The first few days of the year are a time for reflection and re-focusing our attention on the big picture and long term goals. As you plan for the upcoming year, we encourage you to take a moment to read (or re-read) the History Relevance Campaign’s Value of History Statement, share it widely, and make sure your organization has endorsed it.
The History Relevance Campaign is a growing community of individuals working to make history a necessity. Led by a steering committee, the group engages in and supports projects that:
- Foster the effective teaching of history at all levels throughout the United States.
- Build the critical thinking skills that a study of history provides and that are essential for success in the 21st century.
- Encourage historical thinking as an integral part of the American dialogue.
- Promote the utilization of historians to provide context to the challenges facing society.
Some of the recent accomplishments of the History Relevance Campaign include:
- Creating a statement that articulates the value of history.
- Having over 100 organizations endorse this statement.
- Starting an action framework that state historical organizations can take to their respective governors.
- Introducing the Impact Project which is designed to help history organizations learn from each other about best practices in making an impact in their community.
At the heart of the campaign is the Value of History Statement. The statement lists seven reason why history is essential:
- It nurtures personal identity.
- It teaches critical skills.
- It helps provide vital places to live and work.
- It stimulates economic development.
- It fosters engaged citizens.
- It inspires leadership.
- It provides a legacy.
We believe that history – both knowledge of the past and the practice of researching and making sense of what happened in the past – is crucially important to the well being of individuals, communities, and the future of our nation.
If you believe that history is essential, then please take the time to read the Value of History Statement and begin applying it to your practice of history.