August 11 marked the 150th anniversary of Frederick Douglass visit to Newburgh In honor of the visit to Newburgh in 1870 and his legacy of voter rights and civic engagement, the City held a special commemoration. The evening included the unveiling of a mural by artist Vernon Byron, an African American Spiritual Sing-A-Long, a re-enactment by Oliver King and a Proclamation for a Day of Civic Engagement by elected officials.
Stuck inside? Need something to read?
Johanna Porr Yaun, the Orange County Historian, has a list of books of local significance for you to cozy up to while staying safe in your house.
“A lot of people have asked what books I recommend now that they have extra time to read,” Johanna says. “So, I put together this list.”
Read More on Times Herald Record Online
The Wall Street Journal article “Why People are Sharing Their Family Secrets with Strangers in Public” looked at growing numbers of people taking home DNA tests and learning a family secret. Many of them confided in family members and close friends—but also found themselves sharing the information at book events, conferences and other public venues.
Read more on the Wall Street Journal Website
GOSHEN – Orange County Historian Johanna Yaun is hosting a Historian’s Conference from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. on Nov. 1 for town, village and city historians.
The event, which is free and open to the public, will be held at the 1841 Courthouse, at 101 Main Street in Goshen. It will include a variety of discussions and seminars.
Read More on the Times Herald Record Website
Orange County Historian Johanna Porr Yaun has been named chair of the Orange County Semiquincentennial Commission, and is now accepting applications to fill a dozen positions within the group.
Orange County Executive Steve Neuhaus signed an executive order in August tasking the commission with commemorating the 250th anniversary of the Revolutionary War era, which lasted from 1775 to 1783. The commission will be active from now until Nov. 25, 2033, to highlight Orange County’s role throughout the war years.
Read More on The Photo News Website
GOSHEN — During the Civil War, countless local regiments made up of patriotic volunteers wanted to do their part to make the United States whole again. One was 124th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment, better known as the “Orange Blossoms," which officially mustered on Sept. 5, 1862, by Colonel August Van Horne Ellis. It was made up of Orange County residents with veterans of the 71st New York State Militia. The regiment took part in 43 engagements, including many famous battles, such as Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Appomattox Courthouse, and, of course, Gettysburg, where they squared off against the 1st Texas Volunteer Infantry. The Confederates named the 124th “The Red Stringed Devils” because of the red badges they wore on the battlefield. At the end of the war, the regiment was welcomed back as heroes.
Read the full article written by Aaron Lefkowitz on The Chronicle.
Open for 63 years, closed for 68. The Tower of Victory is open once again thanks to the efforts of the Palisades Park Conservancy to raise 1.8 million dollars through private philanthropy and public grants. The tower is not open to the public yet but will reopen very soon. Article by Johanna Yaun, Orange County Historian.
The Drowned Lands Historical Society announces that the Orange County Legislature has issued a resolution proclaiming William Grohoski, of Pine Island NY, the official Black Dirt Historian. The resolution notes that William “Bill” Grohoski was one of three founding members of the Drowned Lands Historical Society, which was formed in the early 1970s on an ad hoc basis. The Society collected archives and artifacts related to farming in the Black Dirt Region.
What’s that in the middle of the official Orange County seal - an orange tree?
How did THAT get there? There aren’t orange trees within 800 miles of here.
“I researched it, and there weren’t even orange trees in Florida back in 1683,” says Johanna Yaun, the Orange County historian.
The county, one of New York’s original 12 counties, was formed in 1683 and named after the Prince of Orange, who eventually became King William III of England.
On a regular basis, Yaun speaks to elementary school students about the seal and even has them design and color their own seals.
She walks back into her office and lugs out a seal press from the past. It must weigh 50 pounds.
Orange County Historian Johanna Yaun explained that this is the first step in the process to deciding how to preserve the ruins.
“[This] is the county’s initial chance to gather as much information as we can, so we know what to do and can make those changes,” said Yaun.