Rachel Christ is the new Director of Education for the Salem Witch Museum - She is focusing her work on improving and expanding educational information at Salem’s most visited museum!
The Salem Witch Museum examines one of the most enduring and emotional events in American History...the Witch Trials of 1692. The main presentation is based on actual trial documents. Visitors experience the drama of that dark time though thirteen life-size stage sets, figures, lighting and a stirring narration as they are witness to the web of lies and intrigue of the Salem Witch Hunt.
1) Tell us a bit about you and what you do?
My name is Rachel Christ and I am the new Director of Education at the Salem Witch Museum. As the Director of Education, my job is primarily focused on how to improve and expand the educational information and resources that our museum has to offer. Within this capacity, I have a variety of responsibilities that range from training new staff to give tours, to creating and updating our educational materials, to giving student interviews and researching developments that can be made to the museum to make it the best educational resource possible.
2) What do you love the most about your creative work?
While it may sound cliché coming from a Director of Education, I have always loved, and felt extremely passionate about, learning and education. To me, to fall in love with learning is one of the most exciting and valuable passions a person could develop throughout their lifetime. From a creative standpoint, my work is entirely based around finding a way to make visitors fall in love with learning, to make history exciting and a little addicting. As such, I am always looking for new ways to present complex and serious history in a way that is accessible, engaging, and interesting to an audience of all ages, backgrounds, and educational experiences.
3) How does your creative work contribute to the Creative Economy?
Our museum offers two presentations, one focused on the Salem witch trials of 1692 and one that delves into how the image of a witch has changed and developed over time. Our second presentation delves into how witch hunts follow a pattern of human behavior, a pattern that continues again and again with different names, dates, and locations. I think the main way our museum contributes to the Creative Economy is by challenging our visitors to think beyond what they would classically associate with a witch or witch hunt. We are asking that our visitors take the lessons of 1692 and see them in a much broader light. As such, our hope is that visitors leave our museum with a new perspective and a desire to know more.
4) What’s your favorite part of creative work?
As an avid history nerd, I must say that my favorite part of this work is constantly engaging with a topic that I find to be fascinating, that I can always learn more about, and that is certainly never dull. I love that when I come into work in the morning I will always, without fail, have something new and interesting on my hands.
5) What’s the one thing people wouldn’t know about you or (your business)?
The Salem Witch Museum is in the midst of a massive update. As we approach our 50th anniversary (which will take place in 2022), our museum is focusing on an enormous project to eliminate some of the antiquated aspects of our exhibits, provide a wealth of new information and resources, focus on growing our presence as an educational institution within Salem, and generally breathing new life into our museum. This project will include substantial changes to both our first and second exhibits, new educational materials that will be available, new acquisitions to a growing artifact collection, and many more extremely exciting projects.
Creative Collective MA connects creativity, community, and commerce across the North Shore. As a collective of creative professionals, small businesses, organizations, and individuals we coordinate a series of events, traditional and non-traditional marketing initiatives, resources, and best practices to define why creativity matters in all aspects of life.