2013 Programs

Emily Dickinson Museum anniversary logo

Saturday, September 21, 2013
A Special Anniversary Celebration:
The Emily Dickinson Museum's 10th Anniversary &
the Homestead's 200th Anniversary

Time: throughout the day; formal celebration from 5:30-7 pm
Location:  Emily Dickinson Museum
Fee:  no charge (unless noted)

This year, 2013, is a special year at the Emily Dickinson Museum.  We are celebrating two anniversaries:  the 200th anniversary of the construction of the Homestead and the 10th anniversary of the founding of the Emily Dickinson Museum. Two hundred years ago, in 1813, Emily Dickinson's grandfather, Samuel Fowler Dickinson, built the Homestead, which was probably the first brick house in Amherst and would become one of the most famous literary homes in the world.  Ten years ago, in 2003, the Emily Dickinson Museum was created when ownership of the Evergreens, the home of Emily's brother Austin and sister-in-law Susan, was transferred to Amherst College so that the two historic Dickinson houses could be joined as a single museum operation.

Our September celebration includes several special programs:

  • The annual Emily Dickinson Poetry Marathon, during which all of Emily's 1,789 known poems are read. The marathon begins on Friday, September 20 at 3 p.m. in the Homestead parlors, and runs until 8 p.m. Readings begin again at 7 a.m. on Saturday, September 21, and continue until all of the poems have been read.  For more information, click here.
  • Open Houses on Saturday from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. at both the Homestead and the Evergreens. Admission will be free, though donations will be accepted for the ongoing restoration of Emily's bedroom and for a new fire suppression system for both homes.There will be no formal guided tours of either house on Saturday.
  • Spotlight on the Homestead.  In honor of the Homestead's anniversary, the Museum will offer a talk about the house at 1:30 pm.  Myron Stachiw, author of the Homestead's Historic Structure Report (1999), will present the talk. Myron Stachiw currently holds an appointment as a visiting lecturer at the University of Massachusetts – Amherst in the Department of Art, Architecture, and Art History, teaching in the M.S. Program in Historic Preservation, and works as a consultant in social and architectural history and historic preservation to museums, historical agencies, and communities.  From 2004 – 2006 he was a Fulbright Scholar in Ukraine, teaching museum studies and historic preservation and researching “cultural rescue” of the traditional culture of the people living in the territories of Ukraine that were heavily irradiated by the 1986 Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant accident.  From August 2006 until December 2012 he served as the Director of the Fulbright Program in Ukraine and the Kyiv, Ukraine Office of the Institute of International Education.  Prior to his Fulbright awards and directorship he worked for more than 25 years as an archaeologist, historian, architectural historian, and museum professional, as well as a consultant to museums and historical agencies in the Eastern U.S. and Ukraine.  Myron Stachiw also served as a member of the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation Board of Directors.  The talk will be followed by a guided architecture tour, led by Emily Dickinson Museum guides.  For details about the tour, click here.
  • A reception and reading of Alison's House on Saturday from 5:30 to 7 pm.  Alison's House, for which playwright Susan Glaspell won  a Pulitzer Prize, was the first full-length play inspired by Emily Dickinson's life and work. The play, in which the family home is almost a participating character, was first perfomed in 1930, the centenary of Dickinson’s birth.

This year's poetry marathon also serves as the kickoff of the first Amherst Poetry Festival, which will take place throughout downtown Amherst from September 20 through September 27. The event is co-sponsored by the Amherst Business Improvement District and the Emily Dickinson Museum.