(GMCC/Smithsonian) The Smithsonian’s Museum on Main Street, in cooperation with the Green McAdoo Cultural Organization, presents “Voices and Votes: Democracy in America.” The exhibition examines the nearly 250-year-old American experiment of a government “of, by and for the people,” and how each generation since continues to question how to form “a more perfect union.” Opening at the Green McAdoo Cultural Center & Museum on March 28th, “Voices and Votes” will be on view for a limited time.
Green McAdoo Cultural Center and the surrounding community has been chosen by Humanities Tennessee to host “Voices and Votes” as part of the Museum on Main Street program—a national/state/local partnership to bring exhibitions and programs to rural cultural organizations. The exhibition will tour six communities in Tennessee from March 25 through the end of the year.
“Voices and Votes” explores the action, reaction, vision and revision that democracy demands as Americans continue to question how to shape the country. From the revolution and suffrage, to civil rights and casting ballots, everyone in every community is part of this ever-evolving story—the story of democracy in America. Exhibition sections explore the origins of American democracy, the struggles to obtain and keep the vote, the machinery of democracy, the right to petition and protest beyond the ballot and the rights and responsibilities of citizens. “Voices and Votes” features historical and contemporary photos; educational and archival video; engaging multimedia interactives with short games; and historical objects like campaign souvenirs, voter memorabilia, and protest material.
“‘Voice and Votes’ allows us to reflect on Clinton’s history and explore what it means to be an active participant in the governance of not only the country but also this community,” said Green McAdoo Cultural Center director, Adam Velk. “We want to convene conversations about and have developed local exhibitions and public programs to complement the Smithsonian exhibition.”
Such free events include some pieces the Museum has on loan from the Tennessee State Museum and our live podcast taping with PBS and Black in Appalachia, which will happen every Tuesday at 6:30 starting March 28th.
The first guest will be Secretary of State Tre Hargett and Anderson County Election Commissioner Mark Stephens.
Designed for small-town museums, libraries and cultural organizations, “Voices and Votes” will serve as a community meeting place for conversations about democracy, the freedoms and responsibilities of citizens, participating in government, and more. With the support and guidance of state humanities councils, these towns will develop complementary exhibits, host public programs and facilitate educational initiatives to raise people’s understanding about their own history, the joys and challenges of living rural, how change has impacted their community, and prompt discussion of goals for the future.
“Voices and Votes” is based on an exhibition currently on display at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History called American Democracy: A Great Leap of Faith. The exhibition is part of Museum on Main Street, a unique collaboration between the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service (SITES), state humanities councils across the nation, and local host institutions. To learn more about “Voices” and other Museum on Main Street exhibitions, visit www.museumonmainstreet.org.
Support for MoMS has been provided by the U.S. Congress.
SITES has been sharing the wealth of Smithsonian collections and research programs with millions of people outside Washington, D.C., for more than 65 years. SITES connects Americans to their shared cultural heritage through a wide range of exhibitions about art, science and history, which are shown wherever people live, work and play. For exhibition description and tour schedules, visit www.sites.si.edu.
Green McAdoo Cultural Center is located at 101 School Street in Clinton, and is open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10 am to 5 pm.
For more information, visit the Green McAdoo website by following this link, or call 865-463-6500.