History program set in Johnstown

JOHNSTOWN – In celebration of the 200th anniversary of Elizabeth Cady Stanton’s birthday in 2015, the Girl Scouts of Northeastern New York and the Elizabeth Cady Stanton Women’s Consortium will present “Our History is our Strength.”

The program is open to girls from kindergarten through 12th grade in the GSNEY service area. It will be held Jan. 24 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Johnstown Area Community Center with a bad weather date of Jan. 31, a news release said.

The cost is $1 per girl and a non-perishable food item for a local food pantry.

The event will begin with “Who Was Elizabeth Cady Stanton?” presented by Nancy Brown, the treasurer of the Elizabeth Cady Stanton Hometown Association and a fifth-grade teacher at Park Terrace Elementary School. Brown’s three daughters inspired her interest in Cady Stanton, the release said.

Next, the girls will rotate to attend four 30-minute workshops presented by area women.

A workshop on “Women in Law” will be given by Polly Hoye, Fulton County judge and surrogate, and Louise Sira, Fulton County district attorney. Hoye was admitted to practice law in New York state and U.S. District Court in 1983 and became Fulton County’s first female judge when she was elected to office in 2002. In 2003, Hoye was named a Juliette Low Woman of Distinction by the former Mohawk Pathways Girl Scout Council. Sira was one of the youngest elected officials to hold the position of district attorney when she was elected in 2003 at the age of 34. Living and working in rural Fulton County, she is the chief law enforcement officer in the county, a role that requires her to make decisions that often have lifelong effects on the people involved directly in cases, their families and the greater community she serves, the release said.

The “Women in Engineering” workshop will be presented by Paula Christman Bagley, a civil engineer for the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. She provides technical expertise to the New York City Watershed Agricultural Program. The program’s function is to protect the 1,972 square mile New York City drinking water supply to 9 million New Yorkers from contaminants from agricultural lands and operations. As an engineer, she is responsible for overseeing the planning, design and construction of various structural practices, including but not limited to: waste storage facilities, alternative water supplies, stream crossings and stream bank stabilization.

A workshop on “Fulton County’s Daughters: Local Women in History” will be presented by Samantha Hall-Saladino, Fulton County historian. Hall-Saladino is the first woman to hold the title of Fulton County historian. She holds has a master’s degree in museum studies from the University of New Hampshire and dual bachelor degrees in history and English from Russell Sage College. She is employed as education coordinator at the Shaker Society in Albany. Hall-Saladino has interned at several museums, including the Strawberry Banke Museum in Portsmouth, N.H.; the American Independence Museum in Exeter, N.H.; and the USS Slater in Albany.

The “Tracing Your Roots” workshop will be presented by Lois Gruner, past regent of the Montgomery County chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. The DAR is a nonprofit, nonpolitical woman’s volunteer service organization open to any woman 18 and older regardless of religion, color or race who can trace her ancestry to a participant in the American Revolutionary War.

Following the four workshops, at noon, the girls will hear Sue McLane, living history presenter, who has been known as “The Victorian Lady” since 1991. McLane will share her knowledge of the Victorian Era through the clothing worn by women of the time. McLane was drawn to the Victorian Era’s simpler way of life and to the study of history itself during what she considers her second career as an independent scholar, and has studied the lifestyle and culture of 19th century America since 1986, the release said. McLane spent seven years as a registered nurse in medical, surgical, cardiac and critical care units before making the choice to develop her entrepreneurial skills and apply them to her avocation for history and a profound desire to simplify her own life, the release said.

Attendees may bring a bag lunch. Doughnuts, milk and juice donated by Stewarts Shops will be provided at registration. Birthday cake will be served at 1 p.m.

The event ends at 1:30 p.m.

Girls interested in attending “Our History is our Strength” at the JACC can register by calling Jo-Ann Clear at 725-7791. Since the Jan. 24 event is limited to 100 girls, registration is on a first come, first served basis, according to the release.