Americans Who Tell the Truth, July 2019

A group of local residents brought Robert Shetterly’s inspiring project,  Americans Who Tell the Truth, Models of Courageous Citizenship, to Ipswich in July 2019.  The work is a collection of painted portraits and narratives that highlight the numerous contributions of ordinary and well-known citizens alike, who have affected change in the social, economic and environmental landscape of America over the past 200 years.

The Ipswich exhibit presented a non-partisan representative sample of 25 to 30 portraits selected by community groups and sponsors. The portraits displayed at three locations in Ipswich, including Zumi’s Espresso, the Ipswich Museum and True North Ale Brewery, throughout the month of July 2019.


July 2: Sounding the Stone: Finding Your Poem: Elizabeth Gordon McKim invites you to attend her poetry workshop, Sounding the Stone: Finding Your Poem. The workshop is suitable for folks who write poetry and for those who have not tried, until now! Elizabeth is a poet, spoken word performance artist, editor, and teacher of poetry for people of all ages.
She is a Lesley University professor and travels the world teaching poetry.

July 3-31: Hours: Mon. 8-7 pm, Tues. -Thurs. 8-4pm, Fri. 8-12pm.  Ipswich celebrates Citizens Who Tell the Truth at the Town Hall Gallery, featuring local artist-interpreted portraits of citizens of Ipswich who have Told The Truth.
Exhibit open Monday-Friday, July 3-31.

July 3: Grand Opening.  Time: 5-7pm, Ipswich Town Hall. Presenter: Master of Ceremony State Rep. Brad Hill

July 7: 4 Portraits Live Through Dance & Music (2 Shows): Times: 5:00 & 6:30 pm – Ipswich Museum.  Presenters: Ipswich Moving Co. & Labor in Vain.  Janet Taisey Craft along with dancers Jessie Boudreau, Jenny Carlson, Danielle DiVito, and Tabitha Rodger of the Ipswich Moving Company, have created dances based on four portraits from Robert Shetterly’s collection, “Americans Who Tell The Truth”. The dances will be performed to the music of Labor in Vain and include three original compositions by Chris Florio. This concert is based upon the lives and work of four Americans: Frances Crowe, Frances Perkins, Woody Guthrie, and Nicole and Jonas Maines. To reserve a seat, contact the Ipswich Museum at office@ipswichmuseum. org, (978) 356-2811.
Suggested donation/$20.

​July 9: Songs of Resistance.  Time: 7-7:30 pm – Downtown Riverwalk.  Presenter: Rise Up Community Singers.  Enjoy the choral music of this community group as they share their renditions of songs of resistance.  July 9: Downtown Tuesdays: Americans Who Tell the Truth (through the language of jazz) Time: 7:30-9:30 pm – Downtown Riverwalk. Presenters: Chris Florio and Tom Palance.
Jazz from artists who tell the truth through their music and words.

July 10: Telling the Truth: James Bell and Phillip Berrigan,  Two Americans Who Looked at War and Prison from the Inside. Time: 7-9 pm – The Meetinghouse Green
Presenters: Brad Clark, John Schuchardt, & Rebecca Pugh with special guest, Robert Shetterly.
A talk about violence and non-violence accompanied by portraits of Berrigan and

​July 11-13 TTS Camp (registered campers only).  Time: 9-11am – Ascension Church
Presenter: Robert Shetterly.  Children’s art class examining truth-telling
through art.

​July 11: Brown Bag Lunch/Gallery Talk.  Time: 12-1:30 pm – Ipswich Museum
Presenter: Robert Shetterly.  The artist will talk about the lives and legacies
of the Americans who are represented in the portraits at the Ipswich Museum

​July 11: Dow
Arts Sponsored Family Art Class.
title to register for this event.

Time: 2-4 pm – Ipswich Museum.  Presenter: Robert Shetterly. Multi-generational
family art class.

July 11: Americans Who Tell the Truth: Who Are They? Where Did They Come From? Where Are We Going? *Click title to register for this event.
Time: 7-9 pm – Ipswich Library, Rogers Room.  Presenter: Robert Shetterly.  The original story of the Americans Who Tell the Truth portrait series and how its mission has transformed over time. The artist will talk about what he thinks it means now, and how he chooses the portrait subjects. He will also address art and activism, and tell stories of several of the portrait subjects.
Plenty of time for Q & A.

July 12: ZUMI’S Meet and Greet.  Time: 9-9:45 am – ZUMI’S. Presenter: Robert Shetterly.
Come share a cup of coffee with the artist.

July 12: Profiles and Portraiture Art Class (please call 978-356-6650 to register).  Time: 10-12 pm – Ipswich Council on Aging.  Presenter: Robert Shetterly.
This class is open to anyone interested in taking a class with the artist.

​July 12: Examining the Truth; Workshop.  Time: 2-4 pm – Town Hall Gym
Presenter: Robert Shetterly. The artist will lead a discussion exploring some of the most potent, challenging quotes in the series.
This will create an opportunity to work together in small groups ending with a
large group discussion.

July 12: Community Opening Reception.  5-7pm – Ipswich Town Hall.  Presenter: AWTT Organizing Committee.  Please join the organizing committee as we welcome artist Robert Shetterly to our town and hear about his portrait project, Americans Who Tell the Truth: Models of Courageous Citizenship. Prepare to be inspired!

July 13: ZUMI’S Meet and Greet.  8:30-10 am – ZUMI’S. Presenter: Robert Shetterly.
Come share a cup of coffee with the artist.

July 13: Truth-tellers Speak! Youth Art Class (ages 10-18) Time: 10:30-12-30 pm – Hall-Haskell House Green.
title to register for this event.
 Presenter: Robert Shetterly.  This class
is geared for youth and will examine truth-telling through art.

July 13: Meet the Artist. Time: 1-2:30 pm – Heart and Soul Cafe.  Presenter: Robert Shetterly.
Meet and talk with the artist.

​July 13: Meet and Greet.  Time: 3-4:30 pm – True North Taproom
Presenter: Robert Shetterly. Come share a brew with the artist as he talks about
the collection at True North Taproom.

July 13 & 14: Speak Up: Truthful Voices.  Time: 7:30 pm – Downtown Riverwalk
Presenter: Alumnae Theater. Experience the voices of truthful Americans
throughout history in the Alumnae Theater’s interactive portrait gallery.

July 17: Tea
and Civility.
 *Click title to register for this event.
Time: 7-8:30 pm – The Crane Estate.  Presenter: Trina Schell.  Do you miss civil discourse? Join us for a cup of tea and an evening of quality conversation. This intimate gathering is limited to 10 conversationalists and is part of Americans Who Tell the Truth, an Ipswich community engagement project held July 1-29. Our discussion topic will be sent to you prior to the gathering.  Admission includes tea and sweets.  $15/$9 Register at www. thetrustees. org.

​July 18: Event TBD (Please check our website for updates) Time: 7-9pm – The Ipswich Library

Date: 7/21: Stand Up and Sing! Pete Seeger’s Songs for Young People. Time: 10-11:30 am – Hall-Haskell House Green. Presenter: Orville Giddings.
A family concert inspired by Pete Seeger’s music for young people.

July 22-28: Community Creates: Local Artistic Reflections on Americans Who Tell the Truth.
Time: 10-5 pm – Hall-Haskell House. A Community Engagement Project. Come and view the art that has been produced through our month-long community engagement project, Americans Who Tell the Truth

July 22: Facing History: America’s History of Wildlife Management 1630-2020. Time: 7-8 pm – Hall-Haskell House Presenter: Zee Soffron

July 22: Sing! Sing! Sing! Songs inspired by Pete Seeger and Woody Guthrie
Time: 5-7pm – Appleton Farm, Carriage Barn.  Presenter: Labor-in-Vain. A picnic
family concert inspired by the music of Pete Seeger and Woody Guthrie.

July 25: Creative Courage: How Artists and Activists Tackle the Tough Stuff. Time: 7-9 pm – Hall-Haskell House. Presenter: Cynthia August.  Americans Who Tell the Truth is a series of portraits of citizens, past and present, whom the artist Robert Shetterly calls, “models of courageous citizenship”. But the painter and his work are also excellent examples of the very thing he celebrates.
What does it take to make art that inspires and encourages activism? Join us for
a moderated conversation about the role of creativity in courageous citizenship.

July 26: Poets Who Tell the Truth. Time: 7-9 pm – Hall-Haskell House. Presenter: Blaine Hebble.
An evening of truth-telling through the voice of local poets.

​July 27: Community Closing Reception. Time: 5-7pm – Hall-Haskell House.
Come join us as we reflect on the art, discourse, and artistic endeavors that
help us engage in our democracy.

July 28: What is “News” in Today’s World? Time: 7-9 pm – Boone Hall, Ascension Memorial Church.  Presenter: Helen Weatherall.  If news happens and people scroll past it, or only read the headline – is it news? Does it matter? As change continues to rock journalism and other media the repercussions impact our towns and our lives.
Join us for a roundtable discussion with journalists William Wasserman, John
Muldoon, Dan MacAlpine, Steward Lytle, and Doug Brendel to explore the state of
communication today.

Visit the Ipswich Americans Who Tell the Truth website

John Wise house Tercentenary sign, Essex MA The Rev. John Wise of Ipswich - The concepts of freedom about which Thomas Jefferson wrote in the Declaration of Independence originated from the pen of the Rev. John Wise of Ipswich: "The origin of civil power is the people...and when they are free, they may set up what species of government they please."
Sally Weatherall - Sally's Pond on South Main St. is dedicated to the memory of Sally Weatherall, who volunteered many hours to her Town as a member of the Conservation Commission and helped achieve development of the Open Space Plan.
Ipswich, Slavery and the Civil War - In 1765, Jenny Slew, a slave in Ipswich, successfully sued John Whipple Jr. for her freedom. In the mid-19th Century, divisions between ardent abolitionists, moderate anti-slavery people and those who avoided the discussion divided families, churches and the town of Ipswich.
Eunice Stanwood Caldwell Cowles - Eunice Caldwell attended Ipswich Female Seminary from 1828 to 1829, where she began a lasting friendship with Mary Lyon. She married the Reverend John Phelps Cowles in 1838, and returned to Ipswich in 1844 to reopen the Seminary, which they ran until it closed in 1876.
Emma Safford, Ipswich MA Emma Jane Mitchell Safford - Across Green Street from the Ipswich Town Hall is a sign on a fence, commemorating Emma Jane Mitchell Safford. She is documented as the last descendant of Massasoit, Sachem (tribal leader) of the Wampanoag when the Pilgrims arrived at Plymouth in 1620. While the term "Indian Princess" is an English construct and Massachusetts was not named after Massasoit, the story is one that has endeared Ipswich residents for decades.
Slave stories “My grandfather belonged to Thomas Jefferson.” - A story first recorded in the 1940's about slavery, as told by people who were slaves.
Appleton's Pulpit Massachusetts Bay Colony Tercentenary Commission The defiant Samuel Appleton - In 1687, a warrant was issued for the arrest of several Ipswich men for being "seditiously inclined and disaffected to his Majesty's government." The 62-year-old Major Samuel Appleton scorned the appearance of submission and remained imprisoned in the cold Boston Jail through the winter.
Freedom for Jenny Slew - Jenny Slew was born about 1719 as the child of a free white woman and a black slave. She lived her life as a free woman until 1762 when she was kidnapped and enslaved by John Whipple. Jenny Slew is believed to be the first person held as a slave to be granted freedom through trial by jury. In November of 1766 the jury ruled in favor of the plaintiff and ordered Whipple to free Jenny Slew. She was awarded £4 in damages and £5 in costs.