In today’s installment of our popular “Meet the Intern” series, we’re giving our howdy-dos to Hannah, who has been a familiar smiling face around the Museum since the spring when her class from Washington University paid us a visit. [Editorial comment: She’s a smarty AND she has awesome taste in dresses.]
I graduated from Washington University in St. Louis in 2012, with a BFA in painting and art history and a minor in history.
Why Campbell House?
I first visited with a class on American cultural remembrance and really enjoyed viewing the artifacts in each room as witnesses to the Campbell story. Historic house museums are my favorite sites to visit as a tourist, so I am enthusiastic to explore the collection and experience how it relates to visitors. I’m also originally from Philadelphia, so the Campbells add an important dimension to how I continue to understand St. Louis history through material culture.
I am researching how the Campbell family has been characterized through letters, portraits and photographs combined with the history of how this information has been presented in the museum. What aspects of the family’s personal lives have been consistently engaging to visitors, and where do these narratives come from? Using this material, I also plan to write an interdisciplinary education program that focuses on visual art in the collection.
When you aren’t slaving away at Campbell House, what are you doing?
I am a gallery teaching intern at Saint Louis Art Museum, a researcher in American Culture Studies at Washington University, and an artist assistant. I’m also studying Reconstruction-era tourism, learning how to drive (and park!) in St. Louis and dreaming up potential art projects – sometimes all while re-watching Downton Abbey.
What’s your favorite thing about Campbell House so far?
The family’s oyster plate and in the archives, a very theatrical transcript titled “Robert Campbell’s Romance” (1948) an episode in “The Land We Live In” radio series, produced by the Union Electric Company. I like imagining the listeners swooning…and then coming to the house to see if the tale was actually true!
Cold Mountain – I’ve been reading it off and on for the past four years, because I have to start over each time to remember what the story looks like! My favorite book that I’ve actually finished is A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.