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June 1999


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Harry Matthews <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
A LISTSERV list for discussions pertaining to New York State history." <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 18 Jun 1999 09:11:10 -0500
text/plain (81 lines)
-- [ From: Harry Matthews * EMC.Ver #2.5.02 ] --

Members of the United States Colored Troops Institute for Local History and
Family Research
will meet in Oneonta this month to further efforts to establish a national
network of affiliates
to honor the black soldiers and their white officers of the Civil War.

Institute members from Illinois, Maryland, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania will
join local
participants June 25-27 at the SUNY Oneonta Morris Hall Conference Center
for its
annual meeting.

The Institute was established in October 1998, three years after it was
proposed on the
Internet by Harry Bradshaw Matthews, associate dean for Hartwick's Center
for Interdependence,
and Institute president. Now based at Hartwick College, Institute membership
has doubled and
its Civil War Digest, a four-page newsletter launched in April, recently
received a subscription
request from General (Ret.) Colin Powell.

The annual meeting will include presentations by three visiting speakers and
an exhibit of rare
abolitionist and Civil War items. Author and historian Agnes Kane Callum
will give the keynote
address at the opening convocation at 4 p.m. on Friday, June 25. Dinner will
follow at 6 p.m.
Callum, a Fulbright-Hayes Fellow who conducted fieldwork in nine African
countries, will present
"To Whom It May Concern: United States Colored Troops 1863-1866." Her book,
Genealogy, History of a Black Family, received a prize in the Parker
Genealogical Contest
sponsored by the Maryland Historical Society. Call is the publisher of
Flower of the Forest
Black Genealogical Journal in Baltimore.

Abolitionist items from Matthews' collection will be exhibited at the
convocation as well. Included
in the exhibit will be the book, Twelve Years a Slave, Narrative of Solomon
Northup. Published
in 1853, it tells the true story of a free black man from Saratoga who was
kidnapped in 1841
in Washington, DC and sold into slavery in Louisiana. Other items include
Harper's Pictorial
History of the Civil War, published in 1866, and an original front copy of
Harper's Weekly,
Saturday, May 6, 1865, featuring an illustration of U.S. President Abraham
Lincoln and his
son, published just weeks after Lincoln's death.

On Saturday, June 26, the public is invited to a luncheon and two
presentations. Author Roland
Barksdale-Hall will present "Freedom Road: Mercer County, PA Revisited" at
11 a.m. and
genealogist and author John Raymond Gourdin will discuss "Civil War Art: A
Black Perspective"
at 1 p.m. Barksdale-Hall has published more than 20 articles and is the
author of two books,
People in Search of Opportunity: The African-American Experience and Healing
Is the
Children's Bread. Gourdin has lectured extensively about the USCT and
currently is conducting
research for a book detailing the heroics of the 128th Infantry Regiment,
USCT from South
Carolina. He is the author of GOURDIN: A French-African-American Family from
South Carolina
(1830-1994) and Voices from the Past: 104th Infantry Regiment, USCT, Colored
Civil War
Soldiers from South Carolina.

The public is invited to join Institute members for the lectures and lunch
and dinner. Ticket
reservations are required for Friday and Saturday dinner and for Saturday
lunch. Dinner
tickets are $15 each. Lunch tickets are $10 each. Registration is $10. For
reservations and more information, call the Institute at 607-431-4428.