January 19, 2018

Partnership with Birmingham History Center Press Conference

Vulcan Park Foundation announces partnership with Birmingham History Center

(Birmingham, Alabama) — Vulcan Park Foundation held a press conference today to announce a partnership with the Birmingham History Center. With a similarity in missions, Vulcan Park and Museum and the Birmingham History Center will help tell the complete story of Birmingham’s history as well as continue to expand upon the work started by the Center. In addition, this partnership will enhance the overall educational programs that Vulcan Park and Museum offers. Out-of-town visitors typically make their first stop at Vulcan Park and Museum to orient themselves about the history of the Birmingham region, and by incorporating the Birmingham History Center collection into Vulcan Park and Museum will help enhance the educational opportunities for visitors who come to Birmingham. Vulcan has embodied the spirit of our community for generations – and will for generations to come.

“We are excited by the opportunities to collect items that tell stories of our predecessors,” said Brian Giatinna, Vice Chair, Vulcan Park and Museum. “In time, we will embark on a master plan to determine how to maximize the resource value of artifacts in sharing our unique stories. In addition, this partnership will aid us in bringing history to life by offering the visitor an experience with a piece of the past instead of a second hand explanation. It’s the difference between reading someone’s diary and reading about someone’s diary in a textbook or article. To see or interact with objects from the past allows a visitor the chance to imagine a first-hand experience of life from that time period.”

“There are many lessons to be learned from Birmingham’s history. Some are as easy as how to prevent a cholera epidemic or how geology can dictate the industry of a city. Then, of course, some are harder, such as how and why racial discrimination took hold in the area and its impact over the last 100 years. Both show us a better path going forward based on a clear understanding of the decisions that were made and their outcomes. Objects and primary source images and documents help us tell these stories to our visitors in an immersive and memorable way. Now, with technology, we will be able to spread this impact further than visitors coming to the park through searchable online records. This opens the doors to researchers of all ages to study our history and learn new information we did not know before. The result of all of this will be that more people than ever before

will have more information about Birmingham’s history on a local as well as national level,” Garland Smith Co- President, Birmingham History Center and Secretary of the board at Vulcan Park and Museum.

Vulcan Park and Museum’s short term goals with the Birmingham History Center partnership will be managed by Vulcan’s new director of Museum Programs, Jennifer Watts. She will work to incorporate the Birmingham History Center collections into new educational programs at Vulcan Park and Museum. Vulcan Park and Museum also expects to see an increase of existing Birmingham History Center “display” (or “popup museum”) programming into additional venues around Birmingham and Vulcan Park and Museum will begin process of digitizing the collection to create an online resource.

About Vulcan® Park and Museum

Vulcan Park Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization which operates Vulcan Park and Museum on behalf of the City of Birmingham. Vulcan Park and Museum’s mission is to preserve and promote Vulcan as the symbol for the Birmingham region, advance knowledge and understanding of Birmingham’s history and culture, and to encourage exploration of the region.