To Greenwich Historical Society friends, members and supporters,
Today, overlooking the quiet Cos Cob Harbor, I am sending my best wishes to you and your loved ones during an unprecedented period in our history. As we all navigate the uncertainty and change to daily routine, I want to offer an update on what we are doing here at the Historical Society to support our community.
In this difficult time, we plan to continue our mission of preserving and interpreting Greenwich History to strengthen the community’s connection to our past, to each other and to our future. Greenwich, in our almost 400 year history, has been a place of perseverance, of responsibility, generosity, commitment to our future, and respect for our past. What endures is our care for community, for education, and for forging ahead with Yankee ingenuity, as thinkers and pragmatists.
An Update on the Historical Society
The health of our visitors, supporters, and staff remains of utmost importance to us. In an effort to help protect our community, we are following recommendations made by the CDC, state and local governments, and will remain closed to the public through at least May 20. In the meantime, our staff has been working on fulfilling our commitment to the community in new ways.
Community: History From Home
Greenwich Historical Society curators, educators and docents have come together to bring the best of Greenwich history – our stories, our landmarks, archives and collections – online for all to peruse and enjoy. Each day we will feature a new story at greenwichhistory.org, and via social media. For educators, parents, and all those curious about Greenwich, we welcome you to enjoy our rich history. If you’d like to contribute to our online resource or have a suggestion for a specific topic of interest, please click here.
Outreach: Documenting…history happening now.
In these unprecedented times, we encourage our community to document their experience and share it with us. Have you taken photographs showing desolate spaces that would normally be bustling with people? Have you used unexpected free time to write journal entries, letters or poetry reflecting on the sense of isolation (or other emotion) that results from efforts to contain the rate of infection? What signs have you seen around town that speak to the prevalent sense of caution and uncertainty? Maybe you’ve witnessed acts of great kindness and generosity (or their tangible results). These are just a few examples of items we would like to capture for posterity in our archival collection. Our website will feature a local gallery of your images. Find more information or submit your images here.
Resources: Online Archives
The Archives photograph collection, containing more than 40,000 prints, film negatives, slides and glass plates, is an enormous visual resource for those interested in the history of the Town of Greenwich, especially its development from a nineteenth century farming and shipping community to the commercial and residential center with strong ties to New York City that Greenwich is today. Access it here.
Education: Sarah & Her Town
Since the decision by local public and private schools to close schools and begin distance learning initiatives, our Education staff has been working to recreate online resources for our teachers. Our Sarah Bush and Her Town program, which almost every 3rd grade student in town experiences will be presented virtually. Additional education resources are being developed and posted at greenwichhistory.org , and we are honoring requests that support the evolving online teaching formats. Click here to reach out to our Education staff about resources for teachers.
Our Spring events calendar is currently in the process of being rescheduled and reformatted. We will be posting updates via email, our website and social media platforms. Initial responses to all of our scheduled spring events and programming have been strong, with broad outreach, planning, and dynamic committees doing valuable work on our behalf. We thank you for your ongoing commitment to ensuring their success, despite the setbacks of potential rescheduling.
In the meantime, we encourage you to be safe and healthy. We look forward to opening our galleries and museum store as soon as possible. In a few weeks, we know our lilacs, heirloom gardens, and arbors will be blooming with the beauty and optimism that had inspired so many artists and residents through the centuries here in Cos Cob. Please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns.
The Debra L. Mecky Executive Director & CEO