United States 250th Anniversary

The United States will commemorate its 250th (or “Semiquincentennial”) anniversary in 2026. AASLH is providing key leadership for the history community as we all prepare for this once-in-a-generation event. We are monitoring national, regional, and state commemoration plans as they develop, serving as a clearinghouse of information for history organizations and practitioners at the local, state, and national levels, particularly through the publication of an annual report on the status of commemoration efforts. We are in communication with other national initiatives, including the U.S. Semiquincentennial Commission, to help ensure that the values and goals of the history community are represented well in national commemoration efforts. We have organized a national coordinating committee, facilitating communication and collaboration among major organizations, institutions, and agencies. Finally, we are outlining major goals for the anniversary that can help align the work of a diverse and dynamic field over the next several years.

View the 2019 report on the status of 250th planning.

Coordinating Committee

AASLH has organized a coordinating committee to facilitate communication and coordination among national stakeholders as preparations for the Semiquincentennial proceed. The committee includes the following members:

  • Sara Cureton (Chair), New Jersey Historical Commission
  • Jeff Allen, Federation of State Humanities Councils
  • Jody Blankenship, Indiana Historical Society
  • Jim Campi, American Battlefield Trust
  • Kevin Cherry, N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources
  • Vedet Coleman-Robinson, Association of African American Museums
  • Sylvia Cyrus, Association for the Study of African American Life and History
  • John Dichtl, American Association for State and Local History
  • Laura Dominquez, [email protected] in Heritage Conservation
  • W. Eric Emerson, Council of State Archivists
  • Susan Feller, Assoc. of Tribal Archives, Libraries, and Museums
  • Cathy Gorn, National History Day
  • Kevin Gover, National Museum of the American Indian
  • Linnea Grim, Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello
  • Jim Grossman, American Historical Association
  • Anthea Hartig, National Museum of American History
  • Richard M. Josey, Collective Journeys, LLC
  • Stephen Kidd, National Humanities Alliance
  • Jennifer Kilmer, Washington State Historical Society
  • Gavin Kleespies, Massachusetts Historical Society
  • Turkiya Lowe, National Park Service
  • Maud Lyon, Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance
  • Brian Martin, American Battlefield Trust
  • Jeani O’Brien, National Council on Public History
  • Larry Paska, National Council for the Social Studies
  • Estevan Rael-Gálvez, Creative Strategies 360°
  • Barry Szczesny, American Alliance of Museums
  • Lee White, National Coalition for History
  • Karin Wulf, Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture

Goals

With the help of the 250th anniversary task force, AASLH has developed broad aspirations for what the 250th anniversary can accomplish for the field and for the public. These goals are:

  • Make history relevant to every American, every day
  • Tell inclusive stories about the American past
  • Increase funding for history
  • Enhance the public’s engagement with history collections
  • Emphasize the importance of history education.

After holding listening sessions about these goals at major conferences, including AASLH, National Council on Public History, Association of African American Museums, and the Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries, and Museums, AASLH has convened working groups to help consider them more deeply. These working groups will provide ideas and action plans to help guide the work of the field. They began meeting in Summer 2019 and will begin sharing their work later this year.

250th Anniversary Resources

Annual Reports
The reports below detail the status of planning across the country. AASLH gathers the information each Spring and publishes the report each Summer.