Archives Speakers Bureau Adds New Programs

By Jim Baggett, Archives Department, Central Library

Jim Baggett speaking at B. B. Comer Memorial Library (Sylacuaga)

Staff from the Birmingham Public Library Archives present programs throughout the year to clubs and other organizations, churches, and for speakers programs at public libraries and museums in the Birmingham area and around the state.

Focusing on Birmingham and Alabama history, the programs draw from and highlight the collections of the BPL Archives. The programs, which last about 30 minutes, are presented free of charge.

The Archives has added three new programs to the Speakers Bureau offerings. They are:

All's Fair...
The end of that idiom is the framework for this presentation. Using love letters sent between a young World War II soldier and his sweetheart at home in Birmingham, we journey through a relationship torn apart by distance and war. (Catherine Champion)

Southern Belles in the Big Apple
Using travel diaries preserved in the Birmingham Public Library Archives, this presentation recounts the experiences of three Birmingham women who visited New York City in the 1890s, the 1930s, and the 2000s.

"It Came Like a Cyclone": Alabama and the 1918 Influenza
As World War One came to a close, tens of millions of people around the world contracted influenza in the worst pandemic in human history. Alabama was not spared the misery, and almost 150,000 Alabamians became ill in every part of the state. Thousands, including whole families, died. Stores, theaters, fairs, schools, and even churches were closed to try and stop the spread of the disease. With not enough doctors or hospital beds to tend the sick, neighbors pulled together to care for one another. This talk explores the story of the great influenza in Alabama and around the world.

Visit BPL's website to learn more about the Speakers Bureau programs.