Victorian hair wreaths were popular among the heartbroken in the 19th century. When a loved one passed, their hair was sometimes saved and then fashioned into a wreath of remembrance. The tradition was lost to time, probably for its creepiness, so it's not surprising Molly Maron '24 was unaware of the tradition... until victory depended on finding a Victorian hair wreath, and fast.
Maron, a sophomore history major, was seeking real work experience in the field, and so immediately responded to an internship post shared by Jenn Dorsey, Ph.D., professor of history. Maron applied for a position at the Brookside Museum in Ballston Spa and scored the internship days later.
The museum, a wooden house built in 1792, is one of the oldest buildings in the area. The museum preserves and tells the stories of history, but Maron's main focus has been on the future. She's been tasked with securing support for the 250th anniversary of the American Revolution celebration, still several years away. She's already been in touch with the Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution and several community newspapers.
“I’m amazed at how easy it has been to contact people and have them be so willing to help.”
Maron's favorite assignment so far was more of a treasure hunt than work. In late September, the Saratoga County History Center hosted a wide-ranging scavenger quest that included a dozen of the county's local museums and historical societies. Maron and her fellow interns were on a treasure hunt to find unique historical items - worth prizes to the winners - and they learned plenty along the way.
“I’m from this area, and I really like exploring the parts of it I haven’t seen before. So it was cool to just drive around and explore Saratoga County for four hours that day.”
“I think I might want to work for a national park or in public history, but I’ve never done anything like that before, or anything like this internship before. So I believe internships are really important because you can get experience in the part of your field that you maybe want to go into without committing to a real job. Down the road, I might also be more interested in living history and reenactors, and this internship is pretty similar because I get to work with all those people and organize them together for a celebration.”
Molly Maron '22