History Room Programs

Only the most recent five History Room Program announcements are shown here. Go to History Room Programs Archive for complete listings.

Posted: September 9, 2021
Adults, History Room, News, Programs, Young Adults

Tales from Hudson’s Crypts: The Tour

Kelley Drahushuk at the Cedar Park Cemetary
Kelley Drahushuk at the Cedar Park Cemetery

Program Description: Kelley Drahushuk leads her annual tour of Cedar Park Cemetery for the 5th year- join us for 2021’s Tales from Hudson’s Crypts: The Tour

Date/Time: Sunday, October 24, 12-1:30pm (RAIN DATE: Saturday, October 30, 12-1:30pm).

Registration: Email brenda.shufelt@hudsonarealibrary.org or call 518-828-1792 x106. Participation is limited to 18 participants and is on a first come-first serve basis. Mask wearing and social distancing at all times is required. Donations are appreciated but not required and they will support the archiving and accessibility of the library’s History Room collection of the history of Hudson, Greenport and Stockport. 



Kelley Drahushuk’s 2016 talk at the library, Raising the Dead: Tales from Hudson’s Crypts, was so popular we began this tour 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 tour. 

Attendees will meet in the cemetery office parking lot promptly at 12pm. As this is a walking tour, wear appropriate footwear & dress for the weather & conditions. We may encounter uneven ground, semi-steep hills, and mud and will not always be sticking to the paved pathways. 

Long-touted as “a virtual treasure trove for historians and enthusiasts of American funerary art”, the Hudson Cemetery includes over 10,000 grave sites for a wide range of interesting and notable individuals, including the Proprietors and their ancestors, war heroes, famous artists, paragons of industry, disaster survivors and much more. Learn about the history of the original cemetery, more recent history and discoveries as well as its current layout.  All attendees will receive a free map of Cedar Park with highlighted sites discussed in this presentation—do your own walking tour and make new discoveries!

Posted: August 12, 2021
Adults, History Room, News, Programs, Young Adults

Tony Kieraldo’s “Hudson Ragtime Piano Suite” Album Launch

Program Description: Hudson Hall, in partnership with the Hudson Area Library, presents the launch of international recording artist, pianist, musical director, and composer Tony Kieraldo’s new album, Hudson Ragtime Piano Suite with a concert in Hudson Hall’s historic 1855 theater. Peppered with fascinating, personal, and oftentimes hilarious stories from residents and historians, Kieraldo takes us on a musical tour of Hudson’s five major streets – Warren, Diamond (now known as Columbia), State, Union and Allen.

Date/Time: Friday, October 8, 7pm

Registration/Tickets: Tickets are $15, with a portion of proceeds to benefit Kite’s Nest. Spotty Dog Books & Ale will be on site with copies of the vinyl album and songbook for purchase ($25). Tickets and information at hudsonhall.org or (518) 822-1438.

Composed in 2020 with seed funding from the Hudson Emergency Arts Fund, Kieraldo took inspiration from the past and present of the town in which he lives, naming each of his five Hudson Rags for streets in Hudson. This includes ‘Diamond Street’ (which, a century ago, was renamedColumbia Street), once the epicenter of the town’s red-light district. 

A propulsively syncopated musical style and forerunner of jazz, ragtime was the predominant style of American popular music from the 1890s to the early 1900s. Influenced by minstrel-show songs, African American banjo styles, syncopated dance rhythms, and elements of European music, ragtime is quintessential piano music. As Daniel Paget, Professor of Music Emeritus at John Jay College of the City University of New York says in the forward to the Hudson Ragtime Piano Suite songbook, “a more suitable subject for a ragtime work is hard to imagine.

To connect this colorful past with the present day, the evening features live performance by Kieraldo alongside filmed interviews with Hudson personalities such as Reverend Ed Cross, Carole Osterink of Gossips of Rivertown, former Mayor Richard Tracy, local historian Ken Sheffer and <insert name>. The Hudson Area Library History Room has also sourced archival images of each named street to project on Hudson Hall’s cinema-sized screen.

“Tony has always supported the Hudson Area Library with his enthusiastic engagement as a patron as well as his artistic talents,” says Brenda Shufelt, Hudson Area Library History Room Coordinator.  “We are particularly proud to have worked with Tony to research the history of the five main streets of Hudson for his book. Tony so obviously loves Hudson and its representative and sometimes quirky history. His compositions will add, fittingly, to our understanding of this city and why so many of us are taken with it and feel so at home in it.”

Tambra Dillon, Executive Director of Hudson Hall says, “we are thrilled to be working with Tony and the Hudson Area Library to bring this very special, uniquely Hudson event to our community. Much like our own historic theater, it beautifully connects Hudson’s fascinating history with the vibrant, creative, and diverse City it is today.”  

About Tony Kieraldo

Based in Hudson, Tony Kieraldo is currently a pianist with Postmodern Jukebox, musical director for the National Dance Institute in NYC and Celebrate the Beat in Colorado. In 2017, Tony performed on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert with the rock band, Bash & Pop following the release of their album, Anything Could Happen. He’s performed twice at the White House for first lady Michelle Obama and Barack Obama with Turnaround Arts where he performed with Sarah Jessica Parker, Keb Mo, and Bernie Williams. Tony also performed at the Kennedy Center with Taboo, Citizen Cope, and Lil’ Buck for Turnaround Arts. 


Hudson Ragtime Piano Suite marks Kieraldo’s return to Hudson Hall, having conducted the critically acclaimed opera The Mother of Us All in 2017, which was named one of the “Best Classical Music Performances of the Year” by the New York Times

Posted: August 11, 2021
Adults, History Room, News, Programs

Leisler Institute Talk: Jewish Commercial Activities in Colonial New York

Portrait of Moses Levy
Portrait of Moses Levy
Attributed to Gerardus Duyckinck I, c. 1735

Program Description: The library and the Jacob Leisler Institute for the Study of Early New York History present To Trade, Traffique, Buy & Sell as the Rest of the Inhabitants’: Jewish Commercial and Communal Activities in Colonial New York, a talk by Noah Gelfand. The talk explores the economic and religious endeavors of New York’s growing Jewish population in the era when they developed the colony into one of the most important locations for Jews in the Atlantic world.

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

Registration: Contact Brenda Shufelt at 518-828-1792 x106 or brenda.shufelt@hudsonarealibrary.org for more information. To register and receive the Zoom meeting link click here.

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

Noah L. Gelfand holds a Ph.D. in Atlantic History from New York University and is currently a Doctoral Lecturer in the History Department at Hunter College, where he teaches courses on early U.S. history. His scholarship focuses on the early modern Jewish Atlantic world. He is also a Trustee of the Jacob Leisler Institute.


Posted: August 7, 2021
Adults, History Room, News, Programs

Local History Talk: A Bronson Park Vision, for all in Hudson

Program Description: Historic Hudson President, Alan Neumann, discusses the history of the organization’s 25 year advocacy to preserve the only National Historic Landmark in Hudson; the Dr. Oliver Bronson House and Estate.

Bronson Park Vision – Historic Hudson

Date/Time: Thursday, September 23, 6-7:30pm.

Registration: Seating is limited for this in-person program, so we encourage you to reserve a seat by emailing brenda.shufelt@hudsonarealibrary.org or calling 518-828-1792 x106. We will hold reserved seats until 10 min. before the event’s start time. At that time, we will make available all remaining seats on a first come, first served basis.

Masks and social distancing will be required for the safety of all participants.

On the grounds of the Hudson Correctional Facility, inaccessible and hidden from view, is the Dr. Oliver Bronson House and Estate. There is a rich cultural history on the land, from Native American to Dutch to the early Federal Period. In 1838 and 1849, the main house and landscape were given a picturesque transformation by the architect Alexander Jackson Davis for the Bronsons. This chapter is why, in 2003, the National Park Service declared it to be “of exceptional significance in telling the story of the nation.”

Continuing in its advocacy, Historic Hudson has produced a Bronson Park Vision plan for a proposed 123 acre public access park on underutilized land owned by the People of the State of New York and what it can mean for our community.

Alan Neumann is the president of Historic Hudson in the City of Hudson. He is a preservation architect and studied at the University of Minnesota School of Architecture and Historic Preservation at Columbia University in the City of New York. Since 1992, he has lectured frequently to museum groups from the US and abroad, in both New York City and the Hudson valley, on art, architecture and the landscape.

Posted: June 4, 2021
Adults, History Room, News, Programs, Young Adults

Local History Talk: The Mohicans’ Incorporation into the Iroquois League, 1671-1675

The Mohican Chief Etow Oh Koam, referred to as one of the Four Mohawk Kings, in a state visit to Queen Anne in 1710. By John Simon, c. 1750.

Program Description: Dr. Evan Haefeli, historian of colonial North America and the Atlantic world at Texas A&M University, will discuss the history of the Iroquois Confederacy’s relations with its Indigenous neighbors to the east and south, especially the people of the Hudson Valley.

Date/Time: Thursday, June 24, 6-7:30pm

Registration: For Zoom registration link click here or contact Brenda Shufelt at 518-828-1792 x106 or brenda.shufelt@hudsonarealibrary.org.

This event is offered in collaboration with The Jacob Leisler Institute for the Study of Early New York History.

The incorporation of the Mohicans into the Iroquois League has remained obscured but was pivotal to the history of the colonial northeast. It explains why the Mohicans and Munsee neighbors did not join in King Philip’s War and so prevented that conflict from spilling over into the Hudson Valley. It also clarifies the nature of Indigenous politics in the region in the era of Jacob Leisler.

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

Dr. Evan Haefeli has a particular interest in the political, religious, Indigenous, and imperial history of the colonial northeast. Born and raised on eastern Long Island, New York, he previously taught at Princeton University, where he received his PhD, as well as Tufts, Columbia University, and the London School of Economics. He has held a variety of fellowships, most recently from the NEH. His published books relating to colonial American and early New York history include New Netherland and the Dutch Origins of American Religious Liberty, Accidental Pluralism: America and the Religious Politics of English Expansion, and (with Kevin Sweeney), Captors and Captives: The 1704 French and Indian Raid on Deerfield.

The Jacob Leisler Institute for the Study of Early New York History is an independent, not-for-profit study and research center devoted to collecting, preserving, and disseminating information relating to colonial New York under English rule. In the years spanning 1664 to 1773, New York province’s diverse European settlements and Native American and African populations fused into a cosmopolitan colonial territory with ties throughout the Atlantic World. The Institute is unique in focusing on this under examined 109-year period in American history.

The Institute contains a collection of original, digital, and/or paper copies of primary source manuscripts, books, maps, and illustrative materials, as well as a library of secondary resources that provide scholarly context to the primary sources. The Jacob Leisler Institute is an open resource for both scholars and the interested public.

Only the most recent five Adult Programs are shown here. Go to Adult Programs Archive for complete listings