The nonprofit history magazine Connecticut Explored has included Trinity faculty members and projects among its new list of “Game Changers” advancing the study, interpretation, and dissemination of Connecticut history.

To mark its 20th anniversary, the board and staff of Connecticut Explored launched an initiative, supported by a Connecticut Humanities planning grant, to find the people and projects leading the future of Connecticut history. From a pool of 120 nominations submitted by members of the public in fall 2021, an advisory team selected 20 “Game Changers,” including Charles A. Dana Professor of Fine Arts Pablo Delano and a project led by Professor of Educational Studies Jack Dougherty.

Also on the list were the Hartford Heritage Project and the Hartford History Center, both of which have partnered with Trinity faculty and students on various initiatives through the college’s Center for Hartford Engagement and Research. The work of the “Game Changers” will be highlighted in a variety of ways in the coming year: in the pages of Connecticut Explored, on the “Grating the Nutmeg” podcast, or via public programs.

In the August 17 Hartford Courant story, “These 20 historic ‘Game Changers’ herald Connecticut’s untold stories,” by Susan Dunne, Connecticut Explored Publisher and Executive Director Kathy Hermes said that many honorees are telling “hard history.” The article said, “The ‘Game Changers’ initiative reflects a nationwide discussion about bringing more unheard stories—stories about race, gender, class, immigration, battles, mental health, land grabs—into education efforts.”

Hermes told the Courant, “We’re a history magazine. We want to tell the whole story of Connecticut history. We are motivated to include people who have not been included before and to represent the diversity of our state geographically and in terms of people and institutions… They’re doing new things, and by virtue of doing new things they’re getting the history that will be the future of the historical enterprise in Connecticut.”

Read more about the Trinity honorees below:

Pablo Delano

Pablo Delano
Charles A. Dana Professor of Fine Arts Pablo Delano. In the photo at the top of the page, Delano works on his Museum of the Old Colony project.

Pablo Delano, a visual artist, photographer, and educator, is recognized for his use of Connecticut and Puerto Rican history in his work, including his 2020 book of photography, Hartford Seen (Wesleyan University Press), a Connecticut Book Award 2021 “Spirit of Connecticut” finalist. Delano, who was born and raised in Puerto Rico, has had his work shown in solo exhibitions in museums and galleries in the U.S., Europe, Latin America, and the Caribbean. He is the Charles A. Dana Professor of Fine Arts at Trinity College.

Over the course of 20 years, Delano amassed a substantial archive of artifacts related to a century of Puerto Rican history. Using this material, including three-dimensional objects, newspaper clippings, and photographs, he created The Museum of the Old Colony, a dynamic, site-specific art installation that examines the complex and fraught history of U.S. colonialism, paternalism, and exploitation in Puerto Rico.

To learn more, visit Delano will be featured in conversation with public historian Elena Rosario on September 21, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., hosted by the Hartford History Center at Park Street Library @ The Lyric, 603 Park Street, Hartford, and in a “Grating the Nutmeg” podcast to be released January 1, 2023.

On the Line

Connecticut Public
Trinity College students, led by Professor of Educational Studies Jack A. Dougherty, refine their data visualizations they compiled using school integration information from the Sheff v. O’Neill agreement. Photo by Tyler Russell/Connecticut Public.

On the Line: How Schooling, Housing, and Civil Rights Shaped Hartford and its Suburbs is a digital-first, open-access book-in-progress by Jack Dougherty and contributors at Trinity College. It is available online, and a finished manuscript is under contract with Amherst College Press. The book combines historical narrative, interactive maps, and video interviews to tell the story of schooling and housing boundaries that shaped American metropolitan life during the past century, along with the civil rights struggles of families and activists to cross over, redraw, or erase these powerful lines. Dougherty is a professor of educational studies at Trinity College; the book’s contributors include many of his past students and research collaborators.

Set in the city of Hartford and its emerging suburbs, the book explains how this metropolitan area became one of the most racially and economically polarized regions in the northeastern United States. The story highlights how government, business, and white middle-class families drew lines to distance themselves from others, and the evolving coalitions that have sought to reform the relationship between private housing and public education.

Read the book at On the Line will be featured in a story in the spring 2023 issue of Connecticut Explored.