Norman Dann presents the life of Ann Fitzhugh Smith
of Peterboro, reformer’s wife

As part of its 2020 Centennial Celebration of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which granted women the vote, Oneida Public Library has invited historian Dr. Norman K. Dann to talk about the subject of his latest biography of a Gerrit Smith family member, Ann Carroll Fitzhugh Smith, on Wednesday, January 29, at 7:00 p.m. in the library’s Meeting Room.

Ann Smith, born in 1805, was the dutiful wife of abolitionist and reformer Gerrit Smith of Peterboro, becoming his most loyal supporter in his reform campaigns, even becoming deeply involved in the Underground Railroad. A firm believer in women’s equality with men, she became an early leader in the women’s dress reform and suffrage movements.

Dann’s recently published biography of Ann Smith, “God, Gerrit and Guidance: The Life of Ann Carroll Fitzhugh Smith,” also emphasizes Ann’s role as the heart and steadfast protector of the Smith family.

Dann’s other books about Smith family members include a biography of Ann’s Suffragist daughter, “Ballots, Bloomers and Marmalade: The Life of Elizabeth Smith Miller” (2017); a biography of her son, “Greene Smith and the WildLife” (2015): “Cousins of Reform: Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Gerrit Smith” (2012); “Whatever It Takes: The Antislavery Movement and the Tactics of Gerrit Smith” (2011); “Practical Dreamer: A Biography of Gerrit Smith” (2009) and “When We Get to Heaven: Runaway Slaves on the Road to Peterboro” (2008).

Dann, emeritus professor at Morrisville State College, is a founder and member of the Cabinet of Freedom for the National Abolition Hall of Fame and Museum in Peterboro, a steward of the Gerrit Smith Estate National Historic Landmark and an active member of Peterboro Area Historical Society and the Smithfield Community Association.

Copies of Dann’s “God, Gerrit and Guidance” will be available for sale and signing by the author.

Dann’s upcoming lecture is the first in a series of special programs in the OPL’s 2020 Centennial Celebration of the Women’s Suffrage Amendment. It is free and open to all. For more information, stop by the Oneida Library, 220 Broad St., or call 315-363-3050.

The new OPL rises from the earth

459 Main Street, January 14, 2020. During a spell of good weather in January, work on the new library facility went at a fast pace. Here, the interior wall metal framework, complete with window frames reveals the dimensions of the Children’s Activity Room, where storytelling, crafts and special projects will be done. (Photo by T. Murray)

459 Main Street, January 14, 2020. With a view towards the main entrance of the new facility, the Local History Room can be seen in outline with the metal wall framing in place. (Photo by T. Murray)

Absentee Ballot Applications available for March 3, 2020, Library Vote

The Oneida Public Library Board of Trustees has appointed March 3, 2020,  for the Library Budget Vote and Election. All registered voters who reside within the OPL Special Library District, which is co-terminus with the Oneida City School District, are eligible to vote March 3 when the polls are open, 12:00 noon to 9:00 p.m., in the library’s Meeting Room. However, if eligible voters intend to be out of town March 3, are chronically ill or are housebound for any reason, they may request an absentee ballot by filling out the Absentee Ballot Application available here and forwarding it to the OPL Director at 220 Broad St., Oneida, NY 13421.

Library Board next meets February 25, 2020

The OPL Board will hold its regular monthly meeting on Tuesday, February 25, 2020 at 5:00 p.m. in the library’s Meeting Room, prior to the 7:00 p.m. public Budget Hearing and introduction of candidates for the open seat on the Board of Trustees that is up for a vote on March 3, 2020. The Meeting Room, 220 Broad St., Oneida, permits barrier-free access to the physically handicapped. The public is invited to attend the regular board meeting as well as the Budget Hearing.

More 19th-century newspapers added to OPL’s Digital Archives Thanks to a grant from the Central New York Library Resources Council and a donation from the Friends of the Oneida Public Library, the OPL’s Digital Archives of the Oneida Public Library now has the digital versions of 10 microfilm reels of Oneida 19th-century newspapers: The Democratic Union (Feb. 1872-Sept. 1875 and Jan. 1885-Dec. 1901) and the Oneida Free Press (April 1880-March 1886).


The OPL has Oneida High School yearbooks online Oneida High School yearbooks from 1936 through 2018 have been successfully digitized, electronically indexed and, as of today, posted online at the web site of New York Heritage, thanks to a Regional Bibliographic Databases Program grant to the Oneida Public Library from the New York State Library, as administered by the Central New York Library Resources Council in Syracuse. Those interested in exploring the yearbooks online can go directly to the New York Heritage site at: https://nyheritage.org/collections/oneida-yearbook-collection 

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9:00 am Tech Connect: Free Computer Help
Tech Connect: Free Computer Help
Jan 28 @ 9:00 am – 1:00 pm
Tech Connect: Free Computer Help
To get free personal help on any problem you’re having with your computer, tablet, cell phone or device or to learn how to download, upload or research online, stop by the OPL Tuesdays to consult[...]
10:00 am Ready To Read
Ready To Read
Jan 28 @ 10:00 am – 11:00 am
Ready To Read
OPL’s Youth Services Coordinator Megan Gillander will help preschoolers learn and practice social skills in a friendly and educational setting through stories, songs, crafts and play.  
2:00 pm Yoga for Seniors
Yoga for Seniors
Jan 28 @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Yoga for Seniors
Bill Skinner, a certified Hatha yoga instructor, is back for a new season of weekly classes for seniors in safe and practical yoga postures and exercises for better all-round health. The class is free and[...]
6:00 pm Pushing the Limits Book Club: ‘Stiff’
Pushing the Limits Book Club: ‘Stiff’
Jan 28 @ 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm
Pushing the Limits Book Club: 'Stiff'
Prof. Jen Herzog introduces the oddly compelling and frequently amusing history of cadavers in medical scientific research in a lively discussion of Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers by Mary Roach. Sign up and[...]