Welcome!

All the events listed in this calendar are funded in whole or part by New Hampshire Humanities. All are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted. Many of these events are Humanities to Go programs your organization can book, made possible in part by generous support from

 


View a PDF of our JUNE Calendar here.
To view a printable calendar of Summer 2018 events, click here.
(To view previous editions of the Calendar, click here.)

Our Humanities to Go Catalog is available online! Click here to view it as a flip book, or click here for PDF.

Friday, June 1, 2018

Warner Town Hall | Warner, NH

How does a state with the motto “Live Free or Die” and a celebrated legacy of abolitionism confront and understand its participation in slavery, segregation, and the neglect of African-American history? Shadows Fall North is a documentary focusing on the efforts of two dedicated historic preservationists and activists, Valerie Cunningham of Portsmouth and JerriAnne Boggis of Milford, to recover the stories of people who have been rendered nearly invisible in the historical record.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Plains School | Portsmouth, NH

Since the late 1600s, the lively tradition of contra dancing has kept people of all ages swinging and sashaying in barns, town halls, and schools around the state.  Contra dancing came to New Hampshire by way of the English colonists and remains popular in many communities, particularly in the Monadnock Region. Presenter Dudley Laufman brings this tradition to life with stories, poems and recordings of callers, musicians, and dancers, past and present. Live music, always integral to this dance form, will be played on the fiddle and melodeon.

South Eaton Meeting House | Eaton, NH

Through traditional music Jordan Tirrell-Wysocki relays some of the adventures, misadventures, and emotions experienced by Irish emigrants. The focus is on songs about leaving Ireland, sometimes focusing on the reasons for leaving (a man who is driven from his land by English persecution); sometimes revealing what happened upon arrival (an immigrant drafted into the Union army during the Civil War); and sometimes exploring the universal feeling of homesickness of a stranger in a strange land (a factory worker in London missing his home in County Clare).

Monday, June 4, 2018

Boscawen Municipal/Library Complex | Boscawen, NH

In their more than two and a half centuries of existence, members of the United Society of Believers in Christ's Second Appearing, commonly known as Shakers, made ingenious contributions to diverse fields: agriculture, industry, medicine, music, furniture design, women's rights, racial equality, craftsmanship, social and religious thought, and mechanical invention and improvement.  Darryl Thompson explores some of these contributions in his lecture and shares some of his personal memories of the Canterbury Shakers.

 

Hooksett Public Library | Hooksett, NH

Why are we so fascinated with stone walls? Kevin Gardner, author of The Granite Kiss, explains how and why New England came to acquire its thousands of miles of stone walls, the ways in which they and other dry stone structures were built, how their styles emerged and changed over time and their significance to the famous New England landscape. Along the way, Kevin occupies himself building a miniature wall or walls on a tabletop, using tiny stones from a five-gallon bucket.  

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Chapin Senior Center | New London, NH

The ancient Greek philosophers defined eudaimonia as living a full and excellent life. In this illustrated talk, Maria Sanders explores how ideas of happiness have changed in Western civilization through the ages, while comparing and contrasting major concepts of well-being throughout the world. Can money buy happiness? To what extent does engaging in one's community impact happiness? When worldwide surveys of happiness are conducted, why doesn't the United States make the top ten?

Abbie Greenleaf Library | Franconia, NH

Telling personal and family stories is fun - and much more. Storytelling connects strangers, strengthens links between generations, and gives children the self-knowledge to carry them through hard times. Knowledge of family history has even been linked to better teen behavior and mental health. In this active and interactive program, storyteller Jo Radner shares foolproof ways to mine memories and interview relatives for meaningful stories. Participants practices finding, developing, and telling their own tales.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Wilton Public & Gregg Free Library | Wilton, NH

Hundreds of one-room schools dotted the landscape of New Hampshire a century ago and were the backbone of primary education for generations of children. Revered in literature and lore, they actually were beset with problems, some of which are little changed today. The greatest issue was financing the local school and the vast differences between taxing districts in ability to support education.

Kensington Grange Hall | Kensington, NH

One of the Great Bay's most prominent families during the latter part of the 17th century was the Wiggin family. Recently, a team of archaeologists discovered the home of Thomas Wiggin, Jr. Neill DePaoli demonstrates how bay residents on the periphery of Anglo-American settlement were far less isolated and bereft of the comforts of the more "civilized" world than traditionally portrayed.  

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Auburn Historical Association | Auburn, NH

Everyone knows that there's "something about lighthouses" that gives them broad appeal, but their vital role in our history and culture is little appreciated. Our early nation was built on maritime economy, and lighthouses were part of the system that made that possible. Due to automation, traditional lighthouse keeping is a way of life that has faded into the past. Jeremy D'Entremont tells the history of New England's historic and picturesque lighthouses primarily focusing on the colorful and dramatic stories of lighthouse keepers and their families.

Cheshire County Court House | Keene, NH

Author and Amherst College professor Dr. Lisa Brooks tells the multi-faceted story of this area, giving a deeper understanding of Native history and place, focusing on the area around Ashuelot, an important space in King Philip’s War and in Mary Rowlandson’s captivity narrative.

Franklin Public Library | Franklin, NH

Quilts tell stories, and quilt history is full of myths and misinformation as well as heart-warming tales of service and tradition. Nearly every world culture that has cold weather uses quilted textiles-quilting is NOT just an American art. Pam Weeks weaves world history, women's history, industrial history and just plain wonderful stories into her presentation. Participants are invited to bring one quilt for identification and/or story sharing.

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Grafton Town Hall | Grafton, NH

Since the late 1600s, the lively tradition of contra dancing has kept people of all ages swinging and sashaying in barns, town halls, and schools around the state.  Contra dancing came to New Hampshire by way of the English colonists and remains popular in many communities, particularly in the Monadnock Region. Presenter Dudley Laufman brings this tradition to life with stories, poems and recordings of callers, musicians, and dancers, past and present. Live music, always integral to this dance form, will be played on the fiddle and melodeon. THIS IS A RESCHEDULED PROGRAM FROM MAY 12TH. 

Sugar Hill Meetinghouse | Sugar Hill, NH

Woody Pringle and Marek Bennett present an overview of the American Civil War through the lens of period music. Audience members participate and sing along as the presenters explore lyrics, documents, and visual images from sources such as the Library of Congress. Through camp songs, parlor music, hymns, battlefield rallying cries, and fiddle tunes, Pringle and Bennett examine the folksong as a means to enact living history, share perspectives, influence public perceptions of events, and simultaneously fuse and conserve cultures in times of change.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Fells Main House | Newbury, NH

A talk by Lynn Clark and Rebecca Courser about their research on rural, free-black settlement in post-Revolutionary New Hampshire, documenting stories of many African American inhabitants in five towns in the Kearsarge-Lake Sunapee region. While the histories of these individuals are important in their own right, what they reveal about the attitudes and prejudices of the early local historians is perhaps more relevant.

Jackson Public Library | Jackson, NH

The Starry Messenger, presented by Michael Francis, is a dramatic fun-filled adaptation of Galileo's short treatise "Siderius Nuncius." Galileo (dressed in 17th-century costume) arrives to present a public lecture on his most recent discoveries made using his newly-devised spyglass. As he describes those discoveries, Galileo's new method of observation and measurement of nature become apparent. Throughout the presentation audience members are actively involved in experiments and demonstrations. After the lecture, Galileo answers questions about his experiments, his life, and his times.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Camp Morgan Lodge | Washington, NH

On first impression, the witchcraft trials of the Colonial era may seem to have been nothing but a free-for-all, fraught with hysterics. Margo Burns explores an array of prosecutions in seventeenth century New England, using facsimiles of primary source manuscripts, from first formal complaints to arrest warrants, indictments of formal charges to death warrants, and the reversals of attainder and rescinding of excommunications years after the fact; demonstrating how methodically and logically the Salem Court worked.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Fitzwilliam Town Library | Fitzwilliam, NH

Visually explore the tremendous legacy of New Hampshire's architecture from the Victorian period (1820 - 1914). This program looks at exuberant Victorian-era architecture across the state in houses, hotels, mills, city halls, courthouses, and churches, with references to gardens, furniture, and other elements of the built environment. Richard Guy Wilson explores elements of visual literacy and points out how architecture can reflect the cultural and civic values of its time and place. 

Wadleigh Memorial Library | Milford, NH

Why are we so fascinated with stone walls? Kevin Gardner, author of The Granite Kiss, explains how and why New England came to acquire its thousands of miles of stone walls, the ways in which they and other dry stone structures were built, how their styles emerged and changed over time and their significance to the famous New England landscape. Along the way, Kevin occupies himself building a miniature wall or walls on a tabletop, using tiny stones from a five-gallon bucket.  PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS PROGRAM WAS ORIGINALLY SCHEDULED FOR MARCH 7.

 

Shared Ministry Church | Lisbon, NH

Glenn Knoblock explores the fascinating history of New Hampshire's beer and ale brewing industry from Colonial days, when it was home- and tavern-based, to today's modern breweries and brew pubs. Unusual and rare photos and advertisements document this changing industry and the state's earliest brewers, including the renowned Frank Jones. A number of lesser-known brewers and breweries that operated in the state are also discussed, including the only brewery owned and operated by a woman before the modern era.

Stephenson Memorial Library | Greenfield, NH

"Your Hit Parade" aired on radio and then on television from 1935 to 1959. It set the standard for American popular music. Calvin Knickerbocker outlines a quarter century of the show's history as a "tastemaker" featuring songs inspired by the Great Depression and on through the advent of rock and roll. He explores the show's relationship with sponsor American Tobacco and Lucky Strike cigarettes and shares stories about the artists the show helped launch and promote, from Frank Sinatra to Elvis. 

Tuck Museum | Hampton, NH

Over the centuries immigrants from the British Isles have come to the Americas bringing with them their musical styles and tastes as well as their instruments. With the concertina, bodhran, mandolin, octave mandolin, guitar, and banjo, Emery Hutchins and Jim Prendergast sing and play this traditional Celtic music, but they also perform American country music in the way it was conceived in the early twentieth century.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Minot-Sleeper Library | Bristol, NH

Who is the Plymouth, NH native who became one of the leading voices in New England's abolition movement and even offered his home as a stop on the Underground Railroad? Dr. Rebecca Noel introduces you to Nathaniel Peabody Rogers, a Dartmouth graduate and successful lawyer who moved to Concord in 1838 to edit the abolitionist newspaper "Herald of Freedom." Learn the fascinating story of Rogers' life and the family home, which attracted cultured and curious men and women of the time, sheltered slaves making their way to Canada, and is now the site of the Silver Center for the Arts.

Rochester Historical Society Museum | Rochester, NH

Everyone knows that there's "something about lighthouses" that gives them broad appeal, but their vital role in our history and culture is little appreciated. Our early nation was built on maritime economy, and lighthouses were part of the system that made that possible. Due to automation, traditional lighthouse keeping is a way of life that has faded into the past. Jeremy D'Entremont tells the history of New England's historic and picturesque lighthouses primarily focusing on the colorful and dramatic stories of lighthouse keepers and their families.

Wolfeboro Public Library | Wolfeboro, NH

Greek myth exerted a powerful influence on the Greeks and Romans, and as cultures and circumstances changed, different methods developed to incorporate mythology. Perhaps most notably, says presenter R. Scott Smith, Christians adopted and adapted Greek myths by allegorizing the stories, seeking to uncover the real-and Christian-truths underneath the facade of pagan gods and heroes. Some Greeks tried to rationalize the stories, imagining that they were simply ordinary events that were blown out of proportion. Others saw myth as pseudo-history, or sometimes pseudo-science.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Divine Mercy Church | Peterborough, NH

Quilts tell stories, and quilt history is full of myths and misinformation as well as heart-warming tales of service and tradition. Nearly every world culture that has cold weather uses quilted textiles-quilting is NOT just an American art. Pam Weeks weaves world history, women's history, industrial history and just plain wonderful stories into her presentation. Participants are invited to bring one quilt for identification and/or story sharing.

Stoddard Town Hall | Stoddard, NH

Drawing on research from her book, Moved and Seconded: Town Meeting in New Hampshire, the Present, the Past, and the Future, Rebecca Rule regales audiences with stories of the rituals, traditions, and history of town meeting, including the perennial characters, the literature, the humor, and the wisdom of this uniquely New England institution.

 

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Union Congregational Church Community Hall | Herbron, NH

New England's colonial meetinghouses embody an important yet little-known chapter in American history. Built mostly with tax money, they served as both places of worship and places for town meetings, and were the centers of life in colonial New England communities.  Using photographs of the few surviving "mint condition" meetinghouses as illustrations, Paul Wainwright tells the story of the society that built and used them, and the lasting impact they have had on American culture.  A POTLUCK SUPPER WIL BEGIN AT 5:30PM WITH PROGRAM TO FOLLOW AT 6:30PM. PUBLIC IS WELCOME.

Monday, June 18, 2018

Bow Mills Methodist Church | Bow, NH

Post cards have many a story to tell about the built landscape, disastrous events such as fires or floods, daily folk customs, and the identity of place. During the golden age of the post card, before telephones, personal messages could contain anything from the mundane, "Having a fine time, wish you were here..." to more profound reflections on family life or colorful portraits of towns and cities from the perspective of newly-landed immigrants.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Fremont Public Library | Fremont, NH

THIS PROGRAM HAS BEEN POSTPONED. A NEW DATE HAS YET TO BE DETERMINED.

Haverhill Alumni Hall | Haverhill, NH

We all think we know the story of Benedict Arnold, the American Revolutionary War general who fought for the Continental Army but then defected to the British. Recalled mainly as a traitor for his 1780 defection, Arnold had risked his life and fortune for American freedom in courageous exploits between 1775 and 1778, when the dream of independence was at its most fragile.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Moultonborough Public Library | Moultonborough, NH

Quilts tell stories, and quilt history is full of myths and misinformation as well as heart-warming tales of service and tradition. Nearly every world culture that has cold weather uses quilted textiles-quilting is NOT just an American art. Pam Weeks weaves world history, women's history, industrial history and just plain wonderful stories into her presentation. Participants are invited to bring one quilt for identification and/or story sharing.

Derry Public Library | Derry, NH

The native Abenaki people played a central role in the history of the Monadnock region, defending it against  English settlement and forcing the abandonment of Keene and other Monadnock area towns during the French and Indian Wars. Despite this, little is known about the Abenaki, and conventional histories often depict the first Europeans entering an untamed, uninhabited wilderness, rather than the homeland of people who had been there for hundreds of generations.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Grange Hall | Andover, NH

From its earliest settlements New Hampshire has struggled with issues surrounding the treatment of its poor. The early Northeastern colonies followed the lead of England's 1601 Poor Law, which imposed compulsory taxes for maintenance of the poor but made no distinction between the "vagrant, vicious poor" and the helpless, and honest poor. This confusion persisted for generations and led directly to establishment in most of the state's towns of alms houses and poor farms and, later, county institutions which would collectively come to form a dark chapter in New Hampshire history.

Friday, June 22, 2018

Campton Public Library | Campton, NH

In January 2016, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association announced the discovery of the wreckage of two sunken whale ships off the Alaskan coast. Oil, Ice, and Bone tells the story of these vessels and how they came to be lost in the greatest whaling disaster in American history. Arctic whaler Nathaniel Ransom served as third mate of one of the ships abandoned in 1871. In 1860, as a fourteen-year-old, he followed his five older brothers into the dank forecastle of a whaling vessel.

Warner Town Hall | Warner, NH

Stories speak to us of community. They hold our history and reflect our identity.  Rebecca Rule has made it her mission over the last 20 years to collect stories of New Hampshire, especially those that reflect what's special about this rocky old place.  She'll tell some of those stories - her favorites are the funny ones - and invite audience members to contribute a few stories of their own. 

Monday, June 25, 2018

Southern New Hampshire University | Manchester, NH

With support from New Hampshire Humanities, the Center for the Advancement of Art-Based Literacy will offer a 5-day summer institute from June 25-29 for New Hampshire teachers who have English learners in their classrooms. The workshop will be held on the campus of Southern New Hampshire University. Using collage made with hand-painted papers, teachers will create their own family immigration stories in pictures and words, to experience first-hand the benefits of composing visual text prior to written text.

Havenwood Auditorium | Concord, NH

In 1837, teenaged Victoria ascended to the British throne, untrained and innocent. Those who would try to usurp her power underestimated this self-willed intelligent young woman whose mettle sustained her through her 63-year reign. Using Queen Victoria's diary and letters, this program reveals the personal details of a powerful yet humane woman, who took seriously her role as monarch in a time of great expansion. She and her husband, Albert, set an example of high moral character and dedication, a novelty in the royal house after generations of scandal.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Kingston Community Library | Kingston, NH

The Starry Messenger, presented by Michael Francis, is a dramatic fun-filled adaptation of Galileo's short treatise "Siderius Nuncius." Galileo (dressed in 17th-century costume) arrives to present a public lecture on his most recent discoveries made using his newly-devised spyglass. As he describes those discoveries, Galileo's new method of observation and measurement of nature become apparent. Throughout the presentation audience members are actively involved in experiments and demonstrations. After the lecture, Galileo answers questions about his experiments, his life, and his times.

St. John's Church Parish Hall | Dunbarton, NH

Why are we so fascinated with stone walls? Kevin Gardner, author of The Granite Kiss, explains how and why New England came to acquire its thousands of miles of stone walls, the ways in which they and other dry stone structures were built, how their styles emerged and changed over time and their significance to the famous New England landscape. Along the way, Kevin occupies himself building a miniature wall or walls on a tabletop, using tiny stones from a five-gallon bucket.  

 

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Weeks Public Library | Greenland, NH

In the early 20th century, the New Hampshire Board of Agriculture launched a program to boost the rural economy and promote tourism through the sale of abandoned farms to summer residents. After introducing the country house movement, Cristina Ashjian focuses attention on some of the great country estates featured in the New Hampshire program between 1902 and 1913. Which private estates were recognized as exemplary, and who were their owners?

Quincy Bog Nature Center | Rumney, NH

In 1947, Edwin Way Teale, the most popular naturalist in the decade between Aldo Leopold and Rachel Carson, followed the progress of spring over four months from the Everglades to the summit of Mount Washington. His best-selling book, North with the Spring, recounts the epic journey he and his wife Nellie undertook. In 2012, John Harris set out to retrace Teale's route, stopping at unfamiliar wild places on the same calendar date on which Teale visited.

Old Cheshire County Court House | Keene, NH

Abenaki history has been reduced to near-invisibility as a result of conquest, a conquering culture that placed little value on the Indian experience, and a strategy of self-preservation that required many Abenaki to go "underground," concealing their true identities for generations to avoid discrimination and persecution.

Castle in the Clouds Carriage House | Moultonborough, NH

Architectural historian Bryant Tolles, Jr. shares the history and architecture of the grand resort hotel phenomenon and hospitality tourism in the White Mountains of New Hampshire from the pre-Civil War era to the present. The primary focus is on the surviving grand resort hotels: The Mount Washington Resort, the Mountain View Grand, the Balsams, the Eagle Mountain House, and Wentworth Hall and Cottages. Extensive illustrations document these buildings and others no longer in existence.

Holderness Historical Society | Holderness, NH

The first agricultural fair in North America was held in what is now Londonderry in 1722, and it would become a wildly popular event lasting for generations until it came to be so dominated by gambling, flim-flam, and other "scandalous dimensions" that the legislature revoked its charter in 1850. But fairs have always had strong supporters and eventually the state came around to appropriating modest sums to help them succeed. Temperance groups and others would continue to attack the fairs on moral grounds and their close connection to horse racing was a chronic flashpoint.

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Portsmouth Senior Activity Center | Portsmouth, NH

Flight of Remembrance is the true story of the speaker's family before, during, and after World War II in Latvia, occupied Poland, and Germany. None were members of the Nazi Party or Hitler supporters, but Marina Kirsch's father and grandfather, both technically skilled, were forced to serve in the German military after fleeing from Latvia to Germany before the first Soviet takeover of the Baltic States.

George Holmes Bixby Memorial Library | Francestown, NH

Do the three major monotheistic religions worship the same deity? Nicole Ruane traces the rise of the deity who comes to be known as The Lord, God the Father, and Allah from his earliest form as a young god (known as Yah, Yahu or Yahweh) in the area of Syria-Palestine, later merged with the father deity of the local pantheon known as El, and on across the Middle East and through the centuries. Judaism, Christianity, and Islam spread knowledge of this deity, in his various forms, throughout the world.

Madison Library Chick Room | Madison, NH

The recent spate of Sherlock Holmes movies, television shows, and literary adaptations indicate the Great Detective is alive and well in the 21st century. Holmes is the most portrayed literary character of all time, with over 230 film versions alone in several different languages. Over the past century, Sherlockians created societies like the Baker Street Irregulars, wrote articles sussing out the "sources" of Doyle's works, and, most recently, developed an entire online world of Holmesian fan fiction. Sherlock Holmes is now a multi-million dollar industry.