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HAL welcomes DeCroix


Wed, Feb 7th 2018 12:45 pm
The Historical Association of Lewiston's February program is titled, "Accept Everything America Can Produce: Glenn Curtiss Comes to Buffalo." The event will take place at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 22, at the Lutheran Church of the Messiah Fellowship Hall, 915 Oneida St.
A July 1, 1914, article in the Hammondsport Herald related how the America, the flying boat Curtiss designed to cross the Atlantic, was launched the previous week and was scheduled to be packed up and shipped to Newfoundland in order to prepare for the pioneering journey.
Historian Douglas DeCroix will discuss this important event in the history of aviation and of Western New York.
While this latest update on the impending trans-Atlantic flight dominated the front page, readers would have done well to pay attention to the smaller story that appeared in the far right column, and began: "Archduke Murdered." The assassination of Franz Ferdinand and his wife in the Bosnian capital of Sarajevo set off a chain of events over the next five weeks that would plunge Europe into war. It would also set in motion the transformation of Curtiss' aeroplane and motor business from a small, hometown workshop into the largest manufacturer of its kind in the world.
And it would bring Curtiss and his operations to the City of Buffalo.
DeCroix currently serves as executive editor of Western New York Heritage, the not-for-profit publisher of Western New York Heritage magazine. He holds degrees in history from the University of Illinois and Miami University of Ohio, and achieved doctoral candidacy status at Bowling Green State University.
A native of Chicago, DeCroix came to Western New York in the early 1990s. Since then, he has made significant contributions to numerous nationally aired historical documentaries produced by WNED-TV and The History Channel.
For his contributions to regional history, DeCroix was selected to receive the prestigious Owen B. Augspurger Award by the Buffalo History Museum in October 2015.
He continues to collaborate with a variety of cultural and educational organizations, working to celebrate the region's rich history while seeking creative ways of bringing that history into the classroom and into the lives of the region's inhabitants.
This community event is free and open to all. Refreshments will be served.

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