In the spring of 2001, Janice Williams Rutherford's graduate public history seminar, "Interpreting History through Material Culture" at Washington State University joined in a collaborative project with the staff at Campbell House, a historic house museum owned by the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture in Spokane, Washington, and outside museum consultant Margaret Piatt. The students undertook the research required to draft a new interpretive script for the museum and worked with staff and consultant to identify appropriate objects and suggest interpretive dialogue gleaned from the archival research. Steven E. Shay, one of the students from the seminar, continued working with museum staff after the academic semester ended to refine the script for adults and school children. The project was a successful learning experience in the area of academic/public collaboration. This article explores its successes and its limitations.

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