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The annual lecture series, offered every October, kicks off Oct. 1, will feature three presenters

The Bowman Museum will be offering their annual fall lecture series in October, but with one big change—it will be offered online.

"This is a different world for us, of course, doing this virtually the first time," commented Sandy Cohen, Bowman Museum director.

He added that they had originally scheduled both the spring and fall series, traditionally held in May and October. Then it had to be canceled again in May because of COVID restrictions.

"We decided to see if the speakers would be willing to do this virtually," he added of the October series.

Three of the speakers have committed to the lecture in October. The three lectures will be held Oct. 1, 8 and 15. The speakers will be Hank Cramer, Rebecca Hom and Nate Pedersen, respectively.

The series will be held through Zoom, facilitated by Sadie Moss. It is being co-sponsored and hosted by Friends of the Library. The speakers will be reporting from different locations, and each lecture will be followed by a question and answer session.

Heather Jones, assistant director of library services for Crook County Library, explained that both the Bowman Museum and the Crook County Library are departments of Crook County.

"We also have shared interests and shared goals as far as education and providing learning opportunities for the community," Jones noted.

She added that they also have similar collections, with the museum having the Ochoco history collection.

"We really rely on the Bowman Museum for their expertise as far as genealogy and local history. We try to work together several times per year to provide some of these learning opportunities," she said.

Jones and Cohen have both voiced their excitement in trying the new presentation format.

"People are going to write in questions, and the audience is supposed to send in questions in the chat," said Cohen. "Then I will read the questions and then I will conclude."

He pointed out that Hank Cramer's presentation will be pre-recorded, since he will be performing songs.

"All of the presenters are out of town," he emphasized. Some of the presenters will also have multi-media presentations as well.

Schedule of virtual lecture series

Thursday, Oct. 1

"From Celtic to Cowboy: The Migration of Folk Music in the West"

By Hank Cramer, traveling folksinger and historian

During the period of the great Celtic migrations to America – the Irish fleeing the potato famines, the Scots evicted in the 'highland clearances' – many of the immigrants could not find work on the East Coast, or they dreamed of a place where they could own land of their own. Many moved westward, as travelers on the Oregon Trail, workers on the new railroads, and as cowboys on the cattle trails. They brought many old songs and fiddle tunes with them and wrote new lyrics to match their new experiences in the American West. In the process, Celtic music became the genesis of several new American music styles, including cowboy songs of the 19th century and the bluegrass music that evolved in the 20th century.

Hank Cramer is a traveling folksinger and historian from Winthrop, Washington. He is well-known for his performances of both cowboy songs and Celtic ballads. He has also sung at cowboy gatherings across the Western states. Cramer's work as historian, musician and entertainer was honored with the presentation of the Humanities Washington Award in 2011, given to one performer each year for excellence in the arts.

Thursday, Oct. 8

"Paper Dolls, Pin-ups, and Pistol Packin' Mamas: The Women Pilots of World War II"

By Rebecca Hom, master storyteller

The WASP (Women's Airforce Service Pilots) were 1,100 female U.S. civilian pilots during World War II. Once trained, they ferried planes to U.S. bases from one corner of the country to the other; they towed targets while airborne for ground artillery trainees to perfect their aim; they tested piloted planes fresh off the manufacturing line; and they delivered red-carded, poorly repaired planes to bases for disposal.

Cumulatively, the WASP logged over 60 million flight miles during the short two years of the program. They won honors, regard and medals. But not military status. The WASP proficiency, enthusiasm and spirit served the country, expanded gender norms, and paved the way for inclusion of female pilots in the future. Their stories are a seldom told as part of history.

Rebecca Hom will share the stories of individual WASP pilots and the overview of the WASP program, its creation, its conflicts, and its controversial disbandment. They served with pride, grace and quiet glory.

Hom is a master storyteller, with experience as an exhibit writer, group and classroom facilitator, columnist, public radio correspondent, interpretive naturalist, and full-time mother. Trained in the field of social work at Wartburg College, Iowa, Hom has spent 25 years using her human resource skills and the art of storytelling to share stories with a message.

Thursday, Oct. 15

"Vampires: A History of the Creatures of the Night"

By Nate Pedersen, author and librarian

Explore the cultural history of the vampire in folklore and literature.

Nate Pedersen is a librarian, historian and writer in Portland. He is the co-author of "Quackery: A Brief History of the Worst Ways to Cure Everything" with Lydia Kang, published by Workman, which NPR dubbed a best science book of 2017. He likes reading, running, animals, birds, farms, old trees, Civil War living history, ancient trackways in Britain, Irish folk music and long road trips.


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