Lectures

Below you will find upcoming lectures and events from the Albany Institute of History and Art

LECTURE: Adriaen van der Donck, a Dutch Rebel in the Seventeenth-Century Colony of New Netherland

General: Sunday, September 23 • 2:00pm - 3:00pm

Julie van den Hout, author of Adriaen van der Donck, A Dutch Rebel in Seventeenth-Century America, by The State University of New York Press (2018)

The young legal activist Adriaen van der Donck (1618–1655) is an important yet understudied figure in the Dutch colony of New Netherland, whose fight to secure the struggling colony made him a controversial but pivotal figure in early America.

From his war-torn seventeenth-century childhood and privileged university education in the Dutch Republic, he became embroiled in the New World politics of Manhattan as he attempted to make his mark on the fledgling fur trading settlement. Taking the complaints of the colonists against their Dutch West India Company administrators to the highest level of government in the Dutch Republic, he was denounced and detained, but not deterred. The changes he set in motion continued long after his early death, while his landmark book, Description of New Netherland, became a lasting testament to his vision for the country. Van der Donck’s determination to stand by his convictions offers a revealing look into the human spirit and the strong will that drives it against adversity and in search of justice.

Included with museum admission

Co-sponsored by the New Netherland Institute

LECTURE: Pets in America: The History of Our Four-Footed Family Members

General: Sunday, September 30 • 2:00pm - 3:00pm

Dr. Katherine Grier, Professor of History, University of Delaware and author of Pets in America: A History

Pet keeping occurs all over the world, in large and small societies, and has been practiced throughout history. European colonists brought animals to the New World as pets and soon made some local wild animals into pets. By the 1820s, pet keeping was regarded as an important part of happy family life and a way for children to learn “habits of kindness” to everyone. Letters, photographs, print media and artifacts all tell the story of the evolving American love affair with pets, including its growing importance to children. Today, over 65 percent of American households (about 85 million families) include pets.

Included with museum admission

*We have limited space for our lectures and seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Attendees will receive a wristband at the admission desk the day of the lecture.

LECTURE: The Hudson River School and Our National Parks

General: Sunday, October 14 • 2:00pm - 3:00pm

Rebecca Bedell, Associate Professor of Art, Wellesley College

We tend to think of our national parks as places of untouched natural beauty. Yet they have been carefully, consciously, artfully shaped to accommodate visitors and orchestrate their experiences.

This lecture will focus on the role that the artists of the Hudson River School played in determining and defining both the locations of our parks and the ways we still experience and respond to their beauties today.

Included with museum admission

*We have limited space for our lectures and seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Attendees will receive a wristband at the admission desk the day of the lecture.

LECTURE: From the Hudson to the Nile: New York Archaeologists in Egypt

General: Saturday, October 20 • 2:00pm - 3:00pm

Dr. Peter Lacovara, Director, The Ancient Egyptian Heritage and Archaeology Fund

For well over a century some of the most important Americans to work in Egypt and the Sudan have come from the Empire State. This lecture will trace the history of some of the most colorful characters from adventurers to scholars and reveal their most spectacular discoveries. These individuals played a role in shaping our understanding of the ancient past and their stories range from scandals to secret tombs.

Presented in partnership with the Ancient Egyptian Heritage and Archaeology Fund

Included with museum admission

*We have limited space for our lectures and seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Attendees will receive a wristband at the admission desk the day of the lecture.

ILLUSTRATED TALK Fashion and Feathers

General: Sunday, October 21 • 2:00pm - 3:00pm

Diane Shewchuk, Curator at the Albany Institute and Jeremy Kirchman, Ph.D., Curator of Orinthology at the New York State Museum

Enjoy a lively show and tell and see feather-trimmed Victorian hats, folding fans, and fashion from the Albany Institute's collection. Jeremy will identify the feathers and explore the history of plume hunters who decimated many species of birds to the point of near extinction.

Included with museum admission

*We have limited space for our lectures and seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Attendees will receive a wristband at the admission desk the day of the lecture.

The Beginnings of Modern Veterinary Medicine: From France to New York State

General: Sunday, December 2 • 2:00pm - 3:00pm

This lecture will explore the beginning of modern veterinary medicine with the creation of the first veterinary schools in France in the 18th century, followed by the establishment of veterinary education in Great Britain. The French and British-educated veterinarians who emigrated to the US in the 19th century sowed the seeds of the American veterinary medical field that we know today.

Our guest speaker is Douglas L. Cohn, D.V.M.