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Gobsmacked in the Hoosier State

Kate Prinsley, executive officer of the Royal Historical Society of Victoria, Australia, received a Churchill Fellowship to study local history in various parts of the world. Kate is visiting the states for four weeks, stopping in Illinois, New York, Washington, D.C., and Indiana. Kate will then travel to England for two weeks.

Kate spent three days this week traveling with IHS's Local History Services team, visiting a few all-volunteer sites and speaking with some county historians about their work. We’ve been learning from each other about how local history organizations work in our countries.

Here are some observations from Kate:

  • Indiana volunteers are powerhouses, mobilizing communities for financial and other kinds of support for local history.
  • Local history groups in Indiana are magnificently supported by the Local History Services Department of IHS.
  • The curriculum standards in Indiana schools focusing on community and local history are a wonderful commitment to the importance of local heritage.

We have learned much from each other this week. We each have shared ideas that we can implement in the future. We know this dialogue will continue, and we look forward to working together in the coming years.

As a part of her Churchill Fellowship, Kate will be publishing the results of the visit to Indiana and other places.

As Kate says, “I was gobsmacked by Indiana and the Indiana Experience.


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