FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: November 9, 2010
Contact: Anne Strong
Telephone: (301) 279-9697
History Associates Celebrates Opening of Philadelphia’s New National Museum of American Jewish History
Historical research firm helped develop the museum’s new core exhibition
History Associates, Inc. is pleased to participate in the opening celebrations of the National Museum of American Jewish History in its new location in historic Philadelphia. The historical research firm has been working with Gallagher & Associates, one of the country’s leading exhibit design firms, and the Museum’s curatorial staff, to help develop innovative exhibits that highlight the experiences of American Jews over the past 350 years.
The Museum’s striking new building overlooks Independence Mall in the heart of historic Philadelphia. The 100,000 square foot museum includes three and ½ floors of exhibit space that explore the promises and challenges of American liberty through the lens of the American Jewish experience. “Our goal for this museum is to tell stories and convey information in a tone that engages and inspires people,” said Josh Perelman, Ph.D., the Museum’s Deputy Director for Exhibitions, Programs, and Collections. “I am confident that museum visitors will agree that we have achieved this mission.”
“We were honored to be part of the project team,” said Dr. James H. Lide, vice president at History Associates. “The new museum reflects years of dedicated work from leading exhibit designers, film makers, computer interactive developers, museum specialists, and historians. We are thrilled to see the final results – a layered story of a people told through displays, interactive media, and illustrated narratives.”
History Associates worked closely with exhibit designers, the museum staff, and a consulting committee of historical scholars. History Associates staff helped identify key themes to be highlighted in the exhibits, searched for supporting imagery and stories, and assisted in drafting the exhibit text. The firm also helped secure licenses and permissions for the exhibit imagery, which came from nearly 150 archival repositories around the world, including: the museum’s own collection, the Library of Congress, the US National Archives, and a wide variety of other institutions such as: the Academy of Motion Pictures, the Israeli Press Office, and the FBI.
Among the dramatic materials exhibited are copies of original Dutch records documenting the first-known Jewish immigrants to the New World, noting that “23 souls big and little” arrived on September 10th, 1654. Also included in the collection are rare images of telegrams sent by Gerhart Riegner, the World Jewish Congress’s representative in Switzerland in August of 1942, alerting Western Jewish leaders of Hitler’s plans for the “Final Solution to the Jewish question.”
The Museum’s Grand Opening Weekend will be held November 12-14. Sold-out festivities throughout the weekend include an all-day symposium, a Museum preview for Founding Members, a gala dinner, and the official ribbon-cutting ceremony on Sunday, November 14. For more information, please visit www.nmajh.org/.
About History Associates
For more than thirty years the historians and archivists at History Associates have demonstrated that history is valuable in the market as well as the marketplace of ideas. They provide professional corporate histories, exhibit content, interpretive planning, historical research, archival services, and collections management services to clients throughout the United States and around the world. History Associates strives to be The Best Company in History®, serving corporate, government, legal, and nonprofit clients from its headquarters in Rockville, Maryland. For more information, call (301) 279-9697 or visit www.historyassociates.com.