New digs.

This month I started a new position as the Associate Director and Oral Historian for the Center for the History of Business, Technology, and Society at the Hagley Museum and Library. I’m eager to continue the public and oral history work I began with Under Connecticut Skies, to have a chance to utilize my curatorial and digital media skills, and to work with the amazing people and collections here at Hagley. It’s also a delight to come each day to the stunning nineteenth-century industrial landscape that is the lower Brandywine. Come see our amazing machine shop if you’re in Wilmington!

Although it be not always so plentiful.

In honor of the holiday, please enjoy this, the earliest description of the first Thanksgiving, from a letter to England printed in Mourt’s Relation: A Journal of the Pilgrims at Plymouth, first published in 1622:

Our harvest being gotten in, our governor sent four men on fowling, that so we might after a special manner rejoice together after we had gathered the fruit of our labors. They four in one day killed as much fowl as, with a little help beside, served the company almost a week. At which time, amongst other recreations, we exercised our arms, many of the Indians coming amongst us, and among the rest their greatest king Massasoit, with some ninety men, whom for three days we entertained and feasted, and they went out and killed five deer, which they brought to the plantation and bestowed on our governor, and upon the captain and others. And although it be not always so plentiful as it was at this time with us, yet by the goodness of God, we are so far from want that we often wish you partakers of our plenty.

Happy Thanksgiving.

OWOT, day 2.

Today at One Week | One Tool we’ve been laboring on our first big task: figuring out what tool we’re actually going to build.

We had our big brainstorming session this afternoon, and are now opening up the floor for feedback. We’ve set up a site where you can vote on the potential tools we’ve come up with, as well as to comment on our ideas. Voting closes at 10 a.m. eastern time tomorrow, Tuesday 30 July 2013, when we’ll begin to narrow the field.

Tomorrow: the real work begins.

Farewell, Smithsonian, for now…

Today was my last day as a postdoctoral fellow at the National Museum of American History. The good news: the weather was perfect for lunch with colleagues on our rooftop terrace, with stunning views reaching from the Library of Congress to the Washington Monument.

On the roof at NMAH on my last day at the Smithsonian.
On the roof at NMAH on my last day at the Smithsonian. Photo by Steve Velasquez.

Thanks to everyone who made my time at the Smithsonian so rewarding, productive, and valuable. I hope to come back someday.


It’s always reassuring to know that there are several of these on the shelf where you work…

McMaster catalogs in the trade literature collections, National Museum of American History.
McMaster catalogs in the trade literature collections, Smithsonian Libraries, National Museum of American History.

…although, of course, in a history museum we use them a little differently.

For more information on the amazing trade literature collection at American History, you can search the holdings, browse selected digitized items, or come and visit.