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View Our Event Calendar!

Stairwell Gallery: Ruth Pearl exhibits Galapagos Photographs

"Galapagos Hawk" by Ruth Pearl

"A Journey to the Enchanted Islands" - January 17 through March 7

Animal and nature photographer Ruth Pearl came to New Milford five years ago after raising a family in New Rochelle, NY. She is a full-time volunteer for Pet Assistance, Inc. which she founded in 1973 to help subsidize urgent and emergency veterinary care for pets of people in financial need throughout the US. Ruth has traveled extensively, photographing her way through many countries. After decades of "film", she switched to digital photography in 2004 during a trip to Tuscany.

When photographing animals, Ms. Pearl prefers to focus on just one or a pair, capturing the essence of each as an individual of its species. The camera is her way of documenting what she has witnessed and experienced. When looking at her photographs, she relives the emotions of those moments.

"The Enchanted Islands" were formed by volcanic eruption in the Pacific Ocean and each has its own unique fauna and flora. Most of the native animals have no predators and do not fear humans. For Ms. Pearl, it was a surreal experience to walk among "wild" animals and she found their serenity contagious. This special exhibition is a sampling of the 1,400 photos taken in March, 2013. All were shot at close range. Other than some cropping, none have been digitally enhanced.

"My hope is that by sharing these images, your adventuresome spirit will be activated and that you will work to help protect our earth's animals and environment," says the photographer. "I am grateful that I have always had the good health and time to travel extensively. It is with the encouragement of my loving family that I am sharing this collection."

This exhibit may be viewed during library hours.

Connecticut's Indigenous Peoples: An Introduction Presentation by Dr. Lucianne Lavin

Postponed to Thursday, February 5 at 6:30 p.m., Dr. Lucianne Lavin, author and Director of Research and Collections at the Institute for American Indian Studies in Washington, CT will offer a discussion and PowerPoint Presentation entitled Connecticut's Indigenous People: An Introduction. (Snowdate: Thursday, February 5 at 6:30 p.m.)

Dr. Lavin states, "CT's Native American communities have long, rich histories that extend back to when they shared Mother Earth with mastodons and other extinct animals. The story of their evolution into complex tribal societies with sophisticated social and political traditions and adaptations to constantly changing social landscapes after European contact, have remained largely untold."

She attempts to remedy the situation in her recent book, Connecticut's Indigenous Peoples: What Archaeology, History and Oral Traditions tell us about their Communities and Cultures. Dr. Lavin will discuss her background in anthropology, archaeology and indigenous studies and her reasons for writing the book and also introduce the audience to the book's major tenets.

The book received an honorable mention at the 2013 New England Book Festival in the general non-fiction category, won an Award of Merit from the Connecticut League of History Organizations, won Second Place in the books category in the 2014 New England Museum Association Publication Award Competition, and was selected as a Choice Magazine Outstanding Academic Title for 2013 in the North America Category.

Dr.Lucianne Lavin is a member of the state's Native American Heritage Advisory Council and Editor of the journal of the Archaeological Society of Connecticut. She is an anthropologist and archaeologist who has over 40 years of research and field experience in Northeastern archaeology and anthropology, including teaching, museum exhibits and curatorial work, cultural resource management, editorial work, and public relations.

Hickory Stick Bookstore will provide books for purchase and for signing. For more information, contact Margaret Ferguson at 860-868-7586 or gunnprograms@biblio.org.

Author Peter C. Vermilyea and Hidden History of Litchfield County

We are pleased to welcome historian and author Peter C. Vermilyea for a presentation and signing of his recently released book Hidden History of Litchfield County. This event is scheduled for Saturday, February 7 at 11:00 a.m. in the Library's Wykeham Room.

Traces of Litchfield County's past are hidden in plain sight. Vestiges of long-abandoned railroad tracks crisscross the county while a decaying and unmarked cinderblock structure in Warren is all that remains of a cornerstone of national defense. All but forgotten today, a fire roared through Winsted in 1908, causing residents to flee their rooms at the Odd Fellows boardinghouse. In Bantam, art deco chairs made by the Warren McArthur Corporation prompted the War Department to order bomber seats from the company during World War II.

Author Peter C. Vermilyea explores these and other obscure tales from the history of Litchfield County, Connecticut. Mr. Vermilyea teaches history at Housatonic Valley Regional High School in Falls Village, CT and at Western Connecticut State University. A graduate of Gettysburg College he is the director of the scholarship program at his alma mater's Civil War Institute. Vermilyea is the author or editor of four books and more than a dozen articles, most on Civil War history. His latest book is Hidden History of Litchfield County (History Press, 2014).

Hickory Stick Bookstore will provide books for purchase and for signing. For more information, contact Margaret Ferguson at 860-868-7586 or gunnprograms@biblio.org.

Book Basement

Come in and browse the newly added fiction, non-fiction, biography, history and children’s books. The history has been organized into major wars as well as American and European categories and more. There is an entire wall of new fiction. The new stock includes "specials" — frequently collectible and highly sought after titles priced far less than what can be found on internet book sites. A large collection of books about antiques will be featured, among which the series, American Furniture by Luke Beckerdite, is covering 1993 to 2010. A selection of Irish literature includes many signed books of poetry. There is a section of local authors and many are autographed.There are thousands of books on varied topics and for every age. Since the Book Basement is constantly restocking, if you don't find something one day, come in another to find additional titles that have been added. It is a bibliophile’s cornucopia!

Call the library for further information at 860-868-7586.

e-Readers at the Gunn!

Six Nook e-book reading devices have been added to our junior library collection, featuring titles for children and independent readers. Three are black and white models, with illuminated screens yet no glare in sunlight, and three are full-color tablets, perfect for younger picture book readers as well as movie-watchers with a Netflix account.

Four Amazon Kindle e-book reading devices continue to circulate from our adult circulation desk. Residents 18 years or older with a current library card may borrow an e-reader, and a Borrower's Term of Agreement must be signed. The e-reader program is made possible by a generous donation from the Shea family.

Museum Passes

Looking for a fun day trip? Museum passes are free to check out for for a three-day loan to Gunn patrons.

New Britain Museum of American Art — Free admssion for four people. (One adult must accompany children under 16). Pass is valid for general admission only. Additional fees may apply to special exhibitions, events and programs. Library pass cannot be used for Docent-led tours.

Wadsworth Atheneum — the ARTpass offers free general admission for up to two adults and two children (ages 6-17).

The Junior Library has more passes.

Explore the Connecticut Room

Looking for your ancestors? Want to learn more about your house? Is there something here in Washington that you've always wondered about? To explore the resources available in both the Connecticut Room and the Museum, please call 868-7756 for an appointment.

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