Posts Tagged ‘history’

Monday, February 6, 2012

7:00-9:00 pm

National Museum of Natural History

Baird Auditorium

10th Street and Constitution Avenue, NW

Metro: Smithsonian/Federal Triangle

NPR’s Tell Me More host Michel Martin and Prof. Annette Gordon-Reed, Prof. of Law, Harvard University, and Pulitzer Prize-Winning author of The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family will discuss the lives of six slave families living at Monticello alongside Jefferson and his family. They will also explore ideas about how Thomas Jefferson and the 11 other American Presidents who owned slaves could have used the power of their office to end slavery and improve the lives of free black communities across the U.S., and chose not to. This program is based on the exhibition, Slavery at Jefferson’s Monticello: Paradox of Liberty. Copies of The Hemingses of Monticello, and Andrew Johnson will be available for sale and signing. The event is free and open to the public on a first come-first seated basis. Please call 202/633-0070 for more information.

via NMAAHC – Home Page.


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The More Things Change….

…the more they stay the same.

“…After the…bubble burst…they were eager to go wherever new opportunities presented themselves.  The biggest losers were the newcomers and the chronic poor who had tried to get rich quick.  Speculation…had driven the price up so fast that houses and businesses were mortgaged to the hilt…when the craze stopped abruptly and paralyzed commerce…”

What does it sound like we are talking about here?  Can you fill in the missing words?  Does it in part sound rather like events you yourself might have witnessed in recent years?

A tulip, known as “the Viceroy”, displayed in a 1637 Dutch catalog, cost a minimum of ten times the annual earnings of a skilled craftsman.

The year?  1637.  The place?  Netherlands.  The passage is from Our New Netherlands Immigrant Ancestors by Virginia Carpenter Jansen,[1]talking about tulip mania’s effect on Dutch immigrants: “Our New Netherlands immigrants that came to America were from Belgium, Germany and Norway as well as from Holland and other Dutch provinces. Most went to the booming city of Amsterdam to find work or to escape religious persecution. They lived there less than a generation before they moved again to the New World during the period 1632 to 1665.  After the bubble burst they were eager to go wherever new opportunities presented themselves…”

[1] Jansen, Virginia Carpenter. “Chapter 27. Westfall Ancestry of the Jansen Daughters.” Westfall Emigrants to America. webpages.charter.net/gjansen/famwes.htm (accessed April 4, 2011).

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I intended for this blog to be a repository for my genealogy tips, thoughts and reflections that were too lengthy to for wall posts.  The past few months have been so busy I have yet to get back to it.  But now I resolve to post more regularly.

This June I traveled with my siblings to Sweden where we visited my mother’s ancestral home.  In Lycksele and Vägsele we saw my grandparents’ birthplaces.  We visited churches and historic sites in Göteborg, Stockholm, the High Coast, Umeå, Lycksele, Tärnaby and Östersund, hiking many miles each day sightseeing both cities and mountain wilderness. I met my genealogist cousin with whom I had corresponded for several years, and his parents who had originally helped my parents research my mother’s ancestry.  We shared some wonderful times with this family and stored up memories to last a lifetime.  After I returned I discovered through a Facebook post that a local friend shares my ancestry.  She connected me with another Swedish cousin who sent me this photo of my ancestors, John Philipson Hilduinen and his wife Hildur, who walked from northern Finland ca 1670 and built the first settlement in Lycksele parish, Örträsk.

In July I gave a talk to the New York Chapter of the Wing Family of America for their annual reunion, this year held at the picturesque and historic  Inn at Dover Furnace.  My presentation included a virtual tour of nearby Wing family related sites: Old Drovers Inn, also the first town hall for the Town of Dover; the Benson Lossing home; and Wing Post Office and Store on Chestnut Ridge.  

Following the meeting we toured, in person, the Tabor-Wing House in Dover Plains (above). Some reunion goers then hiked to the Dover Stone Church (above) where Pequot Sachem Sassacus is thought to have sought refuge when pursued by the English soldiers in 1637.  Though the afternoon was exceptionally hot even for July, those who took the hike wrote to say they were very pleased to have made the effort and intended to return with other family members.  Still others drove to Pawling to visit the Oblong Meeting House and Mehitable Wing Monument on Quaker Hill, and were pleasantly surprised to find the Meeting House open for visitors.

August was a busy month!  I continued updating the web site for the National Association of Leavitt Families and collected material for our quarterly newsletter Leavitt Leaves.  Lots of work this time adding reunion photos and news….this year the reunion was in Turner, ME, and I was very sorry to have missed it while traveling in Sweden.  The Dutchess County Genealogical Society had a booth at the Dutchess County Fair. Our VP of Education, Mary Ann Zatlukal did an excellent job of setting up the volunteer schedule and the displays for this event…as President I did not really have to do much except show up for my shift!  Our County Clerk joined us on opening day to help greet guests and discuss how the Courthouse records can help researchers.  

But…by far for me the most exciting family history event in August was an addition to my own family tree…the arrival of my first grandson, in New York City…he made his appearance in the midst of hectic times, but safely, just before Hurricane Irene.

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