Michigan History (magazine)

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Michigan History magazine traces its roots to the Michigan Pioneer and Historical Collections, an annual single-volume publication first published in 1874 by the Michigan Pioneer and Historical Society, now called the Historical Society of Michigan. With publication of Volume 40 in 1916, the Pioneer Collections ceased production. The following year, the Michigan Historical Commission, organized in 1913, and the Michigan Pioneer and Historical Society introduced the journal Michigan History. The Society and Commission worked closely together and the Society remained involved with the journal until 1965. Both the members of the Michigan Historical Commission and the Board of Trustees of the Historical Society of Michigan are listed in the front matter of each issue. The Commission and Society formally parted ways in 1948.

History and profile[edit]

The Michigan Pioneer and Historical Society was reorganized in 1874 as the Historical Society of Michigan established by Michigan territorial governor Lewis Cass and explorer Henry Schoolcraft in 1828 had become inactive. It was renamed the State Historical Society of Michigan in the early twentieth century and, in 1948, returned to the original 1828 moniker of the Historical Society of Michigan.

For sixty years, Michigan History was a traditional academic quarterly publication. In 1978 the journal converted to a popular magazine format and became a bimonthly publication. In 1978, Michigan History had 5,000 subscribers eventually growing to over 25,000 paid subscribers.

In July 2009 Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm issued Executive Order 2009-36 which in part directed that Michigan History magazine be transferred to a non-profit, society or foundation. On October 1, 2009 the magazine moved to the Historical Society of Michigan, a non-governmental non-profit and the same organization that had been involved in producing the publication from its founding through 1965. The Society then established the subsidiary Michigan History Magazine L3C. Former editorial staff did not move with the magazine. New staff was announced in October 2009 and Patricia Majher was announced as Editor. Historical Society of Michigan Executive Director Larry J. Wagenaar serves as the magazine's Publisher. Along with Assistant Editor Maria Taylor, Majher oversaw the magazine's first redesign in more than a decade, adding a variety of new features to appeal to a millennial audience as well as increase readability among older subscribers. With Majher's departure in May 2016, the Society reorganized its editorial staff into a new group that would oversee the organization's three major magazines - Michigan History, Chronicle and Michigan History for Kids. The new HSM Magazines editorial team includes Nancy Feldbush as Editor in Chief and Creative Director, Christopher Blaker as Features Editor, and Andrea McBride as Special Sections Coordinator. Maureen Beucking was added as the Society's new Graphics and Multimedia Manager which includes the design of Michigan History. On July 1, 2016 the subsidiary Michigan History Magazine L3C was dissolved by the Society's Board of Trustees and Michigan History was merged into the main operations of the Historical Society of Michigan.

Every issue of Michigan History tells exciting stories of Michigan people and places, is filled with bold illustrations and colorful photos and highlights history-related books and places to visit.

From September 2001 the State of Michigan's Michigan History magazine also published Michigan History for Kids magazine. Michigan History for Kids began as a free publication to all fourth grade students in Michigan (over 180,000). State budget restraints forced it to become a subscription-only magazine in 2004. Lower than expected subscription rates which required the publication to operate at a loss led to termination of the magazine by the state in early 2009. In May 2014 the Historical Society of Michigan announced that Michigan History for Kids would be re-launched with support from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. The first issue appeared in early 2015 with two "soft launch" issues used for testing in the classroom. The first widely available, premier issue was launched in September–October 2015. "Michigan History for Kids" is published bi-monthly throughout the school year (5 issues). A companion website, www.michigan.kids.org,[1] includes additional content and activities for students and teachers.

Michigan History is published by the Historical Society of Michigan.[2] The Historical Society of Michigan is dedicated to preserve, protect, interpret and celebrate the rich and diverse history of our state. Michigan History magazine fits squarely into the Society’s key mission areas. It also publishes the Chronicle, a forty-page magazine for members and cooperates with Central Michigan University in producing and distributing the scholarly Michigan Historical Review. Other publications include the Historic Michigan Travel Guide and the Michigan History Directory.

The Historical Society of Michigan operates several statewide conferences including the State History Conference (fall), Michigan in Perspective: the Local History Conference (March/April), Upper Peninsula History Conference (June), and Mulling Over Michigan for educators (fall/winter). It operates several award and recognition programs including the Centennial Farm Program,[3] Milestone Award Program, State History Awards and Upper Peninsula History Awards. The Society also provides support to local historical organizations statewide.

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