The Voices of a Place: The Brattleboro Words Project

-Mary Ide, Archives Month Committee Member

On October 23rd, the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center is scheduled to host the public presentation the work of the Brattleboro Words Project.  Over the past three years, the members and volunteers of the Words Project  have worked with local archives, libraries and community resources to produce self-guided audio tours and a book that tell the story of writing in the Brattleboro community, from the distant past to the present.

From Abenakis using writing to defend their homeland, and Lucy Terry Prince, regarded as the first African-American poet, to Nobel Prize winners and contemporary authors, Brattleboro and its environs have a rich and varied literary history.  The Words Project captures and documents this long and fascinating chronicle of the people, places and events that tell the story of writing, publishing and printing in the region.

Maps of Brattleboro area on drafting board.
Brattleboro area maps used in an artistic carving for the Brattleboro Words Project, created by Brattleboro graphic artist Cynthia Parker.

The Words Project has been made possible through a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities and lots of local support.  The Words Project is a collaborative effort of five local organizations: the Brattleboro Literary Festival, Brattleboro Historical Society, Brooks Memorial Library, Write Action and Marlboro College.

The goal of this project is to help connect all of us and our visitors to the stories behind the rich history of the places we share.

Hand carving a landscape.
Artistic engraved map, created by Brattleboro graphic artist Cynthia Parker, will show people and places of importance, such as writers, printers, and publishers.

For more extensive information about the Words Project, go to

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