Explore the Collection

Hi Kids! 

Scroll down. Click on a Discovery Topic. Explore and have fun! 

Discover What's Inside is a new virtual education program created by the Benton County Historical Society's Education Department, launched during the summer 2020. Educational videos feature museum exhibits and different objects in the collection. Most videos are geared towards children ages 6-12 with many offering hands-on activity suggestions for children to continue learning and discovery at home. 

Discovery Topics

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Oregon Trail Diaries: What was it like on the Oregon Trail? Diaries and journals of the people who made the trip are a great way to learn. Keturah Belknap made the journey to Oregon with her family. In this video, Keturah's descendant, Judy Juntunen reads from her ancestor's journal. Mrs. J also shows and discusses objects people took on the Oregon trail. Imagine you were on this journey, what would you take and what kinds of stories would you write in your travel journal? Create and illustrate a story about preparing for the journey and your first week on the Oregon Trail. 

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Oregon Trail Objects & Apples to Oregon book reading: Learn about the 2,000 Oregon Trail journey and discover objects in the new Corvallis Museum that survived the journey. Listen to a fun entertaining book reading of "Apples to Oregon" a tall tale of how a brave pioneer father brought his fruit trees and his children on the Oregon Trail. Trunk packing and drawing activity. 

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Earl Newman Jazz Exhibit - Go on a short virtual museum tour with Alley cat to see Earl Newman's 2020 Monterey Jazz Festival exhibit at the Philomath Museum. Coloring activity of one of Earl's jazz musicians. 

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Louis Southworth, An Oregon Black Pioneer - This story about Louis Southworth was not written by Louis Southworth, no known autobiography exists of his life. The museum's education department used historical information and photos to write the script used in this video to share about Louis Southworth's life. Louis was born at a complicated time in history, when slavery was legal in some parts of the United States and illegal in others. Back in the 1850's, Oregon was in the process of becoming a state and thousands of people were emigrating to Oregon to live. Despite Oregon being founded as a free state that prohibited slavery, some people were still brought as slaves to Oregon and some slave masters ignored Oregon's laws prohibiting slavery, making the people they enslaved pay them money to buy their freedom. Louis Southworth was one person that was brought as a slave to Oregon and was forced to pay his master to buy his freedom. Louis earned money playing the fiddle to buy his freedom. This video shares about his life, his music and fiddle tunes popular during his time. 

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Mesopotamian Cylinder Seals: Explore a 3-D model of a Mesopotamia cylinder seal. When seals were rolled over clay they left impressions. Watch a video of how seals were used and how a roll stamp works, and learn how to make a roll stamp at home. Some of the oldest and smallest man-made objects in the Benton County Historical Society's collection are cylinder seals from ancient Mesopotamia (now Iraq).  

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Bowed Harp Drawing Lesson Video: Hear how an "Adeudeu" sounds, where it comes from, and try drawing it with teacher Laura. You just need a white piece of paper and a pencil.