• "Mystery" Trunk Project

    In December 2010 Madison High School 10th graders participated in an interdisciplinary activity that called upon their research, curatorial and creative writing skills. The activity was planned by History and Language Arts teachers and centered on determining ownership of a "mystery" trunk recently found in collection of the Museum of Early Trades and Crafts. The trunk, which has the words ""For His Excellency Governor/Jersey/New England/Baggage" stenciled on the bottom, dates from the colonial or revolutionary era.  The students were armed with biographical information of four likely owners and were asked to examine the trunk and an array of period artifacts placed inside. The students conducted artifact analysis on the objects in an effort to link them to one of the four possible owners of the trunk. Once they completed the research portion of the activity, the students completed a creative writing assignment in the Language Arts class which drew upon the information they had collected about the trunk. MHS teachers collaborated with the staff of the Museum of Early Trades and Crafts to develop this activity and we are grateful for their willingness to bring these objects to the school so that the students could do some "hands on" work to learn more about the history of the colonial era.
     
    Analyzing Artifacts
     
    Mystery Trunk