Canton revisiting North Country's role in War of 1812 with educational talks
CANTON -- The role of Northern New York and Upper Canada during the War of 1812 will be revisited through a series of educational talks, from 8:30 a.m. until 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 19, in St. Lawrence University’s Eben Holden Conference Center.
Six speakers will offer War of 1812 Heritage Talks with breaks for question-and-answer discussions and meals. The presenters will include academics within the discipline of early American history, ranging from archeology to re-enactments.“The North Country is crucial to the narrative of American history,” said Melissane Schrems, St. Lawrence University associate professor of history. “The Heritage Talks are instrumental in our community’s ongoing understanding and appreciation of this region’s history.”
Topics discussed at the event will include the war’s historic and regional context, the importance of music and maritime history to the period and specific War of 1812 ties to the North Country. According to Schrems, the talks also serve to highlight and strengthen our region’s value as a destination for historical tourism.
The seventh-annual event is being sponsored by St. Lawrence University and the Fort de La Présentation Association for the first time together. General admission is $9, which will provide admittance to the presentations, continental breakfast and lunch. St. Lawrence students, faculty and staff may attend the talks for free and purchase an on-site boxed lunch.
“It’s an interesting way to spend a Saturday,” Schrems said. “And it’s a part of St. Lawrence University’s mission to educate not only our students but the wider community.”
In addition to the speaker series, the St. Lawrence County Historical Association will host an opening reception from 5 to 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 18, at the Silas Wright House in Canton. Among period-themed hors d’oeuvres, guests may interact with the six Heritage Talks speakers prior to Saturday’s formal presentations. The event is free and open to the public.
“This falls in line with public history,” Schrems added. “A person who’s interested in the War of 1812 and Canadian history has the opportunity to hear from various scholar without the commitment of taking a course.”