National Connections

Local history is a window onto the national stage, helping students to see how national events affected communities and individuals. Local history programs also help local students develop a sense of place and connection to their community. These programs are appropriate for 6th through 12th grade students.

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American Dream: The Gilberts in Ridgefield

Famous architect Cass Gilbert, whose credits include the Woolworth Building and the U.S. Supreme Court building, was the last noteworthy resident of the Keeler Tavern Museum & History Center property. He and his wife Julia moved into what he called the “Cannon Ball House” in 1907 and became active citizens of Ridgefield. Through studying their lives and contributions alongside other Ridgefield residents – including recent Italian immigrants – students will discover how their own community’s history exemplified aspects of the nation’s growth. Students will be challenged to look at documents pertaining to urban growth and development to discover how economic divides can create differing opinions.

Race, Ridgefield, and the Resseguie Hotel

This program examines race, gender, and opportunity through the lenses of art and historiography. The play “Sisters” is based on the real-life stories of two women – one white and one Black – who lived in the mid-19th century at what is now Ridgefield’s Keeler Tavern Museum & History Center. It exposes the raw disconnects between “sisters” whose relationship was forever skewed by one of them having to live under a completely different set of rules, due solely to the color of her skin. The program includes a live viewing of the play and additional activities across the campus. This is a full day program.

Please contact us for more information.