabric into our collective endeavor, one thread at a time.
Proposals due 15 July 2019