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The purposes of the Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society are: "To collect, preserve, research, and interpret, the written, spoken, pictorial and artifactual record of the history of Western New York and the Great Lakes in general, and of Buffalo and Erie County in particular, from prehistoric times to the present; to promote a better understanding of the present by using exhibits, educational programs, publications, media presentations, and other appropriate means to interpret the process of change over time in the community; to make the best of current historical research and insight accessible to general audiences by serving as a meeting ground for professional historians and non-professional enthusiasts; to enrich the Western New York community by encouraging the participation of a broad spectrum of the community in lively programs and exhibits that reflect the diversity of the community's population.
The Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society operates a research library, maintains a collection of 100,000 three-dimensional artifacts, and interprets its collections in permanent and temporary exhibits and programming. All of our programs have an educational component and a connection to the Western New York region, be that in a local context or as a microcosm of wider issues. A panel of advisors from area schools and the Board of Cooperative Education Services (BOCES) works with our Education Coordinator to strengthen compliance with the changes in the NY State Social Studies curriculum. In particular, they are developing strategies for use of primary source materials in accordance with the state syllabus. In recent years, the museum has actively sought collaborations with the community groups projects. We work with collaborators who both need and can further our interpretation of that foster cross-generational discussion and lead to a better understanding of change over questions rather than answers, hands-on opportunities, and sensory learning experiences. The permanent exhibits, especially Bflo.Made!, Neighbors, and Spirit of the City: Imagining the Pan-American Exposition, are the subjects of annual fresh approaches by the Education Coordinator.
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