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PRESS RELEASE: Simsbury Free Library Announces September Events

Laura Phillips Ward
WardComm Public Relations, LLC
860.573.4809 |


August 25, 2014 | Simsbury, CT – In September, The Simsbury Free Library (SFL) will continue its Genealogy Road Show program.  Drop In Book Club and Foreign and Documentary Film Offerings will both return after a summer hiatus.  For all events, RSVPs are required via email ( or phone (860-408-1336).

Simsbury Free Library on Simsbury, Saturday, September 13, 2014, Noon

In this fifth program in its “Simsbury Free Library on Simsbury” series, the SFL will host Fred Feibel for a talk about the lost village of Pilfershire.  Located in present day West Simsbury, Pilfershire was a tightly knit and thriving farming community in the mid-18th century.  Come learn more about Pilfershire, how some of our earliest settlers lived, they homes they built and the old cellar holes and remnants still visible today.  Space is limited for this free program, so RSVPs are required via email ( or phone (860-408-1336).

Genealogy Road Show, September 27, 2014, 10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.

This session will focus on French-Canadian research.  If you are researching your family tree, but don’t know where else to look to find missing ancestors, bring in your tree.  Genealogy librarian Diane LeMay can help with deciphering handwriting, online research, and much more.  Free to members; $5 for non-members.

Drop In Book Club, Tuesday, September 9, 2014, 11:15 a.m.

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt.  The story begins with an explosion at the Metropolitan Museum that kills narrator Theo Decker’s beloved mother and results in his unlikely possession of a Dutch masterwork called The Goldfinch. Shootouts, gangsters, pillowcases, storage lockers, and the black market for art all play parts in the ensuing life of the painting in Theo’s care.  Free.

Film Offering, Thursday, September 18, 2014, 1:00 p.m.

Cutie and the Boxer.  Nominated for an Academy Award for best documentary, this film tells the story of 19-year-old art student Noriko, who fell in love with 41-year-old avant-garde artist Ushio Shinohara and put her career on hold to marry and support this rising star of the Manhattan art world.  It is a powerful and poignant documentary about creativity, sacrifice, and a love that is its own unique work of art.  Free.

Connecticut History with Tom Ratliff, Tuesday, September 23, 1:00 p.m.

In “Hartford from 1820-1920,” Mr. Ratliff will talk about the period of rapid industrial growth and large-scale immigration as the 19th century ended and the 20th century began.  Free to members; $5 for non-members.

About the Speaker

Tom Ratliff is a former English and Social Studies teacher who writes historical fiction for young adults. An expert on Connecticut History and the Civil War, he has a master’s degree in Early American History.

Mr. Ratcliff is the co-author of the six-volume Matty Trescott series (written with Carole Shmurak under the pen name Carroll Thomas), and has written non-fiction books for young readers on the Civil War, the Pony Express, the Brooklyn Bridge, and the American Revolution, as well as graphic novelizations of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Last of the Mohicans, and Jack London’s White Fang. His serialized stories for young readers have been published through the Newspapers in Education program in several states.

For the past 20 years, Mr. Ratliff has taught at Central Connecticut State University in both the History and Secondary Education Departments. Currently he is teaching online for the community college system and writing a book about Connecticut’s role in the American Revolution.

About the Simsbury Free Library

The Simsbury Free Library (the Simsbury Genealogical and Historical Research Library) opened on the second floor of the Hopmeadow District School in 1874.  In 1890, the Library’s collection was moved to its present location at 749 Hopmeadow Street in Simsbury.  Today the Simsbury Free Library (SFL) seeks to promote interest in genealogy and history by providing access to research material and expertise, artifacts, and educational and cultural programs.  It seeks to help patrons connect with the past and to learn from and be inspired by those who have gone before them.  The SFL provides a relaxed setting in which people can pursue family research history at their own pace.  For everyone from seasoned genealogy veterans to beginners, the SFL has the staff and resources necessary to help visitors develop the skills required to create family trees, search local histories, look up census records, explore vital records, etc.

The Simsbury Free Library – the Gracious Yellow Lady – is open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and the second and fourth Saturdays of the month from 10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. as well as by appointment.  To RSVP or for more information, visit or call (860) 408-1336.

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