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Treasures at the Museum

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Smithsonian National Museum of American History Treasures at the Museum September Booksignings

“It’s never too soon to introduce kids to archives, as Deborra Richardson does in her engaging book Treasures at the Museum. Whether collections of photos, letters, diaries, maps, or other historic documents, Richardson demonstrates that when kids get to know the stuff of archives, they get to know history. ”
Society of American Archivists

Treasures at the Museum by Deborra Richarson, Chair, Archives Center, Smithsonian Institution Museum of American History.  September 2011.   $5.99.  ISBN:  978-0-9824945-1-6. 64 pages.

Aunt Imani comes to take Robbie and his sister, Brittany, to visit a museum and its Archives Center.  Robbie doesn’t want to go.  He thinks it will be boring.  Then Aunt Imani shows him how he already created his own archives by hiding his treasures in his tree house.  Now both Robbie and Brittany are excited! They even get to bring along some family photos and other treasures.  They learn more about their family history and American history as they travel downtown. At the museum, Robbie and Brittany discover a lot of fun exhibits on their own.  But, they feel really special when they take a behind-the-scenes tour of the Archives Center with Maxi, Aunt Imani’s friend.  Maxi helps them preserve their treasures just like she does it at the museum.  Robbie and Brittany learn that they make history every day!
Treasures at the Museum is an easy reader chapter book.  It should appeal to children from grades K-4. It is written to get children interested in learning about and, more importantly, creating and preserving family, local, and regional history.  There is an activities section in the back of the book for hands-on learning.

Purchase Treasures at the Museum by Deborra Richardson, $5.99, direct from The Elevator Group.


Read a digital galley at www.NetGalley.com.

"Richardson gives children a glimpse at the inner workings of the Museum archive in a story packaged to appeal to children....Treasures at the Museum is educational and fun to read to kids."--A Frugal Life

Read full review at A Frugal Life

"an engaging story...The 'Activities' section provides many fun and educational hands-on projects...an excellent chapter book to introduce young readers to an area of museums they hardly ever get a chance to see--the Archives." --Linda Maxwell, Museum Educator

About the Author:  Deborra Richardson is the Chair and Chief Archivist of the Smithsonian's Museum of American History.  She has a Master’s degree in Library Science from the University of Maryland, College Park, and a Bachelor’s degree in Music History from Howard University.    Her work experience has included archival management, African American collections, and music or manuscript collections in library, archival, or museum settings, including Howard University’s Moorland-Spingarn Research Center.  Richardson is co-author of the book, Ulysses Kay:  a Bio-Bibliography.


Deborra Richardson, (left), Chair and Chief Archivist, Smithsonian's Museum of American History, and author, Treasures at the Museum (Sept. 2011), reads from advance copies of her book to 50 third grade students at Lamberton School, Philadelphia, while members of the Penn Towne Chapter of the Links, Inc. read along.

3rd grade students show off contents of their Archivist Tool Kits

3rd grade students at Lamberton School in Philadelphia followed one of the activities in the back of the book and created these Archives Tool Kits and filled them with their treasures for author Richardson's visit with the students in April 2011.


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