By: Rachel Hill Ponko—
The old-fashioned art of canning and preserving foods is enjoying new popularity, and a new Indiana Historical Society (IHS) exhibition is taking guests back to its Hoosier beginnings. The newest Indiana Experience offering, You Are There 1948: Communities Can!, explores the impact the Ball Brothers Company from Muncie, Ind., had on the original food preservation movement across the United States. Communities Can! opens March 5, 2016, and runs through Aug. 12, 2017, at the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana History Center, located at 450 W. Ohio St. in downtown Indianapolis.
With Communities Can!, IHS invites guests to travel back in time to a canning center that existed on the grounds of the Ball Brothers Company in October 1948. The You Are There element of the Indiana Experience allows guests to step through—and into—a Minnetrista Heritage Collection photograph of the Muncie canning center projected onto a fine screen of mist.
Guests will enter a room where they will be invited to join the canning class, depicted in the photograph. They will meet a Ball Brothers Company employee, who will explain the process of canning, and a cast of women who have gathered to learn how to better preserve their family’s produce. In addition, guests will be part of a discussion about significant issues affecting Hoosiers in the years immediately following World War II.
Outside the canning center, a supporting content room will focus on topics such as Ball Brothers Company history; World War II-era food preservation techniques and kitchens; seasonal food guides; and a resurgence in canning popularity.
You Are There 1948: Communities Can! is presented by Ball Brothers Foundation, in partnership with Minnetrista. For more information on IHS or the Indiana Experience, call (317) 232-1882 or visit www.indianahistory.org.
About Ball Brothers Foundation
Ball Brothers Foundation (BBF), one of the state’s oldest and largest private family foundations, is dedicated to the stewardship legacy of the Ball brothers. With assets of nearly $160 million, Ball Brothers Foundation annually makes grants in support of arts and culture, education, the environment, health, human services and public affairs. The Muncie-based family foundation gives priority to projects and programs that improve the quality of life in BBF’s home city, county and state.
Located along historic White River, Minnetrista includes 40 acres of beautiful gardens and grounds, a modern museum facility, historic homes, a Nature Area, numerous sculptures, and a portion of the White River Greenway. Minnetrista serves East Central Indiana with dynamic community activities and exhibits that honor and reflect its natural cultural heritage. For more information about Minnetrista, visit www.minnetrista.net.
About the Indiana Historical Society
Since 1830, the Indiana Historical Society has been Indiana’s Storyteller, connecting people to the past by collecting, preserving, interpreting and sharing the state’s history. A private, nonprofit membership organization and an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, IHS maintains the nation’s premier research library and archives on the history of Indiana and the Old Northwest and presents a unique set of visitor exhibitions called the Indiana Experience. IHS provides support and assistance to local museums and historical groups, publishes books and periodicals; sponsors teacher workshops; produces and hosts art exhibitions, museum theater and outside performance groups; and provides youth, adult and family programming.