Every weekend pieces of history are lost forever, generations of family memories, collections of a life well lived are sold or tossed - with good reason. There’s no way to store it all. Fortunately, the weekly “sort and sale” of these items brings collectors and dealers who are happy to breath new interest into them. What is lost is the connection to the people that owned them and the potential significance to local, and sometimes, national history.
Greg Van Antwerp knows. For decades Greg has been uncovering item after item, story after story of forgotten people, places and things that deserve another moment in the spotlight. To list a few - His discoveries are: humorous - An 1867 recipe for “Toad Ointment;” Historic - An 1861 Civil War Military Pass to the front at Bull Run; Entertaining - The 1932 home movies of a Broadway Playwright. Even more fascinating are the stories behind their discovery, research and return.
As a self-styled Urban Archeologist, Greg divides his time between his passions for searching out these hidden nuggets of history and his enthusiasm for sharing them with audiences. Having captured stills and video of many of his best finds he can present audiences with numerous “as it happened” moments in energetic and educational presentations and workshops.Every in-person presentation "STorries Frome The Attic" includes numerous exhibits of promary source historic items audiences are encouraged to handle and inspect. Greg is currently a board of trustee member of the New Milford Historical Society and participating on the educational sub-committee.
The “Confessions of…” is just one examples of the kind of talk that Greg is able to presentation. He can customize each to fit the venue or the group. Libraries, Historical Societies, Senior Centers, Assisted Living Facilities, schools, clubs and organizations - Greg can offer several different experiences that engage participants and get them thinking about their own story, what they collect and appreciate, as well as how they can become curators of American history by learning to be Urban Archeologists themselves. History is hiding everywhere...Let's go find it.
"STORIES FROM THE ATTIC." Can be adapted to any type or size group. My most common clients are Senior Centers, Community Centers, Libraries and Historical Societies - to these groups I offer a talk that is entertaining and informative but also provides tips and tricks as to where and how they can find these many hidden tresures I have discovered. In crafting talks for Senior Living Communities, I perform more story telling, nostalgia audio and video multi-media.
NOTE: Contactless performances are available via Zoom and other live-streaming platforms. I have been working with local community centers and have found this is an acceptable and enjoyable activity for all ages. Please inquire about how I can meet the needs of your community during the pandemic.