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September 21, 2009

History Buffs, Take Note

Posted by webmaster
Two reading groups are taking place in upstate New York and south Florida, one focusing on the Great Depression and the other Abraham Lincoln to coincide with the bicentennial of the 16th president's birth.

On Thursday, October 1st, the History Center in Ithaca, New York, kicks off a monthly reading group focusing on the Great Depression in America. Among the planned topics are 1930s history, experiences of everyday people and Depression-era letters. Participants will be able to view photographs and other materials from the History Center’s archives. The inaugural selection is John Steinbeck's novel The Grapes of Wrath.

Also on October 1st, Books & Books in Coral Gables, Florida, is hosting the second of the store's Lincoln Bicentennial Reading Group Discussions. Historian Bernita King is leading a discussion of John Stauffer's Giants: The Parallel Lives of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass.

No matter where you live, though, you can start your own historical-themed discussions with your book club --- perhaps tying into an anniversary taking place in 2010, such as the Women's Suffrage Amendment being signed into law ( August 26, 1920), the publication of To Kill a Mockingbird (July 11, 1960) and the 200th birthday of composer Frederic Chopin.

2010 has been designated the Year of Mark Twain, for good reason. It's the 175th anniversary of the raconteur's birth (April 21, 1910), the 100th anniversary of his death (November 30, 1835) and the 125th anniversary of the publication of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.