Posted: 06/09/2021 15:40:54 PM
GREENFIELD – The Historical Society‘s board of directors has decided not to open the museum on Church Street for the 2021 season.
“We don’t have the staff, and we don’t have the airflow, in terms of meeting COVID restrictions,” said Meg Baker, company secretary. She added that although state restrictions were recently dropped, the building is not designed to allow adequate air circulation, nor is it well designed to accommodate one-way traffic or have disinfectant stations for hands.
Although closed to the public, the Historical Society of Greenfield still aims to bring the museum to the community in new ways, Baker said, whether through Facebook Live, hosting Zoom speakers, or connecting with other historical societies. Across the country.
“We are looking to make collections accessible to people in new ways,” she said.
For people who wish to access a particular collection – for research or other purposes – the company can accommodate “very limited visits, by appointment,” she added.
“We are taking this opportunity to do general building maintenance,” Baker noted.
Some outdoor events will be taking place throughout the summer, including an Ice Cream Social on August 7 (with a rain date of August 14).
While the building itself will be closed, Baker said the company still welcomes contributions of historical artifacts.
“We’re always interested in talking to people about what they think is historically relevant,” Baker said.
The company is particularly interested now in learning more about how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the lives of local residents, she said. Already, the museum has collected a roll of toilet paper – a reminder of the early days of the pandemic – from Baker Office Supply, and a canceled jury summons.
“It’s that kind of thing that we’re really interested in collecting,” she said. “How has COVID and the past year affected your life? … The story begins yesterday.
The best way for people to contact if they think they might have an artifact of interest is by emailing [email protected]
“We’re not in the building all the time, so we might not hear a phone call, but we’ll still get an email,” she said.
Monetary donations are also always welcome, Baker noted. People can donate either online through the Paypal link on the website, companyhistoricgreenfieldma.org, or by sending an email and setting a time to deposit money or a check.
“We are very excited to open next season,” she said. “In any way people want to contact us, we can’t wait to do so.”
Mary Byrne can be reached at [email protected] or 413-930-4429. Twitter: @MaryEByrne