Local history roundtable set

Shown are some of the two dozen-plus local history buffs who turned out for the first Local History Round Table forum at the Fort Plain Free Library last month. The second installment of the free, drop-in gathering will take place at the 19 Willett St. library this Wednesday from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Photo submitted.

FORT PLAIN — The second installment of the monthly Local History Round Table will take place at the Fort Plain Free Library Wednesday from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

More than two dozen people participated in the first forum at the Fort Plain Free Library in September. Participants from Fulton and Montgomery counties brought photographs and other memorabilia to share, sought information and more during the first-ever event.

Fort Plain resident Gary Elliott, for example, shared photos from the collection of the late Marilyn Haggerty depicting scenes from the Center Street United Methodist Church. Among the images were photographs of the church when its steeple was among the tallest in the village, pictures of the church choir in 1963, a kitchen band and photographs from Mrs. George Duffy.

Also present were a Fulton County couple who were seeking genealogical information about their family. Relatives of former town of Minden resident Leo Van Slyke, they were surprised to learn that co-facilitator Rob Carter, the town of Minden historian, was likely a cousin.

Todd Smith, representing the Fort Plain Fire Department, was curious about the locations of four former fire stations in the village. It was interesting to note that two of those were located on Wagner and Mohawk streets.

Longtime Stone Arabia resident Willis “Skip” Barshied, who was also in attendance, brought with him a Native American artifact that was once featured in an article in “National Geographic” magazine.

Among the “take-aways” for attendees was a tidbit about digitizing historical photos and other documents. Retired Harry Hoag School librarian Evelyn Thode, who is involved with the preservation of the Crum Creek Evangelical Lutheran Church, noted that the New York State Library in Albany has a scanner that can scan both sides of a document simultaneously.

Stephanie Barrett, a senior librarian at the New York state Library, confirmed that the library has an overhead scanner that guests can use to scan items page by page to their own flash drives for no charge. She said the scanner is primarily a document scanner, however it is possible to scan photographs as well. The library is located on the seventh floor of the New York State Museum, 222 Madison Ave., Albany.

Local History Round Table forums are held at the Fort Plain Free Library on the third Wednesday of each month, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

For more information, call the library at (518) 993-4646. The drop-in event is free and open to the public.