On Wednesday, the Worcester Historical Museum will be celebrating the 35th Anniversary of Water Street’s legacy. The evening begins with the opening of the museum’s 1983-4 exhibit led by Norma Feingold, curator, with Nancy Sadick, Elaine Feingold, Sally Levinson and a team of community volunteers at 5:30. The evening continues with a light reception and Water Street video within the WHM’s auditorium, and concludes with Stuart Sadick commentary, “Water Street is Alive.” The exhibit will be running through mid-February at the Worcester Historical Museum.
WATER STREET: WORLD WITHIN A WORLD was a “landmark” exhibition offered by Worcester Historical Museum from November 30, 1983 to March 21, 1984. It captured a moment in time for the city, shared a major chapter in the history of Worcester Jewish community, and signaled the transition of Worcester Historical Museum to full realization of its unique role as the museum of all of Worcester’s history and people.
WATER STREET was “about a way of life that no longer exists.” It was about people; it captured the spirit of a place and a place. The exhibit, the catalog and the accompanying video—all the work of Norma Feingold, curator, Nancy Sadick, Elaine Feingold, Sally Levinson and a team of dedicated volunteers, researchers, lenders and donors–offered significant glimpses into a world that “now exists mainly in memory, yet is strongly reflect in the attitudes and habits of those whose lives were touched by it.”
Today that history—the larger story and the stories, artifacts, and images that inform it–is as important and significant as it was thirty-five years ago as a mirror of community. As Feingold wrote in conclusion in the WATER STREET catalog, reflecting on the street in 1983:
People representing a wide range of ethnic groups and economic levels come from all parts of the city and from neighboring towns. For many a trip to Water Street is part of a Sunday ritual. Some come to connect with childhood memories; others come mainly to socialize. Politicians come, and people with causes who need signatures on petitions. The street belongs to everyone. For some it is a new discovery; for others, it will always echo the past.
Thirty-five years later, “Water Street is still alive, but it is not a ‘Jewish street’ anymore,” as Norma Feingold, exhibition curator, wrote. Although Water Street has evolved over the past thirty-five years, it still “belongs to everyone.” Join us as we revisit Water Street… and Celebrate Worcester!
Free, but reservations are required: 508.753.8278 (Mon 1-3:30; Tues-Sat 9:30-3:30)