The records include incoming and outgoing correspondence and memoranda from Zora Martin-Felton and other staff of the Education Department, as well as program reports, budget justifications, and planning statements. These materials are scattered throughout the records and have many chronological gaps. The records also describe the development of educational materials for Museum exhibitions, and of workshops and programs for local teachers and students. In addition, the records detail the evolution of Department initiatives such as the Youth Advisory Council and the Outreach Services Branch, and contain planning materials for special events sponsored by the Department and the Museum. Some research materials for programs and exhibitions are also included.
The Education and Development Department was established in 1967 as one of the two original branches of the Museum. Its early responsibilities focused on interpreting the Museum's exhibitions to the public. However, as the Museum established itself, the Department reached beyond this early mandate and became an active member of the Anacostia community. Its accomplishments included the development of educational outreach services which used ethnic-based materials; the creation in July 1969 of a Mobile Division to facilitate the Museum's involvement in the community; the formation of a Youth Advisory Council and other cultural arts groups; and the establishment of a Children's Room in February 1972. Renamed the Education Department by 1973, it also played a leading role in developing programs at the Museum which focused on urban problems and the concerns of incarcerated community members.
Zora B. Martin-Felton joined the Museum at its founding as Program Director, and by 1971 was named Supervisory Program Manager of the Education and Development Department. In 1979 she became an Education Specialist, and in 1989 was referred to as Chief of the Education Department. Fletcher A. Smith came to the Museum in July 1969 as the Coordinator of the new Mobile Division. He later took the title of Program Manager of the Division, which was renamed the Outreach Services Branch. The Branch was terminated after Smith's resignation in September 1978.
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 390, Anacostia Museum. Education Department, Records
Smithsonian Institution Archives
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