Sacred Spaces: A Tour
On Saturday, October 19, enjoy a historical and intimate tour of Saints Peter and Paul’s Byzantine Catholic Church Cemetery and Granville, N.Y.’s Alley with Slate Valley Museum’s Coordinator of Education, Robert Isherwood.
In the second half of the nineteenth century, the booming slate industry needed more workers to meet the international demand for Slate Valley roofing slate. Many workers came from the Carpatho-Rusyn Mountains of Eastern Europe. Arriving in a new world with little knowledge of the language and customs and no knowledge of the slate industry, they quickly became a misunderstood part of the community. Historians have glimpses into the lives of Carpatho-Rusyn immigrants, or “Hungarians” as they were mistakenly called, through newspaper articles that chronicled less-than-flattering occurrences in the Alley, the tenement community where many lived, and their sometimes horrific deaths within the quarries.
This program will invite visitors to look in-depth into the life of one of these slate workers whose grave is now at the Cemetery. Learn about the contributions of the many men and women who left their home to start a new life in an alien country.
After the tour, enjoy a social period at the Slate Valley Museum. Visitors are encouraged to come with their own stories, to gain a full experience of culture and community that surrounded the economic decision of many to leave home for the slate quarries of New York and Vermont. Cider, doughnuts, and a warm fire will be provided!
The exhibit and programming series “Preserving a Heritage, Building a Community” was made possible through generous grant support from the New York Council for the Humanities and the New York State Council for the Arts as well as research support through the Institute of Museum and Library Services and digitization support through the Shepard Broad Foundation.
For more information, visit the museum website at slatevalleymuseum.org or call the museum at 518-642-1417.