The 2016 History Camp Boston t-shirt

This year’s design recognizes the 250th anniversary of the repeal of the Stamp Act. (More on the selection of this theme and design below.)  The shirts will be a thinner, cotton-poly mix popular today.

To reduce costs and make sure that we only printed as many as people wanted, shirts had to be ordered in advance, when people registered.  Once all the spots were taken, we cut off registration and will print the number ordered.

Thanks to designer David Alderman for this year’s design.  (David designed last year’s, too.)  And thanks to everyone who contributed suggestions and discussed ideas for this year’s shirt.  Background on this year’s theme is below.

2016 History Camp Boston t-shirt



About this year’s theme

This year’s History Camp Boston t-shirt celebrates 250 years since the repeal of the Stamp Act.

Jacob Sconyers (@BostonStrolls)— History Camp veteran (2014 – 2016) and founder of Boston Strolls (, supplied this historical note:

One of the first direct taxes levied on the colonies, the Stamp Act became a focus of resistance against Parliamentary overreach and the ultimate symbol of taxation without representation. After a year of protests and even riots in the streets of Boston, Parliament passed a law repealing the hated Stamp Act on March 18, 1766. When the happy news finally reached Massachusetts, the Boston Gazette described the celebration. “The Bells in the Town were set a ringing, the Ships in the Harbour display’d their Colours, Guns were discharged in different Parts of the Town, and in the Evening were several Bonfires… The Morning was ushered in with Musick, Ringing of Bells, and the Discharge of Cannon, the Ships in the Harbour and many of the Houses in Town being adorned with Colours — Joy smil’d in every Countenance.”

About this year’s design

The image shows (in black) the skull, cross bones, and text that some printers, who hated the tax, used to indicate where the stamp was to go, over one of the stamps (in white).  In reality, the stamp would have appeared over the skull and cross bones, but since this is the year of the repeal, we thought this worked symbolically and graphically.

There were several good ideas for this year’s theme. I chose this one because . . .

  • The Stamp Act marked a significant development as our country headed toward what ended up being a Revolution.  (The 250th anniversary of the imposition of the tax was last year; we didn’t feature it on that year’s shirt.)
  • It was tied to the Revolutionary period, which Boston is known for. This isn’t to suggest that every year’s should be tied to this period, but given the importance of the Stamp Act, it seemed fitting.
  • We were able to find images that, when printed on a shirt, immediately communicated the Stamp Act.

We’ll revisit the other suggestions for this year’s them when we begin planning next year’s History Camp Boston.

There were two modifications to the historical images:

  • The “250” at the bottom is in recognition of the anniversary.
  • The barcamp “flame” was inserted toward the top. (This graphical element also appears in the History Camp logo. Here are some of the other ways barcamps around the world have included the flame.)