January 27, 2013

Smithsonian exhibit makes one stop in Maine

From staff reports

LEWISTON -- The Smithsonian is coming to Museum L-A.

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Telephone Switchboard Operators” from “The Way We Worked,” an exhibition opening Feb. 8 at Museum L-A in Lewiston.

Courtesy photos

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“Aircraft Carrier Crew” from “The Way We Worked,” an exhibition opening Feb. 8 at Museum L-A in Lewiston.

The museum, which documents and celebrates the economic, social and technological legacy of Lewiston-Auburn and its people, is the only stop in Maine for the Smithsonian traveling exhibition, "The Way We Worked."

The show explores America's work history, depicting how work spans time, cultures and economic systems through the professions and the people that sustain American society. It opens Feb. 8 and is on view through May 4. An opening reception, with free admission, is from 4 to 7 p.m. Feb. 8.

Museum L-A presents the exhibition in cooperation with the Maine Humanities Council and Historic New England.

"The Way We Worked," adapted from an exhibition developed by the National Archives and Records Administration, explores how work has become a central element in American culture. It traces the many changes that have affected the workforce and work environments over the past 150 years, including the growth of manufacturing and increasing use of technology.

The exhibition draws from the archives' collections -- including historical photographs, archival accounts of workers, film, audio and interactive components -- to tell the story of how work impacts our lives and the historical and cultural fabric of our communities.

Museum L-A gathers and shares the stories of local industry and workers, such as the museum's oral history projects and exhibits featuring workers in the textile, shoe and brick industries and now musicians and inventors.

Museum L-A is in the Bates Mill at 35 Canal St. Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday. For information, visit museumla.org.


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