Museum on Main Street
The Smithsonian Institution’s Museum on Main Street (MoMS) program brings high quality traveling exhibitions and educational programs to rural audiences and small museums. As the Smithsonian’s partner in Louisiana, the LEH works with rural museums to leverage Museum on Main Street exhibitions to build community capacity and highlight meaningful local contributions to small town life.
Voices and Votes: Democracy in America
The Voices and Votes exhibition was the centerpiece of Who Gets to Vote?, a statewide LEH initiative focused on civic engagement that asks Louisiana residents to think critically about questions such as:
- Who has the right to vote?
- What are the freedoms and responsibilities of citizens?
- Whose voices will be heard?
- How do you participate as a citizen?
Voices and Votes was made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities under the special initiative, “A More Perfect Union,” which is designed to demonstrate and enhance the critical role the humanities play in our nation and support projects that help Americans commemorate the 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence in 2026.
- Lincoln Parish Library, Ruston, LA: April 18–May 28, 2022
- Zigler Art Museum, Jennings, LA: June 6–August 7, 2022
- Denham Springs Main Street, Old City Hall, Denham Springs, LA: August 27–October 22, 2022
- Louisiana’s Old State Capitol, Baton Rouge, LA: October 29–December 10, 2022
- Shreve Memorial Library, Vivian, LA: December 17, 2022–January 29, 2023
In Louisiana, we have a unique relationship with water. It is a natural resource and a threat, an inspiration to artists, grows the seafood we eat and provides shipping routes for businesses. Water has shaped the geography and history of our state. Water/Ways offers local communities a new opportunity to explore the myriad of ways that water affects our lives.
The current tour of Water/Ways is part of the LEH’s BHP-funded initiative “Coastal Impacts: An Integrated Approach for Community Adaptation, Understanding, and Planning.”
- Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve, Wetlands Acadian Cultural Center, Thibodaux, LA: May 29–June 30, 2021
- Grand Isle Community Center, Grand Isle, LA: July 10–August 21, 2021
- Lake Pontchartrain Basin Maritime Museum, Madisonville, LA: August 28–October 9, 2021
- Bayou Teche Museum, New Iberia, LA: October 21–November 27, 2021
- Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame and Northwest Louisiana History Museum, Natchitoches, LA: December 4, 2021–January 15, 2022
- Calcasieu Parish Public Library, Lake Charles, LA: January 22–March 5, 2022
Water/Ways offers local communities a new opportunity to explore the myriad of ways that water affects our lives.
- Zion Traveler’s Cooperative Center at Phoenix High School, Braithwaite
- Old City Hall Museum, Denham Springs
- Schepis Museum, Columbia
- Louisiana 4–H Foundation Grant Walker Camp, Pollock
- Zigler Art Museum, Jennings
- Jeanerette Museum, Jeanerette
The 2018–19 Water/Ways tour in Louisiana was made possible by a grant from the Walton Family Foundation.
Hometown Teams: How Sports Shape America captured the stories that unfolded on neighborhood fields and courts, including the underdog heroics, larger-than-life legends, fierce rivalries, and gut-wrenching defeats that captivate players and audiences alike.
The Way We Worked
Adapted from an original exhibition developed by the National Archives, The Way We Worked explored how work became such a central element in American culture by tracing the many changes that affected the workforce and work environments over the previous 150 years.
The story of the intersection between transportation and American society is complicated, but it tells us much about who we are: people who see our societal mobility as a means for asserting our individual freedom. Journey Stories examined the intersection between modes of travel and Americans’ desire for freedom of movement.
New Harmonies: Celebrating American Roots Music
American music is built upon the melding of different cultural groups and is a direct reflection of the country’s diversity. New Harmonies was an interactive exhibit that examined the ongoing cultural process that has made America the birthplace of more music than any other place on earth.
Key Ingredients: America by Food
Our recipes, menus, ceremonies, and etiquette are directly shaped by our country’s rich immigrant experience, the history and innovations of food preparation technology, and the ever-changing availability of key ingredients. Key Ingredients explored the connections between Americans and the foods they produce, prepare, preserve, and present at the table.
Yesterday’s Tomorrows: Past Visions of the American Future
Yesterday’s Tomorrows explored the history of the future—our expectations and beliefs about things to come. From ray guns to robots, to nuclear-powered cars, the Atom Bomb house, and predictions and inventions that went awry, Yesterday’s Tomorrows helped visitors understand the values and hopes Americans hold and have held about the years to come.
Produce for Victory: Posters on the American Home Front, 1941–45
Produce for Victory contained the best of the Smithsonian’s wartime images, collected by its curator of graphic arts during World War II. It traced the evolution of the poster as an art form that was key to mobilizing and maintaining stateside support, in human and natural resources, for the global battle overseas.