August 22, 2018
More than ninety people attended the Robert Green Ingersoll Birthplace Museum Silver Anniversary Celebration this past weekend, August 18 and 19, where attendees connected with west-central New York State’s vibrant history of reason and reform.
Saturday was devoted to lectures and a banquet at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Syracuse, where speakers included CFI president and CEO Robyn Blumner, Ingersoll museum director Tom Flynn, abolition experts Norman Dann and Dorothy Willsey, Matilda Joslyn Gage scholar Sue Boland, CFI Libraries director Tim Binga, and Ingersoll Committee chair Jeff Ingersoll. Melinda Grube delivered a costumed presentation as Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Margaret Downey performed as Eva Parker Ingersoll, wife of Robert.
The keynote address was by noted author and historian Susan Jacoby. A special award was
presented to the James Hervey Johnson Charitable Educational Trust, which has supported the Ingersoll Museum over many years and which generously underwrote the event.
On Sunday, August 19, conference attendees boarded two luxury motor coaches to tour freethought, suffrage, and abolition sites on the Freethought Trail, a collection of over 100 locations in west-central New York State, which in the nineteenth century was a cauldron of radical reform movements that changed the world, such as freethought, woman’s suffrage, and the abolition of slavery.
If you weren’t able to attend the conference, you can still visit the Ingersoll Museum and the Freethought Trail and check out the Trail’s newly redesigned website for much more.
Image at top of post: Attendees view the orientation video in the Ingersoll Museum’s James Hervey Johnson Display Room.