This week we are profiling the online resources of The Henry Ford.
Located in Dearborn, Michigan, a short drive from Detroit, this institution boasts a collection of objects from 300 years of American history. The museum was dedicated on October 21, 1929 and opened to the public in 1933. For the first 10 years visitors dealt with construction as the exhibits weren’t fully complete until the early 1940s. You can learn more about the history of the campus here on their History & Mission page.
While the museum and campus are closed, the website features many digital resources.
Their Virtual Visit page is a great place to start your exploration. Here you will find a list of objects with links to the Ford’s Google Maps project from 2015. The photos give you a better sense of scale of these artifacts and allow for 360 degree experience. A great example is the museum’s towering Allegheny Steam Locomotive. There are also links to the object’s record in the Digital Collections.
The Digital Collections can be explored much like the other institutions we have highlighted in these posts. Additionally there are the Expert Sets. These curated groupings are a great resource for educators building lesson plans as well as individuals looking for a more structured way of exploring the vast collection.
For researchers there is the Digital Resources page. There are Research Databases which include oral histories, the library’s catalog, photographs, and historic films.
A really interesting resource is their collection of historic Cookbooks. You can see what the people in the past ate and get some ideas for your own culinary efforts.
The Henry Ford has many education resources on their Online Learning Resources and Activities page. The available programs are arranged by grade level for easy navigation and their Innovation Program is currently free for public.