May 21, 2023: Wally Wheeler – Protection from Evil. Evidence of protective talismans have been found at early 17th century archeological sites and existing buildings throughout the Hudson Valley. The talk will present examples of some of these practices, such as symbolic markings or carvings, foundation deposits, and horseshoes over the door, from c. 1625 to the present. Their relationship to similar European practices will be discussed.
April 16, 2023: David Chinery -- Fun on Two Wheels: A short History of the Bicycle
March 12, 2023 -- Barbara Urban -- History of the Ilium Literary Club of Troy. The Ilium Club turned 100 years old in 2022. The talk will also address other women's groups in Rensselaer County that came into being around the same era, all for the "Intellectual betterment of women."
February 12, 2023: Jim Flanigan -- Up From Troy
January 22, 2023: Bobbie Reno -- Hampton Manor, the Past to the Present. On April 20, 1925, Harold G. Veeder purchased 187 acres of land that was to become Hampton Manor in East Greenbush. Come learn about Hampton Manor's rich history and exciting future. November 20, 2022: Kathy Sheehan -- The History of Brewing Beer in Rensselaer County. From the early Dutch brewers to the craft brewers of our times, beer has played a vital role in the development of our county in spite of the temperance movement and the prohibition period of the 1920's. October 23, 2022: Jill Knapp -- Three Criminals of the Capital District. There were several criminals whose crimes held the attention of the public in the mid-1800s. This presentation will cover three of the criminals, a murderous butcher, a female abortionist responsible for the death of several women, and a dashing confidence man who swindled the public with his various con-games as a naval officer, a preacher, school teacher, and more! September 11, 2022: Michael Barrett – Russell Sage the Money King. He was a self-made man, one of the robber barons of the Gilded Age. Russell was probably the wealthiest American at the time of his death in 1906 but his wife's reaction to his passing is one of the greatest stories of philanthropic retaliation in history