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Rob Robbins wrote with more sad news. “Those who enjoyed Marina Oborotova’s fine presentation
'The Joy of Life: Impressionists and Post-Impressionists in Russia,' will be saddened to learn that she died at the end of February 2023. The Institute board of directors awarded Marina a year’s membership as compensation for her talk and in the hopes of her continued participation. Unfortunately, this was not to be.”
Deanna Paoli Gumina recently joined the Institute, for a second time, so she is not quite a new member. She is the author of The Italians of San Francisco 1850 to 1930/Gl’Italiani di San Francisco (1985), written in English on one side with the Italian translation opposite. It was well received, followed by four printings. For this work Deanna earned the “Medaglia d’Ore” in Lucca, Italy. Over the years, she has written about various local Italo-American figures such as Andrea Sbarboro, as well as on Italian cuisine
and San Francisco’s Italian restaurants (including “A Toast To Paoli’s Restaurant”), fishermen of San Francisco Bay, and the Italian variety theater. She is currently writing an article on the Italian enemy aliens in San Francisco. She has also written about San Franciscans Lillie Hitchcock Coit, illustrator and artist Ernest Peixotto, and writer Kathleen Norris, including the biography, A Woman of Certain Importance. Deanna’s latest research topic is home economics in San Francisco private and public schools up to the 1960s. Deanna is retired as a learning specialist working with disabled children and adults.
In January Elizabeth Thacker-Estrada participated in a program, sponsored by the First Ladies Association for Research and Education (FLARE), about Julia Gardiner Tyler (1820-1889), the second wife of President John Tyler and the first lady of the United States (June 26, 1844 -March 4, 1845). Liz delivered an introduction to the era of Julia Tyler and moderated the question-and-answer session that
followed the presentation, “The First Rose of Texas was the ‘Rose of Long Island.’”
Chris Webber announced his latest publishing venture: The Beowulf Trilogy, published by Open Road Media. In this book Chris shares his own translation of the original epic and also answers the question of what happens next, with two epic poems of his own. He writes: “In ‘Beyond Beowulf,’ the Geats welcome a new leader, Wiglaf, the young warrior who aided Beowulf in his encounter with the dragon. He helps the tribe search for a new home while contending with threats from storms, trolls, and the Saxon army. Then, in ‘Yrfa’s Tale,’ the warrior’s viewpoint gives way to the perspective of Wiglaf’s wife and family, and the
emotional toll of their struggle.”
i writes that his “in-the-weeds book” on the building of the Alaska Railroad, A Rat’s Nest of Rails
, will be out soon. “That the Alaska Railroad, the only government-funded railway in American history, was ever built is astonishing. It was constructed over the most treacherous terrain in the world during the most violent political era in US history. The work force included anarchists, Bolsheviks, socialists, syndicalists, and labor union organizers. Construction took place in the midst of the
Great War, Spanish influenza, Russian Revolution, and the Great Red Scare; US troops were sent to Siberia to keep Russian socialism from our shore, and Japan was gobbling up colonies from Southeast Asia to
Siberia.” An audio visual preview of the book can be found on YouTube
Members: Please submit news of your history-related publications, lectures, awards, research finds, etc. to firstname.lastname@example.org.