Hudson -- Hudson Library and Historical Society will host two significant visitors Sept. 18 -- Dr. Richard Beeman, eminent historian; and the Summit County Bicentennial Bell. Both are part of the library's observance of Constitution Week and a new historical lecture series.
The 9-foot high, 250-pound bell, is on loan for the day from Summit County.
Beeman, a historian specializing in the American Revolution, will kick-off the library's new American Heritage Lecture Series Sept. 18 at 7 p.m.
The series aims to explore our nation's historical under-pinnings and its subsequent development, according to library historian and archivist Gwen Mayer.
"Our mission is to celebrate the rich historical heritage and unique inheritance of America and to promote an appreciation and understanding of the principles upon which our nation was founded," Mayer said.
Beeman's new book, "Our Lives, Our Fortunes and Our Sacred Honor: the Forging of American Independence, 1774-1776" relates how America developed from a colony into a republic, and how Americans became citizens, not subjects.
His book illustrates a combination of political maneuvering, intellectual brilliance, and fortunate timing, men like Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, John Dickinson, and Samuel Adams came to write the Declaration of Independence in 1776 -- a document unimaginable only a few years earlier, according to reviewers.
Beeman is an American historian specializing in the American Revolution. He has written numerous books, and is the John Walsh Centennial Professor of History at the University of Pennsylvania. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of the National Constitution Center and has also served as the Director of the Philadelphia Center for Early American Studies and as editor of American Quarterly.
"He is the perfect person to launch this series," Mayer said.
According to Mayer, the author is the recipient of numerous awards, including fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Institute of Advanced Study at Princeton, and the Huntington Library. He has served as a Fulbright Professor in the United Kingdom and as Vyvlan Harmsworth Distinguished Professor of American History at Oxford University.
The Learned Owl Book Shop will have copies of Beeman's books available for purchase and signing at the event. Refreshments will be served in the library rotunda after the program.
"This is not a ticketed event," Mayer said, "but registration is encouraged for this free event."
Visit hudsonlibrary.org or call 330-653-6658 ext. 1010 for registration.