Noon Programs

IMPORTANT: As with so many things that have had to be adjusted, the Noon Programs that have been presented at the main branch in the McChesney room will now be presented as Zoom meetings for the foreseeable future due to Covid-19.

At the end of each program description there is a link to sign on via Zoom. Each program begins at noon on the date noted.

****For the Q&A section of this program, we will be utilizing Zoom’s RAISE HAND feature. Before you join this program, please make sure that you have read through the web article linked below on how to use RAISE HAND for the device you will be using to participate in this ZOOM program. Please click here to learn the procedure. ****

Geri Mulligan, Coordinator

Books Sandwiched In
Fall 2020

Sept.14   Sapiens by Yuval Harari, reviewed by Richard Alben. From a renowned historian comes a groundbreaking narrative of humanity’s creation and evolution – a number one international best seller – that explores the ways in which biology and history have defined us and enhanced our understanding of what it means to be “human”.  Click here for Zoom link     Meeting ID: 340 506 1738  Passcode: 682539

Sept. 21   David Levine, a local freelance writer and editor, will discuss his new book, The Hudson Valley: The First 250 Million Years: A Mostly Chronological and Occasionally Personal History. The mighty Hudson River is the centerpiece of this fascinating collection of essays, ranging from prehistoric times to current life.  It touches on a wide variety of topics, including the author’s own personal stories of the region. Penned in an enjoyable, sometimes humorous, style, Levine offers up an introduction to the fascinating people, places, and events that have helped define this wonderful Hudson Valley that some of us call home. Click here for Zoom link     Meeting ID: 340 506 1738  Passcode: 682539

October 5   Haven: The Dramatic Story of 1000 World War II Refugees and How They Came to America, by Ruth Gruber.  In 1943, FDR decided to admit 1000 war refugees to the U.S. Gruber volunteered to accompany the group from Europe on their dangerous and secret route across the Atlantic to their camp in Oswego, New York. A poignant and engrossing true story. Reviewer: Susan Lohnas, returning presenter. Click here for Zoom link     Meeting ID: 340 506 1738  Passcode: 682539

October 19  A Woman Condemned: The Tragic Case of Anna Antonio,  by James Greiner. A sensational murder, trial, and a young woman’s execution in Depression-era New York draws upon newly discovered NY State Police records. In Greiner’s description of the trial, he seeks to show how flaws in the judicial system, poverty, and prejudice around the Italian American community in Albany at the time, all played a part in Anna’s conviction and death sentence. Presented by the author, a retired history teacher and Herkimer County Historian.Click here for Zoom link     Meeting ID: 340 506 1738  Passcode: 682539

October 26  Giants of the Monsoon Forest: Living and Working With Elephants,  by Jacob Shell, reviewed by Phil Adams. For more than a thousand years, the people and elephants of Burma/Myanmar and India have worked with elephants to log otherwise impassable forests and to move people and goods (sometimes illicitly) under cover of the forest canopy. The relationship between elephant and rider is an intimate one that lasts for many decades. Though not bred to work with humans, these elephants can lift and carry logs, save people from mudslides, break logjams in raging rivers and navigate mountain forests with passengers.Click here for Zoom link     Meeting ID: 340 506 1738  Passcode: 682539

History Series
November 2020

November 2   Schenectady and the 1920 Election: Women Cast Their Vote for President.”  County historian Bill Buell will discuss the 1920 presidential election in Schenectady County, when for the first time women in New York had the opportunity to vote for president.

November 9   “How the War Was Won: Schenectady During WWII.” City historian Chris Leonard looks at Schenectady’s contribution to the war effort, including the manufacturing prowess demonstrated by General Electric and the American Locomotive Company.

November 16  ”Kurt Vonnegut in Alplaus”. Jessica Polmateer, historian of the hamlet of Alplaus, looks at the life and career of writer Kurt Vonnegut, who lived in Alplaus in from 1947-1951 while  working for GE.

November 23   “Confronting Contagion in Schenectady, New York: From Smallpox to Covid.” Brothers Martin and James Strosberg discuss their soon to be published book documenting Schenectady’s long medical history, including the work of physician and former mayor Charles Duryea in the early 20th century.