Longfellow Birthday Celebration

August 15, 2015

Join us for this annual program in Story Chapel, co-sponsored by the Longfellow House – Washington’s Headquarters National Historic Site.  Following a talk about Longfellow’s lasting legacy, we’ll enjoy birthday cake and then walk to the Longfellow Lot on Indian Ridge Path for a wreath-laying ceremony.


“Landmark of the Past”: The Longfellow House and the Origins of Family, Public, and Federal Preservation

Hilary Iris Lowe will discuss Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s own preservation ethic, the founding of the Longfellow Trust, and the origins of the National Park Service’s interest in the site.  Along the way, she’ll briefly put these in context of the kinds of preservation and memorialization that were going on for other key literary figures in the country—like Nathaniel Hawthorne, John Greenleaf Whittier, and Washington Irving – and explore how unique the Longfellow House-George Washington’s Headquarters’ path to preservation was.

Hilary Iris Lowe is Director of the Center for Public History and an assistant professor of History at Temple University. She holds a PhD in American Studies from the University of Kansas. Her first book, Mark Twain’s Homes and Literary Tourism, came out in 2012, and her next book, Open House: House Museums, Gender, Sexuality, and Politics of Memory, will examine the preservation movement in the United States, with special attention to the histories of gender and sexuality.  She is also currently engaged in researching the administrative history of the John Fitzgerald Kennedy National Historic Site.

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