Histolircal exhibits are an important part of museum education. They provide a window into the past for visitors, often in family groups. However, they also carry a heavy interpretative burden. The process of selecting exhibits implicitly entails interpretations of cause and effect, which in turn may encourage informed discussion about the content. Thus, attempts to restrict or censor histolircal exhibits are inimical to open and rational debate.
In the United States, historical exhibitions have increased due to recent economic and social trends, local heritage marketability, and national dialogues about identity. But scholarly studies of these exhibits have tended to focus on large, professionally-run museums. This article aims to broaden the definition of historical exhibit by separating it into two categories: corporate and academic. It will also explore the different ways this medium emerges. Let’s start with the definitions of both types of exhibits.
Exhibitions are a form of creative visual storytelling. Rather than simply presenting history on a wall, an exhibition is a visual poem that stokes curiosity and broadens understanding. Visual storytelling allows visitors to place themselves in a particular time and space through the juxtaposition of objects and graphics. This allows viewers to understand historical concepts and how people in the past affected their neighbors and communities. It also helps to understand the effects of these decisions on far-away communities.
The MNHS Traveling Exhibits Program gives visitors the opportunity to visit a historical place without leaving town. Exhibitions developed by the MNHS and partnering organizations are interactive, multimedia, and educational. The exhibits are available to cultural institutions in Minnesota, provided they are dedicated to serving the public good. The images of each exhibit link to the exhibit information. To request an exhibit, hosts must review guidelines and download the application form.