The cities of Lewiston and Auburn will soon be installing their own rendition of Museum in the Streets (MITS), a walking tour through the downtown and riverfront areas of L/A. Using 32 panels composed of text and images, the walking tour offers visitors historical anecdotes to illustrate the rich history of the twin cities. The purpose of this tour is to increase the sense of place felt by residents, and to afford visitors a deeper connection to the cities’ history. In collaboration with Grow L+A, Museum L/A, the Androscoggin Historical Society, and several other community partners, our research project focused on drafting, gathering, and improving the materials necessary to create this walking tour. More specifically, we systematically determined the optimal site location for each panel along the proposed route, revised and edited the text for the 30 small panels, composed first drafts of the text for the two introductory panels (one to be located in each city), and assisted our community partners in finding images to accompany the texts. As the nature of this project involved community-based representation, we spent a considerable amount of time developing and implementing a methodology to select appropriate images to accompany the text on each panel. This was especially consequential for the sign topics that feature the cultural history of ethnic communities within the Lewiston-Auburn population. Initially, we--along with our community partners--conducted a cursory collection of many image options for the sign panels; then, we methodologically selected the best images from that collection using an original set of criteria. This project continued the work undertaken by a prior community-engaged research project, which developed a process to determine the ideal sign topics, as well as drafted the text for 13 of the 30 small panels.
Bale, Marissa; Black, Tess; and Smith, Zeke, "Finalizing and Completing the Lewiston/Auburn Heritage Trail" (2018). Community Engaged Research Reports. 57.