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Fall 2012 Brown Bag Lunch Lecture Series

September 13th, 2012, kicked off our Fall Brown Bag Lunch Series with Local History Librarian Teri Blasko’s talk on Saratoga’s Floral Fetes. September in Saratoga Springs was a rosy picture, indeed, in the late 1890’s, when the annual Floral Fete Parade took place! Teri told the story of this special event that ran for 9 consecutive years, and attracted thousands of visitors. Attendees were treated to beautiful photos of the past, along with interesting facts about the event’s creator.


October 11th will welcome Park Ranger/Historian Eric Schnitzer of Saratoga National Park. During the American revolution, about 5% of the Continental Soldiers were African Americans. They fought shoulder to shoulder with white soldiers–but an integrated army would not occur again until the Korean War. Eric will discuss evidence from memoirs, muster rolls and pay lists which document the roles of nearly 500 free and enslaved black men and boys who fought on both sides in “the most important battle of the last 1,000 years.”


November 8th is not too early to think about the upcoming holiday season! Cheryl Hurd, author of several “little books for Victorian pursuits”, will discuss traditional Victorian seasonal festivities including dressing the whole family to go visiting and decorating the home for the holidays. She will demonstrate how to put together an authentic-looking Victorian outfit just in time for Saratoga Springs’ upcoming Victorian Streetwalk.


December 13th is a tribute to Gideon Putnam. Dave Patterson and Charlie Kuenzel present this not-to-be missed talk about our city’s founding father. In 1789, Gideon and Doanda Putnam arrived in Saratoga Springs and recognized that the natural occurring mineral springs were an asset that could be used as a drawing card for visitors to our new city. Gideon not only built the first hotel here, he also tubed the springs, laid out many of the streets, donated the land for schools, churches and a cemetery. Gideon had the vision that helped to turn a pine forest into a world-class resort in the 1800’s. Come hear Dave and Charlie discuss the life and times of Gideon, which is marked by his death 200 years ago on December 1st.


The Brown Bag Lunch Lecture Series is a monthly, hour-long program presented in partnership by the Saratoga Springs Heritage Area Visitor Center and the Saratoga Springs Public Library and is conducted in the Dutcher Community Room located on the main floor of the library.


This program is free and open to the public, and begins promptly at noon. Tea and coffee are provided. For more information, please contact the Visitor Center at 518-587-3241.