Now that the month of March is over, our student poster exhibit in the Mayor’s Neighborhood Gallery has come down in order to make room for another exhibit; however, our companion exhibit of Curley-related projects and artifacts will remain on display through the end of April! This exhibit can be found in the glass display case in the lobby / reception area of the Mayor’s office, located on the 5th floor of City Hall. From City Hall Plaza or Congress St. entrances, take South Elevators to the 5th floor, follow signs to Mayor’s Office.
Christopher Scott Gleason, Ph.D. and Jody Michael Gordon, Ph.D. discuss their use of the James Michael Curley mansion in Jamaica Plain for their course on media, culture, and communications at Wentworth Institute of Technology. Interview for BNN News. Aired March 23, 2015.
A special reception was held in the Mayor’s Neighborhood Gallery on Tuesday, March 24 from 4:00 to 5:00 PM in order to celebrate the work of Wentworth students enrolled in Digital Approaches to Boston Culture over the past year. To date, 140 students have participated in this EPIC-Learning project, which has culminated in two exhibits currently on display in Boston City Hall until the end of March.
The reception was well attended, and featured speeches by project managers Chris Gleason and Jody Gordon as well as Wentworth adjunct professor Larry Overlan and Mayor Curley’s stepson, Richard Dennis (who actually lived in the Curley house at 350 The Jamaicaway).
The reception also served as an opportunity to acknowledge the project’s many supporters and external collaborators:
from Wentworth Institute of Technology:
Michael Anthony (Chair, Board of Trustees)
Zorica Pantic (President)
Russ Pinizzotto (Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost)
Chuck Hotchkiss (Associate Provost)
Pat Hafford (Dean, College of Arts & Sciences)
Ron Bernier (Chair, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences)
Larry Overlan (Adjunct Instructor, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences)
Peter Greenberg (Interior Design, Wentworth Institute of Technology)
Wentworth MCCS Studio Students (140 students have participated in this project as of Spring 2015)
from the City of Boston:
Matt O’Malley (Boston City Councilor, District 6)
Liz Sullivan (Chief of Staff, Boston City Councilor Matt O’Malley)
John Crowley (Director of Exhibits, Boston City Hall)
John Gleeson (current Facilities Manager Trust, Treasury Department, City of Boston)
Joe Byrne (former Facilities Manager Trust, Treasury Department, City of Boston)
from the Boston City Archives:
John McColgan (Chief Archivist)
Marty Crilly (Assistant Archivist)
from Feldman Land Surveyors:
Michael Feldman (President and Chief Executive Officer)
Stephen Wilkes (Director of 3D Services)
from the Jamaica Plain Historical Society:
Gretchen Grozier (JPHS President)
Charlie Rosenberg (JPHS Webmaster)
from the Boston Americana music scene:
Jimmy Ryan (Boston musician, who arranged and recorded three mandolin/guitar instrumental recordings to be used in conjunction with our project, adapting two of Curley’s favorite songs, “The Isle of Capri” and “The Minstrel Boy,” as well as the classic campaign song, “Vote Early and Often for Curley.”)
MCCS Studio Guest Speakers Re: Historical and Cultural Contexts:
Richard Dennis (James Michael Curley’s stepson, who lived in the Curley mansion)
Larry Overlan (Boston Public Works, Wentworth Institute of Technology)
Tom Putnam (Director of the JFK Presidential Library and Museum)
Jack Beatty (author of The Rascal King: The Life and Times of James Michael Curley (1874-1958)
Peter Greenberg (Interior Design, Wentworth Institute of Technology)
Gerry Burke (Doyle’s Café owner and local historian)
Jim Vrabel (A People’s History of the New Boston, UMass Press)
Fred Sullivan (former City of Boston District 9 Fire Chief)
MCCS Studio Technological Consultants/Guest Speakers:
Boston University (3D Photogrammetry): Brandon Olson (Archaeology graduate student and specialist in GIS applications)
Northeastern University (Omeka): Jim McGrath (NULab Scholar; Graduate Fellow Alumnus; Graduate Affiliate Department of English)
Harvard University (WorldMap): Jeff Howry (Research Associate, Semitic Museum, Harvard University)
M.I.T. (Annotation Studio): Kurt Fendt (Director, MIT HyperStudio)
Rachel Schnepper (Communications Officer, MIT HyperStudio)
Jamie Folsom (Web Applications Developer, MIT HyperStudio)
Thanks again to everyone who has participated in this project and helped to make it such a success. We hope we haven’t left anyone out!
On Thursday, March 19, James Michael Curley’s 89-year-old stepson, Richard Dennis, visited Wentworth’s MCCS Studio for the fourth consecutive semester. Mr. Dennis actually lived in the Curley house at 350 The Jamaicaway and is one of the foremost proponents of saving and preserving the house as a historical site. He will be joining us at Boston City Hall on Tuesday, March 24 for a special reception connected to Wentworth Institute of Technology’s exhibition of work produced by students enrolled in the MCCS Studio course Digital Approaches to Boston Culture: Curating the Legacy of Mayor James Michael Curley.
Click here to learn more about the infamous number 5 license plate.
BOSTON – In honor of the centennial of the building of the former mayor’s mansion at 350 The Jamaicaway in Jamaica Plain, Wentworth Institute of Technology is featuring an exhibition of work produced by students enrolled in a Media, Culture, and Communications Studies course titled Digital Approaches to Boston Culture: Curating the Legacy of Mayor James Michael Curley (http://studio.wit-mccs.org/curleyproject/).
A poster exhibit, showcasing curatorial concepts for a digital/virtual house museum, is now on display in the Mayor’s Neighborhood Galleryuntil March 31, 2015. The Gallery is located on the 2nd floor near the South Elevators. From City Hall Plaza or Congress St. entrances, take South Elevators to the 2nd floor.
A companion exhibit of Curley-related projects and artifacts is currently featured in a glass display case located in the lobby / reception area of the Mayor’s office, located on the 5th floor of City Hall. From City Hall Plaza or Congress St. entrances, take South Elevators to the 5th floor, follow signs to Mayor’s Office.
Items in the display case include:
-a computer screen with a video demonstrating the 3D laser scan of 350 The Jamaicaway created by Feldman Land Surveyors
-prints of newly uncovered photographs of Curley, courtesy of the Jamaica Plain Historical Society -Curley’s top hat, with name stitched in the hatband; a wooden plaque reading “Mayor James Curley, Mayor of the Poor;” a scrapbook of photos and news clippings documenting the death of Curley’s daughter, Mary; an “In Memorium” scrapbook with photographs documenting the death of Curley’s son, James M. Curley, Jr., courtesy of the Boston City Archives
-prints of photographs of Curley and his top hat, courtesy of the Boston Public Library
-Curley memorabilia, including “Curley for Governor” sheet music and a Tammany Club Reunion program, courtesy of Gerry Burke (Doyle’s Cafe).
BOSTON – In honor of the centennial of the building of the former mayor’s mansion at 350 The Jamaicaway in Jamaica Plain, Wentworth Institute of Technology will feature an exhibition of work produced by students enrolled in a Media, Culture, and Communications Studies course titled Digital Approaches to Boston Culture: Curating the Legacy of Mayor James Michael Curley (http://studio.wit-mccs.org/curleyproject/).
A poster exhibit, showcasing curatorial concepts for a digital/virtual house museum, will be on display in the Mayor’s Neighborhood Gallery from March 1 to March 31, 2015. The Gallery is located on the 2nd floor near the South Elevators. From City Hall Plaza or Congress St. entrances, take South Elevators to the 2nd floor.
A companion exhibit of Curley-related projects and artifacts will be featured in a glass display case located in the lobby / reception area of the Mayor’s office, located on the 5th floor of City Hall. From City Hall Plaza or Congress St. entrances, take South Elevators to the 5th floor, follow signs to Mayor’s Office.
Nowhere in the Boston landscape is the power of politics and place more resonant with regard to James Michael Curley’s legacy than the former mayor’s mansion at 350 Jamaicaway in Jamaica Plain. Commonly known as the “House with the Shamrock Shutters,” this neo-Georgian style brick home was built in 1915 during Curley’s first term as mayor. Construction began, fittingly, on St. Patrick’s Day, and soon the stately mansion, designed by rising-star architect Joseph McGinniss and incorporating a dining room from the Fairhaven, MA estate of Henry H. Rogers, began to rise. Eventually, the elegant mansion filled with crystal chandeliers, marble fireplaces, and intricate woodwork would have over 21 rooms and be over 10,000 square feet in size, enough room to accommodate Curley’s rapidly expanding family. The window shutters adorned with shamrocks proclaimed Curley’s financial and political success as the son of impoverished immigrants.
Although his opponents had him barred from succeeding himself as mayor, Curley was re-elected at three different intervals from 1922-26, from 1930-34, and from 1946-50. In 1934, Curley reached the pinnacle of his career when he was elected Governor of Massachusetts. He lived in the Jamaicaway mansion until he sold it to the Oblate Fathers in 1956, two years before his death. The Oblates lived in the house until 1988, when the City of Boston purchased it via the George Robert White Fund, and today it remains a testament to the Curley legacy.
The Curley house has proven to be an ideal vehicle for a new mode of pedagogy that is being developed at Wentworth Institute of Technology, E.P.I.C. Learning (externally-collaborative, project-based, interdisciplinary curricula for learning),which promotes undergraduate education by encouraging students from various disciplines to work in teams on projects that motivate both internal and external collaborations. The goal of this studio course is to utilize the E.P.I.C. approach while engaging with issues in the humanities and social sciences that can resonate with the Boston public in meaningful ways (http://studio.wit-mccs.org/curleyproject/e-p-i-c-learning/). In addition, through the use of innovative digital techniques, this course, and the Department of Humanities and Social Science’s new Media, Culture, and Communications Studies minor (http://wit-mccs.org), plays an important role in fostering digital humanities skills at Wentworth.
The Galleries at Boston City Hall are open to the public at no charge. Boston City Hall is accessible by MBTA via State Street (Orange and Blue lines) and Park Street (Green and Red lines). For additional information, call 617-635-3245, or visit http://www.cityofboston.gov/arts.
On Thursday, January 29, yet another group of Wentworth students visited the Curley house at 350 The Jamaicaway.
Students enrolled in the Spring 2015 iteration of Digital Approaches to Boston Culture will be picking up where the Fall 2014 group left off: editing, revising, and expanding upon unique curatorial concepts for each room in the house and migrating that content from our private workspace to a soon-to-be public website.
On Friday, January 23, Wentworth Professors (and Curley Project Managers) Gleason and Gordon visited MIT for a day-long workshop focused on “Collaborative Insights through Digital Annotation” and led a Breakout Session on “Digital Public Humanities.” Much of the day focused on best practices for Annotation Studio, an online application developed by MIT’s Hyperstudio. Annotation Studio is one of the tools currently being used as part of the Curley virtual house museum project.