As of Saturday, March 14 the John Brown House Museum, Museum of Work & Culture, Aldrich House, and Mary Elizabeth Robinson Research Center will be temporarily closed until further notice. All programs and events have been moved to virtual formats, postponed, or canceled. Please see our events calendar for updates. Thank you for your understanding.

Valley Talks Series Continues With Jon Henson on 19th-Century Baseball

Valley Talks, a series of free historical lectures, continues on Sunday, Feb. 10, 1:30pm, at the Museum of Work & Culture.

Baseball enthusiast and vintage ballist Jon Henson will present “The Outward and Visible Expression”: A Brief History of Baseball in the 19th Century.  Henson will survey the rise of the beloved game in the 19th century, from its early forms of “invigorating exercise” through its power to create important social bonds amid the tensions of the age, its entrance on the collegiate scene, and its push toward professionalism. The talk – presented as part of the RIHS’s 2019 programming theme Rah-Rah Rhody – will explore the evolution of the rules of the game and highlight many of the personalities and anecdotes that tell the colorful history of the National Pastime.

Seating is limited to 75 and is first come, first served.

Henson’s love of history and baseball found expression when he became a regular player for the Providence Grays vintage base ball club in 2012, traveling around the Northeast each year from April through October to bring the old game to life as it was played in the mid- to late 1800s. He develops curriculum and trains instructors for the elevator industry’s educational program and teaches writing at Roger Williams University’s Providence campus.

Other Valley Talks will include:

February 24: Rhode Island Reds Heritage Society President Buster Clegg screens “When the Reds Ruled the Roost,” a brief documentary on the state’s onetime professional hockey team.

March 10: Writer and historical reenactor Paul Bourget on why the battles fought in 1864 were pivotal to the outcome of the American Civil War.

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