The staff at the Forbes House Museum has been working hard over the past two years to further engrain the museum into the culture of Milton. The annual Lincoln Day celebration has always been a key component in that mission, and the 2012 edition of the event went a step further.
The Forbes House invited Dixon’s Gold, a local band specializing in Civil War music from both the north and south, to perform at Pierce Middle School after the Lincoln Day festivities at the FHM.
The concert at the Pierce came out of an effort by the Forbes House Museum to partner with the Milton Public Schools as part of the town’s 350th Anniversary celebration.
“We want to reach out more and be more important in the lives of people in Milton,” said Forbes House Museum Executive Director Robin Tagliaferri.
Tagliaferri added that the concert was just the beginning of the partnership. The Forbes House will start doing outreach visits to Milton elementary schools.
A presentation of historian and Milton resident Nina Graves’ work will be brought to Milton fifth graders. Graves has invested over 25 years in learning about Gov. Thomas Hutchinson.
The concert earlier this month isn’t the first time Tagliaferri and her staff have expanded programming outside of the estate on Adams Street. The FHM partnered with St. Michael's Episcopal Church in December to hold a concert featuring Calliope.
The Lincoln Day concert is also not the first time the Forbes House has worked with the musicians from Dixon’s Gold. The group, which recreates Civil War era music with instruments like the mandolin, mandocello, string bass, penny whistle, clarinet, banjo, trumpet, guitar and vocals, performed at the museum in August.
Lead musician Scott Shetler, who performed with Jill Gross, John Moriconi, Bruce Millard and Mitch Nelin at Pierce, brings historical perspective to the songs and encourages participation from the audience.
“There was lots of great commentary,” said Tagliaferri, of the show, which brought out about 50 people to the Piece Middle School on cold Sunday evening. "[Shetler] has a great pulse on Civil War music."
The concert brought an historically accurate end to the Lincoln Day Celebration, which was highlighted by a range of Civil War re-enactors.
The deadline for the Forbes House Museum Lincoln Essay and Drawing Contest is March 2. Visit forbeshousemuseum.org for the theme, contest guidelines and additional information.