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I've been thinking about this all day long, because I feel like I have a pertinent answer/observation, but I'm not quite sure just how to articulate it. The approach where I work has been "Put some old stuff out on a table and let people look at it", more or less. Our visitors do seem to come in with their own sense of relevance, and come away with very glowing, positive and enthusiastic remarks about what we've done. The funny thing is that I feel like we haven't done anything to interpret our artifacts at all (at least not yet- that is going to be down the road a bit), yet our visitors are not looking for interpretation so much as they just want to see the stuff. Sticking to a "keep it simple" philosophy ain't so bad, I guess.


Ann Mefford

Came across a reference to a Clarence Emerson Ball. The Balls and Krohs of Louisville are cousins of mine on the Rautenbusch side. Are you a cousin? My great grandmother was Marie Rautenbusch who married a Shire who married a McGalin, any of this sound familiar?


Kevin Levin's review carries about as much weight as a Bill Clinton's abstinence program would. Kevin once revelled in the fact that visitation to the Museum of the Confederacy was falling and therefore threatened the museum financially. But the same thing is happening to the ACWC with declining attendence. The question is why? Are citizens becoming bored with a politically rewritten version of history? Was it located in the wrong place? Maybe somewhere around a northern urban area would draw larger crowds and while simultaneously making the "moral hero" feel better about themselves?

Regardless, a better focus on slavery in western civilization and among both regions of America would be much more enlightening to frame American slavery within a broader picture. Who would believe that slavery existed in the colonies of developed countries such as Britain, Portugal, Germany, France, Belgium, and Russia into the 20th century?

Lastly, I would prefer more material from someone like Shelby Foote rather than McPherson for a Virginia musuem.

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