There’s always something happening at The Heritage Museum!
2017 – Please help keep Third Thursday Talks free by making a donation of appreciation to support the modest honorariums our presenters receive. It’s so easy using the Donate button on this page. Thank you!
Third Thursday Talk, January 19th, 7 pm: State Highway Marker Highlights Randy Jones, from the Virginia Department of Historic Resources, will provide an overview of the state’s historical marker program, which celebrates its 90th anniversary in 2017. The oldest such program in the nation, Jones will share the program’s origins and discuss how it has changed during the course of 90 years. As one of the most popular state run programs, it is a great example of “public history” in action.
Third Thursday Talk, February 16th, 7 pm: Building Archives, Celebrating Local History: The Lucy F. Simms School Project James Madison University Professors Mollie Godfrey & Sean McCarthy will share details of an effort to involve JMU students in recovering local African-American history. The project, organized by Mollie Godfrey, Seán McCarthy, and Robin Lyttle of the Shenandoah Valley Black Heritage Project, included outreach with community members and extensive archival research and culminated in a permanent exhibition at Simms School, an parallel online exhibition, and a booklet.
Third Thursday Talk, March 16th, 7 pm: Nitre and Mining Bureau District 4½ Author Richard Armstrong will discuss a history of the Confederate Niter & Mining Bureau District 4½, based in Staunton, Virginia. The Niter & Mining Bureau was tasked with producing potassium nitrate or saltpeter used in the manufacture of gunpowder for the Southern Armies during the Civil War. Mr. Armstrong will share stories of the workers, both white and black, who served the Bureau in the caves, under buildings, and on the battlefield.
March 24-25: Virginia World War I and World War II Profiles of Honor Tour Weekend. The Profiles of Honor mobile exhibition brings to life the state’s integral role in both wars, highlighting stories of Virginians who served in both conflicts. As part of the tour, visitors are invited to bring their own World War I and II-related photographs to be scanned for inclusion in the Virginia Profiles of Honor project.
Friday, March 24, 7 pm: Ever Forward! The 116th at Omaha Beach Theodore G. Shuey, Jr., retired commander of the 116th Infantry Regiment of the Virginia National Guard, will share the D-Day Story of this historic military unit, from the perspective of local soldiers. One of the WWII units of the Regiment, C Company, had its Armory in Harrisonburg and was drawn comprised of men from the Harrisonburg-Rockingham community. The presentation will also include a display of D-Day artifacts.
Saturday, March 25, 9 am – 3 pm: Profiles of Honor Tour and scanning open with early Museum hours.
Saturday, March 25, 11 am: William Ruebush & the Dayton Band in WWI. Previous HRHS Museum Director and Archivist Dale Harter shares the history of the 116th Infantry Regimental Band. The Band was formed from volunteers from Dayton, Virginia – the smallest town in the United States to furnish a complete regimental unit in World War I.
Thursday, March 30, 7 pm at MRL Central LIbrary in Harrisonburg: You Need a Schoolhouse: The Rosenwald School Story. Author Stephanie Deutsch describes the partnership and shared vision between Booker T. Washington, the founder of Tuskegee Institute, and Julius Rosenwald, the president of Sears, Roebuck, and Company, which brought thousands of modern schoolhouses to rural black communities of the segregated South.
Thursday, April 20, 7 pm at MRL Central LIbrary in Harrisonburg: Exploring “Every Inch of Harrisonburg:” The Robert J. Sullivan Jr. Papers. Join special guests Charlie Chenault and Dr. David Ehrenpreis at Massanutten Regional Library’s Central branch in Harrisonburg for the unveiling of an exciting Harrisonburg history resource: the Robert J. Sullivan Jr. papers, a new collection at JMU’s Special Collections Library. The preview begins at 6:30 with the presentation following at 7:00. Presented in partnership with Massanutten Regional Library and James Madison University Special Collections Library.
Note: No Third Thursday Talk at The Heritage Museum in April.
Monday, May 1, 7 pm, Special Event at Court Square Theater in Harrisonburg: Rosenwald, a documentary film by Aviva Kempner. Rosenwald is the incredible story of Julius Rosenwald, who never finished high school, but rose to become the President of Sears, Roebuck & Company. Influenced by educator Booker T. Washington, this Jewish philanthropist joined forces with African American communities during the Jim Crow South to build over 5,300 schools.