Tuesday, April 28, 2009

8,000 Years of Native American History and Culture

Five experts on the Native American influence in the Hudson Valley will be part of the conference "Before Hudson: 8,000 Years of Native American History and Culture" Friday (May 1) and Saturday (May 2) at Historic Huguenot Street in New Paltz. It takes place from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. Speakers include Dr. Robert Grumet, scholar and author, Native Americans of the Hudson Valley; Dr. David Ostreicher, leading authority on the Lenape; Tom Lake, anthropologist and Hudson Estuary naturalist; Dr. Joseph Diamond, Department of Anthropology, SUNY New Paltz; and Marc B. Fried, local author and historian.

The conference is $50 for both days or $20 for Friday only. A student rate is also available. More information about the conference can be found at www.huguenotstreet.org by clicking on “Before Hudson” or by calling 845-255-1660.

Here is more from the press release:

In our Quadricentennial year, as much attention is focused on the founding of New Netherlands and the arrival of the earliest Europeans, this conference shines a light on the Native Peoples who were here to greet Hudson and the Europeans that followed him.

Historic Huguenot Street is known as the site where twelve French-speaking Protestants and their families founded New Paltz in 1678. Less known is the fact that this National Historic Landmark District was valued and lived on by Native Americans long before them. The site has been described as one of the richest for Native American artifacts in the Mid Hudson Valley.

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