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SCHS offering plenty of history

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SCHS offering plenty of history

While you're waiting for spring to show up in the Capital Region this month, a good place to ride out the winter, especially if you're a history buff, is the Schenectady County Historical Society.

The society has four interesting programs lined up for the next four Saturday afternoons, beginning with a talk on the Iroquois and the geology of upstate New York this Saturday, March 7, at 2 p.m. at the Mabee Farm in Rotterdam Junction.. Charles Ver Straeten, a Curator of Sedimentary Rocks at the New York State Museum in Albany, will offer a presentation titled "Geology, Landscape, and the Iroquois Homeland." 

Ver Straeten, who got his Ph.D in 1996 from the University of Rochester, has focused his research on the Devonian Period Sedimentation and Stratigraphy. He has produced numerous papers for scientific journals, including two on Albany County's Thacher Park.

The following Saturday, March 14, George Wise will talk about "Edison, Westinghouse and Schenectady," at 2 p.m. at the SCHS headquarters on Washington Avenue in the Stockade. Wise is a retired General Electric employee and an authority on the history of the company and many of the prominent individuals connected with the place.

On March 21 at 2 p.m. you can return to the Mabee Farm to listen to Alplaus Historian Jessica Polmateer talked about "Kurt Vonnegut in Schenectady," and wrapping up the month-long series on March 28, also at the Mabee Farm at 2 p.m., will be Terry McMaster's talk, "Scots-Irish Revolutionaries of Corry's Brook (Currybush)."

All of the programs are free for SCHS members and $5 for non-members.

Also, on Wednesday nights at 6 at the society's Grems-Doolittle Library, librarian/archivist Marietta Carr and City Historian Chris Leonard are hosting a series of book discussions on the literary history of American crime. There are four more Wednesday nights left in the program and four more books to discuss. To register and for more information, contact Carr at the society at (518) 374-0263, ext. 3.

And, while us book nerds are in the library talking about Mary Beth Tinning and Ted Kaczynski and that sort of thing, curator Suzy Fout will be in the house museum, offering a workshop called "Painted Tin." Held in conjunction with the new exhibit at the museum, "Folk and Their Art," participants will be able to create their own piece of folk art and take it home,. The program lasts from 6-8 p.m. and costs $30. Contact the society for more information or visit www.schenectadyhistorical.org.

And, if you want to head south, but only as far as New York City, then the society is having two bus trips to consider. On March 18th, a Wednesday, a trip will be held to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and on March 29, a Sunday, another bus load will be heading for the American Museum of Natural History. Seats are still available.