2020 Seminar Series Schedule

2020 Seminar Series Schedule

The NMHS Seminar Series was founded in 1992 under the auspices of the National Maritime Historical Society to build greater awareness of the rich maritime heritage of the Hudson River Valley and the world at large, and to create a constituency to advocate for our maritime legacy.  Through its monthly lecture series and annual outreach events, the NMHS Seminar Series provides educational programs about our waters and the great community of people who love ships and mariners, the sea, rivers, and bays.  Members of the general public are encouraged to attend.  For more information or to register, email or call 914 737-7878 x 0.  There is no charge to attend the seminars, but a $5 to $10 donation at the door is appreciated to support our educational mission.  We invite you to Sponsor the Series and take advantage of everything our sponsorship options have to offer – including a year of seminars AND family fun at maritime museums!

Seafaring Songs & Chanteys — Seminar with Singer & Songwriter Charlie Zahm
Saturday, 25 January 2020: Continental Breakfast/Registration 10:30 am; Seminar 11:00 am
Hendrick Hudson Free Library · 185 Kings Ferry Road, Montrose, NY

The sea has always inspired song.  Chanteys helped pace the grueling work at sea, ballads recorded great battles and storms, and sorrowful love songs pined about the people and places left behind.  Come join us on a cold winter’s day as multi-talented singer/songwriter and storyteller Charlie Zahm transports us to the Age of Sail as he performs traditional heartfelt maritime songs such as The Mermaid and Leaving of Liverpool.

The Eagle and the Dragon: A Novel of Rome and China — Seminar with Author Lewis McIntyre
Saturday, 22 February 2020: Continental Breakfast/Registration 10:30 am; Lecture 11:00 am
Hendrick Hudson Free Library · 185 Kings Ferry Road, Montrose, NY

Join us for an epic adventure as author Lewis McIntyre tells of the ancient travels of an eclectic group of Romans as they embark on the first Roman voyage to China – a seventeen thousand mile journey by sea and by land across three continents!  The Eagle and the Dragon is McIntyre’s first full-length novel—historical fiction framed by two actual events:  the Gan Ying expedition to Rome in 97 AD, and a Roman presence in the court of China in 166 AD.  Between those two events would have been the first Roman mission to open a trade route to China.  The actual story of that mission may be lost to us, but McIntyre offers an exciting fictional account where danger and adventure lurk at every turn!

Ahab’s Rolling Sea: A Natural History of Moby-Dick
Zoom Seminar with Author & Illustrator Richard King

Wednesday, 17 June 2020: Welcome at 6:15 pm; Presentation at 6:30 PM ET

Since 2006, Richard King has been writing and illustrating the column “Animals in Sea History” for our own Sea History magazine.  Join us as he presents his newest book, an illustrated exploration of the sea and natural world that inspired Melville’s classic.  Ahab’s Rolling Sea: A Natural History of Moby-Dick is a chronological exploration of the natural world as Ishmael and Ahab would have experienced it on their fateful sail aboard the Pequod in the 1840s.

Benedict Arnold’s Navy: The Ragtag Fleet That Lost the Battle of Lake Champlain but Won the American Revolution 
Zoom Seminar
with Author James Nelson

Saturday, 26 September 2020: Welcome & Lecture at 11:00 AM ET

Before becoming America’s most famous traitor, Benedict Arnold was known as one of the greatest fighting generals of the Continental Army and is credited with building America’s first naval fleets.  Organizing a motley group of ships and vessels, Arnold was able to delay the British fleet from sailing down Lake Champlain to reinforce troops engaged in battle with a weary Continental Army.  With his shrewd leadership, many argued he saved the Revolution.  Join us as author Jim Nelson recounts the amazing story of Arnold’s early Revolutionary heroics.

Discovering Amistad
Zoom Seminar with Senior Educator Jason Hine
Saturday, 7 November 2020: Welcome & Lecture at 11:00 AM ET

In 1839 the Amistad uprising and subsequent landmark Supreme Court decision began when Sengbe Pieh, an enslaved Mende warrior from West Africa, found a nail onboard the cargo vessel and used it to break free from the chains that bound him below in the hold.  Freed from their chains, the Amistad Africans emerged from the hatch and rose up in arms against their captors.  After killing the cook and the captain, they took charge of the ship and navigated it to Long Island, New York, where they encountered the US Navy. The Amistad Africans would then spend years living in the New Haven, Connecticut jail where they would work their way through the US court system to eventually secure their freedom and sail back to Sierra Leone. Join us as Discovering Amistad Senior Educator Jason Hine shares the story of the Amistad Africans and using the past as a framework for addressing present day challenges, explaining how the lessons that begin with the Amistad uprising move through the arc of more than 175 years of history.

Commemorating the Mayflower Voyage Quadricentennial
Zoom Seminar with Jerry Roberts, Captain Whit Perry & Quentin Snediker,
Moderated by Sea History Editor Deirdre O’Regan
Saturday, 5 December 2020: Welcome & Lecture at 11:00 AM ET

Please join us for the final NMHS Seminar Series lecture of the year, featuring a panel discussion with author and historian Jerry Roberts, Plimoth Patuxet Museums’ Director of Maritime Preservation & Operations Whit Perry, and Mystic Seaport Museum Senior Curator for Watercraft Quentin Snediker. Sea History editor Deirdre O’Regan will moderate this lively conversation via Zoom as we commemorate 2020’s quadricentennial of Mayflower’s arrival on the shores of Massachusetts, the introduction of the people we now call the Pilgrims into the American narrative, and the restoration of Mayflower II, a reproduction of the 17th century Mayflower and an iconic ship that features in maritime history both symbolically as the first great American story and in its own right as a historic ship, launched in England in 1957. Since then, under Plimoth Patuxet’s stewardship, millions of visitors have crossed Mayflower II’s decks to learn about the Pilgrims’ journey on this living history museum in Plymouth Harbor.

For more information or to register, email or call 914 737-7878 x 0.