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  • Writer's pictureBecky Fifield

And So It Goes: The Fall Crunch

September and October have been full of professional commitments. For those readers not familiar with museum work, this is often the busiest time for the installation of exhibitions that will be reviewed during the Fall season (January being another peak exhibition changing season). Pair that with courier trips (trips in which a museum staff member accompanies objects to another museum for installation) to other museums changing their exhibitions, and you have a full schedule.

Many heritage professional organizations also have conferences in the fall, so I’ve been on the lecture circuit as well. On September 20, I spent less than 24 hours in Birmingham, Alabama. I served as part of a panel at the American Association of State and Local History annual meeting about supporting collection care in institutions. My particular angle was strategies for raising visibility for collection care among administration and colleagues. Read more about previous presentations here.

October 11 found me lecturing about getting institutional buy-in for emergency preparedness at cultural institutions. (Let’s face it folks: you can have the best ideas in the world for emergency preparedness and response, but unless administration supports you and enforces application of the program, nothing is going to happen. Getting buy-in is the first step in every new program). Alliance for Response NYC partnered with the Association for Preservation Technology. I had some wonderful fellow lecturers, including Rob Waller from Protect Heritage Corp, who discussed risk assessment for heritage sites, and Luca Nassi of the Italian Fire Brigade, who talked about amazing collaboration between first responders and Italian cultural heritage staff to preserve damaged heritage sites in the wake of the L’Aquila Earthquake in 2009.

I finished up my current speaking obligations on Tuesday, October 22, at Colonial Williamsburg at the Threads of Feeling Symposium, where I discussed rediscovering personalizing elements of dress among the 18th century working class through my study of 1000 18th century newspaper runaway advertisements. (see this post for more information about the project – check the servants category on my blog for further pieces on the project).

I am honored to be included in all the projects above – I enjoy getting the word out there. Now – I’m looking forward to Thanksgiving!

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