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Examining Slavery and Abolition with the Gilder Lehrman Institute

A group of our rising Sixth and Seventh Grade boys recently spent a week at the New-York Historical Society in a summer camp program offered by Saint David's in collaboration with the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History.

The boys were thoroughly engaged all week long, as they learned about the conservation and handling of original documents through first-hand observation and examination of materials in the Gilder Collection.

In one session, an archivist with GLI taught the boys how paper is treated for preservation and the boys were able to experiment with the process using actual documents from the 1700s.

In another session, Sheriff Bob, an expert on early American music, played his guitar and sang songs with the boys.

During the week, the boys examined documents related to slavery and abolition, reading original letters and journals on those issues, while focusing on the items as historic artifacts.

After having incredible access to GLI's collection of original letters, periodicals, books and artifacts, the boys worked in teams of two to identify a theme and prepare a presentation for parents and guests using Google Culture.

This camp augmented the experiences the boys had this academic year, when they visited the Gilder Collection in conjunction with their study of American history.

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