FC 79 The Underground Railroad on Long Island with Kathleen Velsor

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Kathleen G. Velsor, author of the book The Underground Railroad on Long Island: Friends in Freedom.

Bio – Kathleen G. Velsor

Dr. Kathleen Gaffney Velsor is an associate professor in the School of Education at the State University of New York Old Westbury. She earned an undergraduate degree in fine The Underground Railroad on Long Island with Kathleen G. Velsor on Fieldsotne Commonarts 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. 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.

Book Summary

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. Visit the safe houses many of which are still standing today and explore the journey of runaway slaves on Long Island.

Book InfoThe Underground Railroad on Long Island with Kathleen G. Velsor on Fieldsotne Common

Title: The Underground Railroad on Long Island: Friends in Freedom

Publisher: The History Press (2013)

Trade Paperback; 144 pages; with end notes, bibliography, index and BxW photos & illustrations.

The Underground Railroad on Long Island: Friends in Freedom is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

During the interview Kathleen and I discussed the long involvement of Quakers on Long Island with the anti-slavery movement. Around the time of the American Revolution Quakers started to become uncomfortable with the idea of any human being held in bondage. In the Long Island area Quakers were lead with the strong Leadership of Elias Hicks who rallied other Quakers to join his anti-slavery cause.  His followers were called Hicksite Quakers. Hicksites first manumitted their own slaves. As time passed they developed the network of the Underground Railroad and worked toward helping enslaved people to freedom as well as educating them in reading and writing and providing a trade.

Links mentioned during the interview:

Prize Winners

One copy of The Underground Railroad on Long Island: Friends in Freedom was given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of The History Press.

The winner is:

  • Vonda McCrae of Virginia

Congratulations to our winner and thanks to The History Press for their generosity in donating the book!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

The Direct Link to this post is
www.fieldstonecommon.com/underground-railroad-kathleen-velsor/

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Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 78)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 78 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

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FC 78 Sustainable Genealogy with Richard Hite

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Richard Hite, author of the book Sustainable Genealogy: Separating Fact from Fiction in Family Legends.

Bio – Richard HiteRichard Hite on Fieldstone Common

Richard Hite is State Records Coordinator of the Rhode Island State Archives and Public Records Administration. Previously he was Assistant State Archivist at the Ohio Historical Society and from 2003 until 2012 he served as President of the Hite Family Association. He lives in Providence, Rhode Island.

Book Summary

There are a lot of textbooks that describe how to find your ancestors; this new one by Richard Hite clarifies how not to. In short, Sustainable Genealogy explains how to avoid the traps many family historians can fall into. Whether it’s a proud family legend, a venerable publication, or the claims of an Internet family tree, the unsubstantiated genealogical source is like a house of sticks before the Big Bad Wolf–it won’t stand up. As Mr. Hite demonstrates in this collection of case studies, many are the “oral traditions that have fallen by the wayside under the lens of careful research in primary sources and more recently, DNA testing.”

Here are just a few of the lessons from Sustainable Genealogy that can protect you along genealogy’s primrose path:

  • Recognizing when identical surnames conceal different nationalities
  • Understanding when and why death certificates can be “wrong”
  • Knowing when ancestors’ middle names are not family names
  • Respecting the role of geography in establishing ancestral ties
  • Taking the genealogies in 19th-century “mug books” with a grain of salt
  • Accepting that all relationships must be chronologically plausible

Book InfoSustainable Genealogy with Richard Hite on Fieldstome Common

Title: Sustainable Genealogy: Separating Fact from Fiction in Family Legends

Publisher: Genealogical Publishing Company (2013)

Trade Paperback; 110 pages

Sustainable Genealogy: Separating Fact from Fiction in Family Legends is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

Richard and I talk about how he got involved in genealogy and the many rabbit holes he went down before he sorted out the myths from reality in his family history. Trouble areas that we touch on are surnames with multiple spellings and multiple national origins, maiden names, the royalty seekers, the would-be famous ancestors, the infamous Indian Princess and much more!

Prize Winners

One copy of Sustainable Genealogy: Separating Fact from Fiction in Family Legends was given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of Genealogical Publishing Company.

The winner is:

  • Margot Thompson of Massachusetts

Congratulations to our winner and thanks to Genealogical Publishing Company for their generosity in donating the book!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

The Direct Link to this post is
www.fieldstonecommon.com/sustainable-genealogy-richard-hite

News & Announcements

BIG NEWS for Android users! Fieldstone Common is now available in the Android app Stitcher. Stitcher is a program like iTunes but is available on the Android platform. Download Stitcher and search for Fieldstone Common or click here.

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 78)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 78 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the play button above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.

 

FC 77 The Manor with Mac Griswold

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Mac Griswold, author of the book The Manor: Three Centuries at a Slave Plantation on Long Island.

Bio – Mac Griswold

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0374266298?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creativeASIN=0374266298&linkCode=xm2&tag=marsrooram-20

Mac Griswold photo by Sigrid Estrada

Mac Griswold is an acclaimed cultural landscape historian and writer. Rooted in a childhood spent exploring the castles and towers of lush north central New Jersey, Mac went on to study landscape design at the Radcliffe Seminars and horticulture at the New York Botanical Gardens.

She is the author of Washington’s Gardens at Mount Vernon: Landscape of the Inner Man, Pleasure of the Garden: Images from the Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Golden Age of American Gardens: Proud Owners, Private Estates, with Eleanor Weller.

She taught landscape history at Sarah Lawrence College, where she was a recipient of the Noble Chair in Art and Cultural History, and has lectured widely in America and Europe. A Guggenheim fellow, she has written for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Travel + Leisure.

You can learn more about Mac Griswold at her author website, www.macgriswold.com. Learn more about Sylvestor Manor from their website, www.sylvestermanor.org.

Book Summary

Mac Griswold’s The Manor is the biography of a uniquely American place that has endured through wars great and small, through fortunes won and lost, through histories bright and sinister—and of the family that has lived there since its founding as a New England slave plantation three and a half centuries ago.

In 1984, the landscape historian Mac Griswold was rowing along a Long Island creek when she came upon a stately yellow house and a garden guarded by looming boxwoods. She instantly knew that boxwoods that large—twelve feet tall, fifteen feet wide—had to be hundreds of years old. So, as it happened, was the house: Sylvester Manor had been held in the same family for eleven generations.

Formerly encompassing all of Shelter Island, a pearl of 8,000 acres caught between the North and South Forks of Long Island, the manor had dwindled to 243 acres. Still, its hidden vault proved to be full of revelations and treasures, including the 1666 charter for the land, and correspondence from Thomas Jefferson. Most notable was the short and steep flight of steps the family had called the “slave staircase,” which would provide clues to the extensive but little-known story of Northern slavery. Alongside a team of archaeologists, Griswold began a dig that would uncover a landscape bursting with stories.

Based on years of archival and field research, as well as voyages to Africa, the West Indies, and Europe, The Manor is at once an investigation into forgotten lives and a sweeping drama that captures our history in all its richness and suffering.

 

Book InfoThe Manor by Mac Griswold on Fieldstone Common

Title: The Manor: Three Centuries at a Slave Plantation on Long Island

Publisher: Farrar, Strouss & Giroux (2013)

Hardcover; 273 pages with end notes, a bibliography, an index as well as BxW photos.

The Manor: Three Centuries at a Slave Plantation on Long Island is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

Mac Griswold and I discuss the 17th century origins of Nathaniel Sylvester and his wife Grizell Brinley who developed the Manor on Shelter Island, Long Island, New York.  The home remains in the hands of descendants of the same family today. Slavery existed on Sylvester Manor as well as on Constant Plantation in Barbados, the estate of Nathaniel’s brother Sylvester. Mac makes interesting use of a treasure trove of original records and we discuss what was available and how it helped her research for the book.

Prize Winners

One copy of The Manor: Three Centuries at a Slave Plantation on Long Island was given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of Farrar, Strouss & Giroux.

The winner is:

  • Carol Ubosi of Maryland

Congratulations to our winner and thanks to Farrar, Strouss & Giroux for their generosity in donating the book!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

The Direct Link to this post is www.fieldstonecommon.com/the-manor-mac-griswold

News & Announcements

BIG NEWS for Android users! Fieldstone Common is now available in the Android app Stitcher. Stitcher is a program like iTunes but is available on the Android platform. Download Stitcher and search for Fieldstone Common or click here.

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 77)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 77 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the play button above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.

 

FC 76 Dark Tide with Stephen Puleo

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Stephen Puleo, author of the book Dark Tide: The Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919.

Bio – Stephen Puleo

Stephen Puleo is an author, historian, university teacher, public speaker, and communications professional. His books include

In 2008, Steve was the recipient of the Outstanding Achievement Award, presented by the Appian Club, an Italian-American organization dedicated to preserving and promoting Italian culture in Massachusetts. In 2007, he received the prestigious i migliori award, presented by the Pirandello Lyceum to Italian-Americans who have excelled in their fields of endeavor and made important contributions to society.

A former award-winning newspaper reporter and contributor of feature stories and book reviews to American History magazine and the Boston Globe, Puleo holds a master’s degree in history, for which he received the Dean’s Award for Academic Achievement, and was the Graduate Convocation keynote speaker. He teaches at Suffolk University in Boston.

You can learn more about Stephen Puelo at his author website, www.stephenpuleo.com. You can also follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

Book Summary

Around noon on January 15, 1919, a group of firefighters was playing cards in Boston’s North End when they heard a tremendous crash. It was like roaring surf, one of them said later. Like a runaway two-horse team smashing through a fence, said another. A third firefighter jumped up from his chair to look out a window-“Oh my God!” he shouted to the other men, “Run!”

A 50-foot-tall steel tank filled with 2.3 million gallons of molasses had just collapsed on Boston’s waterfront, disgorging its contents as a 15-foot-high wave of molasses that at its outset traveled at 35 miles an hour. It demolished wooden homes, even the brick fire station. The number of dead wasn’t known for days. It would be years before a landmark court battle determined who was responsible for the disaster.

Book InfoDark Tide with Stephen Puleo on Fieldstone Common

Title: Dark Tide: The Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919

Publisher: Beacon Press (2003)

Trade Paperback; 273 pages with bibliographic essay, an index and some BxW photos.

Dark Tide: The Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919 is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

Dark Tide is so much more than just a book about a very unusual molasses flood. The book is set against the backdrop of WWI, the coming of prohibition and prejudice against immigrants. Steve and I talk about the building of the tank and how the political situation allowed it to be built in one of the most densely populated places in the United States. Steve reads a passage from one of the poignant moments at the bedside of a victim after the flood. We talk about the heros and the villains of the story and how the current events impacted their decisions. And lets not forget the anarchists! Sometimes we think that are current events are unique to us but this book proves that history repeats itself and we are none the wiser.

Prize Winners

One copy of Dark Tide: The Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919 was given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of Beacon Press.

The winner is:

  • Victor Jones of North Carolina

Congratulations to our winner and thanks to Beacon Press for their generosity in donating the book!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

The Direct Link to this post is www.fieldstonecommon.com/dark-tide-stephen-puleo

News & Announcements

BIG NEWS for Android users! Fieldstone Common is now available in the Android app Stitcher. Stitcher is a program like iTunes but is available on the Android platform. Download Stitcher and search for Fieldstone Common or click here.

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 76)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 76 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the play button above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.

 

FC 75 Strong Boy with Christopher Klein

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Christopher Klein, author of the book Strong Boy: The Life and Times of John L. Sullivan, America’s First Sports Hero.

Bio – Christopher Klein

Christopher Klein is a history and travel writer and the author of two previous books, Discovering the Boston Harbor Islands: A Guide to the City’s Hidden Shores–which covers the rich history, recreational offerings, and heritage of each of the 34 islands that compose Strong Boy with Christopher Klein on Fieldstone Commonthe Boston Harbor Islands national park area–and The Die-Hard Sports Fan’s Guide to Boston.

A frequent contributor to The Boston Globe and History.com, he has also written for The New York Times, National Geographic Traveler, Harvard Magazine, Red Sox Magazine, ESPN.com, Smithsonian.com, and AmericanHeritage.com.

Christopher graduated summa cum laude and with honors from Drew University in Madison, New Jersey. He is a member of the Boston Authors Club and the American Society of Journalists and Authors.

You can learn more about Christopher Klein at his author website, www.ChristopherKlein.com and at his book website, www.strongboybook.com.
You can also follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

Book Summary

“I can lick any son-of-a-b— in the world.”

So boasted John L. Sullivan, the first modern heavyweight boxing champion of the world, a John L. Sullivan (Library of Congress photo)man who was the gold standard of American sport for more than a decade, and the first athlete to earn more than a million dollars. He had a big ego, big mouth, and bigger appetites. His womanizing, drunken escapades, and chronic police-blotter presence were godsends to a burgeoning newspaper industry. The larger-than-life boxer embodied the American Dream for late nineteenth-century immigrants as he rose from Boston’s Irish working class to become the most recognizable man in the nation. In the process, the “Boston Strong Boy” transformed boxing from outlawed bare-knuckle fighting into the gloved spectacle we know today.

Strong Boy tells the story of America’s first sports superstar, a self-made man who personified the power and excesses of the Gilded Age. Everywhere John L. Sullivan went, his fists backed up his bravado. Sullivan’s epic brawls, such as his 75-round bout against Jake Kilrain, and his cross-country barnstorming tour in which he literally challenged all of America to a fight are recounted in vivid detail, as are his battles outside the ring with a troubled marriage, wild weight and fitness fluctuations, and raging alcoholism. Strong Boy gives readers ringside seats to the colorful tale of one of the country’s first Irish-American heroes and the birth of the American sports media and the country’s celebrity obsession with athletes.

Book InfoStrong Boy with Christopher Klein on Fieldstone Common

Title: Strong Boy: The Life and Times of John L. Sullivan, America’s First Sports Hero

Publisher: Lyons Press (2013)

Hardcover; 353 pages with end notes, bibliography, an index and BxW photos.

Strong Boy: The Life and Times of John L. Sullivan, America’s First Sports Hero is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

In this interview Chris and I talk about John L. Sullivan the son of a humble Irish immigrant family who went on to achieve sports super stardom in the realm of boxing. The Irish had a difficult time, first with the famine in Ireland and then later with prejudice in America. John L. Sullivan had a fighting aptitude for boxing at a time when the rules of boxing were changing.  Gone were the rules that allowed for barefisted fighting, hair pulling and wrestling. These were replaced with more civilized rules including the use of gloves and three-minute rounds.  With fame also came alcoholism and other vices for John L. Sullivan. Surprisingly after his retirement from boxing Sullivan continued to be a sought after star in the theatre and other areas.  In 1905 he gave up drinking and embraced the temperance movement.  Author Christoper Klein regards John L. Sullivan as America’s First Sports Hero.

Prize Winners

One copy of Strong Boy: The Life and Times of John L. Sullivan, America’s First Sports Hero was given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of Lyons Press.

The winner is: :

  • Bruce Longley of New York
  • Margaret Sullivan of Massachusetts

Congratulations to our winner and thanks to Lyons Press for their generosity in donating the book!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

The Direct Link to this post is www.fieldstonecommon.com/strong-boy-christopher-klein

News & Announcements

BIG NEWS for Android users! Fieldstone Common is now available in the Android app Stitcher. Stitcher is a program like iTunes but is available on the Android platform. Download Stitcher and search for Fieldstone Common or click here.

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 75)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 75 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the play button above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.

FC 74 The Dawn of American Independence with Brian Deming

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Brian Deming, author of the book Boston and the Dawn of American Independence.

Bio – Brian Deming

Brian Deming, author of Boston and the Dawn of American Independence on Fieldstone CommonBrian Deming grew up in Kalamazoo, Michigan. He is a graduate of the University of Michigan and has a master’s degree in American history from Northwestern University. He was a newspaper reporter in Brighton and Jackson, Michigan, and in Ft. Wayne, Indiana. He also worked as a magazine editor and freelance journalist in Munich, Prague, Tokyo, Manila, San Francisco, and Chicago, as well as Watertown, Massachusetts, and taught American history at the University of New York in Prague. His other books are Jackson, An Illustrated History; Hitler and Munich (with Ted Iliff); and Wind Time, Wolf Time (a novel about the Thirty Years War). He and his wife live in Toronto, where he works as a freelance editor.

You can learn more about Brian Deming at his website, Boston Dawn.

Book Summary

In 1760, no one could imagine the American colonies revolting against Great Britain. The colonists were not hungry peasants groaning under the whip of a brute. They lived well. Land was cheap, wages were good, opportunities abounded. While many colonists hadBrian Deming, author of Boston and the Dawn of American Independence on Fieldstone Common been in the New World for generations, they identified with Britain, and England was still “home.” Yet in the space of just fifteen years these sturdy bonds snapped. Boston—a town of just 16,000—lit the fire for American Independence. Brian Deming explains how and why in his lucid, lively, and deeply researched Boston and the Dawn of American Independence.

To dodge British taxes, Boston merchants for as long as anyone could remember had routinely smuggled in molasses from French and Spanish possessions in the Caribbean. Boston distillers transformed this sweet cargo into rum, the liquid gold traded around the world. But British authorities cracked down on smuggling and imposed the Sugar Act to help pay for the debts incurred during their wars against France. Then came the hated Stamp Act, a tax on documents, newspapers, and printed materials of all kinds. In courtrooms, in the press, and in the streets, Bostonians rallied in protest against taxation without representation. As anger swept America, Boston was at the center of the storm, which burst forth with the infamous massacre and the Boston Tea Party. By 1775, open warfare erupted at Lexington, Concord, and Bunker Hill. Boston and the Dawn of American Independence ties these scenes together with the people of the time, including John and Sam Adams, John Hancock, and Paul Revere, as well as Thomas Hutchinson, the beleaguered Massachusetts royal governor, and James Otis, the bombastic, unstable early patriot. Readers hear their voices, but also those of many amazing, colorful, and memorable personalities— feisty mob leaders, defiant Tories, terrified townspeople. Deming illuminates this epic story with views of everyday life inside taverns, outside newspaper offices, and along the wharves, and the political dramas in London and Philadelphia that shaped the destiny of an empire and gave rise to the world’s first modern democracy.

Book InfoBrian Deming author of Boston and the Dawn of American Independence on Fieldstone Common

Title: Boston and the Dawn of American Independence

Publisher: Westholme Publishing (2013)

Hardcover; 508 pages with end notes, bibliography, an index and BxW photos and illustrations.

Boston and the Dawn of American Independence is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

In this interview Brian and I talk about the characters involved in politics at the start of the American Revolution such as Thomas Hutchinson, James Otis Jr., Sam Adams, John Hancock and many more. We also talked about the women of the Revolutionary era in Boston such as Jane Mecom, Mercy Otis Warren and Abigail Adams. Since the book was quite a detailed undertaking we talked about Brian’s process for writing and footnoting all the information. At the very end we get into a brief discussion about journalism and all the places his career has taken him over the years.

Prize Winners

One copy of Boston and the Dawn of American Independence was given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of Westholme Publishing.

The winner is: :

  • Rich Sandler of Oregon

Congratulations to our winner and thanks to Westholme Publishing for their generosity in donating the book!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

The Direct Link to this post is www.fieldstonecommon.com/american-independence-brian-deming/

News & Announcements

BIG NEWS for Android users! Fieldstone Common is now available in the Android app Stitcher. Stitcher is a program like iTunes but is available on the Android platform. Download Stitcher and search for Fieldstone Common or click here.

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 74)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 74 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the play button above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.

FC 73 Becoming Tom Thumb with Eric Lehman

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Eric D. Lehman, author of the book Becoming Tom Thumb: Charles Stratton, P. T. Barnum, and the Dawn of American Celebrity.

Bio

Eric D. Lehman directs the creative writing program at the University of Bridgeport, as well as teaching both writing and literature. Although he has taught over twenty different courses, his signature class is the Literature of Travel and Adventure. He is the editor of the school literary magazine, Groundswell, and of the faculty essay series, The Have you listened to the interview with George Morgan and Drew Smith yet? You won't want to miss this one! www.FieldstoneCommon.comCommons. In his spare time, he researches Henry Miller, writing academic essays for Nexus: The International Henry Miller Journal.

In addition to Becoming Tom Thumb, Eric has published six books including: A History of Connecticut Wine: Vineyard in Your Backyard, Bridgeport: Tales from the Park City, Hamden: Tales from the Sleeping Giant; Insiders’ Guide to Connecticut, A History of Connecticut Food, co-written with his wife, and Afoot in Connecticut.

Eric is also an editor of and contributor to the Connecticut Literary Collective, a guide to literary journals for Connecticut writers. His essays, reviews, poems, and stories have been published in dozens of journals and magazines such as The Writer, Gastronomica, Antique Trader, and the New Haven Review.

Originally from Wyomissing, Pennsylvania, he moved to Connecticut fifteen years ago and fell in love with the state. He believes that history and travel help us know the place we live, and therefore know ourselves.

You can learn more about Eric Lehman at his website.

Book Summary

When P. T. Barnum met twenty-five-inch-tall Charles Stratton at a Bridgeport, Connecticut hotel in 1843, one of the most important partnerships in entertainment history was born. Gravestone of General Tom Thumb aka Charles StrattonWith Barnum’s promotional skills and the miniature Stratton’s comedic talents, they charmed a Who’s Who of the 19th century, from Queen Victoria to Charles Dickens to Abraham Lincoln. Adored worldwide as “General Tom Thumb,” Stratton played to sold-out shows for almost forty years. From his days as a precocious child star to his tragic early death, Becoming Tom Thumb tells the full story of this iconic figure for the first time. It details his triumphs on the New York stage, his epic celebrity wedding, and his around-the-world tour, drawing on newly available primary sources and interviews. From the mansions of Paris to the deserts of Australia, Stratton’s unique brand of Yankee comedy not only earned him the accolades of millions of fans, it helped move little people out of the side show and into the lime light.

Book InfoBecoming Tom Thumb by Eric D. Lehman on Fieldstone Common

Title: Becoming Tom Thumb: Charles Stratton, P. T. Barnum, and the Dawn of American Celebrity

Publisher: Wesleyan University Press (2013)

Hardcover; 246 pages with end notes, bibliography, an index and BxW photos and illustrations.

Becoming Tom Thumb is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

In this interview Eric and I talk about Charles Stratton, the successful man. It’s hard to call him Tom Thumb after reading this book and seeing him as a real person. This story will challenge all the preconceived notions you have of General Tom Thumb. He was smart, talented, entertaining and a leader in his community. We discuss, as well, the success of P.T. Barnum and the prejudices faced by little people later in the 19th century.

Prize Winners

Two copies of Becoming Tom Thumb were given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of Wesleyan University Press.

The winners are:

  • Joan Conklin of Massachusetts
  • Melinda Tarbox of Texas

Congratulations to our winners and thanks to Wesleyan University Press for their generosity in donating the books!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

The Direct Link to this post is www.fieldstonecommon.com/becoming-tom-thumb-eric-lehman/

News & Announcements

BIG NEWS for Android users! Fieldstone Common is now available in the Android app Stitcher. Stitcher is a program like iTunes but is available on the Android platform. Download Stitcher and search for Fieldstone Common or click here.

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 73)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 73 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the play button above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.

 

FC 72 Advanced Genealogy with George Morgan & Drew Smith

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guests are George G. Morgan and Drew Smith, authors of the book Advanced Genealogy Research Techniques.

Bio

George G. Morgan & Drew Smith

George G. Morgan & Drew Smith

George G. Morgan, an internationally recognized genealogy expert, is president of Aha! Seminars, Inc., and vice president of membership for the Federation of Genealogical Societies. He is the author of several books, including three editions of How to Do Everything: Genealogy. George co-produces The Genealogy Guys Podcast with Drew Smith.

Drew Smith, MLS, a librarian at the University of South Florida, is the “Rootsmithing with Technology” columnist for the Federation of Genealogical Societies’ FORUM magazine. He is chair of the Family History Information Standards Organization and president of the Florida Genealogical Society of Tampa.

You can learn more about George G. Morgan and Drew Smith at the Aha! Seminars website or on the Genealogy Guys podcast website.

Book Summary

Learn how to use innovative methods to unearth hard-to-find ancestors. Advanced Genealogy Research Techniques shows you, step by step, how to uncover elusive details by taking advantage of specialized tools and software programs and using proven best practices for breaking through the brick walls that have hindered your progress.

You’ll get professional advice on formulating a research strategy, understanding the details you discover, keeping careful track of your data, analyzing the evidence, and developing hypotheses. Real-world case studies demonstrate how you can apply the systematic procedures presented in this practical guide to your own research–and achieve success!

  • Examine the brick wall in detail to find potential weak spots that can be exploited into a breakthrough
  • Use brute force techniques that leave no stone unturned
  • Obtain exact copies of original records rather than derivative sources
  • Research the family, associates, and neighbors (FANs) of your brick wall ancestor
  • Consult with your family, friends, and colleagues to get a fresh perspective on your research
  • Use crowdsourcing–genealogy societies, online forums, social media, blogs, wikis, and podcasts
  • Apply technological solutions, including DNA testing and specialized genealogical software
  • Get tips on hiring a professional genealogical researcher with the appropriate credentials and references
  • Revisit your brick wall problem after honing your research skills
  • Review your evidence, develop a research strategy, and keep a meticulous research log

Book Info

Title: Advanced Genealogy Research Techniques

Publisher: McGraw Hill Education (2013)

Paperback; 206 pages with an index and BxW photos and illustrations.

Advanced Genealogy Research Techniques is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

In this interview George, Drew and I talk about how to use more advanced research techniques to solve genealogy problems. As well we discuss DNA, crowd sourcing and when it’s appropriate to bring in a professional genealogist.

Prize Winners

Two copies of Advanced Genealogy Research Techniques were given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of the McGraw Hill Education.

The winners are:

  • Pam Carter of Minnesota
  • Lori Hamilton of Connecticut

Congratulations to our winners and thanks to the McGraw Hill Education for their generosity in donating the books!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

The Direct Link to this post is www.fieldstonecommon.com/george-morgan-drew-smith/

News & Announcements

BIG NEWS for Android users! Fieldstone Common is now available in the Android app Stitcher. Stitcher is a program like iTunes but is available on the Android platform. Download Stitcher and search for Fieldstone Common or click here.

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 72)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 72 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the play button above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.

 

FC 71 Cambridge Cameos with Roger Thompson

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Roger Thompson, author of the book Cambridge Cameos: Stories of Life in 17th Century New England.

Roger is our first Fieldstone Common guest to make a second appearance on the show. He first appeared discussing his book From Deference to Defiance: Charlestown, Massachusetts 1629-1692. Roger lives in England so when he was visiting the United States this past summer I took advantage of fitting in a second interview with him.

This interview is a little different. It is not done in a studio but recorded live at his summer Cambridge Cameos with Roger Thomoson on Fieldstone Commonresidence in the very busy, bustling and noisy city of Cambridge, Massachusetts. So we will have some ambiance noise from this city in the background of the interview. I hope you won’t find that too distracting. It seems fitting somehow that we spoke in the heart of Cambridge since our discussion centered on the early history of that city.

Bio

Roger Thompson is emeritus professor of American Colonial History at the University of East Anglia, Norwich, England.

In addition to From Deference to Defiance, Roger Thompson has written:

Book Summary

Cambridge Cameos contains forty-four sketches from the period 1651 to 1686 that combine good stories, intriguing personalities, and incidents involving mostly ordinary Cambridge people. They are based on thousands of original documents; virtually all primary sources with any bearing on the early history of Cambridge. Drawing on his vast knowledge of Middlesex County families and on his equally vast experience in the town and court records of that county, Roger Thompson has composed a number of delightful vignettes of early residents of the town of Cambridge. He provides us with a rare opportunity to hear these early New Englanders speak for themselves and to experience seventeenth-century life as directly as possible.

Book Info Cambridge Cameos: Stories of Life in Seventeenth-Century New England

Title: Cambridge Cameos: Stories of Life in 17th Century New England

Publisher: New England Historic Genealogical Society (2005)

Trade paperback; 355 pages with 2 appendices, footnotes notes, and an index.

Cambridge Cameos is available for purchase from the New England Historic Genealogical Society and other booksellers.

The Interview

In this interview Roger and I dive into all the fascinating aspects of life in the 1600s in Cambridge from the unusual ways people paid for their Harvard tuition to the culture of discipline and why female healers were often accused of witchcraft.

Prize Winners

Two copies of Cambridge Cameos were given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of the New England Historic Genealogical Society.

The winners are:

  • Jean Smoorenburg of Texas
  • Cynthia Bishop of Virginia

Congratulations to our winners and thanks to the New England Historic Genealogical Society for their generosity in donating the books!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

The Direct Link to this post is www.fieldstonecommon.com/cambridge-cameos-roger-thompson/

News & Announcements

BIG NEWS for Android users! Fieldstone Common is now available in the Android app Stitcher. Stitcher is a program like iTunes but is available on the Android platform. Download Stitcher and search for Fieldstone Common or click here.

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 70)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 70 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the play button above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.

 

FC 70 Post Roads and Iron Horses with Richard DeLuca

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Richard DeLuca, author of the book Post Roads and Iron Horses: Transportation in Connecticut from Colonial Times to the Age of Steam.

Bio

Richard DeLuca earned a Bachelor of Civil Engineering degree from Manhattan College in Post Roads and Iron Horses with Richard DeLuca on Fieldstone CommonNew York, and a Master of Science degree in transportation planning from the University of Connecticut at Storrs. He has ten years of experience in the field of engineering as a transportation planner with the Connecticut Department of Transportation and with the Central Connecticut Regional Planning Agency.

In 1978, he moved to San Francisco, after which he pursued a career as a writer, focusing on California history. He was a member of the California Historical Society, a volunteer teacher in the Society’s docent program, and past president of the Society’s docent association. His article on the Indian occupation of Alcatraz Island and the origins of the Native American civil rights movement was published in California History, and received the society’s Alice J. Clark award for twentieth-century history in 1984.

He and his wife returned to Connecticut in 1998. For the past ten years he has been at work on a two-volume history of Connecticut transportation from the colonial period to the present. The first volume, Post Roads & Iron Horses, was published by Wesleyan University Press in December of 2011, and covers the history of Connecticut transportation from colonial times through the age of steam. A second volume on transportation in the twentieth century is in progress. He has presented his research at several history conferences, including the Dublin Seminar, and published several articles in Connecticut History, the journal of the Association For The Study of Connecticut History. His latest article, Competition v. Monopoly: Transportation and the Law in Nineteenth Century Connecticut, appeared in the fall 2010 special issue of Connecticut History celebrating the 375th anniversary of the state’s founding. He also served as the membership chair for ASCH from 2003 to 2005, and is currently on the editorial board of Connecticut History.

You can contact Richard through the publicist at the Wesleyan University Press.

Book Summary

Post Roads & Iron Horses is the first book to look in detail at the turnpikes, steamboats, canals, railroads, and trolleys (street railroads) that helped define Connecticut and shape New England. Advances in transportation technology during the nineteenth century transformed the Constitution State from a rough network of colonial towns to an industrial powerhouse of the Gilded Age. From the race to build the Farmington Canal to the shift from water to rail transport, historian and transportation engineer Richard DeLuca gives us engaging stories and traces the significant themes that emerge as American innovators and financiers, lawyers and legislators, struggle to control the movement of passengers and goods in southern New England. The book contains over fifty historical images and maps, and provides an excellent point of view from which to interpret the history of New England as a whole.

Book InfoPost Roads and Iron Horses: Transportation in Connecticut from Colonial Times to the Age of Steam

Title: Post Roads and Iron Horses: Transportation in Connecticut from Colonial Times to the Age of Steam

Publisher: Wesleyan University Press (2011)

Hardcover; 251 pages with 3 appendices, end notes, a bibliography, an index and lots of  BxW photos and illustrations.

Post Roads and Iron Horses is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

A discussion about transportation in Connecticut is a really a discussion about transportation in the Northeast. Connecticut is a main corridor for travel between New York and Boston. Likewise much travel northward to Springfield, Massachusetts, Vermont and New Hampshire happened via the Connecticut river. In this interview we talk about everything from Native American footpaths to town and country roads to steamboats, canals and, of course, iron horses (trains).

We discuss how people reacted to the arrival of railroads and the change from “local time” to standardized time because of train schedules. For more on the discussion of standardized time, Marian recommended checking out a recent episode, “On the Clock: A (Brief) History of Time” from the program Backstory with the American History Guys.

Prize Winners

Two copies of Post Roads and Iron Horses were given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of the Wesleyan University Press.

The winners are:

  • Leighton Symonds of New Hampshire
  • Sue Kissel of Arizona

Congratulations to our winners and thanks to the Wesleyan University Press for their generosity in donating the books!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

The Direct Link to this post is www.fieldstonecommon.com/post-roads-iron-horses-richard-deluca/

News & Announcements

BIG NEWS for Android users! Fieldstone Common is now available in the Android app Stitcher. Stitcher is a program like iTunes but is available on the Android platform. Download Stitcher and search for Fieldstone Common or click here.

Question: What’s that’s new stuff in the Fieldstone Common title (FC 70)?

Answer: That makes it easier, especially for iTunes and other podcast listeners, to keep track of which episode they are listening to. FC stands for Fieldstone Common and 70 is the number of the episode.

**** The new Fieldstone Common Season 2 subscription is now available in iTunes. You will need to subscribe to this link to continue receiving episodes in ITunes. Click on the link to subscribe.

For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Fieldstone Common is no longer broadcast on Blog Talk Radio. You can listen to the show by clicking the play button above or subscribing in iTunes or other podcatchers.