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Discover dynamic education programs and curriculum resources about the history of our city, state, and nation.

Institute for Constitutional History

Education Mission

The New-York Historical Society Education Division provides dynamic programming and curriculum resources for students and teachers in New York and beyond. Historical study sparks curiosity and creativity, promotes cultural understanding, and fosters an empowered citizenry to strengthen our democracy. Our staff of passionate professionals draws on our world-renowned collections to engage learners of all ages in the study of our collective past.


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Education programs are made possible through endowments established by
National Endowment for the Humanities
The Hearst Foundations
The Peter Jay Sharp Foundation

Public funds are provided by
Institute of Museum and Library Services
New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council
Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer
New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature

Education programs at New-York Historical receive generous support from
Gillian V. and Robert Steel
Pine Tree Foundation of New York
Robert and Mercedes Eichholz Foundation
Stavros Niarchos Foundation
Altman Foundation
The Hearst Foundation, Inc.
Sherri and Darren Cohen
Deutsche Bank
Onassis Foundation USA
Rice Family Foundation
Susan Waterfall
Robie and Scott Spector
Keith Haring Foundation
Con Edison
Alan Shuch and Leslie Himmel
Richard Reiss
Barker Welfare Foundation
Consulate General of the Netherlands
Dan W. Lufkin
Susan and Robert E. Klein
The Michael Tuch Foundation
Max and Victoria Dreyfus Foundation
GWG Foundation
Placer Partners and Ray Lent, Managing Partner
Henry Nias Foundation
an anonymous donor


Help us present groundbreaking exhibitions and develop educational programs about our nation's history for more than 200,000 schoolchildren annually.


The Bonnie and Richard Reiss Graduate Institute for Constitutional History (ICH) sponsors or co-sponsors a variety of events during the academic year. Here is a partial list of upcoming and recent events:

Upcoming Events

The Law of Nations and the Early American Constitution: How Citizens, Aliens, Slaves, and Indians Struggled to Build a “Civilized Nation” (NYC Seminar)
Friday afternoons, 2-5 pm: January 31, February 14, 28, and March 13
Constitution-making in the United States originated in an international war and for decades remained a cosmopolitan drama in which Americans claimed to be constituting a “civilized nation.” In four sessions taking place at the New-York Historical Society, David Golove and Daniel Hulsebosch will lead an exploration of the ways that early Americans invoked the law of nations to make sense of, for example, what it meant to be a revolutionary republic in a world of nations; state-builders in the evening of Enlightenment; African-Americans in an “empire of liberty”; and Native Americans caught between encroaching settlers and a fragmented but powerful government. In these contests, the law of nations functioned as a dynamic field of principles, practices, and keywords through which diverse actors filled in constitutional meanings while arguing about how to structure their relationship with each other and the wider world.

The deadline to apply is December 30, 2019. LEARN MORE

Applications should be sent via email to MMarcus@nyhistory.org.

The Creation of the Constitution (D.C. Seminar)
Thursday nights, 6–8 pm, January 16, February 6, 27, March 19, April 2, 9, 2020
Few events have had more impact on American history than the framing and ratification of the Constitution. This seminar is designed to offer students with serious interests in history, political theory, and constitutional law an opportunity to learn more about these events by examining how the Constitution was created, debated, ratified, and interpreted during the origins of the Republic. Special attention will be given to early constitutional controversies involving implied powers, including slavery, western lands, the removal power, amendments, the federal judiciary, and the creation of a national bank. This seminar is led by John Mikhail across six sessions taking place at the George Washington University Law School in Washington, D.C.

The deadline to apply is December 20, 2019. LEARN MORE

Applications should be sent via email to MMarcus@nyhistory.org.



The Bonnie and Richard Reiss Graduate Institute for Constitutional History (ICH) is the nation’s premier institute dedicated to ensuring that future generations of Americans understand the substance and historical development of the U.S. Constitution. Located at the New York Historical Society and the George Washington University Law School, the Institute is co-sponsored by the American Historical Association, the Organization of American Historians, and the American Political Science Association. The Association of American Law Schools is a cooperating entity. ICH prepares junior scholars and college instructors to convey to their readers and students the important role the Constitution has played in shaping American society. ICH also provides a national forum for the preparation and dissemination of humanistic, interdisciplinary scholarship on American constitutional history.

Lead support for the Bonnie and Richard Reiss Graduate Institute for Constitutional History is provided by Richard Reiss and the Saunders Endowment for Constitutional History. The Bonnie and Richard Reiss Graduate Institute for Constitutional History is supported, in part, by a "We the People" challenge grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. 





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