Wilton Historical Society Sunday Series: The Industrial Revolution in CT

The Sunday series is a collaboration between Wilton Library and Wilton Historical Society. The lectures alternate between Wilton Library and the Wilton Historical Society.

For the seventh year, a new season of the popular Wilton Library and Wilton
Historical Society Scholarly Series gets underway on Sunday, Feb. 9, from 4 to 5:30 p.m. with “American Made: The Industrial Revolution in Connecticut.”

This five-part series which runs through March, 2014 examines the role that Connecticut played in the emerging growth of a nation. As in previous years, the hosts are Louise Herot and Greg Chann, with moderators Stephen Hudspeth and Max Gabrielson sharing the duties. Each of the lectures is on a Sunday, from 4:00 to 5:30 p.m. and is followed by an informal reception.

The series is sponsored by Bankwell in Wilton, with individual sponsors for each lecture.

According to Ms. Herot, one of the originators of the collaborative effort, “We are so happy to be continuing this endeavor with Wilton Library and the Wilton Historical Society and to be able to provide such rich programming for our appreciative audiences. After our successful “Star-Spangled Nation” series examining the birth of our nation from the War of 1812, it was a 
natural progression to explore the Industrial Revolution with a Connecticut focus.” 

The five lectures in the series are as follows:

• “Leaving Connecticut, Shaping America”—Walter Woodward, Sunday, Feb. 9, Wilton Library, 4 p.m. Walter Woodward, a State Historian of Connecticut, returns to the library to discuss the reasons why people left Connecticut between 1780 and 1830 to go to new areas such as Pennsylvania, Vermont, western New York, and the impact of that outward migration on those left behind. The lecture is sponsored by Doon and John Foster; the moderator is Stephen Hudspeth.
• “The Erie Canal, a Mule Named Sal and the Industrialization of America”—Ann Greene, Sunday, Feb. 23, Wilton Historical Society, 4 p.m. Aside from being an engineering marvel of the early 19th Canal offers a window into the long history of industrialization, and the role it played in environmental and energy history of the 19th member and administrator at the University of Pennsylvania in the Department of History and Sociology of Science. The lecture sponsor is Stamford Pathology Group PC; Max Gabrielson is the moderator.
• “The Rise and Fall of the Connecticut Textile Industry” – Jamie Eves, Sunday, March 2, Wilton Historical Society, 4 p.m. Connecticut experienced a robust textile industry with mills first appearing shortly after the American Revolution, flourishing in the late 1800s and early 1900s, until its ultimate demise last year. Jamie Eves will trace the reasons for the rise and fall of Connecticut’s textile industry and its ramifications for the future. Dr. Eves is the Executive Director of the Windham Textile and History Museum and has a Ph.D. in History from the University of Connecticut. Kathleen and Bill Brennan are the lecture sponsors; Stephen Hudspeth is the moderator.

“Silicon Valley of the 19th Heritage”—William Hosley, Sunday, March 16, Wilton Library, 4 p.m. Connecticut Valley was the first high-tech industrial corridor – spearheading the technology-based revolution in which guns, typewriters, sewing machines, bicycles, automobiles and more were manufactured using machines. William Hosley’s talk and photographs will highlight the contribution of Connecticut to the Industrial Revolution. Mr. Hosley, the principal of Terra Firma Northeast, is an independent scholar, cultural resource consultant and photographer. The lecture sponsor is Lee Wilson of Wilson Properties; Max Gabrielson is the moderator.

“The Dawn of Innovation”—Charles Morris, Sunday, March 30, Wilton Historical Society, 4 p.m. Author Charles Morris addresses the growth spurt of the American nation stemming from the War of 1812 which jump started the New England cotton mills, the iron centers in Connecticut and Pennsylvania and the forges around the Great Lakes, allowing the U.S. to move past Great Britain 30 years after the Civil War. In addition to The Dawn of Innovation: The First American Industrial Revolution, Mr. 
Morris has written thirteen books, many of which have received “Notable Book” awards. 

Books will be available for purchase and signing courtesy of Elm Street Books. Lila and Buck Griswold are the lecture sponsors; Stephen Hudspeth is the moderator.

Advanced registration is essential for these popular lectures that alternate between Wilton Library at 137 Old Ridgefield Road and the Wilton Historical Society, 224 Danbury Road. To register for each of the lectures separately, visit www.wiltonlibrary.org or call 203-762-3950, ext. 213. Please see the library’s website for additional details on the speakers. There is no 
charge for the series, however donations are always welcomed.



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