Maryland Humanities Tour of Smithsonian Exhibition Travels to Wicomico County
Voices and Votes travels the state through Maryland Humanities’ Museum on Main Street Program
(Baltimore) – Voices and Votes: Democracy in America, a traveling Smithsonian Institution exhibition, opens at The Edward H. Nabb Research Center for Delmarva History and Culture at Salisbury University on August 14. The Nabb Center serves as the third venue of a five-stop tour of the state, presented through Maryland Humanities’ Museum on Main Street program.
Each Voices and Votes host creates a local exhibit to complement the Smithsonian Institution exhibition. The Nabb Center presents Voices and Votes: Democracy on Delmarva, which explores expressions of democracy and highlights stories of rebellion, resistance, and perseverance that have shaped Delmarva’s past and present. The exhibit showcases images and artifacts from the Nabb Center’s collection that speak to our nation’s democratic system, voting, immigration, and activism. Local museums and libraries join the Nabb Center in contributing stories and artifacts from their collections for the exhibition. Subject matter includes women’s suffrage on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, the civil rights movement in Cambridge, activism at Salisbury University, and more.
Democracy on Delmarva also features a portion from the Nabb Center’s Nutters Election House collection. The collection was donated to the Nabb Center in 2001 as part of the larger Wicomico Historical Society Collection, and contains over 2,500 objects and archival items from national, state, and local political campaigns spanning from 1820-2004. The Nabb Center hosts an Opening Celebration on August 17 at 4:00 p.m. on the first floor of the Guerrieri Academic Commons of Salisbury University.
“Voices and Votes presents a timely opportunity for our campus and local community to reflect on the history of our democracy and the ongoing challenges that face our nation,” says Melinda McPeek, Curator of Exhibits and Engagement at the Nabb Center. “Creating greater awareness of the struggles encountered to secure and maintain our rights will hopefully impress upon our visitors the importance of civic engagement. We hope they walk away from the exhibit with the realization that their voice really does matter.”
Voices and Votes is the seventh Museum on Main Street project brought to small communities throughout the state by Maryland Humanities. Each venue hosts the exhibition for six weeks and develops a complementary exhibit highlighting their community’s heritage and histories.
“In addition to learning more about our country’s voting history, we’re looking forward to exploring the voting rights history of five diverse Maryland regions where our host sites are located,” said Lindsey Baker, executive director of Maryland Humanities. “We see the impact the lack of voting access has on many Americans today and can better understand current civil rights movements by looking at our history.”
Voices and Votes programming is supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the State of Maryland, and Maryland Public Television is the tour’s Media Sponsor. The Nabb Center’s partners are Eastern Shore Public Library; Ocean City Life-Saving Museum; Salisbury University Institute for Public Affairs and Civic Engagement (PACE); Taylor House Museum; The Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art; and Worcester County Library.
The Edward H. Nabb Research Center for Delmarva History and Culture hosts August 14–September 25, 2021, with an Opening Reception August 17 at 4:00 p.m. on the First Floor Lobby, open to the public. The center is located at Salisbury University’s Guerrieri Academic Commons at 1134 S Salisbury Boulevard. The Nabb Research Center will follow specific COVID safety protocols. The Nabb Center will open to the public on August 30. Prior to then, it will be open to members of Salisburys faculty, staff, and student body: members of the public may visit the exhibition before that date on August 17, 19, 24, and 26 from 1:00–4:00 p.m. A docent will be stationed downstairs to provide entry. As of August 30, the Nabb Center will be accessible to the public Mondays through Fridays from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Learn more at salisbury.edu/libraries/nabb/ or call 410-543-6312.
|April 17, 2021 – May 30, 2021||Allegany Museum, Cumberland, Allegany County|
|June 12, 2021 – July 24, 2021||Queen Anne’s County Historical Society at Kennard African American Cultural Heritage Center, Centreville, Queen Anne’s County|
|August 14, 2021 – September 25, 2021||Edward H. Nabb Research Center for Delmarva History and Culture, Salisbury, Wicomico County|
|October 10, 2021 – November 21, 2021||Sandy Spring Museum, Sandy Spring, Montgomery County|
|December 4, 2021 – January 22, 2022||Baltimore County Historical Society at the Community College of Baltimore County Dundalk, Baltimore County|
About Voices and Votes
Voices and Votes is based on a major exhibition currently on display at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. This Museum on Main Street adaptation has many of the same dynamic features: historical and contemporary photos; educational and archival video; engaging multimedia interactives with short games and additional footage, photos, and information; and historical objects like campaign souvenirs, voter memorabilia, and protest material. Our democracy demands action, reaction, vision, and revision as we continue to question how to form “a more perfect union.” How do you participate as a citizen? From the revolution and suffrage, to civil rights and casting ballots, everyone in every community is part of this ever-evolving story – the story of democracy in America.
About Museum on Main Street
Museum on Main Street is a Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service program that teams up with state humanities councils to bring high-quality Smithsonian traveling exhibitions to museums, historical societies, and other small-town cultural venues across the country. These exhibits boost civic pride, as residents young and old, from diverse backgrounds come together to share and celebrate their heritage. Learn more about the program here.