The world is changing fast. You would think that a historical society could live comfortably in the past, worrying only about events, places and people that existed centuries ago. But that’s not the case. Historic Huguenot Street, as well as countless other historical institutions all over the world, need to keep up with the times. And that means the internet.
If you’re reading this blog, you’re obviously familiar with at least one type of social media, the blog. And chances are, you have a Facebook page, maybe a Twitter account and perhaps a blog of your own. Social media sites such at these provide an outlet to post and discuss anything from music, to news, to events or even just funny quotes. But by harnessing the power and speed of the internet, we can share more of our history and events with the public.
Historic Huguenot Street has a Facebook page, a Twitter account, a blog, and Hudson River Valley Heritage (HRVH.org) to share our images and stories, but what else is there? Recently we’ve been working on a couple of different websites to make sharing easier and more fun. The most interesting so far is Historypin.com
Historypin.com is a site run by an English company that coordinates with Google and Google Maps. The idea is to “pin” a historical photograph of an event where it occurred, or a building exactly where it was/is located on the map. This is really cool when you are able to use Google Maps Street View and see the old picture and the current satellite shot side by side. On Historypin, we have created a homepage, several house-themed collections and have pinned more than just historic photos of our house on the street. We have also posted shots of the current renovations going on at the Abraham Hasbrouck House as well as artifacts that have been found in its basement. More or less, we took the original concept of Historypin and ran with it.
It has been about two weeks since we started really working with Historypin and we hope to continue to expand our collection rapidly. We encourage anyone with a smartphone to download the Historypin smartphone app so that you can participate with us on this site. With the app, you can take a photo of a location on Historic Huguenot Street to either mimic an old photo you have of the location, to show changes over time, or to document an event in the area. It’s a great way for us to interact with our visitors and locals!
Our goal is to be as current as possible with all of our social media sites. It’s a big job, but it’s worth it to teach others and to keep our history alive.
P.S. Click the Historypin icon on the top right of this page to see what we’ve been up to!
~Kate Long, Historic Huguenot Street Intern