Join Us Saturday, February 20 at Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall

11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. in the Reception Hall:

  • I’ll be working on my new painting
  • My art will be on exhibit
  • I’ll have my poetry for guests to read
  • The Espy Post room will be open for docent tours
  • The Lincoln Photo exhibit will be available for view
  • I’ll be glad to tell you how that exhibit came together and answer questions about the photos and about early photography
pastel painting of creek in spring

Spring Comes to a Bend in the Creek

“Spring Comes to a Bend in the Creek”

My fourth annual poetry reading and art exhibit was so exciting that we’ve decided to keep my art exhibit in place and I’ll be back on Saturday. The painting is “not quite finished”, but the light in the Reception Hall is wonderful on a winter afternoon so I’ll be there to work on the painting and talk about my art and photography.

My exhibit includes several originals, small and large prints and photographs and many notecards and greeting cards made from my artwork and photos which I’ve designed and market at local stores and on the internet.

I’ll also have my poems on hand for guests to read.

My biggest inspiration for poetry, prose and artwork is the world right around me, and I enjoy the opportunity to share it from the perspective of one who walks and hikes and bikes and carries a camera, art materials and journal everywhere—even around the house—so the inspirations are fresh. You’ll recognize many sights around Carnegie, and you’ll be surprised at some stunning views of Chartiers Creek, Robinson Run and the trails around Carnegie, Collier Township, Scott Township and Crafton.

Espy Post Tours and “Aspects of Lincoln” Exhibit at Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall

photo of the Espy post room at acfl&mh

The Capt. Thomas Espy Post No. 153 of the G.A.R.

The Capt. Thomas Espy Post No. 153 of the Grand Army of the Republic is officially restored and open to the public.

What we used to call the “Civil War Room” was actually a Civil War Veteran’s post established in 1875 as a fraternal and service organization serving the needs of Civil War veterans of the Grand Army of the Republic. It was installed in the ACFL&MH in 1906. At one time about 7,000 of these posts existed all over the country, but most did not have a dedicated room as this post did.

However, when the last veteran died in 1937, the door was locked and virtually no one entered it until the mid 1980s when the 9th Pennsylvania Reserves undertook to sort through the artifacts and begin cataloging and restoring what was there. The room, as the rest of the library and music hall, had been damaged by years of neglect and water damage, and both the building itself and the post have been under a campaign of restoration for the past decade.

Today, only about a half dozen posts still exist, and experts say that none are as intact as the post at ACFL&MH.

It is truly a national treasure, full of artifacts from the veterans and their lives during and after the Civil War, a time capsule of that day and age, and its historical interest alone is worth a visit.

Aspects of Lincoln: 100 Photographic Portraits of the 16th President of the United States

photo of Lincoln Photos Exhibit

The Lincoln Photos exhibit at ACFL&MH

In conjunction with the reopening of the restored Espy Post room in the Library, Pittsburgh photographer Norman Schumm offered to loan his collection of “100 photographic portraits of Abraham Lincoln” assembled by Stephan Lorant for the book by that name.

I had the honor to design and hang this show. To say that Abraham Lincoln is and always has been a person I admired is an understatement, and any way I can honor his memory, in poetry, art, music or any other creative medium, is something I do with joy. I also try do do some type of outreach each year for Black History Month, and this year I honor the president who ended slavery, or at least began the process of such.

In conjunction with the reopening of the restored Espy Post room Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall, Pittsburgh photographer Norman Schumm offered to loan his collection of “100 photographic portraits of Abraham Lincoln” assembled by Stephan Lorant for the book entitled Lincoln: a Picture Story of His Life.

The photos had only been displayed for one night previously, and were mounted on two-ply mounting with their number and an explanatory paragraph accompanying. The only way to display these for the public to see over a six-week period was to have specially-sized mats cut and frame them, which I did along with planning where and how they’d hang in the Reception Hall of ACFL&MH. I secured display panels from the McMurray Art League, displaying 83 of the photos in one solid angle of photos. I thought the portraits were individually stunning and interesting, but all together, displayed in identical frames, a viewer can study each of them individually, then step back and see the impact of the professional life of this incredible president.

The exhibit will continue through the end of April.

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