Fairfield Museum receives two Connecticut Humanities grants

The Fairfield Museum has received two highly competitive grants totaling more than $25,000 from Connecticut Humanities to support an upcoming exhibition and the planning of educational endeavors on the historic Town Green.

The first grant, totaling $4,999, was awarded to the Museum to fund the design and fabrication costs of the upcoming exhibition, “Fabulous Animals! The Illustrated World of Robert Lawson.” The exhibition runs from April 1 through September 18 and will feature a range of Lawson’s original drawings and paintings. Robert Lawson (1892–1957) had a long and distinguished career as an artist and children’s book illustrator and author. Perhaps best known for illustrations of Ferdinand the Bull and Mr. Popper’s Penguins, Lawson is the only artist and author to have won both the Caldecott and the Newbery Awards. A resident of Westport, Connecticut, Lawson and his wife Marie, also an illustrator, lived at Rabbit Hill, pictured in Robert Lawson’s book Rabbit Hill (1945).

The second grant, in the amount of $20,950, will fund the planning of educational endeavors on the historic Town Green. Fairfield Museum plans to create an integrated educational exhibit and program plan for the three historic properties located adjacent to the Museum: Sun Tavern (1780), Victorian Cottage and Victorian Barn (1888). This education initiative will be geared towards children and family audiences and will serve to deepen visitors’ understanding of local and regional history.

The non-profit Fairfield Museum offers community educational programming, historical and artistic exhibitions, a research library and cultural events. It was founded in 1903 and provides families in Fairfield County with the opportunity to celebrate a shared heritage and encourages them to become active participants in their community. Grants and donations to the Museum’s operating budget help support the Museum’s educational programming for the community.

Last year, Fairfield Museum welcomed over 30,000 visitors, including more than 6,000 students who visited during the school year from towns throughout Fairfield County, including Stamford, Weston, New Canaan, Trumbull, Norwalk, Monroe, Newtown, Westport, and Bridgeport. Many of these young visitors were participating as part of curriculum developed specifically to engage with themes represented in Museum exhibitions. In addition, approximately 650 student and adult researchers from across the United States used the Museum’s extensive special collections library.

“These grants will enable us to fulfill our mission of bringing history, culture and arts to the people of Fairfield and the surrounding communities,” said Executive Director, Mike Jehle. “Our programs, exhibitions and events help connect them to the community in which they live. Support from Connecticut Humanities is deeply appreciated and is vital to the success of our mission.”

Connecticut Humanities, a non-profit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, provides opportunities to explore the history, literature and the vibrant culture that make our state, cities and towns attractive places to live and work. Learn more by visiting cthumanities.org. The Fairfield Museum’s mission is simple and powerful: “To connect people around the complex history of Fairfield and neighboring communities so that together we may shape a more informed future.” For more information, visit www.fairfieldhistory.org.

About the Fairfield Museum and History Center

Located at 370 Beach Road in Fairfield, CT, the Museum is open seven days a week, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.Admission is $5 for adults; $3 for students and seniors. Members of the Museum and children under 5 are free. For more information, call 203-259-1598 or visit Fairfieldhistory.org.

Fairfield Museum and History Center

Fairfield Museum and History Center

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