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Rochester Hills Museum Hosts February Film Festival! 
Warm up this winter at the Rochester Hills Museum at Van Hoosen Farm Film Festival in February! Please scroll below to purchase tickets


Friday, February 16:

River to River: Iowa's Forgotten Highway 6 - Fourth Wall Films

What do Bonnie & Clyde, Jesse James, Nancy Drew, and Jack Kerouac have in common? U.S. Route 6 in Iowa takes two-lane motorists from Davenport on the Mississippi River to Council Bluffs on the Missouri River. Built in one day by 10,000 farmers and businesses across the state, Iowa's Route 6 was part of the longest transcontinental highway in America.

This award-winning film by Kelly and Tammy Rundle guides viewers on a nostalgic classic car journey through yesterday's soda shops, filling stations, general stores, drive-ins, and roadside attractions. Experience the sights and sounds and the people and places that the four-lanes have forgotten, before they are gone.

Letters Home to Hero Street - Fourth Wall Films
Letters Home to Hero Street focuses on a young Mexican-American veteran's personal view of World War II as told through the letters and V-Mail (Victory Mail) he sent home to his family on 2nd street in Silvis, Illinois.

Frank Sandoval was just beginning a new job at the Rock Island Arsenal when he was drafted by the Army in 1942. He sent dozens of letters to family and friends during the two years he was in the service, and the more than 100 letters that remain, tell a story of one man's epic journey from Illinois to India.

Killed on the Irrawaddy River in Burma in June 1944, Frank becomes one of eight veterans of WWII and the Korean War, killed in combat from the same block-and-a-half long street - more than any other street in America.

In memory of Frank Sandoval, Tony Pompa, Claro Soliz (Solis), Joseph Sandoval, Peter Masias, William Sandoval, Joseph Gomes and John Munos, 2nd Street was named Hero Street, U.S.A. 

When:
February 16th
Time: 7:00 pm
Location: Calf Barn at the Museum
Cost: Free for Museum Members; $5.00 for Non-Members
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Cabin Fever Series
On Friday evenings in March, the Museum is the place to be for a variety of topics and speakers! All programs begin at 7:00 p.m. Please scroll below to purchase tickets.

Living with Coyotes, presented by Holly Vaughn
Date: March 2
Time: 7:00 pm
Cost: Free for Museum members; $5 for non-members

Coyotes are one of the most misunderstood and feared creatures in Southeast Michigan. Learn more about this adaptable creature and their habits as well as tips for coexisting with this important carnivore.

Holly Vaughn is the Wildlife Communications Coordinator for the Southeast Region of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and based in Detroit. She loves to educate people about Michigan's wildlife. She has a BS in Fisheries and Wildlife and an MS in Park, Recreation and Tourism Resources from Michigan State University.

Modeling the Mahogany Masterpieces of John Hacker
Date: March 9
Time: 7:00 pm - Guests are encouraged to arrive at 6:30 to view these Mahogany Masterpieces.
Cost: Free for Museum members; $5 for non-members

Greg Rice is a resident of Rochester, Michigan and has been scratch building model boats for 25 years. His models have won awards at shows from New York to Missouri and have been featured in numerous publications. Greg will be presenting the history of three unique mahogany powerboats designed by John L. Hacker between 1923 and 1939 and built in Michigan. John L. Hacker (1877-1961) was the dean of American high-speed boat designers. His designs range from small skiffs to large yachts. They included rumrunners, world record holding race boats, large yachts, and high-speed boats for the military. The company he founded, Hacker-Craft, produced boats known as "The Steinway of Runabouts." Frequently, Hacker was commissioned to design unique vessels by the rich and famous. Some of these became the most iconic, and valuable mahogany boats ever built; and many are still in existence today. The presentation will focus on three of these boats, Evangeline, Lockpat II and Thunderbird, which have been modeled by Greg. The models will be on display and Greg will discuss the fascinating history of the boats and their owners, as well as some of the challenges he faced in scratch building the models.

Antique Tools: Unusual and Obsolete, presented by Jim Cassell
Date: March 16
Time: 7:00 pm
Cost: Free for Museum members; $5 for non-members

Jim Cassell, Collector of History, is back to present some tools that you may never have seen or perhaps you have seen but had no idea what the tool was. He will entertain and educate with his knowledge and collection. If you have a tool that you know very little about, he is a happy to take a look and help to identify it.

I, Too, Sing America, presented by Michigan Opera Theatre
Date: March 23
Time: 7:00 pm
Cost: Free for Museum members; $5 for non-members

Join Michigan Opera Threatre for I, Too, Sing America, an innovative lecture-recital that highlights the stories and achievements of African American artists and athletes who defied limitations and paved the way for integration in their fields.

This performance is presented in anticipation of MOT's May production of The Summer King, a new opera centered on the life and struggles of Josh Gibson, a baseball superstar in the Negro Leagues who was barred from playing in the majors. Through live music, poetry, narrative, and video, Michigan Opera Theatre will explore Gibson's story alongside the little-known, but ultimately unforgettable, histories of other luminaries such as Marian Anderson, George Shirley, Jesse Owens, and Florence Price. I, Too, Sing America celebrates those who have contributed to the struggle for integration and equality, and brings a wider recognition of the vibrant, parallel histories shared by the athletic and artistic communities, unifying the interests of our broader Detroit community.

The Influenza of 1918: A Smart Towns presentation by Dr. Adam Hull, Ascension Crittenton Physician - Primary Care Internal Medicine
Date: March 30
Time: 7:00 pm
Cost: Free for Museum members; $5 for non-members

The Flu Epidemic of 1918 killed more than 50 million people, one-fifth of the world's population, and affected over 25% of the population of the United States. The year of 1918 was an unforgettable year of suffering and death, and peace as World War I ended.

A quote from the Journal of the American Medical Association in December 1918 stated: 
"...Medical Science for four and one half years devoted itself to putting men on the firing line and keeping them there. Now it must turn with its whole might to combating the greatest enemy of all - infectious disease."

Join Dr. Hull as he looks back over this tragic time that lead to great discoveries and change.

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Women's History in March

Join us on Thursdays in March for "Herstory" presentations celebrating Women's History Month. All programs begin at 7:00 pm. Please scroll down to purchase tickets.

Not Just a Man's War, presented by Caitlyn Dial of the Michigan Women's Hall of Fame
Date: March 8
Time: 7:00 pm
Cost: Free for Museum members; $5 for non-members

The Michigan Women's Historical Center, operated by the Michigan Women's Studies Association, is responsible for the Michigan Women's Hall of Fame, the only museum in Michigan dedicated to women's history. Established in 1983, it honors and celebrates the achievements of remarkable Michigan women, including Dr. Bertha Van Hoosen and Sarah Van Hoosen Jones, Ph.D.

In her autobiography, Petticoat Surgeon, Dr. Bertha Van Hoosen wrote about her birth - "...I had other reasons for crying: my country was at war - fierce, cruel, civil war. During my first year I was never known to smile..." She reflected that she should have been born laughing - "...for I was that most fortunate of creatures, a wanted baby."

Caitlyn Dial will reflect on remarkable women and their acts of courage, determination, and bravery just as Bertha was entering the world.

Fidelia Gillette, presented by Maureen Thalmann
Date: March 15
Time: 7:00 pm
Cost: Free for Museum members; $5 for non-members

A resident of Rochester, Fidelia was the Women's Rights Editor for the Rochester Era and owned an interest in Truth for the People, an advocacy newspaper dedicated to "the best interest of the people politically, morally, and socially."

In 1874, Fidelia was one of ten men and women chosen to represent Rochester and Avon Township at the Michigan State Women's Suffrage Associations' annual meeting in Lansing. She and her fellow delegates waged a campaign to drum up support for a women's rights amendment to the state constitution. Although the proposal was eventually defeated, Fidelia continued her quest for universal suffrage through lectures and writing, publishing several volumes of poetry and essays.

Maureen Thalmann will share her knowledge of this woman who was a writer, lecturer, and missionary. Minister Fidelia Gillette was hailed as a "thinker of uncommon breadth" for her efforts in the fight for women's suffrage during the 1870s.

A Look Back at Women's Roles as Homemakers and the Tools that they Used,  presented by Jim and Berta Cassell
Date: March 22
Time: 7:00 pm
Cost: Free for Museum members; $5 for non-members

Women's roles have changed over the years, as have the tools that they use. Jim and Berta Cassell are Collectors of History and will share their knowledge of irons and other everyday objects from the past that were part of life in the home. Guests are encourage to bring unusual objects from the past that may have been part of homemaking long ago.

A Purse of Her Own, presented by Susan Nenadic
Date: March 29
Time: 7:30 pm NEW TIME
Cost: Free for Museum members; $5 for non-members

Much of what we think about American women in the nineteenth century is based on stereotype. Author of  A Purse of Her Own, Susan Nenadic, challenges stereotypes regarding issues of education, health, marriage, and divorce. From Washtenaw County, Susan looks at Michigan against a backdrop of changes occurring throughout the United States.

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Founder's Day
Date: March 11th
Time: 2:00 pm
Cost: Admission is free, but advance registration is required.

The annual Founder's Day program, sponsored by the Rochester Historical Commission, recognizes the founding of Rochester on March 17, 1817 by James Graham. This year's event features renowned ragtime pianist, Bob Milne. Bob grew up in Rochester and graduated from Rochester High School. During his amazing career, he has performed for both George H. W. and George W. Bush, Secretaries of State Kissinger and Schultz, as well as many other dignitaries of the United States and leaders in business. His genius has been the study of neuroscience at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. The Hall of Fame selection committee chose candidates who have had a positive and long-term impact on the community, served as a role model for higher achievement, provided inspiration, and elevated others in the community and in their profession.

The 2018 selected members include:
 Dr. Max Mallon  Eva Woodward Parker  Roy Rewold
Dr. Max Mallon
(1906-1998)
Eva Woodward Parker
(1855-1933)
Roy Rewold
(1929-2013)

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