Friday, May 8, 2015

Lunch & Learn for May 2015

Lunch & Learn

Co-sponsored by Friends of the Folsom Library

and the Rensselaer Retirees Forum



"The Hudson-Mohawk Region:

Silicon Valley of the Nineteenth Century”


Presenter:  Michael Barrett

Executive Director

Hudson Mohawk Industrial Gateway


Friday, May 15

12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m.

Fischbach Room


From Fra Burmeister og Wain's Iron Foundry,
by Peder Severin Krøyer, 1885.

Many scholars agree that the Capital District is one of several “birthplaces of the American industrial revolution.”  Nineteenth century entrepreneurs consciously used the cutting-edge technology of their day to transform the dominant rural-agrarian lifestyle into an infrastructure devoted to advancement of industrial enterprise. Developments in transportation, including the Erie Canal and railroads, were coupled with development of investment banking resources as well as advanced educational opportunity, to lead to a modern urban-industrial way of life. Inventions and developments here produced many of the components of our modern lifestyle, such as practical clothing, effective labor organizations, labor saving devices and mass-produced food. Their clear understanding of the cultural dimension of this technological change gave direction to some highly celebrated engineering innovations. 

Free!  Everyone is invited.  Bring your lunch or you can purchase one in the Library Café.  Dessert will be provided. 

Adrienne Birchler
Friends of the Folsom Library

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

             The 74th McKinney Writing Contest and Reading
Alice McDermott
Winner of the National Book Award
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
8:00 p.m.
Biotech Auditorium,
Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies Building
Reception to follow
As we've done for several years now, Friends has again contributed $250 toward the McKinney Writing Contest, the Institute's annual writing competition. The contest and ceremony are co-sponsored by the Rensselaer Department of Communication and Media and the New York State Writers Institute. Students are encouraged to submit original work in the areas of fiction/drama, poetry, essay, and/or electronic media. The contest offers both undergraduate and graduate students an opportunity for assessment and recognition of their creative writing talent. First, second, and third prizes are awarded for the best submissions in both graduate and undergraduate sections. This year's awards will be presented by novelist and short story writer Alice McDermott, who will first give a reading from one of her works and then answer questions from the audience.  
Photo from Wikipedia files
McDermott is the author of the novel Charming Billy (1998) for which she was awarded the National Book Award and the American Book Award. Other highly praised novels she’s written are A Bigamist’s Daughter (1982); That Night (1987), which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize;  At Weddings and Wakes (1992), which was a New York Times bestseller and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize; Child of My Heart (2002), which was nominated for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award; and After This (2006), a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Her most recent book is Someone (2013). Her short stories have appeared in Ms., Redbook, Mademoiselle, The New Yorker and Seventeen. She has also published articles in The New York Times and The Washington Post.  

McDermott has taught at the University of California at San Diego and American University, has been a writer-in-residence at Lynchburg College and Hollins College in Virginia, and was a lecturer in English at the University of New Hampshire. She is currently a professor of humanities at the Johns Hopkins University. She was inducted into the New York Writers Hall of Fame in 2013.
Adrienne Birchler
Friends of the Folsom Library

Monday, April 6, 2015

Lunch & Learn for April

Lunch & Learn

Co-sponsored by Friends of the Folsom Library

and the Rensselaer Retirees Forum

"The Mysteries of the Mabee Farm:  

Uncovering the Story of a 300 Year Old Farmstead" 

Presenter:  Jenna Peterson Riley

Educator/Assistant Curator

Schenectady County Historical Society

Scattered across the Mabee Farm Historic Site (located in Rotterdam, N.Y., in the hamlet of Rotterdam Junction, along NYS Highway 5S, about six miles west of Schenectady) are a number of roadside signs boasting of the history of this Dutch farmstead.  Not only do they differ in size and design, the information listed on them varies dramatically. So what's the story?  Come find out.

Friday, April 10   *   12:00 noon to 1:00 pm     *    Folsom Library Fischbach Room    
     Free!     *     Everyone is welcome!  
Bring your lunch or purchase one at the Library Cafe.   
Dessert will be provided.
Adrienne Birchler
Friends of the Folsom Library

Friday, March 27, 2015

GE Renewable Energy Presentation and Tour

Tuesday, April 7th

9:30 a.m.
  GE's downtown Schenectady plant located on 1 River Road

If any Friends are interested in joining the Hudson Mohawk Retirees for the talk and tour that I mentioned in the previous entry, please note that:
• All attendees MUST be registered in advance of the tour  
                 (Building  273--Steam Turbine and Generator Manufacturing).
• Due to security reasons, walk-in guests will not be permitted.

• All attendees MUST bring photo ID with them.

• In general, the facility is handicap accessible, but it is a shop floor with
                some rough and uneven surfaces.

To sign up, click on the REGISTER button found on the top right corner of this page:

It’s preferable that everyone register online, but if someone who doesn't utilize the web wants to go, he/she can call me at 518-276-8329.  I will let Denise Done in the Office of Alumni Relations know and she will register the Friend online.  

If anyone has any questions, you can contact Denise at

Again, I want to thank Friend Bob Albern ’54 for making it possible for Friends to attend what promises to be a fascinating talk and tour. 

Adrienne Birchler
Friends of the Folsom Library

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Save the Date -- April 7, 2015

Friend Bob Albern '54 has kindly invited Friends of the Folsom Library to join him and other members of the Hudson Mohawk Retirees for an overview on wind renewal energy.  The talk's being given by Dan Jordy, Engineer, Wind Electrical Systems at General Electric Power and Water, at GE's downtown Schenectady plant located on 1 River Road. 

Dan's also arranging a tour for groups of 15 or less of the steam turbine and generator manufacturing facility located in Building 273 where large and small steam generators are built from scratch. 

For those interested, a Dutch treat lunch at Pinhead Susan's in Schenectady (38 - 40 Broadway) will follow the presentation and tour.

More information will be sent as soon as Bob firms things up.

Adrienne Birchler
Friends of the Folsom Library

Come on spring!

Unbeknownst to one another, three of our staff members who work at the Service Desk showed up this morning wearing pink shirts.  Do you think they're eager for spring?  I just had to get a shot of them to share with everyone. 

Left to right: Anna Gardner, Bobbie Harris, Ellen Dearborn

After what seems like an endless winter with considerable snow and temperatures in the teens and below, it's so nice not to have to bundle up to come to work.

                                                      ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

“It's spring fever. That is what the name of it is. And when you've got it, you want—oh, you don't quite know what it is you do want, but it just fairly makes your heart ache, you want it so!” —  Mark Twain
                                                       ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Adrienne Birchler
Friends of the Folsom Library

Monday, March 9, 2015

Lunch & Learn for March

Lunch & Learn
Co-sponsored by Friends of the Folsom Library
Rensselaer Retirees Forum
"My Bibliomania:  30 Years of Art and Source Material" 
                                     Presenter:  Michael Oatman
For the past 25 years, artist and School of Architecture faculty member Michael Oatman has been using archives and libraries as conceptual and physical material for his installations, videos, and collages.  During this Lunch & Learn lecture, he will present both the archival sources and the resulting imagery from three different projects:  "Long Shadows"  (1995/2001), "Conservatory" (2005), and "All Utopias Fell" (2010).

"The Shining," one part of three interrelated parts of Oatman's seasonal
(May through November) "All Utopias Fell" at MASS MoCA

Friday, March 13
12:00 noon to 1:00 pm
Folsom Library Fischbach Room
Everyone is welcome!
Bring your lunch or purchase one at the Library Café.
Dessert will be provided.
Adrienne Birchler
Friends of the Folsom Library