Museums in Strange Places

Museums in Strange Places

hhethmon.com
Exploring the World Through Its Museums


BONUS: London is Ok I Guess
Nov 13 • 29 min
[A pilot for a new show I developed about living in London. I’m really proud of how it turned out, but I just don’t have the time to make more episodes, so it’s going to live here on the Museum in Strange Places feed. I meet up with escape room creator,…
The (Pop-Up) Anti-Trump Museum of Atlantic City
Sep 23 • 24 min
Donald J. Trump has been active in business and media for fifty years, but his scandal-ridden presidency has overshadowed most of his history. Levi Fox’s Pop-Up Atlantic City Trump Museum is an attempt to remedy this oversight for one specific chapter of…
Sneak Peek of My New Podcast: London is OK I Guess
Aug 2 • 5 min
Hey Museums in Strange Place listeners! I’m excited to share a sneak peek of my new podcast, London is OK I Guess. Don’t worry, I’ve still got plenty of Museums in Strange Places episodes in the pipeline for you to enjoy. But first I want to invite you to…
Poe Belongs to Baltimore, Baltimore to Poe
Jul 23 • 39 min
He’s the master of macabre, the man who created mystery fiction, the face on the socks and beer bottles of everyday Baltimoreans. He’s Edgar Allan Poe, and he belongs to Baltimore. Join me on a visit to the Poe House in Baltimore, the tiny house where his…
Slavery in Maryland: Facing Our Whole History at Sotterley Plantation
Jul 1 • 44 min
So much of Maryland was built on the back of enslaved Africans, yet it’s easy to avoid confronting the history of slavery in Maryland’s former plantation country. Historic Sotterley is trying to change that. Today, staff and descendants at Sotterley are…
Museum on Main Street: A Love Letter to Small-Town America (02/09)
Jun 18 • 40 min
About half of all museums in the US are in small towns in rural America. Each of these museums holds stories and objects that are worth preserving and sharing, but they don’t always have the funding and infrastructure they need to operate and innovate.…
Baltimore’s Jewish Roots ft. Harry Houdini (S02/E08)
Apr 24 • 43 min
What do Baltimore, Russian Jews, the third oldest synagogue in America, Eastern European Catholics, seances, and Harry Houdini have in common? You’ll find out in this episode. Join me for a tour of the historic Lloyd Street Synagogue, a journey back in…
Why We Work: Improving the Way Museums Work at The Baltimore Museum of Industry (S02/E07)
Feb 28 • 31 min
S02/E07: The Baltimore Museum of Industry is trying to inspire their visitors around the concept of work by telling the stories of historical workers. In this episode, I talk to staffers Beth Maloney and Auni Gelles about how they are pushing the museum…
A Secular Gathering Place: The Sandy Spring Museum (S02/E06)
Jan 30 • 29 min
The Sandy Spring Museum describes itself as “community-activated.” They want to be a secular gathering places, where people of different backgrounds can come together and build a sense of place and belonging. I visit the museum to speak with Executive…
BONUS: 17th Century Ships are Like Classic Cars
Jan 29 • 5 min
BONUS content from Episode 5, “The Lost City: Historic St. Mary’s City, Maryland.” Dr. Regina Faden and I head down to Historic St. Mary’s City’s Waterfront exhibit, where we board the Maryland Dove, a replica 17th century sailing ship. The ship’s…
BONUS: What We Can Learn From Dirt
Jan 28 • 5 min
BONUS content from Episode 5, “The Lost City: Historic St. Mary’s City, Maryland.” A brief stop at the active dig site of Historic St. Mary’s City’s Archeology Field School, where Dr. Travis Parno is guiding students from St. Mary’s College in a dig to…
The Lost City: Historic St. Mary’s City, Maryland (S02/E05)
Jan 14 • 58 min
In the early 17th century, 300 English settlers traveled to the new colony of Maryland in search of new opportunities and a place where they could practice their Catholic faith in peace. They built Maryland’s first capital, St. Mary’s City, and…
BONUS: Baltimore’s Ring of Fire
Dec 31, 2018 • 8 min
BONUS CONTENT from Episode 4, “Museum Time Machine: The Peale Center.” The Peale Center’s Nancy Proctor shows me the museum’s Ring of Fire, explains the phenomenon of skeuomorphism, and tells me why gas lighting was such a game-changing technology in…
Museum Time Machine: The Peale Center (S02/E04)
Nov 27, 2018 • 31 min
There’s a time machine in downtown Baltimore on Holliday Street. The Peale Center, the oldest purpose-built museum space in the US, is starting its third century as a building and its third life as a museum after decades of sitting vacant. But history…
Community Driven, Community-Led: The Prince George’s African American Museum and Cultural Center (S02/E03)
Nov 13, 2018 • 37 min
Prince George’s County, MD is one of the wealthiest African American communities in the US, a suburban enclave of Black excellence just outside Washington, D.C. But it wasn’t always that way. At the small (but mighty) Prince George’s African American…
A Public Housing Utopia: The Greenbelt Museum (S02/E02)
Nov 13, 2018 • 46 min
Tucked among other Maryland suburbs outside DC, the cute little town of Greenbelt has a surprisingly radical history. It was one of three “green towns” built under the New Deal Era Resettlement Administration, and it was supposed to be a new way of…
A Temple to Intuition and Art: The American Visionary Art Museum (S02/E01)
Nov 13, 2018 • 53 min
The American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland is monument to outsider art, the creative spirit, and the search for truth. Step inside this glittering temple to intuition and inspiration to experience the museum’s marvelous “shows,” each of…
Season 2: Museums of Maryland (TRAILER)
Nov 6, 2018 • 3 min
On November 14, tune in to hear the first three episodes of Museums in Strange Places, “Season 2: Museums of Maryland.” I visited 22 of Maryland’s most interesting and unique museums, including America’s first purpose built museum, a historic synagogue, a…
The Shark Farm at Bjarnarhöfn (S01/E22)
Aug 21, 2018 • 29 min
Iceland has a lot of weird traditional foods, but nothing compares to fermented shark meat. The family at Bjarnarhöfn has been hunting and fermenting shark meat for nearly 400 years, although today they only process bycatch Greenland sharks. Many years…
The Art of Volcanoes (S01/E21)
Aug 7, 2018 • 25 min
What would it look like if Indiana Jones was into volcanoes and created a museum in a small Icelandic village? The Volcano Museum in Stykkishólmur displays the art and geological specimens collected by volcanologist Haralður Sigurðsson from around the…
Iceland in Wartime (S01/E20)
Jul 25, 2018 • 26 min
Walk into the War and Peace Museum, a small building sitting on a fjord north of Reykjavík, Iceland, and you’re instantly transported into another era. Covering every wall are carefully arranged artifacts, photographs, and documents from the WWII years in…
BONUS: The Making of Eldheimar’s Audio Guide
Jul 11, 2018 • 7 min
Bonus! I go behind-the-scenes with Locatify’s Steinunn Anna Gunnlaugsdóttir to talk about the making of Eldheimar’s location-aware audio guide app (E19: Memorial to an Eruption). We chat about how Locatify joined the Eldheimar project, the beacon…
Memorial to an Eruption (S01/E19)
Jul 3, 2018 • 29 min
On January 23, 1973, residents of the island town of Vestmannaeyjar in Iceland were woken from sleep by the sounds of a huge fissure ripping open the earth. The Eldfell volcanic eruption that followed forced everyone to evacuate the island for six months,…
We Always Come Back to Home Island (S01/E18)
Jun 19, 2018 • 33 min
No matter what happens on the Westman Islands off Iceland’s south coast–invading pirates, mass Mormon exoduses, months-long volcanic eruptions, mysterious diseases, perilous fishing waters–the island people, Eyjamenn, always come back to rebuild and…
The Penis Museum, Part II ft. John Bodinger de Uriarte (S01/E17)
Jun 5, 2018 • 22 min
After visiting the Icelandic Phallological Museum in Episode 16, I still didn’t get what all the hype was about. So, I sat down with anthropology professor (and fellow Fulbright grantee) John Bodinger de Uriarte to talk about how the museum plays with our…
The Penis Museum, Part I (S01/E16)
May 29, 2018 • 28 min
I didn’t really want to visit the Icelandic Phallological Museum, so to make it more fun, I invited along my Icelandic museum friend, Sig. Join us as we marvel at massive whale phalluses, question the motivation of human donors to the museum, and try to…
Industry and Nostalgia in Akureyri, Iceland (S01/E15)
Apr 10, 2018 • 22 min
For this episode, I’m back in Akureyri to visit The Industry Museum, a small museum formed from the enormous personal collection of one couple, who wanted to document the history of the many successful industries based in the “Capital of North Iceland” in…
A Museum of Ordinary Things (S01/E14)
Mar 27, 2018 • 28 min
Tucked away in a narrow valley just below the town of Akureyri in North Iceland, Sverrir Hermansson’s Museum of Sundry Objects is one eccentric man’s spectacular collection of ordinary things. In this episode, I visit this beautiful little museum, get to…
Finding Iceland’s Hidden Women (S01/E13)
Mar 14, 2018 • 43 min
In this special episode about women’s history in Iceland, I visit the Women’s History Archive at the National and University Library of Iceland to speak to Rakel Adolphsdóttir about collecting women’s history in Iceland and hunting for the women hidden in…
A Flyby of the Icelandic Aviation Museum (S01/E12)
Feb 27, 2018 • 24 min
The Icelandic Aviation Museum in Akureyri is filled with great stories: locals crashing a Nazi glider into an open grave, the president’s plane enlisted to beat the British in the Cod Wars, and a nineteen year search to find a missing WWII plane that…
How the Seals are Saving Hvammstangi (S01/E11)
Feb 13, 2018 • 28 min
Just off the Ring Road in the north of Iceland, a small town once known for hunting seals has breathed new life into their community with a much more sustainable industry: seal watching. At the Seal Center in Hvammstangi, scientists and museum…
Beatle-Town, Iceland: A Visit to the Icelandic Museum of Rock ‘n’ Roll (S01/E10)
Jan 30, 2018 • 38 min
The Icelandic music scene has produced a remarkable number of international stars like Sigur Rós, Björk, Kaleo, the Sugar Cubes, and Of Monsters and Men. You can learn more about them and discover new music at the Icelandic Museum of Rock ‘n’ Roll. In…
Built with Fish: History Lessons at the Museum of Hafnarfjörður (S01/E09)
Jan 24, 2018 • 23 min
How do you keep history fresh at a municipal history museum? How do you best serve your local audience while still offering something interesting for tourists? These are the challenges the Hafnarfjörður Museum is trying to solve. The museum is housed in…
Community-Centered Contemporary Art in the Heart of Hafnarfjörður (S01/E08)
Jan 16, 2018 • 32 min
How does a contemporary art institution–places that are notoriously elitist–provide a thriving cultural center in a town’s that on the periphery of Iceland and the world? The Hafnarborg Centre of Culture and Fine Art is a contemporary art gallery and…
Celtic Connections on the Icelandic Coast: A Visit to the Akranes Folk Museum (S01/E07)
Jan 10, 2018 • 23 min
Akranes is a coastal town in the southwest region of Iceland with a growing population of about 7,000. They have a unique heritage, as the area was settled in large part by Celts, not Norsemen. The charming Akranes Folk Museum has been around for almost…
A Family, a Mineral Collection, and a Museum in a Gas Station (S01/E06)
Dec 18, 2017 • 24 min
Hafsteinn Thor has always been interested in geology, nature, biology, and philosophy. When he met his wife’s family, he was draw into their decades-old passion for stone and mineral collecting. Last year, he and his father-in-law finally set up a museum…
Keeping the Legacy of a Medieval Legend Alive at Snorrastofa (S01/E05)
Dec 4, 2017 • 33 min
I visit the Snorrastofa, a research and cultural center at Reykholt, the farm in southwestern Iceland where the great medieval Icelandic historian and writer Snorri Sturluson built his home, a church, and later a small fortress. Sigrun Guttomsdóttir…
The Future of History at the Reykjavík City Museum (S01/E04)
Nov 21, 2017 • 20 min
I visit the Reykjavík City Museum to talk with Museum Director Guðbrandur Benediktsson about museum mergers, historians as presidents, the state of history in Iceland, and the future of history museums in Reykjavík. The music in this episode is “Humble…
A Writer’s Home: Gljúfrasteinn-Laxness Museum (S01/E03)
Nov 6, 2017 • 31 min
I visit Gljúfrasteinn, the museum–and former home–of Halldór Laxness, writer and Nobel laureate. He published his first novel at 17 and would go on to publish more than 60 books in his lifetime, mostly novels, but also volumes of poetry and short stories.…
The Icelandic Punk Museum in Reykjavík, Iceland (S01/E02)
Oct 30, 2017 • 15 min
I descend into the historic city public toilets of downtown Reykjavík to check out one of the newer museums in town, the Icelandic Punk Museum. You know it’s legit because Johnny Rotten himself presided over the opening in 2016. Music in this episode is…
Bonus Ep: What Makes an Open Air Museum Memorable?
Oct 22, 2017 • 7 min
I continue my conversation with Sigurlaugur Ingólfsson at the Árbær Open Air Museum in Reykjavík. We discuss what makes an open air museum visit memorable, whether admission prices motivate museums to stay fresh and engaging, and why we have to think…
Árbær Open Air Museum in Reykjavík, Iceland
Oct 16, 2017 • 28 min
I visit the Árbær Open Air Museum in Reykjavík to interview the Árbær Museum Project Manager, Sigurlaugur Ingólfsson. In this episode you’ll learn about: open air/living history museums in Iceland, museum mergers, tourists vs. locals, Vikings, and why…