BHS Exhibit Praised on Times Opinion Page

Brooklyn native and New York Times writer Francis X. Clines, in a short essay at the bottom of today’s opinion page, observes:

Just as Americans visit the Old World in search of family roots, tourists are showing up at the Brooklyn Historical Society, in hopes of tracking down their grandparents’ neighborhood ties and old houses — brownstones in Park Slope, row houses in Bay Ridge — in the New World.

Clines reminisces about going to the first night game at Ebbets Field and watching Jackie Robinson play. He also waxes nostalgic about the taste of Schaefer beer, one of several brands of suds once brewed in Brooklyn, at a ballgame, and then notes that BHS has, in the past, mounted an exhibit on brewing in Brooklyn. He then praises two current BHS exhibitions. One is Home Base, which will be in place until April 1 of this year. This is about the Dodgers and Ebbets Field, and is curated by local high school students. The other is the Society’s on-line exhibition An American Family Grows in Brooklyn, which gives the history of the Lefferts family, early Dutch settlers here. BHS is located at 128 Pierrepont Street, at the corner of Clinton.

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    This is nice and well-deserved plug for the Society. Their staff is short-handed and overworked but they do their best to accomodate all sorts of needs. Last Friday I was in the library looking up some 19th century pictures of the Domino Sugar Refinery and the harassed librarian had to interrupt helping me in my search to take care of casual drop ins looking for this or that in Brooklyn. She never lost her cool.
    The restored library is a gem in which to spend time. But the institution clearly deserves more support.