American Revolution exhibit comes to Lebanon museum, starting Tuesday

Harmon Museum near heart of Lebanon hosts collaboration from American Battlefield Trust and Daughters of the American Revolution.

Starting Tuesday, the Harmon Museum in Lebanon will be among the first two museums in the nation to host the American Revolution Experience, a collaborative project of the American Battlefield Trust and the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

Harmon Museum officials said the traveling exhibit is coming to Lebanon through its collaboration with the Turtlecreek Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR).

This new traveling exhibit, “connects modern audiences nationwide with the people and places that shaped the birth of our nation using visuals & technology.”

The Harmon Museum will also be displaying unique Revolutionary War artifacts from its own collection. The American Revolution Experience will be on display at the Harmon Museum’s Armstrong Conference Center, located at 121 S. Broadway St. in Lebanon, a block south of the Golden Lamb, from Tuesday through Feb. 16.

The American Revolution Experience invites visitors to consider the choice faced by members of the revolutionary generation as tensions mounted in the 1770s: Would these ordinary citizens risk their lives and livelihoods in pursuit of liberty? Or would they remain loyal subjects of the British crown, coming into conflict with neighbors and family?

The exhibit surfaces diverse viewpoints and experiences, touching on the journeys — both literal and figurative — of Patriots and Loyalists, men and women, Black and Native populations and even international allies. Rather than focusing only on generals and famous statesmen, it introduces audiences to drummer boys, military mapmakers and other ordinary people who were impacted by global events.

“The American Revolution would not have happened without the decisions, sacrifices, and valor of ordinary people,” said DAR President General Pamela Rouse Wright. “DAR is honored to have collaborated with the American Battlefield Trust on this initiative to highlight some of our Patriots and their roles in the founding of this great country. We are thrilled for people in communities across the country to learn more about these individuals.”

The exhibits that will travel the country contain 12 panels highlighting thematic connections between profiled individual stories and three interactive kiosks that connect to the full digital biographies, provide documentary context on the Revolutionary War and offer information on how to visit the places tied to these individuals today.

Both online and on-site, the American Revolution Experience features custom illustrations by South Carolina-based artist Dale Watson. Watson made portraits for each figure highlighted on the site, plus larger scenes to show events during the 18th century.

The project’s first iteration launched online in the summer of 2022, receiving a Bronze Award in the Education, Art, & Culture division of the second annual Anthem Awards, an initiative of the Webby Awards celebrating purpose and mission-driven work. It was also a finalist in the “People’s Choice” category of the Webbys themselves.

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