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2020 Seminar Series Schedule

2020 Seminar Series Schedule

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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 nmhs@seahistory.org 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!

Maritime Music along the Hudson — 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!

Captain Ahab Had a Wife — Seminar with Author and Historian Dr. Lisa Norling
Saturday, 21 March 2020: Continental Breakfast/Registration 10:30 am; Lecture 11:00 am
Hendrick Hudson Free Library · 185 Kings Ferry Road, Montrose, NY

Whaling was a thriving industry in America from the late 1700s to the mid-1800s.  Hundreds of men went to sea for months or years working in this brutal and often fatal industry.  Little has been written on the women who stayed behind and how they maintained family life while their husbands were away. Join us as Dr. Lisa Norling, author-historian and associate professor at the University of Minnesota, uses poignant firsthand accounts to examine life for these ‘sea-wives’ in the age of whaling.

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

Wednesday, 17 June 2020: Refreshments & Registration 6:30 pm; Lecture 7:00 pm
Hendrick Hudson Free Library · 185 Kings Ferry Road, Montrose, NY

Since 2006, Richard King has been writing and illustrating the column “Animals in Sea History” for our own Sea History magazine.  Come and 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.

Seminar Series Summer Excursion to Amistad
Saturday, 1 August 2020 — Details to be Announced

Launched in 2000, Amistad is a replica of the 19th-century schooner which became renowned in 1839 for a slave revolt by Mende captives who had been enslaved in Sierra Leone and were being transported from Cuba to their purchasers’ plantations.  Since 2015 the replica ship has been owned by the non-profit organization Discovering Amistad, which uses Amistad as a floating classroom to educate students and inspire communities to come together and reflect on the legacies of slavery and racism. In late July 2020, Amistad will travel up the Hudson River to dock at Charles Point Marina.  Come join us for lunch and a dockside tour of the historic schooner.

If by Sea: The Forging of the American Navy — Seminar with Author George Daughan
Saturday, 26 September 2020: Continental Breakfast/Registration 10:30 am; Lecture 11:00 am
Hendrick Hudson Free Library · 185 Kings Ferry Road, Montrose, NY

Join us as historian and author George Daughan returns to the NMHS Seminar Series to chronicle the origins of the US Navy.  From the early midnight attacks of the ragtag Continental Navy to the historic battle between USS Constitution and HMS Java in 1812, Daughan recounts the humble origins of the US Navy to the strong institution that it became in the War of 1812.

Stanley Johnston’s Blunder: The Reporter who Spilled the Secret Behind the US Navy’s Victory at Midway — Seminar with Author Elliot Carlson
Saturday, 7 November 2020: Continental Breakfast/Registration 10:30 am; Lecture 11:00 am
Hendrick Hudson Free Library · 185 Kings Ferry Road, Montrose, NY

While traveling aboard the Lexington in 1942, Stanley Johnston, a war correspondent from The Chicago Tribune, learned of Japanese plans to mobilize forces to the Midway Islands.  Johnston reported the news, unleashing a panic that he had divulged top secret information and exposed an important information source. Join us as long-time journalist and author Elliot Carlson recounts the controversial story of Johnston’s reporting, the backlash that followed and the news article that could have threatened US success in the War in the Pacific.

Benedict Arnold’s Navy — Seminar & Annual Holiday Potluck with Author James Nelson
Saturday, 5 December 2020: Continental Breakfast/Registration 10:30 am; Lecture 11:00 am; Potluck Lunch to Follow
Cortlandt Yacht Club · 238 Kings Ferry Road, Montrose, NY

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.

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

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