This past September 27th the Government Appointed Historians of Western New York held their fall conference at the Beaver Hollow Conference Center in Java, NY. It is also the home of the World's Biggest Loser Niagara, ranked the #2 spa in North America. We had a beautiful day for our event!
Since we were in the great outdoors it seemed only fitting that the theme of this conference would be on the environment and agriculture. Our first speaker was Paul Pacheco, Associate Professor of Anthropology, SUNY Geneseo. He spoke on The Origins and Spread of Farming in Western New York. It was quite fascinating to find how much food tells about a culture.
|Paul Pacheco, Associate Professor of Anthropology|
Next up was Stephen J. Tulowiecki, PhD Candidate, Department of Geography, University at Buffalo who gave a very informative talk titled, Oak Plains and Gunter’s Chains: Utilizing Original Land Survey Records to Understand Pre-European Forests. Descriptions of the surroundings in these early record almost paints a picture of how the landscape used to look, as you can see by the wording in the slide below.
|Stephen J. Tulowiecki, PhD Candidate, Department of Geography|
During lunch, GAHWNY presented the Julia Reinstein Career Achievement Award to two worthy historians. Leo N. McCarthy (Sardinia historian until his passing in 2013), was granted posthumously to his two daughters. The other recipient was Laurence Haseley, Lockport historian (no photo).
|Left to right: Ted Wiedemann, current Sardinia historian; |
daughters of Leo McCarthy; Jeffrey C. Mason, Arcade Historian
After lunch our program that began with the agriculture of early inhabitants continued to progress into more modern times when John Thomas Slater, Historian and founding member Lake Erie Grape Belt Resource Network, Trustee Historical Society of the Tonawandas presented, Before There Was Grape Juice: The Grape Belt Table Grape Shipping Industry 1870-1940.
|John Thomas Slater, Historian and founding member Lake Erie |
Grape Belt Resource Network
Our final speaker, Joan Sinclair Petzen, Agriculture Program Leader, Farm Business Management Specialist, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Wyoming County rounded out the day's event bringing us full circle with her presentation, WNY Agriculture Yesterday & Today - by the Numbers & Community Landscapes.
|Joan Sinclair Petzen, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Wyoming County|
Thank you so much to all our wonderful speakers and for Beaver Hollow for having us. See you in the spring everyone!