History Happenings   Late July - Early August 2017
The History Center's Electronic Newsletter 
  
The Corner

At the heart of every not-for-profit is a board of trustees and The History Center is no different. At the end of this fiscal year we are saying so long to outgoing board members Lynn Thommen and Rhonda Gilmore and are welcoming new board members: Liz Bodner, Kim Cornish, Adam Klausner and Ron Ostman. 

Liz moved back to the area and has degrees from Cornell's College of Arts & Sciences and School of Veterinary Medicine.  Kim is a native of Cambridge, Maryland, and a descendant of Harriet Tubman. She is a graduate of Oberlin College with a B.A. in English with a specialization in Creative Writing and a minor in Women's Studies; she now holds a position of Education and Outreach Coordinator with the Tompkins County Office of Human Rights . Adam is a senior lecturer at the School of Hotel Administration, where he teaches Real Estate Law, Internet law, and Law for Entrepreneurs. Ron grew up in International Falls, Minnesota. His Ph.D. and M.A. are from the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, University of Minnesota and most recently is a Cornell University Graduate Professor Emeritus in Communication. 

You will find information about our trustees on our website . They are an incredible, dedicated group excited to be working toward a move to our new location on the Commons at the end of 2018. If you see them out and about ask them what most excites them about local history.

 
Executive Director of The History Center in Tompkins County

Everett Morse at his desk in the John Marcham Research Library at The History Center. Photo Credit ©RPhilipson
Happy 100th Birthday, Everett Morse!

Long-time volunteer Everett Morse celebrated his 100th birthday on July 5th, 2017! A mainstay in our research library for almost 20 years, Everrett recently retired from his weekly work on our General Photo Collection. Until just a few months ago he was here in our research library helping us keep this popular collection in order. In addition to that, he always offered his insights and considerable knowledge of local history to library patrons.

Everett was always a warm and welcome addition to our research library crew and we were sorry to see him retire, but we are delighted to honor him on this momentous birthday!

Happy 100th Everett!
Tompkins Center for History and Culture

Rod Howe, on behalf of the partners involved in the new proposed center, went before the Tompkins County Legislature last week seeking approval for a name for the new building on the Ithaca Commons that will house several community organizations, including The History Center.  Before endorsing the proposed name that the participants had developed with the help of Iron Design, the Tompkins County Legislature has asked that we seek additional community input.

The proposed name is the "Tompkins Center for History and Culture."  We arrived at this name for several reasons, including the following: (1) It fits within the requirements of the County policy on naming buildings; (2) It provides a reference to the County through the use of "Tompkins;" (3) It uses "Center" to recognize that it will be the home to several community organizations; and (4) It describes the shared purpose of the organizations that will participate.  We did not want a fanciful name that would not help visitors understand the shared purpose, such as a person's name or a brand.

While our group has considered many names, including several variations on this one, the consensus was that the "Tompkins Center for History and Culture" worked for us and the building.  But if you have a strong reaction to this name, good or bad, we would be glad to hear it.  If you have a new idea for a name, let us know.  If you think this name works well enough, tell us.  We will all live with the name we choose for a long time, so please weigh in by clicking on this link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/XLP8MBX by Saturday, July 15 at 5:00 p.m.

Thank you from The History Center in Tompkins County, Convention and Visitors Bureau - Downtown Visitors Center/Chamber of Commerce, Wharton Studio Museum, Historic Ithaca, Community Arts Partnership, Dorothy Cotton Institute, Sustainability Center, Ithaca Aviation Heritage Foundation, and the Discovery Trail.
Bookstore & Gift Shop Highlights 
*Items to be purchased in The History Center book store

Mention our newsletter and get 15% off from these new titles!

"The History of the Five Indian Nations: Depending on the Province of New-York in America"
by Cadwallader Colden, A Critical Edition

Colden's The History of the Five Indian Nations is a fascinating but complex book. Far from unbiased, it reflects its author's own political interests, as well as the general imperial concerns of the eighteenth-century British nation.
Cadwallader Colden (1688-1776) profoundly shaped the politics and culture of eighteenth-century New York. As a leading colonial statesman, he promoted British imperial expansion and defended the rights and privileges of the British Crown. As a scholar, he advanced American cartography, botany, medicine, natural history, physics, and moral philosophy. Colden's explanation of the cause of gravitation was printed in New York, London, Paris, and Hamburg in the 1740s and 1750s. His influential account of the Iroquois (or Haudenosaunee) confederacy, published in London in 1747, became a standard resource on Native American history.


"Jacob's Land: Revolutionary War Soldier, Schemers, Scoundrels, and the Settling of New York's Frontier"
by Charles Yaple

Jacob's Land...years in the making, is a carefully researched and factual account about life on New York's frontier before, during, and after the American Revolutionary War. Following the experiences of a German immigrant family, an Indian Leader (Joseph Brant), and George Washington's Surveyor General (Simeon DeWitt) it brings the hardships, dangers, ironies, and politics of the revolution up close and personal for the reader. Striking parallels with today's terrorist attacks, people (Indians and whites alike) on New York's frontier could never be certain when neighbors were plotting to raid, murder and burn. However, there is considerably more to the story than war episodes. It is about conquest and division of Iroquois Nation lands and creation of places like Ithaca that provided the agricultural and forest resources enabling New York to become the "Empire" State and the USA, a nation where common people enjoy lifestyles unheard of in the annals of history. Finally, Jacob's Land...is about our dwindling connection to the land and how that undermines the pursuit of happiness.

"New York Amish: Life in the Plain Communities of the Empire State,"  by Karen Johnson-Weiner

In a book that highlights the existence and diversity of Amish communities in New York State, Karen M. Johnson-Weiner draws on twenty-five years of observation, participation, interviews, and archival research to emphasize the contribution of the Amish to the state's rich cultural heritage.
Johnson-Weiner welcomes readers into the lives of Amish families in different regions of New York State, including the oldest New York Amish community, the settlement in the Conewango Valley, and the diverse settlements of the Mohawk Valley and the St. Lawrence River Valley. The congregations in these regions range from the most conservative to the most progressive. Johnson-Weiner reveals how the Amish in particular regions of New York realize their core values in different ways; these variations shape not only their adjustment to new environments but also the ways in which townships and counties accommodate-and often benefit from-the presence of these thriving faith communities.

July 24 - Celebrate Amelia Earhart's Birthday!

Through July 29th Amelia Doll is on 20% sale. 
The doll kit comes with a compass and a book Amelia Earhart: Legend of Flight by Lynda Plueger. 
Current Exhibitions

Tioga Street in 1920s and modern times. Photo montage from the Collection of The History Center.
Main Gallery Exhibit
The Altered and Preserved Landscape
On display from May 5th through September 9th, 2017
This exhibit by students from Tompkins Cortland Community College examines the local landscape and is part of the larger celebration of the 200 year anniversary of Tompkins County. The artworks explore the visual and functional conditions of Tompkins County over time by drawing on primary source materials from The History Center. 
Faculty:  Harry Littell,  Keith Millman,  Christine Shanks,  Mark Grimm,  Cynthia Kjellander-Cantu.
 
 

Sons of Italy Crowning of Queen (popularity/beauty contest, 1928). Photo from the Collection of The History Center. 
Our Community 
Italian-American Community Display
The History Center presents images and archival materials related to the Italian-American community in Tompkins County.
Italian immigrants have been settling in Tompkins County for over 100 years and have added immensely to the economic, civic, and cultural life of our area. Often from modest origins, Italian families frequently faced economic hardship and the prejudices of their new neighbors and co-workers as they became part of the life of the community. Through their experiences, good and bad, they retained a love of family, work, friends.

   
Woodard School - District 7 - Last Day Picnic. Photo - Courtesy of the Town of Enfield Historian, Sue Thompson.

Exploring Tompkins County: A Municipality Display Case
The Town of Enfield: Schools as a Center of Our Community
Through October, 2017
Exploring Tompkins County display is a collaboration between The History Center in Tompkins County and Tompkins County's municipal historians. This new exhibit shows how Enfield schools have been continuously bringing the community together. We thank Sue Thompson, Town of Enfield Historian, for  providing her knowledge and time to convey this unique exhibit.
The History Center in Media

Eight Square Schoolhouse Facebook Page
It is now very easy to follow all the exciting activities hosted at the Eight Square Schoolhouse via the new Facebook page   @EightSquareSchoolhouse

Archaeology Day Camp on WHCU
Listen to Carole West and Lee Rayburn talk about  the upcoming Archaeology Day Camp at The Eight Square Schoolhouse. 
Upcoming Events


Smith Woods. Photo - Courtesy of Paleontological Research Institution.
Smith Woods Walk 
Saturday, July 15th, 11:00 AM - 12:30 PM (Smith Woods, across from the Trumansburg fair grounds)
Join The History Center for a guided walk around the historic Smith Woods, following up on a recent publication of "Smith Woods: The Environmental History of an Old Growth Forest in Central New York State," published by the Paleontological Research Institution.
Just outside the Village of Trumansburg, in the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York, is Henry A. Smith Woods, a 32-acre plot that is one of the largest remaining flat tracts of old growth forest in the area. This small but spectacular place, with its enormous trees, dense forest canopy, and never-plowed ground is a glimpse into the past. A walk through this small forested area may be the closest one can get in central New York to experiencing a landscape like the first Europeans encountered across most of the region in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.
The authors of the recently published book Marvin Pritts (Professor, School of Integrative Plant Science, Cornell University) and Kurt Jordan (Assoc. Professor, Anthropology, Cornell University), and The Village of Trumansburg Historian S. K. List will lead the walk and talk about how this patch of land was preserved, what it can tell us about the human and pre-human history of the region, and its ecological importance.
Please register by e-mailing community@thehistorycenter.net or via the registration page.
Details about logistics and parking will be sent to those who register.

Reading of the Declaration of Sentiments
Wednesday, July 19th, at noon (in Avenue of the Friends, TCPL)
In celebration of women's suffrage, TCPL and the Tompkins County Bicentennial Committee are partnering for a special reading of the Declaration of Sentiments. The entire program is anticipated to last no more than 30 minutes,

HistoryForge Data Entry Bee Party
Saturdays, July 22nd, August 5th & 19th, 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM (at The History Center)
Come volunteer at our next transcription bee!  Light refreshments will be served with lots of fun and an educational opportunity that will make Ithaca history come alive. Be sure to bring your laptop. Sign up to volunteer here: https://thehistorycenter.net/volunteer-historyforge 



New York Amish: Life in the Plain Communities in the Empire State
Saturday, July 22nd, 2:00 PM (at The History Center)
Join us for a discussion of the book "New York Amish: Life in the Plain Communities of the Empire State" with the author Karen Johnson-Weiner.
In a book that highlights the existence and diversity of Amish communities in New York State, Karen M. Johnson-Weiner draws on twenty-five years of observation, participation, interviews, and archival research to emphasize the contribution of the Amish to the state's rich cultural heritage.
While the Amish settlements in Pennsylvania and Ohio are internationally known, the Amish population in New York, the result of internal migration from those more established settlements, is more fragmentary and less visible to all but their nearest non-Amish neighbors. All of the Amish currently living in New York are post-World War II migrants from points to the south and west. Many came seeking cheap land, others as a result of schism in their home communities.


A festive occasion at Stewart Park (then Renwick Park), 1905. Photo - Courtesy of The History Center.
First Friday Gallery Night: "Then & Now of Stewart Park" Presentation by Rick Manning
Friday, August 4th, 6:00 PM (at The History Center)
In conjunction with the First Friday Gallery Night and the current exhibit "The Altered and Preserved Landscape," The History Center will feature a 6:00 PM presentation on Then and Now of Stewart Park with Rick Manning, Program Coordinator of Cayuga Waterfront Trail Initiative at Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce Foundation.




Save the Date: Come Dig with Us! Archaeology Day Camp
August 5, 12, 19 & 26, 2017, 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM (at the Eight Square Schoolhouse)
The History Center in Tompkins County is offering a field school to the public at the historic Eight Square Schoolhouse, a one-room school built in 1827 and used by generations of students and teachers. Participants will 
learn archaeological field techniques and research skills by working side-by-side with several professional archaeologists; contribute to the historical record of the Eight Square School. Sign up for a day camp by emailing Carole West at EightSquare@Thehistorycenter.net. Learn more about the camp here. 
rmation, visit http://wcc2017syracuse.com/.
Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor Tourism Research
Your opinions matter!


Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor is conducting an online survey to gather opinions regarding travel and activity destinations in the Corridor, including the NYS Canal System and Canalway Trail. They especially want to hear from people like you who appreciate the experiences that the Erie Canalway and its surrounding communities have to offer.

Please take part in the survey, which will take about 10 minutes to complete: 
http://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/3661565/General

Your answers will be aggregated and will not be linked to you personally, nor will you be asked to buy anything.
From the Collection 
Fluting Iron Kit: Late 19th century
Fluters. Photo from the Collection of The History Center. 

This is a specialized tool designed for one purpose: to put pleats in a collar. Before the invention of the fluting iron, pleats had to be ironed in one at a time, but this iron could put 20 identical creases at once into a piece of fabric. 

A heating element would be warmed on a fire; the handle allowed one to carry the hot iron without being burned. The element fit into the bottom of the pleated surface, and the fabric was laid over the creases. The roller pressed the fabric into the pleats. This tool, 2 inches wide, had limited use, but other irons of different width and pleat size were also available.



In need of a video camera
Are you wondering what to do with your digital video camera that you no longer use? The History Center in Tompkins County will make sure that your contribution is put to good use. Your donation is greatly appreciated.

CONTACT US
 
Rod Howe | Executive Director | Director@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 222
 
Donna Eschenbrenner | Archivist | Archives@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 224

Carole West | Educator, Eight Square Schoolhouse | EightSquare@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 229

Ksenia Ionova |  Community Outreach & Visitor Services | Community@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 227

Karen Binder | Bookkeeper & Administrative Services | Admin@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 225

Cindy Kjellander-Cantu | Design & Support Specialist | Design@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 223

STAY CONNECTED @TompkinsHistory