As 2015 comes to a close, we reflect on a successful 2015 and look forward to the new year. Throughout the past year, the Museum has hosted over a dozen temporary exhibitions, including The Shakers: America's Quiet Revolutionaries, REPRESENT: Contemporary Native American Art, and important art exhibitions from the New-York Historical Society (The Coast & The Sea: Marine and Maritime Art in America) and the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art (Along His Own Lines: A Retrospective of New York Realist Eugene Speicher). Public programs for children, families and adults attracted thousands of visitors to the Museum. Our scientists, anthropologists, and historians continue to conduct exemplary research and are published in leading national and international journals.
Most recently, the Museum increased efforts to celebrate New York State History Month in November and encourage New Yorkers to learn about the history of our state. Thanks to this strengthened effort, the History Month program is building statewide partnerships focused on celebrating New York State's rich history. Important state programs, including Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's Path Through History program, I Love New York, and the Museum Association of New York, support History Month. Museums, libraries, historic sites, and local government historians around the state are participating by spreading the word about History Month and hosting public programs.
While there were great History Month activities across the state, the fact is that every month is history month in New York. Many New Yorkers—the nation's greatest thought leaders, innovators, scientists, artists, and every day people—have changed the world. New York State owns the birthplace of the women's rights movement, the Erie Canal, birthplace of the NAACP, home to the Roosevelts, and more. Historian Kenneth T. Jackson speaks often of the central role New York State plays in American history - a position that no state can rival.
As we look back at a great 2015, let's continue to promote and learn about our history not just during History Month, but every day. Visit your local museum or historic site—or take a road trip and discover the myriad of cultural education institutions throughout the state. Encourage the children and students in your life to learn about the history of their community or neighborhood. Discover the diversity, uniqueness and influence of New York's history.
I'll see you at the Museum.
Director, New York State Museum