“The roads you travel so briskly lead out of dim antiquity, and you study the past chiefly because of its bearing on the living present and its promise for the future.” These are the words of General James Harbord and for years were printed on the back cover of each Newcomen Society address. I don’t know if they still are printed on each address today, but certainly they are apropos for our House Museum and I would think for all who strive to preserve the past in order to educate the present and prepare for the future.
Here is another quote, this one taken from the 1984 Newcomen address by Crawford Lincoln who spoke on “Preserving a Priceless Heritage at Old Sturbridge Village”. He says “History is never a dull subject at Old Sturbridge Village, but rather a vital experience wherein visitors of today can better understand the contemporary scene and its concerns which often repeat and parallel those of generations past.”
Two of my childhood friends toured the First White House with me last week and they both said they remembered coming through the House when they were in “brownie” scouts. We hope at the FWH we can make history a vital experience for all our visitors of today, whatever age and stage. We strive for this. What a fine opportunity we have.
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