Journey Stories is a Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibit that explores individual stories that illustrate the critical roles travel and movement have played in building our diverse American society.
From June 2013 through March 2014, the exhibit will tour five Michigan rural areas - Alpena, Coloma, Dundee, Curtis and Charlevoix. See below for tentative schedule dates for each site.
About the Exhibit
Journey stories – tales of how we and our ancestors came to America – are a central element of our personal heritage. From Native Americans to new American citizens and regardless of our ethnic or racial background, everyone has a story to tell. Our history is filled with stories of people leaving behind everything – families and possessions – to reach a new life in another state, across the continent, or even across an ocean. The reasons behind those decisions are myriad. Many chose to move, searching for something better in a new land. Others had no choice, like enslaved Africans captured and relocated to a strange land and bravely asserting their own cultures, or like Native Americans already here, who were often pushed aside by newcomers.
The Museum on Main Street exhibition Journey Stories will examine the intersection between modes of travel and Americans’ desire to feel free to move. The story is diverse and focused on immigration, migration, innovation, and freedom. It is accounts of immigrants coming in search of promise in a new country; stories of individuals and families relocating in search of fortune, their own homestead, or employment; the harrowing journeys of Africans and Native Americans forced to move; and, of course, fun and frolic on the open road.
The story of the intersection between transportation and American society is complicated, but it tells us much about who we are – people who see our societal mobility as a means for asserting our individual freedom. Journey Stories will use engaging images with audio and artifacts to tell the individual stories that illustrate the how transportation helped build our nation, how it has changed us, and how our mobile world has looked to travelers along the way.
2013-14 Exhibit Schedule
June 1 - July 26, 2013
Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary and Underwater Preserve
Aug. 6 - Sept. 21, 2013
North Berrien Historical Museum
Sept. 30 - Nov. 15, 2013
Historical Preservation Society of Dundee / Old Mill Museum
Nov. 25, 2013 through Jan. 24, 2014
Erickson Center for the Arts
Feb. 3 - March 21, 2014
Charlevoix Public Library
Journey Stories has been made possible in Michigan by the Michigan Humanities Council. Journey Stories is part of Museum on Main Street, a collaboration between the Smithsonian Institution and state humanities councils across the country. Support for Museum on Main Street has been provided by the United States Congress.