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Museums in Strange Places

Author: Hannah Hethmon

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Welcome to Museums in Strange Places, a podcast for people who love museums, stories, culture, and exploring the world. In Season 1, the podcast focuses on museums in Iceland. Season 2 explores the museums of Maryland.

I’m your host, Hannah Hethmon, and in each episode I visit a different museum to discover its stories, discuss challenges and triumphs with fascinating museum professionals (and volunteers), and get to know each season’s country, state, or region through it museums.

I believe that museums are one of the best ways to discover a place, whether it’s your first time visiting or you’ve lived there your whole life. Join me on this adventure as I get to know the world….one museum as a time.

Get bonus material from each episode (photos, further reading, links) by visiting individual episode pages at hhethmon.com. Use the hashtag #MuseumsinStrangePlaces on social media.

Interested in starting a podcast at your organization? Check out my new book, "Your Museum Needs a Podcast: A Step by Step Guide to Podcast on a Budget for Museums, History Organizations, and Cultural Nonprofits," available on Amazon.
36 Episodes
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What do Baltimore, Russian Jews, the third oldest synagogue in America, Eastern European Catholics, seances, and Harry Houdini have in common? You’ll find out in this episode, a visit to the Jewish Museum of Maryland, an institution that prioritizes storytelling (and is pretty good at it). Join me for a tour of the historic Lloyd Street Synagogue, a journey back in history to the heyday of the Jewish market on Baltimore’s East Lombard Street, and a celebration of the life of Harry Houdini, the son of a rabbi. All the music in this episode is by Seth Kibel and the Alexandria Kleztet. This episode is sponsored by Grove History Consulting TRANSCRIPT Find more information on the museum and photos on my website, hhethmon.com. If you enjoy Museums in Strange Places, please help me keep it going by leaving a review on Apple Podcasts/iTunes or sharing this episode with a friend. Let me know what you think by sending me a tweet @hannah_rfh. Interested in starting a podcast at your organization? Check out my new book, Your Museum Needs a Podcast: A Step-ByStep Guide to Podcasting on a Budget for Museums, History Organizations, and Cultural Nonprofits. 
S02/E07: Located in a waterfront 1860s oyster cannery in the Baltimore Harbor, The Baltimore Museum of Industry is trying to inspire and engage their visitors around the concept of work by telling the stories of historical workers. But in order to better fulfill this mission, the museum has to be constantly re-evaluating themselves and their assumptions about work. In this episode, I talk to staffers Beth Maloney and Auni Gelles about how an experimental interactive and a new job description are pushing the museum beyond more traditional education and interpretation methods. This episode is sponsored by Grove History Consulting. Featured songs in this episode are by The Bumper Jacksons, off their new album, I Never Met a Stranger. DOWNLOAD TRANSCRIPT Find more information on the museum and photos on my website, hhethmon.com. If you enjoy Museums in Strange Places, please help me keep it going by leaving a review on Apple Podcasts/iTunes or sharing this episode with a friend. Let me know what you think by sending me a tweet @hannah_rfh. Interested in starting a podcast at your organization? Check out my new book, Your Museum Needs a Podcast: A Step by Step Guide to Podcasting on a Budget for Museums, History Organizations, and Cultural Nonprofits. 
The Sandy Spring Museum describes itself as “community-activated.” They want to be a secular gathering places, where people of different backgrounds can come together and build a sense of place and belonging. I visit the museum to speak with Executive Director Allison Weiss about the museum’s radically community-driven programming, the Quaker principles built into the museum’s design, and how they are trying to serve a community of incredible diversity. This episode is sponsored by The Lyndhurst Group. DOWNLOAD TRANSCRIPT Music in this episode is by Los Hijo 'e Plena, the musical arm of the community-building nonprofit Cultural Plenera. Find more information on the museum and photos on my website, hhethmon.com. If you enjoy Museums in Strange Places, please help me keep it going by leaving a review on iTunes or sharing this episode with a friend. Let me know what you think by sending me a tweet @hannah_rfh. Interested in starting a podcast at your organization? Check out my new book, Your Museum Needs a Podcast: A Step by Step Guide to Podcast on a Budget for Museums, History Organizations, and Cultural Nonprofits. 
BONUS content from Episode 5, "The Lost City: Historic St. Mary’s City, Maryland."  Dr. Regina Faden and I head down to Historic St. Mary's City's Waterfront exhibit, where we board the Maryland Dove, a replica 17th century sailing ship. The ship's Boatswain, Jeremy, talks to us about what it's like working on a historic ship and why old boats are like classic cars.   Music in this episode is by Hesperus, from their album An Early American Quilt, released on the Maggie’s Music Label. Find more information on the museum and photos on my website, hhethmon.com. If you enjoy Museums in Strange Places, please help me keep it going by leaving a review on iTunes or sharing this episode with a friend. Let me know what you think by sending me a tweet @hannah_rfh. Interested in starting a podcast at your organization? Check out my new book, Your Museum Needs a Podcast: A Step by Step Guide to Podcast on a Budget for Museums, History Organizations, and Cultural Nonprofits. 
BONUS content from Episode 5, "The Lost City: Historic St. Mary’s City, Maryland."  A brief stop at the active dig site of Historic St. Mary's City's Archeology Field School, where Dr. Travis Parno is guiding students from St. Mary's College in a dig to investigate the site of Maryland's first State House. Dr. Parno also tells me about his ongoing research into early taverns, the powerful enslavers who ran them, and how they can shed light on the codification of slavery in Maryland and America.  Music in this episode is by Hesperus, from their album An Early American Quilt, released on the Maggie’s Music Label. Find more information on the museum and photos on my website, hhethmon.com. If you enjoy Museums in Strange Places, please help me keep it going by leaving a review on iTunes or sharing this episode with a friend. Let me know what you think by sending me a tweet @hannah_rfh. Interested in starting a podcast at your organization? Check out my new book, Your Museum Needs a Podcast: A Step by Step Guide to Podcast on a Budget for Museums, History Organizations, and Cultural Nonprofits. 
In the early 17th century, 300 English settlers traveled to the new colony of Maryland in search of new opportunities and a place where they could practice their Catholic faith in peace. They built Maryland’s first capital, St. Mary’s City, and their city thrived...until its founders fell from power in England. Soon, St. Mary’s City was abandoned and it’s wooden structures rotted. The city lay hidden under farm fields and forests until archeological efforts led to the formation of Historic St. Mary’s City, a living history center that tells the story of the fourth permanent English settlement in America. TRANSCRIPT This episode is sponsored by the Lyndhurst Group. Music in this episode is by Hesperus, from their albums An Early American Quilt and Colonial America, released on the Maggie’s Music Label. Find more information on the museum and photos on my website, hhethmon.com. If you enjoy Museums in Strange Places, please help me keep it going by leaving a review on iTunes or sharing this episode with a friend. Let me know what you think by sending me a tweet @hannah_rfh. Interested in starting a podcast at your organization? Check out my new book, Your Museum Needs a Podcast: A Step by Step Guide to Podcast on a Budget for Museums, History Organizations, and Cultural Nonprofits. 
BONUS CONTENT from Episode 4, “Museum Time Machine: The Peale Center.” The Peale Center’s Nancy Proctor shows me the museum’s Ring of Fire, explains the phenomenon of skeuomorphism, and tells me why gas lighting was such a game-changing technology in Baltimore.   All the music in this episode is by Outcalls. Find more information on the museum and photos on my website, hhethmon.com. If you enjoy Museums in Strange Places, please help me keep it going by leaving a review on iTunes or sharing this episode with a friend. Let me know what you think by sending me a tweet @hannah_rfh. Interested in starting a podcast at your organization? Check out my new book, Your Museum Needs a Podcast: A Step by Step Guide to Podcast on a Budget for Museums, History Organizations, and Cultural Nonprofits. 
There’s a time machine in downtown Baltimore on Holliday Street. A time machine that will take you back to the origin of public collections of art, history, and science...and then zip you through the present and into the future of museums. The Peale Center, the oldest purpose-built museum space in the US, is starting its third century as a building and its third life as a museum after decades of sitting vacant. But history isn’t repeating itself here. Executive Director Nancy Proctor wants it to be a cultural commons, a storytelling platform, and an experimental lab for the art of the 21st Century museum. TRANSCRIPT This episode is sponsored by The Lyndhurst Group. All the music in this episode is by Outcalls. Find more information on the museum and photos on my website, hhethmon.com. If you enjoy Museums in Strange Places, please help me keep it going by leaving a review on iTunes or sharing this episode with a friend. Let me know what you think by sending me a tweet @hannah_rfh. Interested in starting a podcast at your organization? Check out my new book, Your Museum Needs a Podcast: A Step by Step Guide to Podcast on a Budget for Museums, History Organizations, and Cultural Nonprofits. 
Prince George’s County, Maryland is one of the wealthiest African American communities in the US, a suburban enclave of Black excellence just outside Washington, D.C. But it wasn’t always that way. At the small (but mighty) Prince George’s African American Museum and Cultural Center, the passionate young Executive Director, Maleke Glee, tells me about the history of the area, the museum’s far-reaching youth programs, and his vision for a museum that’s truly community-led, inclusive, and relevant. DOWNLOAD TRANSCRIPT This episode is sponsored by The Lyndhurst Group. The featured song in this episode is “Good Morning (feat. Odd Mojo)” by Alex Vaughn. Find more information on the museum and photos on my website, hhethmon.com. If you enjoy Museums in Strange Places, please help me keep it going by leaving a review on iTunes or sharing this episode with a friend. Let me know what you think by sending me a tweet @hannah_rfh. Interested in starting a podcast at your organization? Check out my new book, Your Museum Needs a Podcast: A Step by Step Guide to Podcast on a Budget for Museums, History Organizations, and Cultural Nonprofits. 
Tucked among other Maryland suburbs outside Washington, D.C., the cute little town of Greenbelt has a surprisingly radical history. It was one of three “green towns” built under the New Deal Era Resettlement Administration, and it was supposed to be a new way of living, a utopia. Was it really a utopia? And how did the model hold up over time? I discover this and more during my visit to the Greenbelt Museum, housed in one of the original 1937 low-income row homes.   This episode is sponsored by The Lyndhurst Group. The featured song in this episode is by Katy Starr. Documentary clips from a 1939 documentary The City. DOWNLOAD TRANSCRIPT Find more information on the museum and photos on my website, hhethmon.com. If you enjoy Museums in Strange Places, please help me keep it going by leaving a review on iTunes or sharing this episode with a friend. Let me know what you think by sending me a tweet @hannah_rfh. Interested in starting a podcast at your organization? Check out my new book, Your Museum Needs a Podcast: A Step by Step Guide to Podcast on a Budget for Museums, History Organizations, and Cultural Nonprofits. 
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