Chandler Museum reviving history-at-lunch program SanTan Sun News

Chandler Museum reviving history-at-lunch program

August 31st, 2021 SanTan Sun News
Chandler Museum reviving history-at-lunch program
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By Ken Sain, Staff Writer

A popular pre-pandemic program is coming back to the Chandler Museum, which is restarting its History Bites fall series Sept. 7.

“Definitely people have come in and asked about some of those programs,” said Tiffany Egnor, the education coordinator for the museum. “History Bites is our first bringing back an in-house program this fall.”

First up for the fall series is a little bit of Chandler history with “John Quarty: Making the San Marcos Modern.”

Quarty took over as general manager of the hotel in 1943 and helped it regain its status after it emerged from the Great Depression. He helped it recover to the point the rich and famous were soon once again walking its halls.

History Bites is intended to be a small slice of history served over lunch. The programs last about 30 minutes and people attending are encouraged to bring in their lunch for the presentation. They take place the first Tuesday of every month at 12:30 p.m. in the Museum’s Saguaro Room.

The October program relates to the current exhibit at the Chandler Museum, “Photography Technology Series, Part 1: Glass Plate Negatives.”

“Glass plate negatives is a neat medium that really isn’t used anymore,” said Nate Meyers, collections coordinator for the museum who will be presenting that program. “They are super clear images, really sharp.”

Meyers said he will include famed-Civil War photographer Matthew Brady in his presentation.

“After the war, people didn’t want to see his images anymore,” Meyer said. “A lot of his glass-plate negatives were lost because they were used as glass in greenhouses.”

After the presentation attendees are encouraged to visit the exhibit. The current one is “Black and White in Black and White: Images of Dignity, Hope and Diversity in America.”

“The person who curated this show actually discovered all the glass-plate negatives at a yard sale, when he was a late teen, a high schooler,” Egnor said. “He started digging into them and doing research and other people came together and did research and they kind of tracked down who this photographer was and discovered more of his story.”

The November History Bites presentation will focus on the American West.

Egnor will present “Idea and Reality: Defining the West Through Imagery.” It will match the exhibit that will be on display in November, which will include photos from National Geographic.

The return of History Bites brings back in-person adult programs that were halted at the Museum because of the pandemic. Egnor stressed they will try and keep everyone who attends safe.

“The setup in our classroom, we do have it set up for some social distancing so we can have people sitting at both tables and chairs,” she said.

Anyone who wants to attend is encouraged to register in advance so they make sure they have enough space to accommodate everyone safely.

So is History Bites back for good?

“The last year and a half has taught everybody to be flexible and there are times you’ve got to change your plans,” Egnor said. “We do have the next year outlined, at this point, but being flexible is part of the game now.”

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