A live band accompanies the music-themed content of New Harmonies at the Randolph County Community Arts Center in Elkins, WV, in 2011.


The following venues have been chosen to host Crossroads while it tours West Virginia: The Jack Caffrey Arts and Culture Center in Welch; the new Coal Heritage Discovery Center in Mount Hope; the Museum of American Glass in Weston; Arthurdale Heritage in Arthurdale, Preston County; the Wetzel County Museum in New Martinsville; the Weirton Area Museum and Cultural Center; and Moorefield High School, sponsored by the Hardy County Convention and Visitors Bureau. Each venue will display Crossroads for approximately five weeks, and the final schedule will be announced this fall.Please contact Program Officer Kyle Warmack with any questions at 304.346.8500 or warmack@wvhumanities.org.


Changes have transformed rural America—and West Virginia—throughout the last century. What are some of these changes, and what have they meant for rural life? Why and how do people work to preserve and support their rural communities? What is rural life like today, and how are rural West Virginians shaping their future?


The West Virginia Humanities Council (WVHC), the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, is sponsoring a special West Virginia tour of Crossroads, an exhibit from the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Services (SITES) as part of their Museums on Main Street program (MoMS). WVHC has sponsored several MoMS exhibits over the last two decades, connecting twenty West Virginia counties with Smithsonian resources.


Crossroads will travel to seven West Virginia communities from August 2021 to June 2022 and is available only through WVHC. Sites are selected on the strength of their submitted applications including the narrative, appropriate display space, proposed ideas for local programs and exhibit(s), and geographic location.


Students in Rowlesburg, WV, learn about their own “hometown teams” at a community display incorporated into the Hometown Teams Museum on Main Street tour in 2014.Host institutions are expected to develop a variety of public humanities programs that expand on the themes presented in the exhibit.  These might include: lectures, films, and discussions about change within their town or region; interaction with the land; the evolving landscape as the populations of rural towns have grown smaller; the collective identities that motivate them to seek positive transformation of their communities; and more.


The West Virginia Humanities Council invited small museums, historical societies, historic properties, cultural organizations, and communities to apply to host Crossroads and provide public programs around the exhibit. Organizations in rural areas received priority, as the Museum on Main Street program targets rural communities.


CROSSROADS brings to your community:

  • A top-notch traveling exhibit designed by the Smithsonian team.
  • Up to $3,000 in WVHC funding for exhibit-related programming (additional funds can be applied for through WVHC’s regular competitive grant process).
  • Direct access to the project’s designated state scholar.
  • Capacity-building and professional development opportunities from WVHC and the Smithsonian.


CROSSROADS requires:

  • Minimum 800 square feet of open exhibit space; 1000 square feet recommended.
  • Commitment from your organization to create additional programming and content to augment the Smithsonian exhibit.
  • Dedicated staff or volunteers at your organization who can attend two planning meetings prior to hosting the exhibit, and spearhead coordination with other contributing organizations in your area.







Informational webinar

Follow the link for a video presentation on the Crossroads exhibit, and how it can benefit your organization and community. Presented in partnership with the Preservation Alliance of West Virginia.

View the presentation »