Tuesday, July 23, 2024

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CONNECTIONS: A tale of two 19th-century Berkshire women

One had a solid impact on Berkshire County and her generation. While the other, although more famous, may have had no impact on the county at all. You decide.

CONNECTIONS: The accidental traitor

Truth is Whiting was consistent but the “little group of conservatives who ran the affairs of the county” were not.

Shays’ Rebellion: How it impacted Berkshire County, changed history

In these coronavirus times, perhaps we can take comfort in knowing that the people of Berkshire County have lived through other tumultuous times, and survived and prospered.

Bits & Bytes: ‘Love Yourself’ at the Colonial; ‘A Little Rebellion Now and Then’; Marie Kendall photography talk; ‘Empowering Women and Girls Worldwide’

Shays’ Rebellion is viewed as an agrarian revolt pitting impoverished farmers in western Massachusetts against the wealthy merchant class of the coastal eastern part of the state.

Great Barrington’s Laura Ingersoll Secord: Heroine or traitor?

At least a few residents of Great Barrington were aware of Laura Secord by the early 1900s. When the Ingersoll home was first moved and then torn down during the construction of the Mason Library, structural artifacts were removed and sent to Canada for a Laura Secord exhibit.

Bits & Bytes: ‘She Shapes History’ at Berkshire Museum; Shays’ Rebellion lecture; CATA art exhibit; ‘Pollock’ at PS21; ‘Early Epitaphs’ talk

John 'Sean' Condon will explore how Shays' Rebellion influenced the division of power between state and federal governments set out by the U.S. Constitution and how it shaped the form of public protests today.

Business Briefs: Restoration grant for Shays’ Rebellion monument; Davis joins Mill Renaissance LLC; Red Lion Inn artist residency; Cultural Facilities Fund grant for CATA;...

Davis will report directly to principal developer Jeffrey N. Cohen on projects including a $70 million revitalization of the historic Eagle Mill in Lee and the revitalization of the Spinning Mill, a 225,000-square-foot mill in Adams.

CONNECTIONS: A rebellion of ‘desperate debtors’

In August 1786, Daniel Shays, a Massachusetts farmer, ceased the search for “representatives who can find means to redress the grievances of the people” and took up arms.

CONNECTIONS: ‘The Resolves’ of Sheffield, hotbed of insurrection

Some historians dismiss the Sheffield Resolves; others call them the first American Declaration of Independence. In either case, in just seven days, who wrote this impressive document?

EDGECAST VIDEO: Sheffield Arbor Day, honoring Shays Rebellion

Arbor Day in Sheffield, Massachusetts, was celebrated by planting trees around the Shays Rebellion Monument (newly restored) commemorating protests in 1787 by former Revolutionary War soldiers against a dysfunctional financial system.

Bits & Bytes: Arbor Day celebration; CPA funding presentation; Schantz Galleries reception; rain garden volunteers needed; ‘Messiah’ performance

Rain gardens in Pittsfield collect storm water and remove motor oil, dirt, animal waste, trash, and other pollutants from the water, via filtration through the soil and uptake by the plants, before it enters the Housatonic River.

At the Stagecoach, elegance and Bohemia join hands ‘down county’  

Bohemia of the Berkshires: The Down County Social Club at the Stagecoach Tavern is a sort gypsy-rustic-styled hybrid of speakeasy, salon, and cabaret that holds a variety of performance art, poetry readings and film screenings.

CONNECTIONS: Great Barrington’s Laura Ingersoll, resourceful soldier – for Canada

With the announcement that women are to assume military combat roles, it is good to remember it will not be first time women fought and fought well.

Flag for forgotten soldier at Mahaiwe Cemetery

Many of the very oldest stones in the cemetery are unreadable today. If you rub some of the lichens off, you can still make out Ephraim Porter’s stone, though. He was a militiaman who died in a later conflict, Shays’ Rebellion.

Connections: Agrippa Hull — soldier, farmer, philosopher

While Agrippa Hull was safe from slavery in Stockbridge, he lived much too close to the New York border. Slavery was legal in New York and kidnappers were common. They came across the state line, grabbed Black men, women and children in Massachusetts, and sold them in New York.

Unresolved ‘resolves’ and other Berkshire conflicts

The battle is not couched as in the 18th century: the merchant class versus the farmers. Today, it is Main Street versus Wall Street.

Connections: What goes around comes around

The earning capacity of many people makes it impossible for them to afford health care. Millions do not have protection against the economic effects of sickness.
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