Ohio Chautauqua Schedule of Events

| July 16, 2013


Host communities will have one youth and one adult daytime workshop by each Ohio Chautauqua scholar.  Please remember that these activities are workshops presented by the scholars; they are NOT in-character living history performances.  When publicizing these programs, you should make it clear that the scholars – not the characters – are presenting the workshops.

Unless otherwise indicated in the program descriptions, youth programs should be scheduled for ages 8 and above.

Workshops Descriptions for Hank Fincken

Adult Workshop:

John & Johnny: Past, Present, and Future

Contemporaries described John Chapman/Johnny Appleseed as strange.  One even called him “the oddest character in our history.”  After he died, people began to see something special, even saintly, in this independent bachelor who wandered the countryside selling apple seedlings and preaching “good news right fresh from heaven.”  Walt Disney reduced him to a well-meaning, simple-minded children’s cartoon.  But the story isn’t over: John’s image continues to evolve, and the transition is still in flux.   Using examples from his own 20-year career portraying John and stories both old and new, Hank will discuss what we know and don’t know about this pioneer, the magic that makes him so dear to so many, and how and why the next change will make him equally relevant to future generations.

Youth Workshop:

Becoming Johnny

I first met Johnny Appleseed in a cartoon.  He was energetic, sincere, and big-hearted, but seemed less than human.  My job as an actor is to make him flesh and blood.  In this workshop, Hank will ask students to share their beliefs about John Chapman and discuss how we separate fact from fiction.  We conclude by playing theatre games that reveal how gestures and mannerisms bring historical characters to life.  Don’t be surprised if we discover that a little of John Chapman resides in all of us.

 Workshops Descriptions for Debra Conner

 Adult Workshop:

Women on America’s Western Frontier

“Women are the forgotten men of history,” claimed the historian Daniel Boorstein.  In this workshop, we’ll learn about the lifestyles and the habits of the women who settled the western frontier in the early 1800s.  Did you know that women smoked cigars?  That dinner guests wiped their noses on the tablecloth?  Or that women took arsenic to increase their pallor?

Youth Workshop:

Inspired by Margaret Blennerhassett

Margaret Blennerhassett was known throughout the Ohio Valley for her creativity.  She had a special appreciation for art, music, and poetry.  Inspired by Margaret’s love of nature, participants begin by examining some fantastic nature-based art and then create their own imaginative drawings.  Finally, we will do some creative writing to accompany our artwork.

Workshops Descriptions for Dan Cutler

 Adult Workshop:

History in a Nutshell:  The American Indian Perspective

Making connections between the past and the present helps make history come alive.  In this program, Dan will travel through time and highlight important aspects of American history, with a special focus on the Ohio frontier.  During this fast-paced history lesson, Dan will explain how, no matter what the time or event, American Indians played an important role.

Youth Workshop:

Adopted by Indians

Frontier families were terrified that their children might be kidnapped by Indians.  When loved ones were killed by the White Man’s disease and war, the Indians felt justified in adopting replacements.  In this program, Dan shares information about Indian culture and family traditions, and explains why many of the adoptees were so happy in their new lives.  Then the participants will play some of the games that helped Indian children learn skills that were needed to do the work of men and women.  The games are as fun today as they were back then, so come ready to learn and play!

 Workshops Descriptions for Marvin Jefferson

 Adult Workshop:

York, William Clark, Slavery and American History

This lecture and discussion program will examine the relationship between York and William Clark.  Participants will also explore how slavery impacted their relationship, and how slavery’s legacy denied York his proper place in history for many years.

Youth Workshop:

Telling a Tall Tale

Tall tales are a uniquely American art form.  Using a few theatre games to open everyone’s imagination, Marvin will take participants on an imaginary adventure, creating tales taller than mountains – much like York is purported to have done in his time.  In our tall tales, the sky’s the limit!

Workshops Descriptions for Jeremy Meier

Adult Workshop:

Three Perspectives on The Battle of Lake Erie

“We have met the enemy and they are ours…”  The victorious words of Oliver Hazard Perry are still remembered nearly 200 years after the Battle of Lake Erie.  Perry’s preparations of his Lake Erie squadron during the summer of 1813 make for intriguing history.  But the preparations of his adversary, Commander Robert Barclay of the British fleet, are equally fascinating to look back upon.  In this workshop, Jeremy discusses how each side prepared and strategized for the Battle of Lake Erie, as well as how Perry’s second-in-command, Lt. Jesse Duncan Elliott, would for years argue a very different version of what occurred in the Battle of Lake Erie.

Youth Workshop:

A Star Spangled Banner

In September of 1814, Washington had been burned to the ground and British ships were sailing off to Baltimore.  What stood in their way was a naval base called Fort McHenry.  When Mary Pickersgill was asked to construct a flag to fly above the fort, the demands were large.  The flag was to measure 34 feet by 40 feet.  In the morning after the attack on Fort McHenry, a young lawyer named Francis Scott Key saw Pickersgill’s flag flying valiantly over Fort McHenry.  It was the inspiration for a poem he wrote called “Defense of Fort McHenry” and is now our national anthem.  In this workshop, Jeremy will lead the kids in a discussion about the history of the American flag and the writing of Key’s poem during the attack on Fort McHenry in the War of 1812.


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