Sandy Spector

Creating Tactile and Emotional Connections to Make History Relevant

How does one bring history to life? As most of our audience knows, it is not just about names, dates, and places. It is about the connection between a person of that time and the modern day visitor. This is created through emotions, relatable feelings and experiences that transcend time, and tactile interactions that make time travel possible. Visitors need to recognize themselves in the interpreter, so that they may easily relate to them and retain the information being imparted.

In this session, Sandy Spector, or Martha Washington, shared how her audiences end up nodding their heads in agreement, or shaking their heads in commiseration, through her visits with them. She will share what elements connect her to her guests—both in a physical and in an emotional fashion.

[Recorded August 12, 2023]

Sandy Spector has been a Revolutionary War reenactor since 2000, but now finds herself in her favorite role, Martha Washington. She now spends most of her time researching and interpreting Mrs. Washington and has been portraying Martha—alone or with George (John Koopman, III)—in multiple states and venues for the past 8 years, including the National Park Service’s Washington’s Headquarters in Cambridge, MA and Washington’s Headquarters, in Newburgh, NY. As well, she works with classrooms, libraries, historical societies, and various associations virtually and in person throughout the US. She is currently writing a book about Martha Washington—in Martha’s voice!

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