2016 Eartha Dengler History Award Ceremony to Honor Martha Lopez-Velez, June 23, 2016


It is with great pleasure that the Board of Directors of the Lawrence History Center announces the recipient of the 2016 Eartha Dengler History Award:

Martha Lopez-Velez

Born in Cuba, an immigrant to Lawrence at age five, Martha and her family came to the United States with the hope of a better life. Anchored in love for her family and her new city, Martha has wrapped her arms around all who live in Lawrence by creating a bridge between diverse cultures and by giving a voice, dignity, and respect to all she meets. Her leadership at the Lawrence Council on Aging and her commitment as director of the Lawrence Senior Center to a holistic approach in creating community has resulted in a vibrant, enriching environment that serves thousands of people a year—seniors, veterans, and entire families. In all that Martha does, she brings together her hard working nature, her grateful spirit, and her deep personal understanding of the sacrifices immigrant families make when they come to this country, to help lift up and strengthen the city of Lawrence for the future.

2016 Eartha Dengler History Award Host Committee

Laura Alefantis, Lawrence Senior Center
Terry Kelley, Merrimack Valley Community Services Corps
Vilma Lora, Mayor’s Health Task Force
Mary Morris Pannos, Lawrence History Center
Daniel Rivera, Mayor of Lawrence
JT Torres, New England Veterans Liberty House
Helen Tory, Essex Art Center
Francisco A. Ureña, Secretary of Veterans’ Services

Please join us as a guest and/or event sponsor on Thursday, June 23, 2016!

LHC Symposium 2016 - Reclaiming Urban Renewal in Lawrence, Massachusetts and Other Industrial Cities


This program is funded in part by Mass Humanities​, UMass Lowell, NECC, the Catherine McCarthy Memorial Trust Fund, the ECCF—Rosman Family Fund, and the Lawrence Cultural Council, a local agency supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

The Lawrence History Center will host a one-day symposium on the history of Urban Renewal in Lawrence, Massachusetts and Other Industrial Cities on Saturday, May 7, 2016 at the Everett Mill, 15 Union Street, Lawrence.

Please PRE-REGISTER for a full day of speakers, panel presentations, and other attractions!

Our morning Keynote Speaker:

lizabeth-cohen_photo-by-kathleen-dooher_1.jpgLizabeth Cohen
Dean, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study; Howard Mumford Jones Professor of American Studies, Department of History, Harvard University

"The Planners and the People: Boston's Urban Renewal Revisited"
An expert on 20th-century American social and political history, Lizabeth Cohen’s current book project, Saving America’s Cities: Ed Logue and the Struggle to Renew Urban America in the Suburban Age, considers the benefits and costs of rebuilding American cities through the life and career of urban planner Edward J. Logue, who contributed to major redevelopment projects across the Northeast, including the “New Boston” that emerged in the 1960s.

Presentations held throughout the day will address topics such as:

  • Preservation and Place-Making: Lawrence Heritage State Park and the New Urban Renewal
  • From Demolition to Preservation to Celebration: Renewing Lowell, Mass. (1965-2015)
  • Paternalism Inscribed on the Industrial City: The Case of Lawrence, Massachusetts
  • Addressing the Legacy of Urban Renewal: UMass Amherst Design Center in Springfield
  • Rocky’s Folly: Modernism, Urban Renewal, and Albany’s Empire State Plaza
  • Provenance, Preservation and Discovery: Urban Renewal Archival Resources in Lawrence, Massachusetts
  • Building Up, Spreading Out: Analyzing the Legacy of Buffalo’s Public Housing Projects During the Urban Renewal Era and Beyond
  • Lunchtime presentation: Urban Renewal in Lawrence through the “Rising” Voices of Bread Loaf
  • City Life/Vida Urbana: Just Cause Eviction & the Struggle for Community Control of Housing and Land (in Boston)
  • The Lawrence Redevelopment Authority (LRA): A New Urban Renewal Plan for a New Century
  • From Urban Renewal to Affordable Housing Production System: Boston Mayors and the Evolution of Community Development Corporations in Boston
  • Neighbors No More: Urban Renewal Comparisons and Research Methods in Lawrence and Lowell
  • Resurrecting a Vanished Neighborhood: Interpreting Urban Renewal at Boston’s West End Museum
  • And more!

      Registration Fee: $35.00 per person by 5:00 pm on April 29, 2016 / $40 per person after that time and at the door. The fee covers your full day of attendance, including a continental breakfast and lunch. Space is limited!


Tue–Fri: 9am-4pm
Sat: By appt
Sun-Mon: Closed


6 Essex Street
Lawrence, MA 01840

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Founded in 1978 as the Immigrant City Archives, the mission of the Lawrence History Center is to collect, preserve, share, and animate the history and heritage of Lawrence and its people.