This week on The Historians Podcast, an update on a previous program on the origins of the New York State Thruway from Tim Tielman of the Campaign for Greater Buffalo-History, Architecture and Culture. Tielman explains why the Thruway was built some miles south of Rochester. He also delves into historic preservation in greater Buffalo. [Read more…] about Why Does the Thruway Avoid Rochester?
In 1845, Amasiah Ford of Ballston Spa wrote a multi-page manuscript for his application seeking a veteran’s pension. The account of his military experience 30-plus years earlier would be used 150 years later as references in several books on the War of 1812. [Read more…] about Hard Times For War of 1812 Veteran Amasiah Ford
The Greece Historical Society (GHS) is the recipient of two grants totaling $30,000 to fund a Cultural Resource Survey of the architecture of noted Rochester African American architect Thomas W. Boyde, Jr.
The grants were awarded by the Preservation League of New York State and their program partners at the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) and the Rochester Area Community Foundation. [Read more…] about Upstate Historians Shine Light On A Noted Black Architect
Thomas W. Boyde, Jr. is Rochester’s foremost African American architect. He was a master of Mid-Century Modern home design and did significant work designing buildings for communities of color and the low-income communities.
Many of Boyde’s projects no longer exist or have been severely altered. [Read more…] about Survey Underway of Rochester African-American Architect’s Buildings
I offer the following tribute to Anna Douglass, first wife of Frederick Douglass and mother of their five children, on the anniversary of her death Aug. 4, 1882:
Both Frederick Bailey and Anna Murray were born in rural Maryland in the early 1800s and grew up under harsh racist customs that strictly defined roles for men and women by sex, race and class.
By the time Frederick and Anna met in the 1830s in Baltimore, his owner valued him as a slave who was a skilled caulker. Yet Anna, despite being a free woman skilled as a domestic and cook, was not well paid by her white employers. [Read more…] about Anna Murray-Douglass: Frederick’s Most Important Ally
Three dozen dealers from more than a half dozen states, from Minnesota to the Carolinas, be in Rochester October 19, to offer a trove of biblio-treasures including rare, collectible, first edition and scholarly titles as well as prints, maps, photographica, illuminated manuscripts and collectible ephemera.
Dealer inventories embrace a broad breadth of subject categories: art, advertising, politics, religion, sociology and psychology, medicine and science fiction, mystery and cooking are among the centuries of printed culture to be on view. [Read more…] about 47th Annual Rochester Antiquarian Book Fair Oct 19th
Ann Mitchell is set to perform Suffragettes UNITE! at the 2019 KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival on Thursday, September 19th, at 6:30 pm at the The Avyarium Theatre (274 Goodman St. N. Suite D242 – located at The Village Gate, Entrance B – 2nd floor). [Read more…] about Women’s Suffrage Performance in Rochester
Neighborhoods change. Ours was changing when my single parent mom managed to buy a modest house for cash in Rochester’s Near Northside in 1952. My mom was an immigrant from Toronto whose own mother had emigrated from England.
She had grown up in this working-class immigrant neighborhood somewhat northeast of downtown. In 1937, she graduated from Vocational High, located in the Bausch and Lomb plant. In 1952 she was newly divorced and had been hired to work on an assembly line – she could walk to work. [Read more…] about Rochester’s Near Northside and Neighborhood Change
I grew up in an immigrant neighborhood close to downtown Rochester, New York in the 1950s. People displaced during the Second World War, along with migrants from the American South and Puerto Rico, were the newest arrivals to my part of the city (settled by Europeans in the last decades of the 19th century).
The housing stock was old. Our house was built in 1895 by a German immigrant laborer from a pattern book plan, many of which were available in German language editions. It was a classic one and half story, front gable, wood frame worker’s cottage. It provided inexpensive housing for the rapidly expanding workforce needed for mid to late 19th-century industrial cities. When I grew up, my single-parent mom’s assembly line job at Bausch and Lomb Optical Company allowed her to be a homeowner and to support her mother and three children. [Read more…] about A Rochester Worker’s Cottage Has Lessons For Today
Susan Peterson Gateley’s new novel The Widow Maker, A Maritime Tale of Lake Ontario (Whiskey Hill Press, 2019) looks at the story of a female Lake Ontario sailor’s political enlightenment in the time of Rochester’s Susan B. Anthony, Oswego’s Dr. Mary Walker and Auburn’s Harriet Tubman.
The novel’s publication coincides with the centennial of the passage in Congress of the 19th amendment allowing the vote for women by the U. S. Congress (subsequently ratified in 1920). Much of the plot is based on actual historic events and takes place on Oswego’s waterfront in 1880 and on the open waters of Lake Ontario. [Read more…] about Widow Maker, A Maritime Tale of Lake Ontario