Connecticut

Announcing “The Long Journeys Home” by Nick Bellantoni

The moving stories of two Indigenous men and their repatriations

In The Long Journeys HomeNick Bellantoni tells the tale of two men who, in death, found their way back home.

Henry ʻŌpūkahaʻia (ca.1792–1818) and Itankusun Wanbli (ca.1879–1900) lived almost a century apart and came from different indigenous nations—Hawaiian and Lakota. Yet the tragic circumstances that led them to leave their homelands and to come to Connecticut, where they both died and were buried, have striking similarities.

In 1992 and 2008, descendant women had dreams which told them that their ancestors wished to “come home.” Both families started the repatriation process. Then Connecticut State Archaeologist, Nick Bellantoni oversaw the archaeological disinterment and forensic identifications in returning these men to their families and communities. The Long Journeys Home chronicles these intergenerational stories, both examples of the wide-reaching and long-lasting impacts of colonialism.

Nicholas F. Bellantoni is an associate adjunct professor in the anthropology department at the University of Connecticut and Emeritus Connecticut State Archaeologist at the Connecticut State Museum of Natural History.

September
260 pp., 15 illus., 3 maps, 6 x 9”
Cloth, $28.95
978-0-8195-7684-2
ebook, $24.99 Y,
978-0-8195-7685-9 History / Biography

The Driftless Connecticut Series is funded by the Beatrice Fox Auerbach Foundation Fund
at the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving.

    

#NationalWaffleDay

Happy National Waffle Day! While the United States differs from other countries celebrating this day, National Waffle Day here can be just as scrumptious, if not more with a few toppings.


Recipe for Quick Maple Fudge, found on page 172 of Maple Sugaring.

Fortunately for readers, Maple Sugaring: Keeping It Real in New England by David K. Leff (Wesleyan, 2015) can provide a bit of inspiration for the most popular waffle topping: maple fudge.

An essayist, poet, and former deputy commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection, David K. Leff is an expert on what makes waffles in New England so great: the syrup on top.

The book trailer can be found below:

Heading Outdoors in Connecticut Summer

The flowers are blossoming, grass growing greener by the day, and sunrise is before 5:30am; it’s summer in Connecticut and at Wesleyan University Press, we’re celebrating with some of our favorite outdoors books and field guides.

 

Why not kick of your summer with an excursion on foot—whether it be a leisurely stroll or vigorous hike? The newly redesigned 20th edition of The Connecticut Walk Book by Connecticut Forest and Park Association (CFPA) is now available to inspire and guide you through your summer jaunts.

Every summer, CFPA offers local hikes and other events. Most are free. Here are this season’s events:

June 2-3, 2018 (All Day): CT Trails Day – LARGEST National Trails Day in the nation; Celebration of 50th anniversary of the National Trail System, follow on Twitter with #CTTrailsDay FREE

June 3, 2018 (9:00am): 2017 Goodwin Forest Trail Run 10k/30k, $20-33 registration fee

June 12, 2018 (10:00am-12:30pm): June Senior Walk at CFPA, FREE

June 13 & 14, 2018 (10:00am-12:30pm & 12:00pm-2:30pm): Senior Walks at Hampton, FREE

July 10, 2018 (10:00am-12:00pm): July Senior Walk at CFPA, FREE

August 14, 2018 (10:00am-12:00pm): August Senior Walk at CFPA, FREE

September 11, 2018 (10:00am-12:00pm): September Senior Walk at CFPA, FREE

 

With its release coinciding with National Geographic’s #YearOfTheBird,  look to the skies for Birding in Connecticut, by Frank Gallo, will help those of you looking to the skies to capture

Some local birding and #YearoftheBird events to watch out for:

June 3, 2018 (9am-1pm): First Sunday Bird Walk at Greenwich Point Park (Every first Sunday) FREE

June 3, 2018 (10am-11:30am): Connecticut Bird Atlas – Training Workshop, Audubon Center, Southbury, CT, FREE

June 5, 2018 (7:30pm-9pm): “Saving Seabirds” at National Geographic Campus, Gilbert H. Grosvenor Auditorium, 1600 M St NW, Washington, D.C. 20036, $25 admission

June 9-10, 2018: Summer Bird Count; various locations (Hartford, New Haven, Greenwich); Every weekend of June, FREE

June 30, 2018 (11am-1pm): Audubon Greenwich – LGBT – Let’s Go Birding Together!, Pride Month birding event, $5 Audubon members, $8 non-members

August 25, 2018 (7:30pm-9pm): Creatures of the Night… Hike! at the New Canaan Nature Center, FREE

 

Following the flow of the river, and the trout, fishermen and would-be fishermen might consider picking up a copy of Fly Fishing in Connecticut: A Beginner’s Guide by Kevin Murphy.

Why not brush up on your fishing skills at one of these fun events?

May 26-June 15, 2018: 2018 CT Fishing Tournament/Derby; various locations

June 2, 2018 (5am-3:30pm): Bass-A-Palooza, Norwalk, CT (registration for fishers has passed)

June 16, 2018 (12pm-4:30pm): Hooks for Heroes Fishing Tournament, Stamford, CT, $35 admission (registration for fishers has passed)

July 15-24, 2018: Three Belles Outfitters Trifecta Challenge Kayak Tournament, Niantic, CT, $100 registration

August 4-5 & 11-12, 2018: The Federal Bass Federation of Connecticut (CT-TBF) 2-Day Events

 

 

After hiking the trails, fishing, or birdwatching, one can delve into Connecticut’s multitude of small towns and rural structures in Hidden In Plain Sight: A Deep Traveler Explores Connecticut by Hartford Courant essayist, David K. Leff and look to the night sky with Under the Dark Sky: Life int he Thames River Basin by Steven G. Smith.

 

Wesleyan University Press @ AWP2017 – Washington D.C.

Join us @ AWP2017, in Washington DC!

Booth #137

awp2017wip

Come to our panel!

Working with Archives—Ethics, Strategies, and Methods

Saturday, February 11, 2017 – 1:30pm-2:45pm
Marquis Salon 1 & 2, Marriott Marquis, Meeting Level Two

Gerald Vizenor
Jena Osman
Harmony Holiday
Daniel Tiffany

Writers sometimes use archival records as sources of inspiration and information. Our panelists, including poets, a fiction writer and a historian, look at the use of public records as a source to gain better emotional understanding of their subject, and as evidence of sometimes grim historical events that have been overlooked or intentionally ignored. The panelist will discuss the methodologies and strategies of working with archival material, as well as the important ethical considerations of working with these often sensitive materials.

Meet the Authors
and have your books signed

Rae Armantrout, Friday 11-12

Peter Gizzi, Friday 1-2

Shane McCrae, Friday 2-3

Camille Dungy, Friday 4-5PM

Stop by booth 137 to see our new titles!

awp2017 new new books

 Trophic Cascade (Camille T. Dungy)

Because When God Is Too Busy (Gina Athena Ulysse)

In The Language of my Captor (Shane McCrae)

Planetary Noise: Selected Poetry of Erín Moure (Erín Moure)

awp2017 new books wip

Archeophonics (Peter Gizzi)

BAX 2016: Best American Experimental Writing (Seth Abramson)

The Work-Shy (Blunt Research Group)

Partly: New and Selection Poems, 2001-2015 (Rae Armantrout)

George Krimsky, 1942-2017

It is with heavy hearts we share news of the death of George Krimsky. From the International Center for Journalists:

In a career spanning 45 years, George Krimsky has been a journalist, author, lecturer, media critic and non-profit administrator. Krimsky served 16 years with the Associated Press, reporting from Los Angeles, New York, the Soviet Union and the Middle East. Following his overseas service, he was appointed head of AP’s World Services News Department. In 1984, he left the AP to found ICFJ, originally known as the Center for Foreign Journalists. After 11 years as its first president, Krimsky returned to his home state of Connecticut as an independent consultant, later serving in Central Asia as a media trainer for the Center. Read the complete biography.

krimsky-making freedom

Krimsky was co-author, with Chandler Saint, of Making Freedom: The Extraordinary life of Venture Smith. Chandler recently shared his memories of working with George:

Venture Smith has lost his word guy. George Krimsky, the only person I know to use words more carefully than Venture, passed away Friday night 20 January 2017. The world lost a great journalist – I lost my best friend.

Read Chandler’s complete statement here.

Remembering Jelle Zeilinga de Boer

It is my sad task to inform you that Jelle Zeilinga de Boer, Wesleyan University Press author and Harold T. Stearns Professor of Earth Science, emeritus, passed away last Saturday, a month before his 82nd birthday.

Jelle Zeilinga de Boer, photo by Bill Burkhart.

Jelle Zeilinga de Boer, photo by Bill Burkhart.

Jelle received his BS and PhD from the University of Utrecht before coming to Wesleyan as a postdoctoral fellow in 1963. During his early years at Wesleyan he worked closely with Geology Professor Jim Balsley in the field of paleomagnetism. In 1977 Jelle was named the George I. Seney Professor of Geology and in 1984 he was named the Harold T. Stearns Professor of Earth Sciences.

In the 1970s Jelle worked as a joint professor at the University of Rhode Island at the Marine Sciences Institute where he was a PhD supervisor for Bob Ballard, who found the Titanic in 1985. Ballard later invited Jelle to go diving in the submersible Alvin to collect rocks in the Cayman Trough.

Jelle was the author of four books, Volcanoes in Human History (with D.T. Sanders), Earthquakes in Human History, Stories in Stone (2009), and New Haven’s Sentinels (2013)—the latter two published by Wesleyan University Press.

Originally interested in coming to the United States to study the Appalachian Mountains, Jelle’s research focused on the geotectonics of the Appalachians, Southeast Asia, and South and Central America.

In 2015 Jelle received the Joe Webb Peoples Award, presented annually by the Geological Society of Connecticut to someone who has contributed to the field of geology in Connecticut. Wesleyan’s current Harold T. Stearns Professor of Earth Science Joop Varekamp, Jelle’s friend and colleague, was quoted by The Wesleyan Argus at the time of this award: “[De Boer] was an outstanding teacher, who received the Binswanger prize for excellence in teaching roughly a decade ago. His classes were very well-liked by many, and he taught many intro science classes until the day that he retired. [His] great talents were in drawing in students to the field of E&ES, making people enthusiastic about Geology, and his field trips on the Geology of Connecticut aroused interest among students who never thought that they would be interested in science.”

Jelle is survived by his wife, Felicité, his son, Bjorn, daughters Byrthe and Babette, their spouses, and his four grandchildren, Cheyne, Indiana, Braedon and Marino.

The funeral services will be private. A memorial event will be planned for the fall.

“Hamilton” History Lessons & The Federalist Papers

The Federalist Papers, edited by Jacob E. Cooke

The Hamilton buzz won’t be ending anytime soon. Lin Manuel Miranda, a Wesleyan alum, has created a hit that will irrefutably change the stage and much beyond. With tickets basically impossible to lay your hands on to this phenomenal rejuvenation to both America’s early history and Broadway’s musical scene, it’s no surprise you can’t go a week without Hamilton coming up.

This Broadway musical isn’t just helping American musical practice evolve, either—the show’s ubiquitous presence in American pop culture has teachers across the nation incorporating the score into their history lessons. This contemporary, youthful take on our “founding fathers’ is helping to  revitalize interest in America’s early history. Twenty-thousand New York The Federalist Papers, edited by Jacob E. CookeCity 11th graders will be able to go further than just incorporating the soundtrack, though:

The Rockefeller Foundation and the show’s producers are financing a program to bring 20,000 New York City 11th graders, all from schools with high percentages of students from low-income families, to see Hamilton at a series of matinees. As part of the program, the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History will develop curriculum.

The New York Time‘s “The Learning Network” featured a few examples for teachers, including the staging of “historic rap battles.” Another one of their wonderful examples was delving into the Federalist papers, which Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and Jon Jay wrote to defend the American Constitution after critique came of their government being too weak. Originally printed in newspapers, it can be difficult to discern which versions are the final versions, as intended by the authors. But not to fear, because editor Jacob E. Cooke created the “most complete and accurate” edition of The Federalist that has yet to appear. Fully annotated and reproduced from the original newspaper texts, The Federalist features chiefly works by Hamilton, aided by papers by Jay and Madison, to defend the government and its texts that the founding fathers so painstakingly fought to create.

Benedict Arnold & AMC’s “Turn: Washington’s Spies”

Wartime treachery, twisted spies and brutality—sound familiar?

AMC’s period drama TURN: Washington’s Spies is in it’s third season, and tensions are rising in the Arnold household. One can understand how a man could be frustrated, having served as Washington’s finest battle commander only to be sent to work a desk job. This restless man would become synonymous with ‘traitor.’ If you’re loving the drama and intriguing politics of Turn, Eric Lehman’s Homegrown Terror: Benedict Arnold and the Burning of New London should be on your summer reading list.

The clandestine meeting of John Andre and Benedict Arnold led to Andre’s death and Arnold’s discovery as a traitor and became one of the most talked about incidents in American history. From an engraving by S. B. Stearns, in Writings of Thomas Jefferson, vol. 7, University of Bridgeport Archives.

Maybe AMC’s Turn has you wondering how true the drama between John Andre, Peggy Shippen, and Benedict Arnold is? Or you’re interested in learning more about the charges leveled at Arnold surrounding his leniency towards Loyalists? This new take on the most reviled traitor of the Revolutionary War is filled with fascinating details surrounding his attack on New London, Connecticut, when the settlement was burnt to the ground. Based on research of primary documents, Lehman pays close attention to key changes in Arnold’s character—from his time as a decorated American soldier, to “the point where he went from betraying his comrades to massacring his neighbors and destroying their homes.”

Homegrown Terror, a finalist for both the Indie Book and Army Historical Foundation Distinguished Book Awards, is a must-read for anyone enthralled by the twists of Benedict Arnold’s storyline in Turn. None of his colleagues saw his betrayal coming, just as readers will not anticipate what Lehman uncovers regarding this Revolutionary War antihero’s psyche.

  

Celebrating International Women’s Day

Today, March 8th, is International Women’s Day! A great way to commemorate a day—and womens’ history month—is to read a book written by or about a woman. Here are just a few of our favorite books by or about our favorite females.

Williams - Prudence R-150-3In its new paperback edition, Connecticut state senator Donald E. Williams’s Prudence Crandall: The Fight for Equality in the 1830s, Dred Scott, and Brown v. Board of Education is a necessity to read. Crandall was a Connecticut school teacher dedicated to the education of African-American girls who ignited a firestorm of controversy when she opened Miss Crandall’s School for Young Ladies and Little Misses of Color, in Canterbury. The town’s residents retaliated—Crandall couldn’t find anyone willing to supply her with goods necessary for running the school, and even the school’s well water was poisoned. Crandall herself faced ridicule all over town, was arrested, and yet did not close the school until her girls’ safety was threatened. Williams tells of Crandall’s push for justice and how her struggles helped to set legal precedent. He explains the relationship between three trials brought against Crandall, for her violation of Connecticut’s “Black Law,” and other notable legal cases: the Amistad case, the Dred Scott decision, and Brown v. Board of Education. Williams also discusses how Crandall v. State impacts our modern interpretation of the Fourteenth Amendment.

 

 

Basinger - Womans-R-72-3 In A Woman’s View: How Hollywood Spoke to Women 1930-1960, Jeanine Basinger highlights the incredibly contradictory messages sent to female moviegoers—films about women’s lives constantly displayed both conformity and righteous freedom. Where women’s film has often been dismissed as another instrument in female oppression, Basinger brings an understanding of both film and women’s lives to parse out the complexities in films sometimes dismissed as “sheer trash.” Films from across genres, from melodramas to westerns to musicals, are examined under Basinger’s discerning eye for traces of subversive rebellion against the “proper” idealized role of women. As the New York Times Book Review said, “Ms. basinger analyzes Hollywood’s view with affectionate wit and verve…Her book is a timely reminder that female rebellion didn’t start with Thelma and Louise.”

 

 

Reed - Weird R-300-9 In humorous, ironic prose, acclaimed Science Fiction writer Kit Reed explores women’s lives and feminist issues in the twenty stories inside Weird Women, Wired Women. Spanning across the years of the women’s movement to more contemporary years in American history, Reed’s writing in Weird Women, Wired Women deals in her usual darkly comic speculative fiction at its best. Reed uses her expertise in science fiction to further cast a subversive spell over these depictions of predominantly-believed women’s roles. The collection of short stories with provocative, clever titles such as “The Bride of Bigfoot” and “Mommy Nearest” takes worn-out suburban subjects and gives them a fresh coat of paint—if that paint is moving, eerie, sharp social criticism, that is.

 

 

0819565474Inside American Women Poets in the 21st Century: Where Lyric Meets Language, readers can find indispensably valuable poetry and prose from women’s points of view. Each section of the book is devoted to a single poet and contains new poems; a brief “statement of poetics” by the poet herself in which she explores the forces—personal, aesthetic, political—informing her creative work; a critical essay on the poet’s work; a biographical statement; and a bibliography listing works by and about the poet. With highly acclaimed poets selected-among them Rae Armantrout, Mei-Mei Berssenbrugge, Jorie Graham, Barbara Guest, Susan Howe, and Harryette Mullen—this collection forces us to redefine lyric poetry. Underscoring the dynamic give and take between poets and the culture at large, this anthology is indispensable for anyone interested in poetry, gender and the creative process.

 

 

McGee_Some_R_72_2Women and jazz have been intricately involved with one another since the genre’s conception, but so often the men of jazz stole the spotlight away from the many acclaimed ladies. Some Liked It Hot looks at all-girl bands and jazz women from the 1920s through the 1950s and how they fit into the nascent mass culture, particularly film and television. G.A. Foster from Choice says, “A remarkable book in every respect. Although one can find several other books on this topic, this study stands above the rest for its accuracy, scholarly discipline, thoroughness of research, and detailed analysis… A stunning achievement. Essential.”

 

 

March is Maple Month!

According to the Maple Syrup Producers Association of Connecticut, March is Maple Month—the sweetest time of year. The longer days and melting snow reminds us that Spring is coming, and it is time to harvest maple sap and boil up some maple syrup. You can enjoy the process and product by attending one of the many maple festivals throughout New England. Learn about some of these festivals from Yankee Magazine’s list of “Best Maple Festivals in New England.”

You can learn more about the process of sugarmaking by attending a talk by David Leff, author of Maple Sugaring: Keeping it Real in New England. David has several events scheduled in Connecticut, where he will read from his book and share knowledge from his experience as a sugarmaker.

MaplePhotos1

Photos courtesy of David Leff, Maple Sugaring: Keeping It Real in New England.

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A Sampling of Maple Festivals in Connecticut

Stamford Museum & Nature Center’s “Maple Sugar Festival Weekend,” March 5–6
Sweet Wind Farm’s Maple Festival, March 12
Plymouth Maple Festival, March 15
AG Day at the Capitol, March 16
Hebron Maple Festival, March 19–20