The “Turkish Captivity” of Jacob Leisler and the Susannah

Jan Goeree and Casper Luyken, “Landing en mishandeling van gevangenen in Algiers” (1706). Amsterdam Historic Museum

Program Description: The library and the Jacob Leisler Institute for the Study of Early New York History present a talk by David Voorhees on Leisler’s capture and enslavement by pirates. Throughout the early modern era, North African raiders known as Barbary Corsairs, trolled Europe’s coasts from the Aegean Sea to the Netherlands and as far north as Iceland in search of European slaves. American ships were among their victims. On October 8, 1677, Algerian Corsairs boarded New York City merchant Jacob Leisler’s ship Susannah in the English Channel and captured Leisler along with his crew, two stepsons, nephew, and a passenger. This lecture focuses on the Susannah’s dramatic captivity, the efforts to obtain the prisoners release, and their enslavement’s subsequent impact on New York politics.

Date/Time: Thursday, January 28, 6-7:30pm.

Registration: For Zoom registration link click here.

The Jacob Leisler Library Lectures are made possible through the generous support of the Van Dyke Family Association. Continue reading

Watch: Virtual Talk on the History of the Stockbridge-Munsee Community

On Thursday, November 19, Heather Bruegl, director of community affairs for the Stockbridge-Munsee Community and member of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin, spoke on the history of the Stockbridge-Munsee Community, a band of Mahicans who inhabited the land that makes up New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Vermont. Their original territory includes the land where our library is located.

The talk is viewable in full on the library’s YouTube channel, and the video includes Heather’s answers to questions asked by virtual attendees of the event.

Our Winter Walk windows win a prize!

Julia Black, library trustee, poses in front of our Winter Walk windows.

We are participating at two locations for Hudson Hall’s Winter Walk: The Hudson Safe Edition, running from December 5-24. At 417-419 Warren Street, passersby will delight in the wintry and holiday images from Hudson’s history, along with the holiday magic of a running train set and trolley. And, in 7th Street Park/Public Square at Park Place, our Tween Advisory Council’s winter hut returns, honoring favorite children’s literary characters including Peter from Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats, Harry Potter, and Gerald and Piggie from the Elephant and Piggie series by Mo Willems.

And we’re proud that we were awarded “Best Hudson Christmas Past, Present, and Future” for our Warren Street windows that utilize images from our History Room collections including photographs from Rowles Studio, Neefus Photographers, and Howard Gibson, home movies of South Front Street recorded between 1939-1966 by Jozef Cipkowski, and historic maps from 1871, 1881, and 1923. For more information on Winter Walk click here and for the window display winners visit this post on Gossips of Rivertown.

Special thanks to Mark and Deborah D’Archy for sharing their window space with us; to Robert Rasner, who with his wife Marie Rasner owns The Inn at 34, for loaning and setting up the historic building models, trains and trolleys; to Peter Cipkowski for digitizing and making available his grandfather’s home movies; to our board of trustees and History Room volunteers who worked on the Warren Street windows; and to the Tween Advisory Council and their parents for the original winter hut creation. Continue reading

Contribute to our Local History Archive

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the entire globe in a historic way. The killing of George Floyd has sparked protests in our community, nation, and around the world as well as demands for police reform and restructuring to combat systemic racism in society. Both of these events serve as the inspiration to collect the history of our community during this time for use by future researchers. The Hudson Area Library History Room Committee invites you to submit images (photos, artwork), videos, and words (poems, stories, journal entries, personal essays) that help to document the personal experiences of our community in 2020.

Those wishing to contribute to the archive can submit work through the library’s website by following the link “Community Archiving of Local History” found underneath the main banner on the home page or by clicking here. If you are contributing works as physical items rather than digital submissions, please also submit using the form on the website to schedule your drop-off. In keeping with the mission of the Hudson Area Library’s History Room, we request that all submissions be either from individuals who live in the library’s service area – Hudson, Greenport and Stockport – or that feature these areas as the main subject.

To learn more about our community’s rich history, please visit our History Room page.

The Stockbridge-Munsee – Not the Last of the Mohicans: a Virtual History Talk

Program Description: Join us for a talk on the history of the Stockbridge-Munsee Community, an integrated society with indigenous families and European immigrants. Heather Bruegl, director of community affairs for the Stockbridge Munsee Community and member of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin, speaks on this vibrant community.

Attendees also learn about the people who inhabited the land that makes up New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Vermont. A question and answer period follows the talk.

Date/Time: Thursday, November 19, 6pm

Registration: To register click here or contact Brenda Shufelt at 518-828-1792 x102 or brenda.shufelt@hudsonarealibrary.org to receive the Zoom link. Continue reading

Dance to the 80s on Zoom

Program Description: The library and the City of Hudson Senior Center are excited to present a series of dance classes focused on dances of the 1980s with Andrew Loren Resto.

Time/Date: The program meets virtually via Zoom Wednesdays, 11am-12pm and Fridays, 5-6pm, September 23 – November 6.

Registration: Email programs@hudsonarealibrary or call 518.828.1792 x101 to receive the Zoom link for either or both of the sessions.

This program is made possible, in part, with support from the Berkshire Taconic Foundation Grants for Senior Services. Continue reading

History Room on Zoom: History of the US Census and 2020 Census with the Jacob Leisler Institute

History Room on Zoom: Early NY Census History to Census 2020

In this episode of The History Room on Zoom, Gary interviews David Voorhees of the Jacob Leisler Institute for the Study of Early NY History and Tina Lesem, who works at the Hudson Area Library and the Jacob Leisler Institute, on the history of the US Census and the importance of completing the 2020 Census.

Our library team is here to help you and your neighbors complete the 2020 Census – due September 30, 2020. We have team members ready to assist you in English, Spanish, Bengali, and Mandarin Chinese. For an appointment email info@hudsonarealibrary.org. You can also submit your census form online at 2020census.gov.

We’ve embedded the video above for your convenience. If you wish to view the video on YouTube, please click here. For more interviews and videos, and to learn more about our community’s rich history, please visit our History Room page.

Tales from Hudson’s Crypts: The Tour with Kelley Drahushuk

UPDATE: Both tours are currently filled. For information on the history of the cemetery click here for Dan Udell’s video of Kelley’s tour from two years ago AND click here for Gary Sheffer’s interview with Kelley about the cemetery as part of our History Room on Zoom series.

Program Description:  Kelley Drahushuk’s talk at the library, Raising the Dead: Tales from Hudson’s Crypts, was so popular we began this tour of Cedar Park Cemetery and it has become an annual event. Kelley once again acts as our tour guide and has added new graves and new stories to the tours.

Date/Time: 1. Saturday, October 17, 12-1:30pm (RAINDATE: Sunday, October 18, 12-1:30pm

2. Saturday, October 24, 12-1:30pm (RAINDATE: Sunday, October 25, 12-1:30pm).

Registration: Required and participation is limited to 10 participants. Mask wearing and social distancing at all times is required. Register by emailing programs@hudsonarealibrary.org or calling 518-828-1792 x101.

Donations are appreciated but not required and they will support the archiving of the library’s History Room collection based in the history of Hudson, Greenport and Stockport. Continue reading