Sherman County Historical Society and Museum
Open Daily 10 until 5 May through October

WHY MUSEUMS MATTER
~ Colleen Schafroth, Director, Maryhill Museum of Art
May 2008 in celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Sherman County Historical Museum.

Museums matter.

They matter because they tell STORIES.
Stories about you, me, our neighbors and friends. Museums tell the stories that make us who we are, stories about our families, towns, farms and factories. Sometimes, they tell us stories we may not know about. Stories about inventions, new ideas, or accomplishments that shaped the fabric of human accomplishment. They tell us stories about our towns, counties, states, and county in new ways and with different perspectives.

They matter because they keep THINGS.
Things that help us understand where we’ve been and sometimes where we could be going.

THINGS. Bird, animal and plant collections in natural history museums contain information about changes in the natural world that can help scientists as they grapple with such challenges as pollution, global warming, or declining populations. In some cases, their specimens represent our only knowledge of extinct animals or plants.

THINGS. Painting, sculptures and all things beautiful and not so beautiful that man has made -- our art, culture and, yes, history museums, present the enormous skill and drive of the human race – its need to express thoughts, emotions, and ideas. These things that separate us from the rest of the animal world – that make us human.

THINGS. Documents, letters, a bonnet, wedding dress, a telephone, pitchfork and I-pod are the things that tell us about human lives, past and present. The things that made our lives easier and happier. And, yes, sometimes these things tell us about us harder, sadder and occasionally horrific deeds and times. These are the things we need to see – they are real objects, proof if you will, of both the good and the bad times. So that we as human beings can know where we are going today because we know where we came from.

Museums matter because they BRING US TOGETHER.
They bring us together to share the stories, to study our world, to admire what we cannot create ourselves, to learn from what we did, to change what we need to change to make our lives better. Museums give us opportunities to marvel at our ingenuities and successes, to understand our pains, to understand where we have been so that we can work together for a better future.

Museums also bring communities together – like the Sherman County Community – who 25 years ago banded together to rejoice in its heritage, share its common history, discuss its challenges, and look to its future.

Museums have a huge responsibility not just because they are operated as a private non-profit with obligations under law, but because of their deeper core reason for existing – to tell our stories, show us our things, and ultimately bring us together.

The Sherman County Historical Society and Museum has done just that. Over its 25 years its volunteers have brought to this county its stories – of the people, the land and its history. And, the volunteers and supporters who’ve worked on this monumental job have done it well – with every possible industry standard in mind, without huge sums of money, and with heart, goodwill and care. They did it for their community, for everyone here today and for future generations to come.

 

 

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200 Dewey Street, P.O. Box 173 - Moro, Oregon 97039
Phone: 541-565-3232
    Email: info@shermanmuseum.org
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