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HAL, DeCroix spotlight Blanche Stuart Scott at February program

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Mon, Feb 11th 2019 11:20 am

The Historical Association of Lewiston’s February program, “Blanche Stuart Scott – Untamable Tomboy of the Air,” will be held at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 28, at the Lutheran Church of the Messiah Fellowship Hall, 915 Oneida St.

On Sept. 2, 1910, Blanche Stuart Scott became the first woman to achieve solo flight in an aircraft – despite Glenn Curtiss’ best efforts to prevent her from doing so. This was but a single incident in the life of this adventurous Western New York woman who refused to play by the rules of a world governed by men, and who refused to let herself and her achievements be limited by gender.

From terrorizing the streets of Rochester in her one-cylinder Cadillac to her epic cross-country automobile odyssey to her pioneering role as a female aviatrix, Scott’s story is one of a gutsy and spirited young woman who was anything but average.

The story of this remarkable woman will be historian Douglas DeCroix’s latest topic when he visits the Historical Association of Lewiston. In his presentation, “Blanche Stuart Scott –Untamable Tomboy of the Air,” he will chronicle Scott’s adventures and life-long contributions to the world of aviation.

DeCroix currently serves as executive editor of Western New York Heritage Inc., 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. He oversaw production of the three-volume commemorative series on the War of 1812, published by Western New York Heritage, and was one of the scholars selected to contribute a chapter for the Routledge Handbook of the War of 1812, published by the Taylor & Francis Group in late 2015.

 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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