Guilderland Historical Society


GHS 2019 Programs 

November 21st, 7:30 pm

"Women of Schuyler Mansion" presented by Jessie Serfilippi

The Schuyler sisters have been causing quite a stir in the Broadway musical "Hamilton: An American Musical" but did you know that there were really 5 Schuyler sisters?  Learn what it was like growing up Schuyler, as Schuyler Mansion Site Interpreter Jesse Serfilippi presents an in-depth look at the history of all the Schuyler women in this family, their daily lives and the impact that had on shaping their family's history.

Jessie Serfilippi is currently a site interpreter at the Schuyler Mansion State Historic Site, located in the historic South End of Albany. Her research there focuses on the lives of the people the Schuyler's enslaved, the Schuyler women and the Hamiltons. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the College of Saint Rose and has been published in the anthology "Fierce: Essays by and about Dauntless Women. She is also the author of "As Odious and Immoral a Thing:" Alexander Hamilton's Hidden History of an Enslaver.

October 17, 7:30 pm

An Evening with Tom Thorpe: Origins of American Folk and Bluegrass Music

This program will be an informal and open discussion, slideshow and Q & A about performing for people in the African countries of Zimbabwe, Zambia and Botswana while on tour with an Overseas Adventures Travel trip. Music is a common language throughout the world but since many of the songs performed in American Bluegrass and Appalachian Folk music originated in Africa, it was as if the circle had been completed.

Tom Thorpe lives in Voorheesville, NY and has been a performing artist for many years. Tom grew up in a musical family and plays guitar, banjo, mandolin, dobro and fiddle. 

As part of his travels with his wife Karen, he has played for audiences in Ireland, Costa Rica, Greece, Italy and Africa. He is currently focusing his attention on songwriting and teaching others to love and perform music.

September 2019 - No Public Meeting

Spring/Summer 2019 GHS Programs:


June 15th 2-4 pm 

The Guilderland Historical Society and the Guilderland Garden Club will hold an Open House at the 1802 Mynderse-Frederick House in Guilderland Center on Saturday June 15th from 2-4 pm.

Tours of the house, decorated will flower arrangements provided by the Garden Club, will be given by Historical Society members. 

Tours of the Award-winning gardens will be given by Garden Club members.

In addition, a display of items related to the 1860's  Cobblestone Schoolhouse just down the road, will be on view. Although the Cobblestone Schoolhouse is not open to the public at present, visitors will be welcome to view the exterior, a masonry marvel!

Guilderland is included in Cobblestone Landmarks of New York State.

The John L. Schoolcraft House, 2299 Western Avenue, Guilderland, will also be open for showing. The home, built around 1835, is an example of "Carpenter Gothic" design. Schoolcraft, a U.S. Representative in the 1800's, was also the Uncle of Henry Rowe Schoolcraft, author and Indian authority.

February 23rd 2-4 pm 

An Open House was held at the Schoolcraft House, 2299 Western Avenue, Guilderland, sponsored by the Guilderland Historical Society and the Guilderland Garden Club.

This historic 1840's Gothic Revival style house was built by John L. Schoolcraft as a summer cottage in the community where he grew up. He had achieved financial, political and social success in Albany and Washington, D.C. but never forgot his Guilderland connection.

Historical society members were on hand to answer questions about John Schoolcraft and his house, while Garden Club members described their garden planning with the Town to improve the outside landscaping.

March 21, 2019 7:30 pm 

"Enterprising Waters: New York's Erie Canal" by Brad Utter

Brad Utter has been a Senior Historian/Curator, Science and Technology History at the New York State Museum since 2014, As the Curator of the New York State's Museum's new exhibit "Enterprising Waters: New York's Erie Canal", he will give an overview of the exhibit and highlight some of the stories and artifacts featured in the exhibit.

April 18th  7:30 pm

"Brick, Books and Google: An Improbable Journey" by John Haluska

This program seeks to provide an increased understanding of the Hudson River Brick industry  in the 1800-1900's. In addition to giving us an overview of the brick making industry, Mr. Haluska will present various brick examples that he has collected over the years. Do you have an interesting or unusual brick? Please feel free to bring it along for "Show & Tell" or to ask the speaker questions you may have.

May 16th 7:30 pm

"Grave Cleaning and Restoration" presented by Christopher White

Have you ever seen that unreadable gravestone or that toppled monument and wondered "what can I do to address its condition?" There is a correct way and a wrong way to remedy that gravestone.