The Tsongas Industrial History Center, which educates thousands of schoolchildren and teachers annually about the American Industrial Revolution, will kick off a series of events marking its 25th anniversary with a celebration for the public.

Twenty-five years ago, this unique partnership between UMass Lowell’s Graduate School of Education and the Lowell National Historical Park welcomed its first groups of students to the Boott Cotton Mills Museum in Lowell.

Thursday’s celebration will launch a series of anniversary events and provide attendees with the opportunity to see how the Tsongas Industrial History Center has grown and changed over the years while retaining the character and qualities that have made it so relevant to the more than 1 million teachers and students who have visited. Members of the public interested in attending the free event should RSVP no later than Wednesday, Oct. 12 to TIHC@uml.edu or 978-970-5080.

A new exhibit will be unveiled at the event. Speakers are scheduled to include U.S. Rep. Niki Tsongas, UMass Lowell Provost Michael Vayda and LNHP Superintendent Celeste Bernardo. More on the center’s 25th anniversary events is available at www.uml.edu/tihc-anniversary.

The Tsongas Industrial History Center provides unique field-trip programs and teacher workshops that incorporate hands-on activities and the authentic resources of Lowell National Historical Park to enliven the study of history, literature, art, science, technology and engineering. Programs also include in-school activities, local and national teacher professional development workshops and specialized offerings for college students, faculty and staff. The mission of the center is to inspire connections with and an understanding of America’s industrial past, present and future through experiential learning that uses Lowell’s unique resources.

The Tsongas Industrial History Center began as part of efforts by the late U.S. Sen. Paul Tsongas to revitalize Lowell by recognizing its special place in U.S. history. In 1978, Tsongas introduced federal legislation establishing Lowell National Historical Park, the first national park to focus on industrial history, and urged collaboration by UMass Lowell, the park and Lowell public schools. As that collaboration moved forward, a plan was established to use space in the Boott Cotton Mills, which were being redeveloped, for an education center. In 1985, the U.S. Senate approved the creation of “Paul E. Tsongas Industrial History Center” and after the completion of the renovation of Boott Mill No. 6, the center opened for programs in October 1991.