Spring 2016 (January – May)
Programs are held at 2 pm Tuesday afternoons at the Nolin Murray Center, Next to St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 38 Pleasant Street, Springfield, Vermont
AGRICULTURE IN THE CONNECTICUT RIVER VALLEY: ITS UPS AND DOWNS THROUGH THE CENTURIES
Steve Taylor – Farmer, Writer, Scholar of All Things Rural
Farming in the Connecticut River Valley of Vermont and New Hampshire has been through cycles of prosperity, followed by contraction, ever since the land was first cleared by pioneering settlers in the 1760s. Explore these periods of change and assess the economic, cultural and social impacts these cycles have had. Give particular attention to the Great Sheep Boom (1809-1840) when fortunes were made producing wool, and how that period left a lasting legacy on the region.
GEOLOGY OF THE CONNECTICUT RIVER VALLEY: FROM AN ANCIENT OCEAN TO MOUNTAINS TO GLACIERS
Jon Kim – Geologist, Vermont Geological Survey
Co-Sponsored by Ascutney Mountain Audubon Society
The rocks and landscape of the Connecticut River Valley region record events of ancient times. Learn about the geologic history of our region from the deposition of sedimentary rocks to the folding, faulting, metamorphism, intrusions of granites and then the effects of the glacier era. The calcium-rich rocks of the area eroded to form “sweet” soils that are favorable for agriculture. Humans and their agricultural practices are the last blinks of time in this rich geologic past!
VERMONT AND THE END OF THE CIVIL WAR
Howard Coffin – Civil War Historian, Author
Vermont, it can be said, won the Civil War. Then came peace, and a stunned state tried to get back to business as usual. Many former soldiers left; some went south to help freed slaves. Hear how those who stayed organized a powerful political force, erected monuments, and gave speeches about their experiences and tried to explain what it had all been about.
SIX ENGLISH GARDENS IN FIVE DAYS: A WHIRLWIND PHOTOGRAPHIC TOUR
Patty Talbot – Nurserywoman, Lecturer, Teacher, Traveler and Photographer
Co-Sponsored by the Springfield Garden Club
“Travel” with Ms. Talbot, beginning at the Cambridge Botanic Garden, then to Bath for day trips to three “Manor” gardens: Iford, Hidcote and Kiftsgate. Stop next at Plymouth, to see Mt. Edgcumbe Country Park, and then on to Falmouth for a day trip to Trelissick Garden. The secret to six gardens in five days is that Hidcote and Kiftsgate are both in Chipping Campden, on the edge of the Cotswolds, about 1/4 mile apart! Come and enjoy these breathtaking gardens through her photographs!
ORPHAN TRAINS IN VERMONT
Daniel Bean – Retired St. Michaels College Biology Professor
Between 1905 and 1928 thousands of very young orphan children, foundlings from the streets of New York City, were shipped by train – called “Orphan Trains” – all over the United States and Canada to families willing to give them a home. Hear the very personal story of how this impacted Mr. Bean’s life – as one of those young riders who disembarked at Enosburg Falls in 1905 was his father.
PROVERBS ARE NEVER OUT OF SEASON POPULAR WISDOM IN THE MODERN AGE
Wolfgang Mieder – Author, Professor of German and Folklore, University of Vermont
Proverbs play an important role in communication and the mass media. Newspapers use proverbs for headlines and slogans. Proverbs are not universally true, but as distilled bits of wisdom, they do contain a lot of common sense. View colorful slides and illustrations, and discuss the meaning behind such proverbs as: “Where there’s smoke, there’s fire”, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”, Honesty is the best policy”, “When the cat’s away, the mice will play.” Hear a leading scholar of proverbs discuss how proverbs guide people on their path through life.
MYRA COLBY BRADWELL – AMERICA’S FIRST WOMAN LAWYER
Nancy Nahra – Author, Poet, Professor of Humanities, Champlain College
Her name, Myra Colby Bradwell, likely will not sound familiar. Wonder why after you hear her story, including the following: She was born in Vermont. Going against everyone’s advice, she tried to become a lawyer, and succeeded. Learn how she started and ran a successful Chicago newspaper for over twenty-five years. Discover how, as a good friend of Mary Todd Lincoln, Myra Bradwell ultimately arranged to have Mrs. Lincoln released from the mental hospital where she had been confined against her will. Later, Bradwell again used her influence to have Chicago chosen as the site of a World’s Fair. Speculate why her impressive legacy never resulted in lasting fame after her death. That odd fact, far from accidental, has its own equally fascinating story.
A ‘BRIEF’ HISTORY OF ROCK AND ROLL
Bill Cotte – Professor: Fine & Performing Arts, Lyndon State College
In sight and sound, follow the progress of ‘Rock & Roll’ from its black origins in the late 40’s and early 50’s beginning with Little Richard (Mr. Rock & Roll), Fats Domino and Chuck Berry right up to the present. In the mid-50’s, the phenomena of Elvis Presley brought this genre of music into the white culture; and in the early 60’s, with their ‘British Invasion,’ the Beatles changed the face of R & R in our culture forever!! Realize that, like it or not, Rock & Roll (in all of its guises) is here to stay!!
THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION OF 2016: SELECTING THE DEMOCRATIC AND REPUBLICAN NOMINEES
Eric Davis – Professor Emeritus of Political Science, Middlebury College
This presentation will review both the Democratic and the Republican presidential nominating campaigns from the time of the Iowa caucuses in early February through early May. Ask: What were voters looking for in their party’s nominee? What issues were important during the primaries? What candidates had the best mix of personal characteristics, issue positions, and campaign organization? Contemplate what the current state of the campaign means for the general election in November.
$45 for all 9 programs and admittance to the other Vermont Osher Institute Programs; Single program fee: $8
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322 South Prospect Street
Burlington, VT 05401
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Membership in the Springfield Osher Lifelong Learning Institute entitles members to attend programs in other Osher Institutes established in seven other locations throughout Vermont, as well as EEE-Burlington (Elder Education Enrichment). Your active OLLI membership also entitles you to the discounted member rate for the new OLLI on UVM campus programs. Simply present your membership card during the corresponding semester.
For a complete listing of all programs, see our listing in a pdf format.
THANKS TO OUR LOCAL BENEFACTOR: BARBARA SANDERSON