Between the States Symposium


The Tyler Museum of Art continues its commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the U.S. Civil War with the Between the States Symposium on Saturday, Jan. 31. Open to the public with free admission, the symposium is set for 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. in the Jean Browne Theatre located on the Tyler Junior College campus across from the TMA at South Mahon Avenue and Apache Pass.

Presented in conjunction with the exhibitions Between the States: Photographs of the American Civil War from the George Eastman House Collection and The American Civil War’s Impact on Tyler, the program will cover a wide variety of topics related to the U.S. Civil War including art, photography, North Texas’ role in the conflict and collecting period artifacts. Speakers include noted historian and author John C. Waugh, guest curator Dr. Letha Clair Robertson, photography expert Dr. Danny Sessums and Marsha Dixey from Heritage Auctions.

“It is our hope that the symposium will not only make the current exhibition more accessible to the public but also expand the knowledge of our community,” TMA Executive Director Chris Leahy said.

The symposium kicks off at 10 a.m. with “Defending North Texas in the Civil War” presented by Waugh, author of recently published Lincoln and the War’s End. He will spotlight key activities that took place in the northern region of Texas during the war. A book signing will follow his presentation.

Dr. Robertson, assistant professor of art and art history at the University of Texas at Tyler, presents “The Art of the Civil War” at 11:15 a.m. Her talk will cover a variety of works and artists from the era, including pieces by American artist Thomas Hicks on view in the exhibition.

Dr. Sessums continues the program with “Civil War Photography” at 2 p.m. He will discuss the science and techniques behind the various types of photographs used during the Civil War.

The symposium concludes from 3:15 to 4:30 p.m. with a panel discussion on collecting U.S. Civil War artifacts in today’s market moderated by Dixey, consignment director of the Historical Department of Heritage Auctions. Composed of local collectors, the panelists will share personal stories as well as insights into collecting.

Between the States: Photographs of the American Civil War from the George Eastman House Collection, organized by the George Eastman House in Rochester, N.Y., provides an encyclopedic overview of the war through period images.

Complementing that exhibition, The American Civil War’s Impact on Tyler highlights the role Tyler and Smith County played during the conflict. The exhibitions continue through February 15, 2015. Admission is free to the public, courtesy of underwriting by the Julietta Jarvis Foundation, Inc., Eleanor Cameron, Mrs. Ralph Spence, Carol and Jack Gibson, Marilyn Richey, Bitsy Wynne and the Robert M. Rogers Foundation.

The TMA, accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, is located at 1300 S. Mahon Ave. across from Wagstaff Gymnasium on the Tyler Junior College main campus. Regular hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and 1-5 p.m. Sunday; the Museum is closed Mondays and most major holidays. The TMA is supported by its Members, Tyler Junior College, and the City of Tyler. For information, call (903) 595-1001 or visit