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August 2020

*POSTPONED* Vermont, 1800 and Froze to Death: The Cold Year of 1816

August 16
3:00 pm
Image of Vermont field in winter

1816 has long been known as the year without summer. Vermonters still call it “1800 and Froze to Death,” a year of frosts every month, dark skies, and mysterious lights that caused a widespread belief that a higher power was displeased. In this talk, historian Howard Coffin includes scores of anecdotes on the dark year of failed crops, scarce food, and religious revival. Read More »

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*POSTPONED* Circle of Sawdust: The Mud, Myth, and Magic of the Circus

August 17
5:00 pm
Blake Memorial Library, East Corinth
Image of man with painting of a clown

Circus Smirkus founder Rob Mermin shows rare film clips and relates personal anecdotes of wacky characters, wild escapades, and poignant recollections of life in the world of the circus. Read More »

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**POSTPONED** Thunderbolt: A True History of a Scottish Highwayman in 19th-Century Vermont

August 18
6:00 pm

Award-winning novelist Tim Weed shares the story of a notorious Scottish outlaw who resurfaced in Brattleboro, VT in 1821. Read More »

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*POSTPONED* Finding Jesse: A Fugitive from Slavery in Vermont

August 18
6:00 pm
Image of Jesse

“Finding Jesse: A Fugitive from Slavery in Vermont” traces Jesse’s life from enslavement in North Carolina to freedom in Vermont. This illustrated talk by Jane Williamson brings the narrative of one slave out of anonymity and explores his life and pursuit of freedom. Read More »

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**POSTPONED** Book Discussion: American Lightning: Terror, Mystery, the Birth of Hollywood and the Crime of the Century by Howard Blum

August 31
7:00 pm

Part of the Gilded Age: Then and Now series. This series starts with the 1893 Columbian Exposition and continues on through the Gilded Age. Three novels and a narrative history illustrate that spectacular time period in ways that in turn illuminate our own era. Read More »

September 2020

*CANCELLED* From the Parlor to Polling Place: Stories and Songs from the Suffragists

September 2
7:00 pm
Suffragette standing before a banner

Singer and historian Linda Radtke, in period garb and “Votes for Women” sash, celebrates the centennial of the passage of the 19th Amendment, specifically highlighting the decades-long persistence of Vermonters, both women and men. Radtke also traces the movement’s alignment with other social justice initiatives such as temperance, labor conditions, wage equity, peace, and children’s welfare. Read More »

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*POSTPONED* Murder in the Vermont Woods: A Story About Race, Class, and Gender in the 19th Century

September 5
6:00 pm
Image of Vermont forest in winter

Historian Jill Mudgett tells the story of an Indigenous man from southern New England who came to central Vermont during the late 19th century and was the victim of a murder. Recreating community connections in a rural Vermont hill town, this story is about poverty, racism, disability, and gendered violence against women, but is also an account of Indigenous movement and choice despite great obstacles. Read More »

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*POSTPONED* People, Music, and 88 Keys, More or Less: Keyboard Instruments through the Ages

September 9
6:30 pm
Image of a piano keyboard

Lionel Hampton and other jazz greats used the marimba and xylophone, and Tchaikovsky used the celeste. With presentation and music, St. Michael’s College Professor Emeritus William Tortolano leads an exploration of the harpsichord, clavichord, the pianoforte, and more through the ages. Read More »

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*POSTPONED* From the Parlor to Polling Place: Stories and Songs from the Suffragists

September 9
7:00 pm
Suffragette standing before a banner

Singer and historian Linda Radtke, in period garb and “Votes for Women” sash, celebrates the centennial of the passage of the 19th Amendment, specifically highlighting the decades-long persistence of Vermonters, both women and men. Read More »

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*CANCELLED* Lectures to Enhance the Second Vermont Classical Play: Clouds by Aristophanes

September 10
6:15 pm

The Vermont Classical Play 2020 is Aristophanes' Clouds! This ancient Greek comedy explores the timeless clash of traditional wisdom and new learning, inter-generational strife, and a villainous Socrates. The production features original music, dance, and a live band. Pre-show wine and mead tasting at 5:30 pm; pre-performance lecture at 6:15 pm; performance at 7:30 pm. Read More »

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