Tag Archives: New Bedford Historical Society

“The Abolitionists” screening, Dec. 13

AbolitionistsAMEXPart Two of AMERICAN EXPERIENCE FILMS The Abolitionists  – a three-part documentary produced for PBS – will have a special free public screening on Thursday, December 13 at 6:00 p.m. in the Cook Memorial Theater, hosted by the New Bedford Historical Society. The Society operates the Nathan and Polly Johnson House, Frederick Douglass’ first home in freedom. Part Two deals with Douglass’ escape from slavery to New Bedford and his early activities as an abolitionist.

Sharon Grimberg, Executive Producer, and Lois Brown, Academic Adviser to the film, will speak about the series.

“The series tells the stories of five heroes of the original civil rights movement. Bringing to life the intertwined stories of Frederick Douglass, William Lloyd Garrison, Angelina Grimké, Harriet Beecher Stowe and John Brown, The Abolitionists takes place during some of the most violent and contentious decades in American history, amid white-hot religious passions that set souls on fire, and bitter debates over the meaning of the Constitution and the nature of race.”

Now in its 25th year, AMERICAN EXPERIENCE will celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation in 2013 with the national broadcast premiere of The Abolitionists on PBS January 8, 15, and 22.

The cast includes former NBC “Law & Order” actors Neal Huff as William Lloyd Garrison and Richard Brooks as Frederick Douglass. It also features Broadway veteran T. Ryder Smith as John Brown, whose failed raid at a federal arsenal at Harpers Ferry is considered a key event leading up to the Civil War.

Running time of Part Two is 1 hour.

54th Regiment in words, music and art, August 9

Saint-Gaudens exhibit in the Jacobs Family Gallery

As part of ongoing observances of the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, the Whaling Museum is hosting Heroes in Bronze; the 54th Regiment in words, music and art on AHA! Night, Thursday, August 9 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in partnership with New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park and the New Bedford Historical Society. The evening will feature a free public lecture by a national expert, Civil War re-enactors, fife & drum, readings and a youth performance.

At 6:00 p.m. members of the Boston Fife & Drum Service will lead a procession from 54th Regiment Plaza (William Street and Acushnet Avenue) to the Whaling Museum Plaza. They will be joined by some of the re-enactors of the Boston-based 54th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, Company A. Members of Battery B, 1st Rhode Island Light Artillery, and Company K, 2nd Rhode Island Infantry will also accompany the 54th re-enactors.

At 6:15 p.m. members of the New Bedford Historical Society will read excerpts of letters from the 54th Regiment on the museum plaza, followed at 6:45 p.m. by a performance of “54,” an original work by the Youth Ambassador Program.

At 7:00 p.m. Dr. Henry J. Duffy will present an illustrated lecture, Robert Shaw and the Massachusetts 54th Consecration and Monument, in the Cook Memorial Theater.

Dr. Duffy is Curator at the Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site in Cornish, New Hampshire. He holds a doctorate in Art History from Rutgers University and previously worked with the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the New York Historical Society, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. An author and lecturer on Saint-Gaudens, nineteenth-century art and culture, Dr. Duffy has also appeared as a commentator on A&E America’s Castles.

The Youth Ambassador Program (YAP!) is a partnership program between the National Park and Third EyE Unlimited Youth Empowerment, where teens communicate national park themes through hip-hop culture and social media outreach, including creating music and videos about local, regional, and national park themes.

Dr. Henry J. Duffy, Curator of the Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site, will speak at 7pm in the Cook Memorial Theater

 The evening’s events highlight the museum’s continuing exhibition of the bronzed busts for the 1897 monument on Boston Common honoring the regiment. The busts are on loan from the Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site.

The Robert Gould Shaw and Massachusetts 54th Regiment Memorial was created by sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens (1848-1907). Fourteen years in the making, it depicts the 54th Regiment marching down Beacon Street in 1863 led by Captain Shaw.

Leading his regiment in the assault on Fort Wagner near Charleston, South Carolina, Shaw was killed with more than 50 of his soldiers in 1863 and buried with his men on the battlefield. Another 149 were wounded. The first African-American unit to fight for the North, the 54th ultimately suffered 272 casualties, the highest total for a single engagement during the war.

Men were recruited from throughout the region, especially New Bedford. Sergeant William Carney of the city received the Congressional Medal of Honor for his valor at the Battle of Fort Wagner.

Visual Culture of the Civil War Era, May 3

The Stone Fleet, which sailed from New Bedford, Nov. 16, 1861, by Benjamin Russell (1804-1885). It will be one of many images from the Whaling Museum discussed in “The Visual Culture of the Civil War Era.”

Keith Kauppila, Esq. will present an illustrated lecture titled The Visual Culture of the Civil War, on Thursday, May 3 at 7:30 p.m., Cook Memorial Theater, New Bedford Whaling Museum. A reception at 6:30 p.m. in the Jacobs Family Gallery precedes the lecture.

This lecture is part of the 2012 Old Dartmouth Lyceum series, and one of three Civil War related programs being offer by area organizations, including the New Bedford Historical Society, Friends of the New Bedford Free Public Library, New Bedford Civil War Roundtable, and Fort Taber~Fort Rodman Military Museum.

 Mr. Kauppila will discuss perspectives on painting inspired by the “War Between the States.” Several pieces from theWhalingMuseumcollection will be highlighted during this presentation. Mr. Kauppila has a deep interest in the visual and decorative arts and has been active on the museum’s collections committee. He currently serves on the Board of Governors at the Addison Gallery of American Art atPhillipsAcademy.

Other Civil War related programs include:

April 27:  “New Bedford’s Civil War” Professor Earl Mulderink, author of a new book published by Fordham University Press, titled New Bedford’s Civil War will present an illustrated talk on his research on Friday, April 27 at 7:00 p.m. at the Whaling Museum.  This free program is part of a national book tour and includes a book-signing. It is co-sponsored by the New Bedford Historical Society, Friends of the New Bedford Public Library, Fort Taber~Fort Rodman Military Museum, New Bedford Civil War Roundtable, and the New Bedford Whaling Museum.

May 22: “The Day the South Lost the War: The Fall of New Orleans” Historian A. Wilson Greene will present an illustrated lecture titled The Day the South Lost the War: The Fall of New Orleans on Tuesday, May 22 at 7:00 p.m. at the Whaling Museum. This free lecture focuses on the combinedUnion naval and army operation in the spring of 1862 that resulted in the capture of the Confederacy’s largest city and most important port. Presented in association with theNew Bedford Civil War Round Table, Mr. Greene has been Study Leader for more than 40 Smithsonian Institute tours and seminars covering all the major Civil War campaigns and has spoken to more than 100 Civil War Roundtables across the country.

Old Dartmouth Lyceum admission on May 3: $15 members; $20 non-members. For tickets, call (508) 997-0046 Ext. 100. The lectures on April 27 and May 22 are free.

The New Bedford Whaling Museum 2012 Speakers’ Series, of which the Old Dartmouth Lyceum is a part, is presented by BayCoast Bank, and sponsored in part by C.E. Beckman, and Hampton Inn Fairhaven/New Bedford.