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Museum educators invite you to join in a student-driven conversation with historians about some of history’s hottest topics in your virtual classroom! Students will hone their skills in visual literacy, historical literacy, and critical thinking, by participating in a brief learner-centered analysis of a historical image using the inquiry-driven Visual Thinking Strategies teaching method. Students will not only gain knowledge from an expert but will be given the opportunity to share their own questions and perspectives with our historians in a moderated dialogue. See how Host a Historian meets the Kentucky Academic Standards for Social Studies here


  • Audience: 8-12th grade students
  • Duration: 45 minutes with a 10-minute Visual Thinking Strategies session, 15-minute lecture from the historian, and a 20 minute moderated discussion
  • Date/Time: Available Tuesday-Friday, 9am-4pm EST
  • Cost: $75 per session, up to 100 participants (scholarships are available)
  • Payment: Due one week before the session. Check or charge.
  • Platform: Virtual (Zoom, Google Classroom or Meet, etc.)
  • Scheduling: All visits must be scheduled a minimum of three weeks in advance
  • Questions: Submit them to


Manifest Destiny: The Ripple Effects of Moving West 

HistorianDaniel J. Burge, Ph.D

Manifest destiny is one of the most well-known phrases in U.S. history. This session examines the rise of the idea of manifest destiny and its role in western expansion by focusing on the annexation of Texas, the U.S.-Mexican War, and the sectional crisis of the 1850s. Students will learn about the justifications for expansion but also how opponents of the ideology, like Henry Clay, who mobilized his party to challenge it. Dr. Burge will not only illuminate the topic of western expansion, but also its impact on Kentucky and how that expansion helped trigger the Civil War.

Civil War Era Kentucky: Emancipation and Freedom in the Bluegrass State 

Historian: Chuck Welsko, Ph.D

This session will focus on how Kentuckians dealt with the process of emancipation and the destruction of slavery in the Commonwealth during the mid-19th century. Dr. Welsko will discuss how African Americans fought for, acquired, and struggled to maintain freedom before, during, and after the war. Students will have the opportunity to discuss the unequal process and results of emancipation, and how similar conversations about inclusion in American society and legacies of the Civil War are still present today.

Coal in Appalachia: Fueling Industrialization, Activism, and Identity

Historian: Stephanie M. Lang, Ph.D

This session will focus on the evolution and effects of the coal industry in Kentucky’s Appalachian region. Dr. Lang will discuss the early formation of the coal industry at the turn of the 20th  century, its impact on the residents and environment of the Appalachian region, and how Kentucky’s “coal country” continues to leave a legacy.  Students will have an opportunity to share their thoughts on industry, activism, and attempt to answer the question: What is Appalachia and how does it affect Kentuckians today?

Bookings are dependent on our Historian’s and Museum Educator’s schedule. Please book three weeks in advance.

Host a Historian

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