Museum Wins 2023 PA Museums Statewide Special Achievement Award for “Liberty” ExhibitionApril 4, 2023
The Museum Also Received PA Museums’ S.K. Stevens Award for its 2020-21 “When Women Lost the Vote” Exhibition
The Museum of the American Revolution today announced that it has been recognized with a 2023 Special Achievement Award from PA Museums for its 2021-2022 special exhibition Liberty: Don Troiani’s Paintings of the Revolutionary War. The Museum also received an S.K. Stevens Award for its 2020-21 special exhibition When Women Lost the Vote: A Revolutionary Story, 1776-1807.
The exhibition brought together – for the first time in public – more than 45 original paintings by nationally renowned historical artist Don Troiani, alongside historic artifacts that illuminated the story in each scene. Using a masterful combination of “artistry and accuracy” (New York Times), Troiani’s paintings demonstrate his extraordinary combination of historical research, technical skill, and artistic drama. The exhibition lives on through a 360-degree virtual tour on the Museum’s website. A richly illustrated exhibition catalog remains available for purchase in the Museum’s store and online.
A highlight of exhibition was Troiani’s painting, “Brave Men as Ever Fought,” commissioned by the Museum and funded by the Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail of the National Park Service. This painting captures the moment when free Black Philadelphian James Forten witnessed Black and Native American troops in the ranks of the Continental Army as they marched past Independence Hall on their way to eventual victory at Yorktown. Forten later called those soldiers “as brave Men as ever fought.” It is now on display in the Museum’s current special exhibition, Black Founders: The Forten Family of Philadelphia, which is on view through Nov. 26, 2023.
An original theatrical performance based on Forten’s life experiences, created in conjunction with the Liberty exhibition, is available to be viewed on the Museum’s website and is performed on select weekends at the Museum.
“We are honored to receive this award from our Pennsylvania museum peers,” said Dr. Aimee E. Newell, Director of Collections and Exhibitions. “With Liberty: Don Troiani’s Paintings of the Revolutionary War, we were able to share the faces of the people and the appearance of the places of the Revolutionary War with our visitors, while continuing to share the complex stories and diverse people of our past.”
Since the 1980s, PA Museums has invited nominations from its membership and chosen institutions, projects, and individuals to be recognized. This year, eight organizations from every region of Pennsylvania have won Institutional Awards of Merit. Four organizations are receiving PA Museums’ prestigious S.K. Stevens Award, and one individual will be honored for their contributions to the field with Individual Awards.
“PA Museums’ annual awards are meant to inspire the museum field and impress visitors to museums,” said Rusty Baker, Executive Director of PA Museums. “Pennsylvania’s museums and historical organizations are star performers, and we are proud to recognize the great work being done throughout the Commonwealth.”
Liberty was presented by Bank of America. Comcast NBCUniversal is the exhibition’s education sponsor. Additional support was provided by Pritzker Military Foundation on behalf of Pritzker Military Museum & Library, Lanny and Ann Patten, The Pennsylvania Society of Sons of the Revolution and its Color Guard, NJM Insurance Group, State Society of the Cincinnati of Pennsylvania, Cynthia Sweeney, and Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail of the National Park Service. In-kind support was provided by Clovernook Center for the Blind & Visually Impaired.
About PA Museums
PA Museums is Pennsylvania’s statewide museum association with 350 members across the Commonwealth. PA Museums’ membership includes museums and historical organizations of many types and sizes, and in addition to providing professional development opportunities for museum professionals, the organization also leads advocacy campaigns on behalf of the museum community.
About Museum of the American Revolution
The Museum of the American Revolution uncovers and shares compelling stories about the diverse people and complex events that sparked America’s ongoing experiment in liberty, equality, and self-government. Through the Museum’s unmatched collection, immersive galleries, powerful theater experiences, and interactive elements, visitors gain a deeper appreciation for how this nation came to be and feel inspired to consider their role in ensuring that the promise of the American Revolution endures. Located just steps away from Independence Hall, the Museum serves as a portal to the region’s many Revolutionary sites, sparking interest, providing context, and encouraging exploration. The Museum, which opened on April 19, 2017, is a private, non-profit, and non-partisan organization. For more information, visit www.AmRevMuseum.org or call 877.740.1776.