The Springfield Museums have received $20,000 from the Verizon Foundation to develop technology-based educational programs for the planned new Museum of Springfield History and Technology. The donation is the first installment of a three-year, $60,000 grant.
The new museum will be located in the former Verizon building on Chestnut Street. The Springfield Museums purchased the building in July with a gift from the late Allen Swift of West Hartford. The Verizon building also stands on the site where the artist James McNeill Whistler lived for several years as a child in the 1840s. In addition to awarding the grant, Carol Baribeau, Verizon's regional director for public affairs, presented the Museums with a photograph of the Whistler home as well as a print of the famous painting Arrangement in Grey and Black: Portrait of the Painter's Mother (commonly known as "Whistler's Mother"). She also donated a lobby plaque that commemorated the opening in 1940 of what was originally the New England Telephone building.