The Power of Possibility - AASLH 2015 Annual MeetingJust as Louisville’s growth and success spring from the barriers faced by Ohio River travelers at the Falls of the Ohio, the power of possibility allows the public history field to see opportunities instead of obstacles. Momentum is building once again!

We can be both creative and disciplined, consistent and fresh, informative and fun. As they like to say in Louisville, “It’s possible here.” At the 2015 Annual Meeting, we found ways to blend what appear to be opposite extremes and to navigate boundaries and barriers, ultimately unlocking the Power of Possibility!

Free Audio

Keynote Address: Sam Wineburg

Plenary Address: Wendell Berry, James C. Klotter, and Renee Shaw

Awards Banquet Speaker: Carol Kammen

Controversial Objects

Ferguson, USA

Stories from the HEART: 10 Years After Katrina and Rita

Is It Possible That Remembering Local History Can Heal Old Wounds? 

New Strategies for Inclusive Commemoration

Preservation50: Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the National Historic Preservation Act

Engaging the Grown-Ups: A Roundtable Exploring New Strategies

Achieving the Impossible: Strategies for Completing Projects that Seem Unlikely

Powerful Funding Makes History Possible

Field Services Alliance Tips: Demonstrating Relevance

New Ways to “Read” Old Objects

New Partners and New Opportunities

Visitors Talk Back: What Audiences Tell Museums

City Mouse and Country Mouse: Supporting Student Learning in New Environments

Them’s Fighting Words! New Approaches in Military History

After Teaching American History Grants Have Ended… Imagine the Possibilities

2015 Meeting of the Membership


Each year, anyone registered for the Online Conference can virtually attend six hot topic sessions, plus hear from featured speakers. Each session is broadcast live from the Annual Meeting. All presentations have been reworked for a live audience. See slides, ask questions, and interact online with presenters and the virtual audience in these live broadcasts.

The 2015 webinars will be available exclusively to Online Conference attendees for six months. In the spring, they will become available to members and the public for purchase (except for Is History Relevant, which is available for free download immediately). 

Commerce + Interpretation: the Possibilities, Pitfalls, and Principles of Shared Use at Historic Sites

Shared use between for-profit commercial ventures and museum operations- the best new idea for sustaining historic sites or a risky proposition? The National Trust offers a frank assessment of prototyping this model at Cooper-Molera Adobe from different perspectives and provides a toolkit for evaluating it at your own site.

Is History Relevant? Then Let’s Do Something About It!

If you believe history deserves better positioning, fire up your passion with the History Relevance Campaign. Learn about what yoru colleagues are doing to elevate the value of history, share what you are doing, and walk away with a variety of ways to take action now. Grad students to CEO’s and everyone in between have work to do to make the case for history. Come prepared to share, learn, and be inspired.

First Session: Learn what the History Relevance Campaign has been doing. Hear how Callie Hawkins at President Lincoln’s Cottage has measured the impact of her relevance work. Share your ideas about how your institution’s mission and collection connect to current community issue and sign up to engage in drawing greater attention to the value of history.

Second Session: this on is all about YOU. What can YOU do as an individual regardless of your position or longevity in the field? How can YOU influence YOUR institution to push history into the limelight? What can YOU do to fire up passion for history in YOUR COMMUNITY? Spend time at five stations to hear from colleagues who are walking the walk and learn what YOU can do.

Don’t be a Run Away Bride: the Possibility of Building a Long Term Relationship with your Community

Participants will explore ways to build sustainable relationships with communities. What are different stages of community engagement and methods museum practitioners can use? Together we’ll explore key ingredients for various options- from the “getting to know you” stage to an enduring long-term relationship, ending the session fully “engaged.”

Small Fish, Big Pond: How to Effectively Advocate in Your Community

Can history organizations afford to not be engaged in advocacy? Find your voice in this session focused on advocacy techniques at both the state and local level, and in both large and small communities.

We Can Do It! Uncovering Women’s History Together

Do you want to increase access to women’s history and discover diverse and untold stories within your community? This session explores research and access to women’s history through a series of first hand accounts and offers practical techniques to integrate women’s history into a broader interpretation of the nation’s sites.



Corporate History at the 2015 Annual Meeting (Corporate History Affinity Community)

Inspiration Found at the 2015 Annual Meeting (Small Museums Affinity Community)

Things to See During the 2015 Annual Meeting: Shaker Village at Pleasant Hill (Religious History Affinity Community)

Part 2 – Things to See During the 2015 Annual Meeting: Shaker Village at Pleasant Hill (Religious History Affinity Community)

AASLH Annual Meeting 2015: Small Museum Friendly Sessions (Small Museums Affinity Community)

Hang Out With the Ladies at the AASLH Annual Meeting (Women’s History Affinity Community)

AASLH 2015 Attendees Suggest Session Topics for 2016 (Broadside)

It’s a Wrap! Free Resources and More from #AASLH2015 (Broadside)

The Next Word on Nomenclature at the AASLH Annual Meeting (Nomenclature Affinity Community)

From an Academic Perspective: Why Do I Care about the AASLH Annual Meeting? (Broadside)

2015 AASLH Re-Cap: Criteria for Assessing Program Ideas (Educators & Interpreters Affinity Community)

Excited About the Online Conference? I Am (Broadside)

Wanting to Be Everywhere at Once (Broadside)

Women’s History Was Everywhere at AASLH2015 (Women’s History Affinity Community)

Are Religious Objects Controversial? You bet! Learn How to Address Them in Louisville (Religious History Affinity Community)

#AASLH2015 Stories from the HEART: 10 Years After Katrina (Historic House Affinity Community)

AASLH Announces 2015 Leadership in History Award Winners

AASLH Program Committee – A Newbie’s Perspective (Broadside)

Message from the Council Chair: On AASLH 2015 (Broadside)

A Diversity Fellowship Winner’s Perspective of AASLH 2015 (Broadside)

Deaccessioning Demystified! (Historic House Affinity Community)

Five Things You Didn’t Know About Wendell Berry (Broadside)

Top Ten Reasons For Visiting Kentucky and Louisville (Broadside)

Try Something New—Participate in Pop-Up Session at the Annual Meeting (Broadside)

Embracing Audience Engagement: A Small Museum Scholarship Recipient’s Experience (Broadside)