Michigan History Magazine Moving to State Historical Society
September 18, 2009
The Historical Society of Michigan and the Michigan Department of History, Arts and Libraries are pleased to announce that an agreement has been signed to transfer Michigan History magazine from the Department to the Society effective October 1.
Michigan History is among those state history magazines with the highest circulation in the United States. It was first published in 1917 as a journal and evolved into its current magazine format in 1978. Recent state budget cuts and the elimination of the Department of History, Arts and Libraries, also effective October 1, put the continuation of Michigan History magazine at risk.
The Historical Society of Michigan is the state’s oldest cultural organization, founded in 1828 by territorial governor Lewis Cass and explorer and surveyor Henry Schoolcraft. It is a non-governmental non-profit that focuses on education, publications, conferences, award and recognition programs and support for local historical organizations.
President Kendall Wingrove commented that “Michigan History magazine remains one of the most respected publications of its kind. For decades, the magazine has set the standard. It is vital that this high level of quality be maintained in the years ahead as we continue to share memorable stories about our state’s heritage.”
The Society 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.
Governor Jennifer Granholm’s Executive Order 2009-36 directed that future management and publication of Michigan History magazine be transferred from the Michigan Department of History, Arts and Libraries (HAL) to a non-profit agency. The Society was selected to take it over. “We’re very proud of Michigan History magazine’s award-winning tradition of bringing Michigan’s authentic and exciting story to it’s readers” interim HAL director Mark Hoffman said. “I look forward to working with the Society on this transition.”
“We are very pleased that we could step up to the plate and ensure that this outstanding magazine did not fall victim to the financial challenges facing the State of Michigan,” commented Larry Wagenaar, Executive Director of the Society. “HSM published the magazine’s predecessor, the annual Michigan Pioneer and Historical Collections, and was involved in the process of producing Michigan History with the Michigan Historical Commission until 1948 when the Commission and the Society formally disengaged from one another. We are honored to be in a position to take the magazine forward and reengage a historic relationship after a sixty year absence.”
Staff of the Department and Society are fully engaged in a process to transfer all of the magazine’s functions in a very short timeframe. Due to the transfer the first issue published by the Society, the November-December 2009 issue, is expected to arrive in subscriber homes approximately 3-4 weeks later than normal. “We expect that by the third or fourth issue we will be fully caught up and operating on the previous timetable,” Wagenaar said.
To learn more about Michigan History magazine, visit www.hsmichigan.org/michiganhistory.
For more information on the Historical Society of Michigan visit www.hsmichigan.org .