Professor Michael D’Innocenzo will present a lecture, The Uniqueness of Radical Reconstruction: The Capitulation to Racism. Professor D’Innocenzo received the American Historical Association Eugene Asher National Distinguished Teaching Award in 2009. During 56 years at Hofstra University, D’Innocenzo served as both a Professor of History and The Harry H. Wachtel Distinguished Teaching Professor for the Study of Nonviolent Social Change. He has degrees from Columbia University (where he was a Danforth Scholar and an Edward John Noble Leadership Fellow) and from Union College (where he was recognized with the Freling Smith Prize for outstanding history thesis, and received the Bailey Prize for outstanding senior service). For the past twenty-four years, D’Innocenzo has led the Hofstra Social Science Associum and Public Policy Institute. Working closely with the Kettering Foundation, the National Issues Forums Institute, and the Public Agenda Foundation, Hofstra’s programs have involved more than 50,000 people over that time span, mostly high school students and teachers, but also increasingly reaching into the community to sponsor intergenerational programs. These extended programs have developed into “town meeting” sessions at nearly a dozen public libraries where D’Innocenzo leads “current events in perspective” discussions. Because of these endeavors and others, he has received many public recognitions and has written extensively on themes of diversity and communication, both historically and in the present. In 2013, Professor D’Innocenzo was appointed to the Advisory Board of the National Issues Forums Institute. In 2007, he was a founding member of the Hofstra Center For Civic Engagement (CCE) and served as the first chairperson of its advisory board. He is now working to help establish an Institute for Peace Studies as part of the CCE.
Friday, September 9, 2016
Roundtable member Dr Ralph Levy will present a lecture entitled 1860: The Year of the Party of No Compromise or How to Lose an Election. Dr. Levy is a retired primary care physician; He was a hearing officer for the state of New York Department of Health: Office of Professional Medical Conduct for twenty years; He was a member of the Board of directors of The Des Moines University for thirty years and he is currently a Member of the Long Island Civil War Round Table. He received his B.A. from Brooklyn College and his DO from Des Moines University.
He was always interested in history. The Democratic nomination convention of 1860 particularly interested him because Stephen A Douglas, if nominated might have easily defeated William Seward or Lincoln. But the party of no compromise led by Mr. William Yancy, a Fire-eater, prevented his nomination and caused the Democratic Party to split into three parts easily allowing the Republicans to win, insuring a civil war.
Friday, July 15, 2016
Kathleen Velsor will discuss her book The Underground Railroad on Long Island. Kathleen Velsor lives in Bayville, New York on the North Shore of Long Island. She was born in Rochester, New York. As a girl she lived in nearby LeRoy, New York - an up-state stopping point on the Underground Railroad - and remembers hearing local stories about fugitive slaves. She earned an undergraduate degree in fine arts and education from Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Missouri, and received her master’s degree in educational administration from Lehigh University in Pennsylvania and her doctorate in educational research from the University of Cincinnati in Ohio. Dr. Velsor has uncovered a rich history of anti-slavery activity on Long Island that started at least two decades before 1775, the year that the Quakers from Westbury began to free their slaves.
Dr. Velsor is an associate professor in the School of Education at SUNY Old Westbury. She is co-author of the non-fiction book The Road to Freedom: the Underground Railroad, New York and Beyond, and author of Friends of Freedom: Anti-Slavery Struggle in Queens and Long Island. She speaks frequently to middle and high school students about her topic. She has received numerous grants to research the Quaker involvement in the Underground Railroad on Long Island, most recent among them an education grant from the Long Island Community Foundation to establish the Underground Teaching Partnership to build community through interdisciplinary social studies workshops for schoolteachers.
From the arrival of the Quakers in the seventeenth century to the enforcement of the Emancipation Proclamation, Long Island played an important role in the Underground Railroad’s work to guide slaves to freedom. In Old Westbury, the Post family established a major stop on the freedom trail with the help of an escaped Virginia slave. In Jericho, families helped escaping slaves to freedom from the present-day Maine Maid Inn. Elias Hicks helped free 191 slaves himself and worked to create Underground Railroad safe houses in many northeastern cities. Some former slaves even established permanent communities across the island.
Friday, June 3, 2016
Coming Thursday July 7, John Oller will present his book, American Queen: The Rise and Fall of Kate Chase Sprague, Civil War Belle of the North and Gilded Age Woman of Scandal. John Oller, is the author of four books, including, most recently, American Queen. It has been praised by Pulitzer prize-winning author Debby Applegate as “a terrific work of historical research and reconstruction” which tells “the story of the Civil War and its scandalous aftermath—its assassinations, impeachments and sexual hi-jinks—from an entirely fresh perspective.”
Born in Huron, Ohio, John is a graduate of The Ohio State University with a B.A. in journalism. He obtained his law degree from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. For many years he represented Major League Baseball in many high-profile cases, including the celebrated George Brett "Pine Tar" case and the Pete Rose gambling case. His first book was Jean Arthur: The Actress Nobody Knew. At the end of 2011, John retired from active legal practice to concentrate on his writing career. Since then, in addition to American Queen, he has published an e-book, An All-American Murder, a true crime story of a murder in Columbus, Ohio in 1975. His next book, The Swamp Fox: How Francis Marion Saved the American Revolution, is scheduled for publication in October 2016. When not writing he pursues his hobbies of golf, theater, film, and travel. He divides his time between New York City and a home in California wine country.
Friday, May 6, 2016
Coming Thursday June 2, 2016 . Dr. Sarah Beetham will give a talk entitled Sentinels Keep Watch: The Civil War Citizen Soldier and American Sculpture. Sarah Beetham is an adjunct lecturer in American art and material culture at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. She holds an M.A. and Ph. D. in art history from the University of Delaware and a B.A. in Art History and English from Rutgers University. She has recently published work in Common-Place and Nierika: Revista de Estudios de Arte, and she has a forthcoming article in the spring 2016 issue of Public Art Dialogue addressing the recent controversy surrounding Confederate monuments. Her current book project, titled Monumental Crisis: Accident, Vandalism, and the Civil War Citizen Soldier, focuses on the ways in which post-Civil War soldier monuments have served as flash points for heated discussion of American life and culture in the 150 years since the end of the war.
In her talk, Dr. Beetham will explore the material and social history of the citizen soldier monument. First appearing in the years following the Civil War, these monuments were erected to honor the contributions to the war effort by rank-and-file soldiers. They took many forms, from columns and obelisks to triumphal arches and multi-figure groups. But by far the most common were soldiers standing at parade rest, with their rifles held vertically before them and their eyes gazing into the distance. Standing in town squares or in cemeteries, these monuments represent an important legacy of the Civil War.
Sunday, April 10, 2016
Daniel Carroll Toomey will present his book, War Came By Train: The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad During the Civil War, Commemorating the Sesquicentennial of the American Civil War 1861-1865.
Beginning with the B&O’s reaction to John Brown’s Raid in 1859 and ending with the demobilization of the Union Army in 1865, Toomey’s new book is a highly detailed yet readable history of America’s most famous railroad during the Civil War. The author blends the overall strategy and political aims of that time period with the battles, raids and daily operational challenges of a Civil War railroad. He introduces an array of little known personalities who worked for, attacked, defended or traveled on the B&O Railroad. He also shows in numerous instances how the railroad and the telegraph combined to conquer time and distance on the battlefield and ushered in the era of modern warfare with the introduction of armored rail cars, hospital trains, and large scale troop movements.
Daniel Carroll Toomey is a seventh generation Marylander whose first American ancestor taught school for John Carroll of Carrollton. He is a graduate of the University of Maryland and the author of several books including The Civil War in Maryland, Marylanders at Gettysburg, and The Maryland Line Confederate Soldiers’ Home. He is also co-author of Baltimore During the Civil War and Marylanders in Blue, all of which were published by Toomey Press. Mr. Toomey has lectured for a number of historical organizations as well as the National Park Service and the Smithsonian Institution. His course “The Civil War in Maryland” has been offered at a number of local colleges. He has also contributed to radio and television programs and two Civil War battle videos. He is a member of the Surratt Society, and the Maryland Arms Collectors Association, and the Company of Military Historians. He serves on the Maryland Military Monuments Commission and was project historian for the Maryland Memorial erected at Gettysburg in 1994. Dan Toomey has won numerous awards for his historical research and exhibits including the Gettysburg National Battlefield Award in 1985 and was the 2001 recipient of the Peterkin Award given by the National Park Service at Fort McHenry for his many contributions in the field of research and preservation. He is currently the guest curator at the B&O Railroad Museum for the five year exhibit, The War Came By Train, commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Civil War.
Friday, March 4, 2016
The Field of Lost Shoes (Full length feature film) In the midst of a prolonged and deadly American Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln appoints a very different kind of general, Ulysses S. Grant, Chief of Union Forces. Grant acts decisively. He brings total war to the pristine Shenandoah Valley, breadbasket of the South. The superintendent of the Virginia Military Institute volunteers to send the Corps of Cadets to protect the valley. 274 young cadets march northward toward the strategic valley choke-point of New Market. On the day of battle, May 15, 1864, Confederate General John C. Breckenridge, former Vice President of the United States, and commander of southern forces in the Valley, is faced with a horrible decision. When Southern forces are jeopardized, he orders the young cadets into battle.