Center for Research on Vermont

Fall 2012 Seminar Series

Watch all the seminars on the web at RETN.org

September 27- “Major Valentine's Swedes” John Dewey Lounge, Old Mill, UVM  7:30 pm


Paul Searls, Professor of History and Music, Lyndon State College

In 1890, Vermont's Commissioner of Agricultural and Manufacturing Interests, Alonzo B. Valentine, launched a program to repopulate Vermont's 'abandoned' farms with farmers recruited from Scandinavia. The program brought a handful of Swedes to three towns in the state, was immediately discontinued, and generally has been dismissed, both by contemporaries and by historians, as a preposterous fiasco. But, in fact, the program had a remarkable legacy, both in terms of its impact on the promotion of summer tourism, and as measured by the subsequent lives of the Swedes and their descendants, many of whom remain in Vermont to this day. In this talk, Paul Searls will explore the bizarre and ironic story of Vermont's Swedish colonists, what the program has to teach us about that transitional era in Vermont's history, whether the program brilliantly accomplished what Valentine hoped for it all along, and what we can learn about twentieth-century Vermont as the Swedes became Vermontesr! This program is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Samuel B. Hand.

            co-sponsored by the Center of the Research on Vermont and UVM's History Department


October 9- “Of Wheelmen, The New Woman, and Good Roads: Historical Perspectives on Bicycling in Burlington, 1880-1920”  Billings North Lounge, UVM  7:30 pm


Luis Vivanco, Associate Professor of Anthropology, and Director, Global and Regional Studies, UVM

Dr Vivanco will present his research on bicycle travel in Vermont from 1880-1920.

            co-sponsored by the Center of the Research on Vermont and UVM's Transportation Research Center


November 13- “Election 2012: The Impacts of the Results on Vermont and Vermonters” Billings North Lounge, UVM  7:30 pm


Professor Eric Davis, Middlebury College, will moderate a panel of journalists to discuss the probably impact of the 2012 voting result onour lives here in Vermont. Outstanding news and political reporters from Vermont media will participate in a roundtable discussion. Come hear Hamilton Davis, journalist and author and former managing editor of the Burlington Free Press; Kristin Carlson, WCAX TV; Andy Bromage, Seven Days; Bob Kinzel, Vermont Public Radio; and Sam Hemingway, Burlington Free Press.