Autumn 2013 at the American Museum in Britain

August 20, 2013 - Zoe Dennington

American Civil War Weekend
Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 September
Skirmishes at 3 pm on Saturday and 2 pm on Sunday
Adult £9; over 60s and students £8; child (5 to 16 years) £5; family ticket £25
Fans and enthusiasts of the American Civil War (1861-1865) can witness
life amongst the soldiers who fought brother against brother in the
bloodiest conflict in American history. Walk around their camp and get
caught up in the argument between North and South. When the skirmish
starts whose side will you be on?
The American Museum welcomes back the Southern Skirmish
Association as they set up camp at Claverton Manor in Bath on 14 and 15 September 2013. Midafternoon
a skirmish between the Unionists of the North and Confederates of the South will break out,
when the sound of gun- and cannon-shot will echo round the valley!
Churchill and the Lessons of History Lecture
Monday 16 September, from 6 to 8 pm
Tickets are £25 (£20 for Museum members).
To book, please tel. 01225 823014, wine, soft drinks and canapés are included.
A free shuttle bus will operate from the centre of Bath, to reserve a seat please call the above number.
The lessons of history, particularly concerning Pakistan and Afghanistan, will
be the topic when Britain’s former Ambassador to the United States, Sir
Christopher Meyer KCMG, launches the Museum’s Inaugural Sir Winston
Churchill Memorial Lecture series. Sir Winston, whose mother was American,
delivered his first political address in 1897 at Claverton Manor, now home to
the Museum. In his lecture, Sir Christopher will draw on Churchill’s
despatches on the conflict raging on what is now the Pakistan/Afghanistan
border in the late 19th century.
Sir Christopher is the author of DC Confidential, a chronicle of his time in
Washington, and Getting Our Way: 500 Years of Adventure and Intrigue: The
Inside Story of British Diplomacy, which was also a highly-acclaimed BBC TV
series. He recently wrote and presented Networks of Power on Sky Atlantic.
The Last Runaway: an evening with Tracy Chevalier
Thursday 26 September, 6 pm
£7 (£5 for Museum members)
Best-selling author Tracy Chevalier (Girl with a Pearl Earring) talks about her
latest book, The Last Runaway. The book tells the tale of a 19th century English
Quaker who emigrates to Ohio and becomes involved with the Underground
Railroad, a clandestine network helping enslaved people escape to freedom in the
The Last Runaway explores themes that have close links to the American
Museum’s collection: migration from England to America, the Quakers, slavery
and the Underground Railroad are all represented by objects on display. Quiltmaking
plays an important role in the novel, and the Museum was pleased that
Tracy chose to reproduce images of quilts from its collection in the book. Tracy
will discuss the novel’s historical themes and the importance of quilting to her
characters, in relation to the Museum’s collection.
Refreshments will be available to purchase, and the talk will be followed by a book-signing.
Booking essential, please call 01225 820868 or email
Family Fun: Bath Children’s Literature Festival
Meet the Author: Caroline Lawrence
Saturday 5October, 1 pm
£5.50 adults, £4.50 children
In celebration of this year’s Gangsters & Gunslingers exhibition, the American
Museum has invited best-selling children’s author Caroline Lawrence to reveal
some of the most exciting things she’s discovered about the Wild West whilst
researching her book, The Western Mysteries. Caroline will also be signing copies
of her book, and there will be the chance to handle some of the Museum’s artefacts
from the Wild West.
The Western Mysteries follows the whip-cracking adventures of 12-year-old
detective P.K. Pinkerton in Virginia City, Nevada, in 1862. Join Caroline to hear
about the gunslingers, gamblers, and desperados of the Wild West, hear her read
from her latest book, The Case of the Good Looking Corpse and get hands-on with
some of the Museum’s objects from the American West.
The event will appeal to children aged 8 to 12.
To book tickets, please contact Bath Box Office: 01225 463362 or email:
Race War: Black American GIs in Bristol and Gloucestershire during World War Two
Thursday 17 October, 6 pm
£7 (£5 for Museum members)
Professor Neil Wynn (University of Gloucestershire) explores the experiences of African American GIs
stationed in Bristol, Bath, and Gloucestershire during World War Two. Hear their fascinating stories and
learn about the impact of their time in Britain on the burgeoning Civil Rights movement.
This event takes place in October, which is Black History Month. Neil Wynn has been carrying out
research into the African American experience of World War Two for over thirty years and will share his
knowledge on the personal stories of individual African American soldiers stationed in and around Bath, as
well as the wider context of segregation and the Civil Rights movement.
October Half-Term
Family Fun: Day of the Dead Shadow Puppets
Tuesday 29 October, 1 pm to 4 pm
Workshops at 1 pm, 2 pm and 3 pm
Join puppeteer Tallulah Swirls and create fantastic shadow puppets to
retell the story of the Day of the Dead, a colourful Latino festival in
which families honour deceased loved ones with sugar skulls, dancing
skeletons, and piles of marigolds.
Falconry Demonstration and Bird Handling
Wednesday 30 October
Demonstrations at 12.30 pm and 2.30 pm, with bird handling in between
Ray Prior is one of the leading falconers in the country, with a wide selection of
beautiful birds. Come along to see his owls, eagles, hawks, and falcons swoop over the
Museum grounds.
American Ghost Tours
Wednesday 30 and Thursday 31 October, 6.30 pm
£10 (£7 for Museum members)
The Museum’s evocative Period Rooms are the perfect setting for a sinister tale on a dark evening. Join us
for a chilling journey around the Museum, starting in a 17th century home in colonial Massachusetts at the
height of the Salem witch trials. Who knows what lurks around the next corner?
Not suitable for children. Booking essential.
Family Fun: Happy Halloween!
Thursday 31 October, 1 pm to 4 pm
Come along and celebrate this most American of holidays at the Museum! Join us for spooky crafts and
face painting. Fancy dress welcome.
Family Fun: Spooky Stories
Friday 1 November
Sessions at 1.30 pm (under 8 years) and 2.30 pm (8 to 12 years)
Join our storyteller for tales of ghouls, ghosts, and things that go bump in the night!
For further information and images, please contact:
Sue Bond Public Relations
Tel. +44 (0)1359 271085
Email, Website