History Happenings Late May - Early June 2018
The History Center's Electronic Newsletter 
The Corner

The History Center in Tompkins County is pleased to be working with Historic Ithaca through our Ithaca Heritage collaboration to plan "Authentically Rural" scheduled for  October 5-7, 2018 . The event will link rural heritage and rural revitalization. We are appreciative of the Tompkins County Tourism Program funding.

Participants will experience revitalized rural areas of Tompkins County with an enhanced focus on Dryden and its environs. The 3 days will tentatively include an opening reception on the Cornell campus, interesting tours, Dryden Historical Society's Heritage Day, celebrating Tompkins County's rich farm-to-table movement at a harvest dinner and dance at Coltivare, and a Sunday morning brunch highlighting an emerging rural revitalization initiative in the Town of Ithaca.

Given that this is a three-day weekend we will provide participants with a range of things to do in Ithaca and around the county.

This rural heritage pilot is intended to be the first in a series: an every-other-year event focused on a different part of Tompkins County.

Start mentioning this to your friends and colleagues around New York State and the Northeast and stay tuned for more information at IthacaHeritage.com.

Executive Director, The History Center in Tompkins County
The History Center will be closed on Saturday, May 26 in observance of Memorial Day.
Bookstore & Gift Shop Highlights  

Mention our newsletter and get 15% off from this selected title!    
50 Years of Ellis Hollow Quilting
By Beverly West, for the Ellis Hollow Community, Ithaca, NY
This "Big Book" displays a few of the details behind the making of each of the Ellis Hollow quilts. A very few of the most important documents have been retyped to be more readable. You will also find scans of the originals.
"The Ellis Hollow Quilt is much more than just a year quilt, it represents not only the beauty of the area, but also the soul of the women that design and stitch them..."-- Maria Alejandra Gandolfo Nixon, 2016

The Sauna in Central New York
By Melissa Ladenheim
This book is about the saunas built by the Finnish community in the lower Finger-Lakes Region of New York State. The book is filled with history of the saunas and the people who built them.

Twice-Told Tales: History, Literature, and Family Lore Retold in Narrative Quilts
By Patty Elwin Davis
Through the art of quilts Patty Davis tells "the narratives of interesting events and the literary and personal treasures" the author had gathered as a result of her extensive traveling   .
Current Exhibitions

Main Gallery Exhibition
The Maps of Tompkins County
Maps are powerful and engaging forms of visual communication. They show us our world, and the myriad smaller places within it. Maps simplify, scale down, and organize what otherwise would be too large, too distant, or too complex to be seen. 
Maps fulfill a multitude of functions, and are used for a variety of purposes. Political maps, railway maps, waterway maps, soil maps; from cross-sections of lake water depth to trolley routes; maps are irresistible and invaluable resources for learning about our environment in all its tremendous diversity.  This exhibit displays a sampling of The History Center's map collection from the 19th through the 21st centuries.

Peter Webb & Phyllis Webb of Caroline, n.d. Photo from the Collection of The History Center.
Our Community Corner
The Webbs - A Tompkins County Family
In honor of our county's bicentennial in 2017 The History Center is celebrating one long-established family from Caroline, the Webbs and their descendants, who exemplify the strength, character, and dedication to family and community that highlight the best of Tompkins County. Peter and Phyllis Webb were both born into slavery sometime in the 1790s and brought to New York as children. Phyllis (she had no last name) was born in North Carolina. Peter Webb, who was born around 1792 in Virginia, was brought here by John James Speed, a slave merchant who settled in Caroline on Level Green Road. Through tremendous hard work and perseverance Peter bought his freedom in 1818; Phyllis would be freed when slavery was abolished in New York State in 1827.
This photograph exhibit tells the moving and enriching story of one family's triumph over extreme hardship and their prosperous and vibrant descendants. 

Former Map Room Exhibit
The Many Names of Fall Creek
Names tell a story. Known to the Cayugas as Nogaene, Fall Creek flows past Tompkins County places whose names acknowledge the many connections we have with the creek--from business success to technical triumph, and even personal tragedies. 
The exhibition is co-sponsored by:  Tompkins County Bicentennial Commission and Names on the Land--Tompkins County

Exploring Tompkins County: A Municipality Display Case
Town of Ithaca: Early Days
Exploring Tompkins County display is a collaboration between The History Center in Tompkins County and Tompkins County's municipal historians. This exhibit samples artifacts of early Town of Ithaca. We thank David George, Town of Ithaca Historian, for providing his knowledge and time to create this unique exhibit. In  the photo: Town of Ithaca Board Minutes, 1821. Photo Courtesy of David George. 

Ladies' Accessories Display 
Pictured here is an early 19th century beaded purse that was hand-made and originally had a drawstring along the top. It's part of The History Center's Ladies' Accessories display, highlighting elegant items that 19th and early 20th century ladies used to accompany the fashions of the day. Handkerchiefs, purses, gloves, cosmetic containers and more all showcase the different ways accessories made fashion more beautiful.
Upcoming Events

Collaborative Project between Ithaca Welcomes  Refugees and Musicians for World Harmony. 
May 15, 16, 23, 29, 30 (must be able to come to at least the first 4),  5:00 PM to 7:00 PM (at Meditation Room of the First Presbyterian Church, 315 N. Cayuga St., Ithaca NY)
A series of storytelling and writing workshops for people who have come to this area as immigrants or refugees.  
These workshops, led by Samite Mulondo of Musicians for World Harmony, are a space for people who moved to the U.S. to share their experiences with other  immigrants and refugees in a relaxed and supportive environment. 
Come talk about beautiful or difficult memories from your home country, from when you first arrived in the U.S., and about how you feel living in this country now.  People with all levels of English are welcome to attend. If you feel more comfortable, you can  bring a friend or family member to translate. For more information or to register: Contact Sasha Endo at sashaendo@gmail.com. 
About the presenter: 
Samite Mulondo is a World-renowned musician, humanitarian and photographer. He was born and raised in Uganda, until having to leave as a refugee in the 1980's. Today, he makes his home in upstate New York and travels the world bringing his message of peace and hope through the healing power of music, and telling his own story. He is the founder and director of Musicians for World Harmony, a local not-for-profit organization.

Ithaca YMCA facility that once existed on the corner of Buffalo and Tioga Streets, built in 1907 across from Ithaca Town Hall and destroyed by fire in 1978.
YMCA History "The Ithaca Y... Then, Now, and Later" Presentation by Frank Towner 
Thursday, May 17, 6:30 PM to 7:30 PM (at The History Center)
A historical walk down memory lane focused on the Ithaca "Y," its Tompkins County history and how it has served the community. By Frank Towner, CEO of YMCA in Ithaca.  Turning 150 years old, the local chapter of YMCA dates back to 1868 when it was formally known as the Young Men's Christian Association. With its first meeting held in a reading room of the Cornell Public Library on November 23, 1868, Ithaca's YMCA started its long history of  becoming a vibrant resource to the diverse community it serves.  About the presenter:
Frank Towner, CEO of Ithaca YMCA, began his career in recreation as an intern at Rochester Institute of Technology and has continued with numerous positions, including state leadership roles with Camp Good Days and Special Times, a camp for children with cancer and their families. 

HistoryForge Data Entry Bee Party
Saturdays, May 19 & June 2, 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 Ithaca Falls:
Interpretive Signs to be Unveiled 
Thursday, May 24, 4:00 PM (at the entrance to the Ithaca Falls Natural Area on Lake Street in Ithaca)
The Ithaca Falls Natural Area is a natural and cultural treasure. To celebrate its rich geologic story and industrial history, a team of community members created three new interpretive panels for the site which will be dedicated at a public ribbon cutting ceremony on Thursday, May 24th at 4:00 p.m.  The program will take place at the entrance to the Ithaca Falls Natural Area on Lake Street in Ithaca and will include remarks by Mayor Svante Myrick and County Legislator Anna Kelles at  4:00 p.m.  Following a ribbon cutting, attendees will be invited to join a guided walking tour to explore the geologic events that shaped the gorge we enjoy today. The tour will depart from the entrance to the Ithaca Falls Natural Area on Lake Street in Ithaca to access trails and more waterfalls in Fall Creek Gorge. The route will take a spur trail to enjoy a scenic waterfall at creek level, cross a pedestrian suspension bridge, then return to the Ithaca Falls Natural Area. This moderately strenuous tour will be led by Cornell Botanic Gardens staff Todd Bittner, Director of Natural Areas, and Sarah Fiorello, Interpretation Coordinator, and will take approximately 60 to 90 minutes. People planning to join the walk should wear comfortable footwear and be prepared to climb stairs and hike a steep incline in a few sections.

SAVE THE DATE! Ithaca Festival Parade 2018
Friday, June 1, 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM (Downtown Ithaca)
Please join us as The History Center walks in the 2018
Ithaca Festival Parade: Celebrating the Artist in Everyone!  Contact Youth Education Director Carole West for details as we get closer to the date eightsquare@thehistorycenter.net or 273-8284 X229

Celebrating the Ithaca Festival: 
A Community Conversation
June 2, 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM (at The History Center)
Join Ithaca Festival participants past and present to reflect on 41 years of a festival like none other. This conversation, moderated by folklorist Hannah Davis, will provide community members an opportunity to learn about the festival's history, share their own festival experiences, and contemplate the festival's broader significance. Immediately preceding, Johnny Russo will perform songs from Ithaca Our Home: A Forty Year Musical Odyssey in Tompkins County.

History & Science of Craft Beverages: The History of New York State Cider 
Wednesday, June 6, 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM (at The History Center)
Guided cider and food pairing reception with Sommelier Laura Winter Falk of Experience! The Finger Lakes.
Presentation by Elizabeth Ryan, of Hudson Valley Farmhouse Cider. She is a renowned fruit grower and cider maker and studied cider making in Somerset and Hereford, England, has a degree in Pomology, Cornell University.  She has been a Smithsonian Fellow and was the keynote speaker at the NS Governor's Alcohol Summit that created new policy for better support for small-scale cider production in New York State.  
History, geology, and chemistry all converge to tell the story behind the flavors of craft beverages in the Finger Lakes. Sponsored by the Museum of the Earth, the History Center in Tompkins County, the Sciencenter, and Experience! The Finger Lakes, this four-part series will stimulate your palate and your mind.
Each session begins with a reception led by Sommelier, Laura Winter Falk, of Experience! The Finger Lakes where you will enjoy tasting samples of the featured libation paired with locally-sourced edibles followed by an engaging presentation by a top Finger Lakes craft producer. See full schedule and let us know if you are coming by following this link.

Book Talk: "What a Swell Party It Was!" by Michael Turback
Friday, June 8th, 6:00 PM (at The History Center)
In conjunction with First Friday Gallery Night, Michael Turback will give a talk about his recently published book "What a Swell Party It Was: Rediscovering Food and Drink from the Golden Age of American Nightclub." What A Swell Party It Was! entertains and inspires with a delicious slice of nearly forgotten culinary history-an era that followed the Great Depression and prohibition's repeal, where America boomed and the nightclub scene flourished.
About the speaker: 
Michael Turback created and nurtured the eponymous Turback's, one of Upstate New York's first destination restaurants. His mission combined inventive, passionate cooking with local ingredients, and the daring concept of a wine list with exclusively New York regional wines--this achievement resulted in Wine Enthusiast naming Turback's "one of the wine-friendliest restaurants in America," and the restaurant was awarded "Best American Wine List" by Restaurant Business. Michael is also the author of Cocktails at Dinner, ReMixology, and What a Swell Party It Was, all from Skyhorse Publishing. He resides in Ithaca, New York.

Book Talk & Signing: "
Pennsylvania Farming: 
A History in Landscapes" with Author Sally McMurry
Saturday, June 9th, 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM (
at The History Center)
The author Sally McMurry will give a presentation related to her recently published  Pennsylvania Farming: A History in Landscapes, followed by Q&A and book signing. After the talk, Monika Roth, recently retired Agriculture Issues Leader with Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tompkins County, will speak briefly to discuss comparisons with New York State farming landscapes. 
In her book,  Sally McMurry considers the diverse forces that helped shape the farming landscape, from markets to physical factors to cultural repertoires to labor systems. Above all, the people who created and worked on Pennsylvania's farms are placed at the center of attention. Her illustrated talk will highlight major themes from the book and demonstrate how a careful attention to landscape can help us understand the history of farming. This event is co-sponsored by Historic Ithaca and The History Center in Tompkins County.
About the author:
Sally McMurry is professor emerita of history at Pennsylvania State University, and former president of the Agricultural History Society. She is the author of several books on landscape and architectural history.   

Lake View: The Hidden Cemetery
Sunday, June 10, 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM (at 
605 East Shore Drive, across from Ithaca High School football field)
This is a wonderful opportunity to explore and learn about this unique hidden cemetery. Stations will be set up across the cemetery so you can learn about the people and families buried in this landscape treasure.
Parking will be available at the base of the cemetery.  
Donations will go to the Lake View Cemetery Association. S
uggested donation $10; students/retirees $5; under 12 free. Register here. 

Tompkins County Genealogy Society Organizational Meeting
Wednesday, June 13 at 6:00 PM (at The History Center)
Hosted by The History Center in Tompkins County and the Tompkins County Public Library. Interest has been expressed in forming a local genealogy society with the goals of building and supporting a network and making resources discoverable.
The program will consist of a speaker, brief highlights of local resources and a discussion of organizational issues.

Engaging Local History 
Thursday, June 14th, 12:00 PM to 1:30 PM (at Tompkins County Public Library, Time Warner Cable Study Room)
Join Tompkins County Historian Carol Kammen for these free monthly workshops on exploring and 'doing' local history. 
We are Moving!
Packing Highlights 

The Morse Chain Company was incorporated in 1898 in Trumansburg, NY. The brain child of two inventive brothers, Everett Fleet and Frank Lincoln Morse, the company first became successful with springs for a two-wheeled cart and strong a bicycle chain. It prospered and moved to South Hill in Ithaca where it produced chains of all kinds, including large industrial chains. One of these smaller chains was used for cars in the mid 20th century.

These and the rest of our object collection are being packed for our move to the new Tompkins Center for History and Culture.

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

Nancy Menning | Bookkeeper & Office Manager  | Admin@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 225

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

STAY CONNECTED @TompkinsHistory