Saturday concerts – ‘Strings at the Strong’

Saturday concerts – ‘Strings at the Strong’

We are pleased to announce that the Museum garden summer concert series, Strings at the Strong, will begin its 2022 season on Saturday, August 6. Local musicians will perform in a series of free concerts on Saturdays at 2PM in the 18th Century garden at the Strong House. Bring lawn chairs or a blanket to sit on.

The series will begin on August 6 with the group Bella Musica. Bella Musica is a quintet of local musicians: Cindy Naughton on the flute, Steven Williams on the violin, Rebecca Phelps on the piano, Scott Halligan on the cello, and Sarah Mahler Kraaz on the piano. They will play duets, trios and quartets from Quantz, Telemann and Handel.

On August 13cellist Ignacy Gaydomovich will give a solo concert.

No concert is scheduled for Saturday, August 20.

On August 27Conway Fine Arts will perform.

On September 3, the Cushman String Quartet will perform. The musicians are Laura Arpiainen and Amanda Stenroos, violins, Lesley Hogg, viola, and Karl Knapp, cello.

All concerts are free and open to the public. The concerts are made possible by a grant from the Amherst Cultural Council and the generous support of Stammell Stringed instruments.

News from the Collection

News from the Collection

Our intern Shannon Feng writes:

I found a pair of handcuffs donated by former Amherst Police Chief William Engelmann in 1949, who was appointed as a policeman in 1927 and was Police Chief from 1949 – 1958. They were a pair of Hiatt made “Irish figure 8” handcuffs that were used exclusively in Britain, particularly by the Royal Irish Constabulary (which was when Ireland was still part of England). Through my research, I became curious about the Amherst Police History during the 20th century as well as its relationship with the town of Amherst.

 

Due to my own background of being Chinese, I am also particularly interested in finding any intersections between the immigrants and the Police.

 

You can help me by talking to me. If you are an immigrant family, I would love to hear your story of how you came here, how you interacted with the earlier settlers, and how you grew into the town. If you have done similar research on Amherst immigrants or the Police, I would love to hear what you found and share your insights. If you have materials such as photographs or objects from the decade it would help me visualize the experience as well.

You may get in touch with Ms Feng through our email, info@amhersthistory.org, or by stopping by the Museum.

 

Finding R H Weakley

Finding R H Weakley

Park Ranger Susan Ashman highlights a Civil War rifle – an 1856 British Enfield used during the Civil War with the initials “R.H. Weakley” carved into the stock. Through in-depth research, she learned about the tragic story of Pvt. Weakley – another soldier who could have been lost to history. Ms Ashman was able to trace Pvt Weakley’s family, and and even to show the rifle to to his great-great-grandnephew.

You may view this presentation, in which she  emphasizes the human stories behind the objects and records, by checking the link here.

Stay tuned for the Summer Concert Series which begins on August 6 on our lawn!

History of Mount Toby Friends Meeting

History of Mount Toby Friends Meeting

Before they found their home in the Mount Toby Meeting House on the Leverett Plain, the local Friends Meeting led a peripatetic existence, with various addresses in Amherst, Pelham, and even Greenfield.  When Francis and Becky Holmes moved to Amherst in 1954 they helped to revive the Meeting, and in 1963 the group broke ground on what would be their permanent home in Leverett.

Longtime members Carol Letson and Becky Holmes tell us the story of the early days of the Friends meeting. You may view their presentation here.

Virtual Tour of West Cemetery, part 2

Virtual Tour of West Cemetery, part 2

On April 8Bob Drinkwater gave his second presentation on the early graves in Amherst’s West Cemetery. In this presentation, he showed pictures of the graves of many of Amherst’s founding families – the Boltwoods, Kelloggs, Mattoons, Strongs  and others, as well as noting that there are dozens of names and families for whom the graves are not known.

Save the date! At 1 PM on Saturday, June 4, Bob will host a walking tour of West Cemetery in Amherst with John Hanscom so we may visit these graves in person. He recommends that interested persons should view both of his video tours before attending the walking tour of the West Cemetery with the Association of Gravestone Studies.  If you’re planning to attend, please RSVP to Andreaanduruna@hotmail.com.

You may view his 2019 lecture here, and his 2022 lecture here.