The Schoharie County Historical Society has announced their 2022 Summer Lecture Series lineup. The lectures, led by a full slate of local historians, authors, and artists, will be held at historically significant locations along the Schoharie Valley, including Lasell Hall, the Dr. Best House Museum, and the Schoharie Colonial Heritage Association on Depot Lane in Schoharie.
The 2022 Summer Lecture Series will kick off on Thursday, July 14th at 7 pm at Lasell Hall, on Main Street in Schoharie with host historian Jeff O’Connor, author of the first installment of a three-volume series Skohere and the Birth of New York’s Western Frontier 1609-1731.
Volume one of O’Connor’s trilogy spans 1609-1686. While the three-volume series builds toward the arrival of the refugees called Palatines in the Schoharie Valley, beginning in 1712, and their impact on extending the western frontier of New York.
The first volume is a sweeping narrative that begins to connect a far-reaching network of people and events that helped shape its earliest colonial history of the Schoharie Valley. The author will discuss people who may have had knowledge of the valley, along with those who would possess it.
Jeff O’Connor is an accomplished historian who has a deep connection to the Schoharie County historical community. He and his wife Pam team up as Turning Point 1777 to provide guided walking and driving tours in Schoharie County, flag reproductions, living history, and publications.
The 2022 Summer Lecture Series will continue on Thursday, July 28th at 7 pm, with local folk artist John Wilkinson who will talk about his folk art paintings of Schoharie County at the Schoharie Colonial Heritage Association located on Depot Lane in Schoharie.
Wilkinson has been painting scenes of life in Schoharie County for more than 20 years. He pains farm scenes, parades, special events, village scenes, and more, in his distinctive folk art style. The artist will speak about how he develops painting ideas and what attracts him to a particular subject.
In all, Wilkinson estimates he has created more than 150 paintings and he will be showing some of his favorite and most significant works in a prepared slide show. Additionally, original paintings will be on display and many of his prints, greeting cards, and his recently published book, titled The Heart of Schoharie County, will be available for purchase.
On Thursday, August 18th, 7 pm the 2022 Summer Lecture Series will continue with “A Crossing Situation”, presented by David Brooks, Education Director at Schoharie Crossing State Historic Site at Lasell Hall.
The presentation explains how the Schoharie Creek was actually an impediment to the Erie Canal before the artificial river was opened and how Erie Canal engineers and builders determined how to cross the waters of the Schoharie, from the earliest dams to the incredible John B Jervis-designed Schoharie Creek Aqueduct, and what that meant for the success of the Erie Canal.
The 2022 Summer Lecture Series will conclude at 7 pm on Thursday, August 25th at the Dr. Best House and Medical Museum, located at 1568 Clauverwie Road, in Middleburgh. Lecturer Bobbi Ryan will reveal unexplained events and mysteries lurking in the shadows at the Dr. Best Museum.
The program will be a unique adventure taking place within the museum and amongst the worldly possessions of the Best family, reaching back to the 1880s and beyond, featuring unexplained events, evidence from previous paranormal investigations, and first-hand accounts of these experiences.
Due to limited seating in the event space, registration is required for the Dr. Best House event and can be made by calling the Old Stone Fort Museum at (518) 295-7192.
Admission to all of the 2022 Summer Lecture Series events is $5. Admission for Schoharie County Historical Society members is free.
For more information on these events and for more resources on Schoharie County history, visit the Old Stone Fort Museum and Schoharie County Historical Society website.
Photo of Schoharie Crossing on Erie Canal provided.
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