Tag Archives: Cooperstown

Farmers’ Museum Exhibit: New York’s Good Eats!


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Do the words “Buffalo Wings” make your mouth water or do you prefer Shredded Wheat? Either way, you can thank New York State for bringing you both of these foods and many others as well. A new exhibition at The Farmers’ Museum in Cooperstown tells the story of the foods that got their start in New York State. New York’s Good Eats! Our Fabulous Foods opens this Saturday, May 28th.

Several foods commonly eaten everyday across the nation were invented or first produced in New York State. Buffalo wings and potato chips are probably the most famous, but Thousand Island dressing was also created in the Empire State, and celery was first commercially farmed here. The exhibition will profile over a dozen foods – everything from Jell-O to Lifesavers to ice cream sundaes.

“New York has a rich agricultural and culinary history,” says Museum Curator Erin Richardson. “The whole family will enjoy learning about their favorite foods, discovering how they got their start, how they’ve changed, and the impact they have had.” In addition to fun food facts, New York’s Good Eats! will showcase important objects and artifacts, such as the oldest known tomato ketchup recipe, classic Jell-O molds, and an original packing crate for Shredded Wheat.

This new exhibition promises to be popular—not only because of the topic, but also because of how it is designed. “The Farmers’ Museum has developed an innovative, hands-on approach to engage visitors of all ages with this exhibition,” says Richardson. “From recipe sharing to an interactive family guide to trivia quizzes and coloring stations, there is something fun for everyone.”

New York’s Good Eats! Our Fabulous Foods opens Memorial Day Weekend on Saturday, May 28th in the Main Barn of The Farmers’ Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y. The exhibition will run through October 2012. It is sponsored in part by Price Chopper, The Tianederrah Foundation, WMHT, Savor New York, and The New York State Council on the Arts. Visit FarmersMuseum.org for more information.

Illustration: The Saratoga Specialties Company makes potato chips according to the original recipe used by George Crum. The chips are made by hand and packaged in replica Moon’s Lake House take-out boxes. Ccourtesy of Saratoga Specialties Company.

Fenimore Features Edward Hopper Exhibit


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An exhibition showcasing the life work of noted 20th-century artist Edward Hopper opens May 28th at the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown, New York. A Window into Edward Hopper will focus on the evolution of Hopper’s work from the 1890s to the 1930s, giving visitors a deeper insight into the man, his process, and his art.

As part of an innovative collaboration, the exhibition coincides with The Glimmerglass Festival’s presentation of Later the Same Evening, a 2007 contemporary opera based on five Hopper paintings. The opera brings the paintings to life and eventually intertwines them on a single night in New York City in 1932. One of the arias, “Out My One Window,” serves as the inspiration for the title of Fenimore Art Museum’s upcoming exhibition.

Approximately 40 works will be on display in the exhibition including early watercolors, etchings, drawings, and major oil paintings. Fenimore Art Museum President and CEO, Dr. Paul S. D’Ambrosio, comments, “In compiling this exhibition, we selected works that share the sensibility andstyle that Hopper is known for – an exploration of solitude and the desire for connection. Whether painting an urban or costal setting, the distinctive qualities of Hopper’s artistic vision come through.” Hopper played a key role in bridging the gap between traditionalists and modernists. His work is rooted in realism but his streamlined compositions capture the essence of modern American life.

A Window Into Edward Hopper is the first major exhibition of Hopper’s works in Central New York. A surprising fact, given that two of Hopper’s patrons, Edward Root and Stephen C. Clark, were based in the area.

For more information about this and other exhibitions, visit the Fenimore Art Museum’s website.

Illustration: Freight Cars, Gloucester, 1929. Oil on Canvas, 29 x 40 1/8. Gift of Edward Wales Root in recognition of the 25th Anniversary of the Addison Gallery. Addison Gallery of American Art, Phillips Academy, Andover, Massachusetts.

Grants for School Travel to Cooperstown Museums


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The Fenimore Art Museum and The Farmers’ Museum in Cooperstown, New York, have received a donation from KeyBank for $5,000. The gift was given to support travel grant opportunities that will cover transportation costs for fourth grade students, in Otsego County and the surrounding region, planning to visit the Museums. These grants will pay partial or total transportation costs depending on the school’s location and need.

The programs are currently available for the fourth grade only. For Otsego County fourth grade students, both bussing and admissions can be covered by this grant. For students outside of Otsego County, NYSHA is offering matching grants to PTOs or schools who are providing most of the costs of the field trips.

“We know that school budgets are tighter than ever, and we thank KeyBank for their part in supporting this much needed program to bring students to our museums,” said John Buchinger, Associate Director of Education at the New York State Historical Association and The Farmers’ Museum.

Summer Kids Program at Farmers Museum


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The Farmers’ Museum, one of the nation’s premier rural history museums, is currently recruiting for this summer’s Young Interpreter program. Boys and girls between the ages of 12 to 14, as of May 1st, are invited to apply by May 15th.

Young Interpreters have the opportunity to work in various selected sites throughout The Farmers’ Museum including: Peleg Field Blacksmith Shop, Lippitt Farmhouse, Dr. Thrall’s Pharmacy, The Middlefield Printing Office, Todd’s General Store, the Children’s Barnyard, or developing spinning and weaving skills. “This program is so popular because the boys and girls who participate enjoy working one-on-one with our experienced staff to learn new and unique skills,” says program manager Gwen Miner. “Plus, the leadership and presentation skills they gain over the summer are life-long benefits.”

A limited number of students will be accepted for the program; the application process is competitive. To apply, submit by May 15th a one to two page letter expressing your interest and reasons for wanting to be a Young Interpreter, as well as, an explanation of which apprenticeship you would like and why. Mail to: Young Interpreter Program, The Farmers’ Museum, P.O. Box 30, Cooperstown, NY 13326. Letters of reference are not necessary.

A committee of museum staff will review the applications. Applicants will be chosen based on their commitment and interest, maturity, willingness to learn, and ease with the public.

Young interpreters are expected to work one day a week for a period of eight weeks, beginning the last week in June and ending the last week in August. Students applying for the Young Interpreter Program must have parental permission and transportation to the Museum during the course of the program.

The program takes place at The Farmers’ Museum, a premier rural history museum established in 1943. The Museum presents the trades and crafts common to ordinary people of rural 19th-century New York State in its historic village and farmstead.

Applications for Fenimore’s ‘Art By The Lake’ Due


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Fenimore Art Museum is still accepting submissions for its outdoor, juried art competition – which attracted over 800 visitors last year from all over the region. The 4th annual Art By The Lake will be held Saturday, August 6, 2011 on the Museum’s grounds overlooking Otsego Lake.

Art by the Lake is a juried art invitational celebrating artists and landscape. An artist’s information packet and application is available on the Museum’s website at FenimoreArtMuseum.org/lake.

Selected artists will have the opportunity to display, demonstrate, and sell their art. Prizes will be awarded in the following categories:

• Best Interpretation of New York Landscape

• Most Outstanding Use of Color

• Most Original Style

• Audience Favorite

Judges’ decisions will be based on creativity, craftsmanship, and relationship to the landscape theme.

Applications must be postmarked by May 2, 2011. (Late applications may be accepted at the discretion of the jury if space is available.) Artists will be notified of their acceptance by May 16, 2011, at which point they will receive detailed event information and an artist’s contract.

In addition to showcasing outstanding artists in all genres of landscape art, Art By the Lake features interactive demonstrations, educational programming, live entertainment, and tastings of some of the best food, wine, and beer from across the state, all with the backdrop of the spectacular Otsego Lake.

Farmers’ Museum Spring Workshops Begin


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Beginning April 9, The Farmers’ Museum will offer a series of spring workshops on topics ranging from making the freshest butter to blacksmithing. These fun, hands-on workshops will not only give you opportunities to learn new, novel skills, but will also feature current trendy hobbies—like heirloom gardening and raising chickens.

Discount pricing for NYSHA members. All workshops are held at The Farmers’ Museum in Cooperstown. Registration is required. For more information and reservations, please call Sara Evenson at (607) 547-1461. Find more information at FarmersMuseum.org.

2011 Spring Schedule

Gardening with Heirloom Vegetables

April 9, 10 am – 2 pm / Fee: $40 non-members; $35 NYSHA members

Learn about heirloom variety vegetables and how to grow them in your own gardens. You will help set up a hot frame in one of the museum’s gardens and plant it with heirloom seeds. You’ll also take a visit to the Lippitt Farmhouse to see and learn about differentmethods of vegetable storage. Other topics, including seed propagating and cloning, will also be covered during the workshop.

Happy Healthy Hen House

April 16, 9 am – 1 pm / Fee: $40 non-members; $35 NYSHA members

This half-day workshop will introduce participants to techniques and information about the care and housing of chickens. Learn both about historic and contemporary methods of breed selection, nutrition, housing, management and general care for raising your own backyard flock. Come prepared to work in The Farmers’ Museum’s barnyard.

Introduction to Blacksmithing

April 16-17, 9 am – 4 pm / Fee: $150 non-members; $140 NYSHA members

This class covers the core skills of blacksmithing. Try out blacksmithing for the first time, or expand your existing skills under the supervision of our master blacksmith. Practice managing a coal fire and forging skills such as drawing out, bending, twisting, and punching. Projects include making decorative hooks, fireplace tools, nails, and hanging brackets. No previous experience is necessary. (Fee includes materials and information packet.)

Intermediate Blacksmithing

May 5-6, 9 am – 4 pm / Fee: $150 non-members; $140 NYSHA members

This class requires students who already have core blacksmithingskills. Work with more complex forging projects. Skills practiced include hot punching, mortise and tennon joints, forge welding, and reproduction of historic ironwork. Students should have taken Blacksmithing 1 or have prior permission of the instructor. (Fee includes materials and information packet.)

Spring Beekeeping

May 7, 9 am – 1 pm / Fee: $40 non-members; $35 NYSHA members

Are you interested in learning about the ancient art and science of beekeeping? This hands-on workshop will introduce you to the fundamentals of keeping bees. We will discuss the different ways to get started as a beekeeper and prepare you for the tasks involved. You will also learnsome of the history and folklore of beekeeping.

In the Medicine Cabinet

May 14, 10 am – 1 pm / Fee: $40 non-members; $35 NYSHA members

This workshop will cover growing, harvesting, and wild crafting of about fifteen herbs. In addition, instruction will be given for producing medical preparations from the various herbs. Preparations will include oils (hot and cold infused), ointments, compresses, tinctures, infusions, and decoctions.

Intermediate Blacksmithing

May 21-22, 9 am – 4 pm / Fee: $150 non-members; $140 NYSHA members

This class requires students who already have core blacksmithingskills. Work with more complex forging projects. Skills practiced include hot punching, mortise and tennon joints, forge welding, and reproduction of historic ironwork. Students should have taken Blacksmithing 1 or have prior permission of the instructor. (Fee includes materials and information packet.)

Introduction to Blacksmithing

June 9-10, 9 am – 4 pm / Fee: $150 non-members; $140 NYSHA members

This class covers the core skills of blacksmithing. Try out blacksmithing for the first time, or expand your existing skills under the supervision of our master blacksmith. Practice managing a coal fire and forging skills such as drawing out, bending, twisting, and punching. Projects include making decorative hooks, fireplace tools, nails, and hanging brackets. No previous experience is necessary. (Fee includes materials and information packet.)

Udder to Butter

June 11, 8 am – 12 pm / Fee: $40 non-members; $35 NYSHA members

Join the farm staff in a unique opportunity to participate in the process of transforming milk into butter. We will start in the barn where you will try your hand at milking the cow and end in the kitchen enjoying our freshly made butter on toast. Participants will separate cream and churn butter using historic and contemporary methods.

This post is brought to you by Cheap Flights to New York.

New President of Farmers’ Museum, NYSHA


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The election of Dr. Paul D’Ambrosio as President of The Farmers’ Museum/New York State Historical Association was announced yesterday by Jane Forbes Clark, Chairman of The Farmers’ Museum, Inc. and Dr. Douglas E. Evelyn, Chairman of The New York State Historical Association, effective April 1, 2011.

Dr. D’Ambrosio succeeds D. Stephen Elliott as President and C.E.O. Mr. Elliott, who served nearly six years as President, has been appointed Director and Chief Executive Officer of The Minnesota Historical Society.

In a joint statement, Jane Forbes Clark and Douglas Evelyn said, “although we are sorry that Steve Elliott is leaving Cooperstown after six very productive years, we have a most capable successor in Paul D’Ambrosio. Paul’s leadership, experience and creativity have been on ample display at The Farmers’ Museum and The Fenimore Art Museum, and we are fortunate to have such a worthy and skilled museum professional within our ranks to promote to our highest administrative position.”

Mr. Elliott stated that “it has been an honor to work with the very capable and dedicated staffs of the New York State Historical Association and The Farmers’ Museum and I look forward to applying what I have learned from my colleagues in Cooperstown to my forthcoming work with another of America’s premier history institutions.”

Paul D’Ambrosio has been associated with The Farmers’ Museum, The New York State Historical Association and its Fenimore Art Museum for 26 years. He has been Vice President and Chief Curator since 1998 and has been responsible for organizing and traveling exhibits, acquisitions, publications, research, academic study and the care of objects. Dr. D’Ambrosio has also taken the lead role in the adoption of the many new forms of social media at the Museums, thereby making their collections and programs open and accessible (see his blog). In addition, he is an Adjunct Professor of Museum Studies at the Cooperstown Graduate Program, a Member of the American Folk Art Society and has served as a Museum Panelist for the New York State Council on the Arts.

A nationally recognized expert of American Folk Art, Dr. D’Ambrosio is the author of Ralph Fasanella’s America, numerous exhibition catalogs and articles, and co-author of Folk Art’s Many Faces. He holds a B.A. from SUNY Cortland, an M.A. from SUNY Oneonta’s Cooperstown Graduate Program and a Ph.D. from Boston University. Dr. D’Ambrosio, his wife Anna and their family reside in New Hartford, New York.

The Farmers’ Museum, founded in 1943, is an educational organization devoted to presenting the lives of ordinary people and the agricultural and trade processes of rural 19th century New York State; it is one of the oldest and most popular continuously operating outdoor museums in the United States. Founded in 1899, The New York State Historical Association preserves and exhibits objects and documents significant to New York history and American culture. The Association is home to The Fenimore Art Museum that features collections of American folk art, 19th century American fine art, and the acclaimed Eugene and Clare Thaw Collection of American Indian Art.

Photo: Paul D’Ambrosio with students form the Cooperstown Graduate Program.

Fenimore’s Art by the Lake Set for Saturday


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The Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown announces its third annual juried art event celebrating the relationship between artists and the landscape – Art by the Lake, taking place Saturday, August 7 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on the Museum’s expansive back lawn. The event offers plein-air painting demonstrations, exhibits of works by contemporary landscape artists, music, educational programs, and samplings of New York State foods and beverages – all in a lavish setting overlooking Otsego Lake.

Art by the Lake is a juried art competition featuring 12 selected artists. These artists, chosen this past May, include Jessica Dalrymple (oil), Evelyn Dankovich (Oil, Watercolor, Acrylic), Denise Dolge (Pastel), Grant Dolge (Pastel), Lois Holz (Watercolor), Tom Hussey (oil), Bill Mowson (Watercolor), Marilyn A. Roveland (watercolor), Elaine Wentworth (watercolor, acrylic), Meg Anderson Argo (Soft Pastels), Andrea House (Oil), and Susan Jones Kenyon (Oil). A panel of judges will determine awards for categories such as “Best Interpretation of a New York Landscape,” Most Outstanding Use of Color,” and others. There will be spectator voting for the “Audience Favorite” until 2:30 p.m. The award ceremony takes place at 3:00 p.m.

The Museum will provide tours of current exhibitions including Empire Waists, Bustles & Lace: A Century of New York Fashion with curator Chris Rossi (11:00 a.m.); Watermark with artist Michele Harvey (12:00 p.m.); In Our Time: The World as Seen by Magnum Photographers with curator Michelle Murdock (1:00 p.m.); and John Singer Sargent: Portraits in Praise of Women with chief curator Paul D’Ambrosio (2:00 p.m.). The Mohawk Bark House and Interpretive Trail will also be open in the afternoon.

Author Marian Mullet will be signing copies of her book, Richard Andrew: Called to Paint, throughout the day and Cynthia Marsh will have information available on the Oneonta Mural Project.

In addition to the art, there will be children’s activities from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. including lawn games such as bocce and croquet. Kids can also create their own postcard and partake in an afternoon tea (1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.).

Art by the Lake provides delectable culinary experiences including wine and beer tastings from Cooperstown Brewing Company and Four Chimneys Organic Winery (11:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.). The Museum’s food staff will create dishes incorporating ingredients from local sources – available for purchase from 11:30 a.m. – 3:30 pm. Cabot/McCadam Cheese will offer samples and the Fenimore Art Museum Café will be open throughout the day.

Admission to the event is free with paid admission to the Fenimore Art Museum. Adults (13-64): $12.00 and seniors (65+): $10.50. Members of NYSHA, children 12 and under, as well as active and retired career military (must present card at admissions) are free.

Visit their website for more information at FenimoreArtMuseum.org/lake.

Lecture to Focus on Southern Otsego County


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Join Mark Simonson as he discusses the development of southern Otsego County as well as the preservation work of Hanford Mills and Hyde Hall – both co-sponsors of the lecture. Mr. Simonson is the Otsego City Historian and an interpreter at The Farmers’ Museum. The lecture will be held in the auditorium of the Fenimore Art Museum on Tuesday, June 8, beginning at 7:00 p.m.

The Fenimore Art Museum, located on the shores of Otsego Lake — James Fenimore Cooper’s “Glimmerglass Lake” — in historic Cooperstown, New York, features a wide-ranging collection of American art.

Fenimore Art Museum exhibits include: folk art; important American 18th- and 19th-century landscape, genre, and portrait paintings; an extensive collection of domestic artifacts; more than 125,000 historical photographs representing the technical developments made in photography and providing extensive visual documentation of the region’s unique history; and the renowned Eugene and Clare Thaw Collection of American Indian Art comprising more than 800 art objects representative of a broad geographic range of North American Indian cultures, from the Northwest Coast, Eastern Woodlands, Plains, Southwest, Great Lakes, and Prairie regions. Founded in 1945, the Fenimore Art Museum is NYSHA’s showcase museum.

Farmers’ Museum Annual Benefit Horse Show, Clinic


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Hunt-seat riders are welcome to submit entries for The Farmers’ Museum’s 14th Annual Benefit Horse Show, scheduled for Sunday, June 13, at the Iroquois Farm Showgrounds on County Route 33, in Cooperstown. The show, which offers equestrians the opportunity to test their horsemanship skills, features a range of classes for beginner through open riders.

Riders and spectators alike will enjoy the course which features handcrafted jumps representing local landmarks in Cooperstown.

The 4th Annual Horse Show Clinic will be conducted by Timmy Kees from Westport, CT. With over 35 years experience on the “A” horse show circuit, W.T. (“Timmy”) Kees is one of the country’s most prominent hunter/equitation trainers. His riders have won the ASPCA Maclay, USEF Medal and USET equitation finals a total of 7 times. Kees has also trained hunters such as Holy Smoke, Watership Down and Castaway to championships at Devon, Harrisburg, Washington and The National Horse Show. He is a USEF “R” judge and conducts clinics throughout the country. Kees was recently inducted into the National Show Hunter Hall of Fame. He is based at Red Gate Farm in Newtown, CT, where he trains horses and riders for the hunter, jumper and equitation divisions with partners Olympic gold medalist Leslie Burr Howard and Grand Prix riders Molly Ashe Cawley and Chris Cawley.

The clinic will be held on Saturday, June 12, and is open to riders of all ages, levels, and abilities riding horses or ponies. (Participants must be able to jump at least 2’.) Overnight stabling off-site and a discount on entry fees is available for registrants who will be participating in the clinic and the show. Four sessions are available. Space is limited and registration is required by June 9. Registration forms are available on our website at FarmersMuseum.org.

The 14th Annual Benefit Horse Show will be held on Sunday, June 13. A warm-up over-fences class will be offered from 6:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. The show begins at 9 a.m., rain or shine. Championships will be awarded as well as The Josef Neckermann Perpetual Trophy, presented to the best child rider; The John Moffat Perpetual Trophy, granted to the Champion in the Equitation Division; The Coral Island Leading Hunter Perpetual Trophy, awarded to the horse scoring the most points entered in the children’s, adult and/or open divisions; and The Good Sportsmanship Award, will be presented to a rider, trainer, or parent who exemplifies good conduct, character and overall good sportsmanship.

Judges for the show include Mason Phelps, Wellington, FL; Walter T. Kees of Westport, CT; and Susan B. Schoellkopf of Buffalo, New York. The course designer and show manager is Leo Conroy of Wellington, FL. The announcer is David Distler of Norwalk, CT. All classes are pointed by Chensego Hunter Association.

The Annual Patrons’ Luncheon will also be offered at noon. Enjoy a delicious champagne luncheon coupled with ringside seating under the tent. Coffees and teas will be available from 10:00 a.m. – noon; champagne and mimosas will be served starting at 11:00 a.m.; and afternoon refreshments will follow through the end of the show. Tickets are $45 per person (adult) and $10 (12 and under). Reservations are required by June 1st. For more information or to make a reservation, please contact Laura Gattoni at 607-547-1471 or email Development@nysha.org.

For a prize list, information on the horse show or clinic, please contact Meg Preston at (607) 547-1452 or visit our web site at FarmersMuseum.org. Admission to the show is free. Dogs are welcome at the show, but must be leashed at all times. Food and drinks will be available for purchase throughout the day.

Proceeds raised by the Benefit Horse Show will support the education programs at The Farmers’ Museum.

Cooperstown: Food For Thought Programs


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Food for Thought, the popular lunch and lecture series of The Farmers’ Museum and the Fenimore Art Museum, kicks off the 2010 season on Wednesday, May 12. All programs are held on Wednesdays beginning at noon at the Fenimore Art Museum or The Farmers’ Museum.

Food for Thought programs are a lunch and lecture series which offers visitors a more in-depth understanding of our exhibits and programs. All programs begin at noon on Wednesdays and include lunch ($15 for NYSHA members and $20 for non-members). Registration is required at least three days in advance. Cancellations without advanced warning will be charged. To reserve your spot, please call Karen Wyckoff at (607) 547-1410.

Food for Thought programs at the Fenimore Art Museum:

May 12 Virtual Folk: A People’s Choice Exhibition

June 2 Thirty Feet of Legend and Lineage

June 16 John Singer Sargent: Portraits in Praise of Women

June 23 In Our Time: The World as Seen by Magnum Photographers

July 7 Civil War Arms & Equipment: The New York Soldier

Food for Thought programs at The Farmers’ Museum:

June 9 New York State Barns

July 14 The History of Thrall Pharmacy

July 28 Phrenology in 19th-Century America

Mothers: Free Admission to Fenimore, Farmers’ Museum Sunday


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In recognition of Mother’s Day, all mothers and grandmothers will receive free admission to the Fenimore Art Museum and The Farmers’ Museum on Sunday, May 9.

Visitors can start the day at the Fenimore Art Museum by taking in one of the new exhibitions, such as Empire Waists, Bustles and Lace: A Century of New York Fashion – an exciting exhibition of the Museum’s collection of historic dresses. The exhibition includes the oldest known example of a dress with a label, stunning examples of Empire, Romantic and Civil War era dresses and turn-of-the-20th century items. Afterwards, visitors can enjoy lunch on the terrace overlooking Otsego Lake and then stroll across to The Farmers’ Museum to visit the baby lambs and ride on The Empire State Carousel.

About the Fenimore Art Museum

The Fenimore Art Museum, located on the shores of Otsego Lake — James Fenimore Cooper’s “Glimmerglass Lake” — in historic Cooperstown, New York, features a wide-ranging collection of American art including: folk art; important American 18th- and 19th-century landscape, genre, and portrait paintings; an extensive collection of domestic artifacts; more than 125,000 historical photographs representing the technical developments made in photography and providing extensive visual documentation of the region’s unique history; and the renowned Eugene and Clare Thaw Collection of American Indian Art comprising more than 800 art objects representative of a broad geographic range of North American Indian cultures, from the Northwest Coast, Eastern Woodlands, Plains, Southwest, Great Lakes, and Prairie regions. Founded in 1945, the Fenimore Art Museum is NYSHA’s showcase museum.

About The Farmers’ Museum

As one of the oldest rural life museums in the country, The Farmers’ Museum in Cooperstown, New York, provides visitors with a unique opportunity to experience 19th-century rural and village life first-hand through authentic demonstrations and interpretative exhibits. The museum, founded in 1943, comprises a Colonial Revival stone barn listed on the National Register for Historic Places, a recreated historic village circa 1845, a late- nineteenth-century Country Fair featuring The Empire State Carousel, and a working farmstead. Through its 19th-century village and farm, the museum preserves important examples of upstate New York architecture, early agricultural tools and equipment, and heritage livestock. The Farmers’ Museum’s outstanding collection of more than 23,000 items encompasses significant historic objects ranging from butter molds to carriages, and hand planes to plows. The museum also presents a broad range of interactive educational programs for school groups, families, and adults that explore and preserve the rich agricultural history of the region.

Otsego County: A Historical Introduction Lecture


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F. Daniel Larkin will discuss the development of the Otsego County region from the late 18th century to the late 20th century at an evening lecture in the auditorium at the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown. The event will take place tomorrow night from 6 to 8 pm; the lecture is free and open to the public.

Larkin’s lecture will cover the expansion and movement of people and goods across the region as well as the rise and decline of agriculture, industrialization, and trade. Dr. Larkin is the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at SUNY College at Oneonta. The lecture is co-sponsored by Hyde Hall and Hanford Mills Museum.

For more information, contact the New York State Historical Association at (607) 547-1453

Illustration: Otsego County, 1792-1793

Young Interpreters Sought at The Farmers’ Museum


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The Farmers’ Museum is seeking applicants for its Young Interpreter Program. By pairing young people with museum staff, this popular summer program teaches students about America’s past, helps them develop new skills, and allows them to share their newfound knowledge with museum visitors. Boys and girls between the ages of 12 to 14 as of May 1, 2010, are invited to apply. A limited number of students will be accepted for the program.

The Young Interpreter Program began in 1993. The program takes place at The Farmers’ Museum, a premier rural history museum established in 1943. The museum presents the trades and crafts common to ordinary people of rural 19th-century New York State in its historic village and farmstead. Young interpreters will have the opportunity to work in various selected sites throughout the museum including: Peleg Field Blacksmith Shop, Bump Tavern, Lippitt Farmhouse, Dr. Thrall’s Pharmacy, The Middlefield Printing Office, Todd’s General Store, the Children’s Barnyard, or developing spinning and weaving skills.

Young interpreters are expected to work one day a week for a period of eight weeks, beginning the last week in June and ending the last week in August. Students who would like to participate should submit a one or two-page letter expressing their interest and reasons for wanting to be a Young Interpreter, as well as an explanation of where they would like to work and why, to: Young Interpreter Program, The Farmers’ Museum, P.O. Box 30, Cooperstown, NY 13326. Letters of application must be received by May 15, 2010. Letters of reference are not necessary. A committee of museum staff will review the applications. Candidates may be asked for an interview. Applicants will be chosen based on their commitment and interest, maturity, willingness to learn, and ease with the public. Students applying for the Young Interpreter Program must have parental permission and transportation to the museum during the course of the program.

For more information, please contact Deborah Brundage at 607-547-1484.

Fenimore Art Museum Opens For Season


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The Fenimore Art Museum, in Cooperstown, reopened for the 2010 season with four new exhibitions on Thursday, April 1. These diverse exhibitions include examples of 19th-century fashion, folk art, photography, and contemporary landscape painting.

Starting this year, admission for children 12 and under is free. This price change will allow more families the opportunity to experience the Museum, its acclaimed exhibitions, and its unique educational programs. Adult admission (13-64) is $12.00 and senior admission (65 and up) is $10.50. NYSHA members, active military, and retired career military are always free.

Exhibition highlights include:

Empire Waists, Bustles and Lace: A Century of New York Fashion
(April 1, 2010 – December 31, 2010)

Empire Waists, Bustles and Lace is an exciting exhibition of the Museum’s collection of historic dresses. When viewed in conjunction with the John Singer Sargent exhibition (opening May 29), the show enables visitors to see and experience a broader historical context of men’s and women’s fashion. Even though upstate New York was considered the edge of the western frontier in the 19th century, residents of the area kept up with New York City and the world in terms of fashion. The exhibition includes the oldest known example of a dress with a label, stunning examples of Empire, Romantic and Civil War era dresses and turn-of-the-20th century items. Additionally, visitors will be able to peek at what was worn underneath the dresses which were vital to giving them their distinctive shapes. This exhibition is funded in part by The Coby Foundation.

In Our Time: The World as Seen by Magnum Photographers
(April 1, 2010 – September 6, 2010)

In Our Time was organized to celebrate 50 years of photography at Magnum Photos Inc. and the 150th anniversary of the invention of photography.

This exhibition of 150 black-and-white photographs is from a comprehensive survey of Magnum Photos, Inc., which is considered to be one of the world’s most renowned photographic agencies. These images are a result of the extraordinary vision of the many talented photographers who have been associated with Magnum since its founding in 1947.

The broad events captured in these Magnum photographs include the D-Day landing in Normandy, France (1944); prisoners of war returning home to Vienna, Austria (1947); Ghandi’s funeral in India (1948); James Dean in Times Square (1955); Castro delivering a speech in Havanna (1959); Martin Luther King receiving the Nobel Peace Prize (1963); Jacqueline and Robert Kennedy at Arlington (1963); a Shriner’s parade in Boston (1974); women supporters of Ayatollah Khomeni in Iran (1979); and a crack den in New York City (1988).

In Our Time: The World as Seen by Magnum Photographers is toured by George Eastman House International Museum of Photography and Film.

Watermark: Michele Harvey & Glimmerglass
(April 1, 2010 – December 31, 2010)

Michele Harvey spends most of the year in her summer studio in upstate New York. Among her various formats, Harvey’s signature triptych formats often include quiet roads or paths framing a central scene that provides one with the sense of simultaneously entering and leaving her misted landscapes. The union of the darker colors of the trees and the distinct light of the vaporous sky create a calming rhythm that draws the viewer into a mysterious world where time appears to stand still.

Harvey is enchanted by the environs of Cooperstown and the opportunity to create works based here. “The lake, its history, the views… all conspired to take me off the beaten path. I felt the lure of Glimmerglass as it must have felt to James Fenimore Cooper. For the first time I became a tourist, humbled by the scenery.”

Watermark: Michele Harvey & Glimmerglass represents a melding of the two; adding her own style to the venerable history of landscape art already created here.

Virtual Folk: A Blog Readers’ Choice
(April 1, 2010 – December 31, 2010)

Virtual Folk: A Blog Readers’ Choice is an exhibition of exceptional folk art objects from the Fenimore Art Museum’s vast collection, chosen by the readers of our folk art blog – American Folk Art @ Cooperstown.

Bits of Home
(April 1, 2010 – December 31, 2010)

Visitors to the Fenimore Art Museum have long enjoyed the extraordinary collections of fine art, folk art, and American Indian art held by the New York State Historical Association. Less well known are the thousands of historical artifacts in the collections storage areas. Bits of Home acquaints visitors with these historical collections by featuring a selection of more than 30 artifacts from NYSHA and The Farmers’ Museum’s extensive collections of domestic life in nineteenth-century New York.

Opening Later in the Season…

John Singer Sargent: Portraits in Praise of Women
(May 29, 2010 – December 31, 2010)

The Fenimore Art Museum presents the first major exhibition on the topic of portraits of women by the well-known American artist John Singer Sargent (1856-1925). The exhibition explores Sargent’s range of styles and depth of characterization in his portraits of society women, as well as his fascination with exotic working-class women of Venice and Capri. The paintings and drawings provide an intimate glimpse into the lives of these women of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Included will be drawings of Madame Gautreau, the mysterious subject of Sargent’s famous portrait Madame X.

Picturing Women: American Art from the Permanent Collections
(July 18, 2009 – December 31, 2009)

Ongoing Exhibitions…

Eugene and Clare Thaw Collection of American Indian Art
Eugene and Clare Thaw Gallery

The Coopers of Cooperstown
Cooper Room

Genre Paintings from the Permanent Collection
Paneled Room

American Memory: Recalling the Past in Folk Art
Main Gallery

From April 1 through May 10, the museum will be open Tuesday through Sunday, from 10 am to 4 pm, closed on Mondays. Summer hours begin on May 11 and continue through October 11. During the summer season, the museum is open seven days a week from 10 am to 5 pm. Please visit their website for more information – www.fenimoreartmuseum.org.

Call For Artists: Fenimore Art Museum’s ‘Art By The Lake’


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Fenimore Art Museum is now accepting submissions for its third annual outdoor, summer event Art By The Lake – formerly called A Taste of the Sublime. It will be held Saturday, August 7, 2010 on the museum’s spacious grounds overlooking Otsego Lake.

Art by the Lake is a juried art invitational that welcomes artists from across New York State in a celebration of the historic relationship between the artists and the landscape that surrounds us. The event features outstanding artists in all genres of landscape art, interactive demonstrations, educational programming, live entertainment, and tastings of some of the best food, wine, and beer from across the state.

Prizes will be awarded in the following categories:
• Best Interpretation of New York Landscape
• Most Outstanding Use of Color
• Most Original Style
• Audience Favorite

An artist’s information packet and application form can be found on the Fenimore Art Museum’s website at FenimoreArtMuseum.org.

Applications must be postmarked by May 3, 2010. (Late applications may be accepted at the discretion of the jury if space is available.) Artists will be notified of their acceptance by May 17, 2010, at which point they will receive detailed event information and an artist’s contract.

NYSHA Research Library Offers Genealogy Workshops


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The New York State Historical Association Research Library will be offering three workshops for both the beginner and intermediate genealogist on Wednesday, April 7; Thursday, April 8; and Wednesday, April 14.

Workshops will be held from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm in the NYSHA Research Library in Cooperstown, NY. Each session is $10 for NYSHA members and $15 for non-members. Registration required; contact the Research Library at (607) 547-1470 or via e-mail at library@nysha.org. Genealogy Workshops may be taken individually, although it is recommended that Researching Your Family History: An Introduction Part I and II be taken in sequence.

Wednesday, April 7: Researching Your Family History: An Introduction, Part I
This workshop provides an introduction to family history research and an overview of the genealogical records at the New York State Historical Association’s Research Library. Some popular online databases and websites will be demonstrated.

Thursday, April 8: Researching Your Family History: An Introduction, Part II
This workshop will teach you how to research your ancestors using major genealogical sources, including cemetery records, Bible records, church records, and other primary resource materials. In addition, Revolutionary War and Civil War soldiers will be covered. (Attendance at Workshop Part I helpful but not required.)

Wednesday, April 14: How to Find Your Ancestors in Census Records
The first federal census was taken in 1790. During this workshop, participants will learn how to search censuses and use the indexes to them in their family history research. Participants will also learn how to use the census taken by New York State.

Cooperstown: Dinner at A 19th Century Tavern


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Escape to the 1800s with The Farmers’ Museum’s “Evening at the Tavern” and experience music and merriment topped off with an authentic period dinner. Evenings at the Tavern will be offered on Saturday, April 10 and 24 from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Guests will enjoy a dining experience featuring a four-course candlelit meal, period music and games, and old-fashioned hospitality in the Museum’s historic Bump Tavern. The menu is designed and based on foods that were served in rural 19th-century New York taverns. Dinner includes soup, vegetables, roast meat, fresh bread, and dessert. During the evening, guests will be offered a tour of the historic tavern with the Museum’s interpretative hosts, learning about the history of taverns and travel in the 19th century.

Bump Tavern was built by Jehiel Tuttle in the late 1790s in the village of Ashland, Greene County, New York. Strategically located on the Catskill and Windham Turnpike, the resting spot served cattle drovers and other travelers passing through the area. The tavern was purchased in 1842 by Ephraim Bump, who expanded the building and updated the Federal period architecture with Greek revival porches. In 1952, Bump Tavern was moved to Cooperstown, where it became part of the collection of historic buildings at The Farmers’ Museum.

Space is limited; reservations are required and are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Full payment is required in advance by check or credit card. The fee, which includes the complete meal and an unforgettable experience, is $60; $55 for members of the New York State Historical Association. Wine and beer will be available for an additional fee. For more information or to make reservations, please call The Farmers’ Museum at 547-1452.

Farmers’ Museum Offers Spring Craft Workshops


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Beginning April 3, The Farmers’ Museum will offer a series of workshops based on 19th-century trades and crafts with topics ranging from blacksmithing to beekeeping. All workshops are held at The Farmers’ Museum in Cooperstown. Registration is required. For more information and reservations, call Karen Wyckoff at (607) 547-1410. Information on future workshops can be found on their website at www.farmersmuseum.org.

Farm Family Meal (parent/child)
April 3, 10 am – 2 pm / Fee: $50
Learn what it took to create a meal during the 19th-century. Participants will cook a simple meal over the fire while learning about daily chores of parents and children during the 1840s.

Heritage Vegetable Gardens
April 10, 10 am – 2 pm / Fee: $40 per family
Spend the day learning about historic and current practices for planting and maintaining heritage vegetable gardens. Participants will discuss layout of gardens, cultivation and pest control, and storage of vegetables. They will also have the opportunity to build a hot frame and plant seeds and will leave with packets of heritage seeds.

Farm Chores
April 12, 19, and May 3, 8 – 11 am / Fee: $50 per family or $20 per person
Spend the morning with the farmers preparing the farm for a day’s work: open the barns, clean stalls, feed the animals, thresh wheat, etc. Each day will bring different tasks, just as it does on any farm. A perfect “morning out” for a family or adults.

Growing a Taste of Yesterday: an Heirloom Gardening Workshop
April 17, 10 am – 2 pm / Fee: $40
This hands-on workshop will focus on starting and maintaining your own supply of heirloom vegetables. Participants will have the opportunity to plant a selection of vegetable varieties for their home gardens. In addition the process for starting a hot frame and composting for your garden will also be discussed. There will also be a discussion and demonstration of propagation methods for saving your favorite vegetable varieties.

Happy Healthy Hen House
April 24, 9 am – 1 pm / Fee: $40
This half-day workshop will introduce participants to techniques and information about the care and housing of chickens. Learn both about historic and contemporary methods of breed selection, nutrition, housing, management and general care for raising your own backyard flock. Come prepared to work in The Farmers’ Museum’s barnyard.

Spring Beekeeping
May 15, 9 am – 1 pm / Fee: $40
Are you interested in learning about the ancient art and science of beekeeping? This hands-on workshop will introduce you to the fundamentals of keeping bees. We will discuss the different ways to get started as a beekeeper and prepare you for the tasks involved. You will also learn some of the history and folklore of beekeeping.

In the Medicine Cabinet
May 15, 10 am – 1 pm / Fee: $40
This workshop will cover growing, harvesting, and wild crafting of about fifteen herbs. In addition, instruction will be given for producing medical preparations from the various herbs. Preparations will include oils (hot and cold infused), ointments, compresses, tinctures, infusions, and decoctions.

Udder to Butter
June 12, 8 am – 12 pm / Fee: $40
Join the farm staff in a unique opportunity to participate in the process of transforming milk into butter. We will start in the barn where you will try your hand at milking the cow and end in the kitchen enjoying our freshly made butter on toast. Participants will separate cream and churn butter using historic and contemporary methods.

Blacksmithing 1
June 12 and 13, 9 am – 4 pm / Fee: $150
This class covers the core skills of blacksmithing. Try out blacksmithing for the first time, or expand your existing skills under the supervision of our master blacksmith. Practice managing a coal fire and forging skills such as drawing out, bending, twisting, and punching. Projects include making decorative hooks, fireplace tools, nails, and hanging brackets. No previous experience is necessary. (Fee includes materials and information packet.)

Blacksmithing 2
June 26 and 27, 9 am – 4 pm / Fee: $150
This class requires students who already have core blacksmithing skills. Work with more complex forging projects. Skills practiced include hot punching, mortise and tennon joints, forge welding, and reproduction of historic ironwork. Students should have taken Blacksmithing 1 or have prior permission of the instructor. (Fee includes materials and information packet.)

Sugaring Off Sundays at The Farmers’ Museum


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Sugaring Off Sundays, The Farmers’ Museum’s annual event which honors the maple sugaring season, will be held each Sunday throughout the month of March and will also include Easter Sunday, April 4th. The event features historic and contemporary sugaring demonstrations, children’s activities and more. A full pancake breakfast will be served from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. with all other activities scheduled 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Visitors will be treated to demonstrations of traditional methods of maple-sugaring. Other hands-on demonstrations will allow visitors to experience the traditions of sugaring in the region.

Children’s activities will take place in the Filer’s Corners Schoolhouse throughout the day and maple cooking demonstrations will be held in the More House. Visitors are invited to have a taste of “jack wax” – hot maple syrup poured over snow! The blacksmith will also be working in his shop – stop in to watch a true craftsman.

The Empire State Carousel, a favorite attraction at The Farmers’ Museum, will also be open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Facebook fans receive one free ride.

The Farmers’ Museum Store and Todd’s General Store will be open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Each offers unique gifts, books and crafts.

Admission to Sugaring Off Sundays is $8 for adults; $4 for children age 7 to 12; admission is free for children 6 and under. Admission includes full breakfast. No reservations are required.