This week on 0684-Radi0, our free podcast (subscribe here in the iTunes Store), we talk to Nancy Geary, executive director of the New Canaan Museum & Historical Society, about a research project into the history of enslaved and free black people in New Canaan. Thanks to a grant from the New Canaan Community Foundation, the Historical Society will bring in a researcher and exhibition developer to help create a show for display this coming winter. We talk to Nancy about the research project’s origins, what has turned up so far and what you our listeners may do to help the Historical Society as it gathers up relevant information, photographs and artifacts.
Located at 13 Oenoke Ridge, the New Canaan Museum & Historical Society can be reached at 203-966-1776 and firstname.lastname@example.org.
The volunteer body that oversees New Canaan’s Historic District is poised to approve a request from an organization located on God’s Acre to replace cedar shingles on part of a building there with asphalt shingles. The New Canaan Museum and Historical Society is seeking to replace keep the shingles on its 1825 “Town House” building facing Oenoke Ridge as cedar, but to use asphalt shingles for the roof of a 2000 addition that houses the Lindstrom conference room, officials said. “We have a number of leaks,” the organization’s executive director, Nancy Geary, told members of the Historic District Commission at their July 23 meeting, held via videoconference.
“One of the problems that we have is under roof of Lindstrom Room as part of of the library roof is where we store our extensive clothing and textile collection,” she said. “So we are very worried about water damage in there. It’s already leaking in the attic extensively.
The New Canaan Museum & Historical Society will be reopening to the public on June 23rd. Tours of the house museums, including the Cody Pharmacy, the Hanford-Silliman House, the Rock School, the Tool Museum and the Little Red Schoolhouse, will be available to individuals or families that have been sheltering in place together by appointment. The research library will be open with limited capacity so reservations are recommended. Visitors will be asked to wear masks and have their temperatures taken; researchers will need to also wear gloves. Equipment will be provided.
For today’s Q&A with a local organization navigating the COVID-19 public health emergency, we hear from Nancy Geary, executive director of the New Canaan Museum & Historical Society. The God’s Acre organization reopens Tuesday. Here’s our exchange. New Canaanite: The New Canaan Museum & Historical Society was forced to close months ago, with many other nonprofit organizations. One thing we’re hearing from many of them is that the COVID-19 health-related restrictions have hurt fundraising efforts, such as through event cancellations.
Why did Benedict Arnold go bad? Find out as Jim Bach, one of New Canaan’s favorite historians, presents American Betrayal, the saga of a turncoat, at the New Canaan Museum & Historical Society on March 29 at 4 pm. Bach’s presentation takes a look at the many events and personal shortcomings that brought about Benedict Arnold’s ultimate treason. You’ll hear how General George Washington, British Major Andre and our local hero Major Tallmadge had roles in what led to Arnold’s demise. All the events took place not too far from our border including Ridgefield, Norwalk, Croton, Tarrytown and West Point.