NHA Offers Eight Exciting Programs during June

The Nantucket Historical Association’s popular June Lecture Series is back for 2017, with a different lecture every Monday evening in June at 6 pm in the Whaling Museum, 13 Broad Street.

This year, the Nantucket Historical Association June Lecture Series features a variety of speakers who will give engaging talks on topics from ocean life to Nantucket history. These lectures are free for Nantucket Historical Association members and only $10 for the general public.

Christopher Clark on NantucketTo start the series, Dr. Christopher Clark will speak Monday, June 5 on The Singing Planet: Ocean Voices in a Rising Sea of Noise. This Cornell Senior Scientist will presents his research about noise levels in the ocean and how they impact North Atlantic right whales. Dr. Clark reveals how in the waters just off the coast of Massachusetts, whales are dealing with a chronically noisy environment that is affecting their day-to-day and long-term survival.

An engineer and biologist, Dr. Clark has pioneered ocean listening systems for studying whales and the influence of noises from commercial shipping and offshore energy activities at ocean-basin scales. He led the development and application of the near-real-time, auto-detection network for North Atlantic right whale acoustic monitoring in Boston shipping lanes.

Stephen Kinzer on Nantucket“The True Flag: Theodore Roosevelt, Mark Twain, and the Birth of American Empire” is the topic of author Stephen Kinzer’s talk on Monday, June 12. Kinzer, author of The True Flag: Theodore Roosevelt, Mark Twain, and the Birth of American Empire, brings to light the political debate that erupted at the turn of the twentieth century when the United States found itself with the opportunity to dominate foreign lands. He explores how this debate set America’s interventionist course in the world and continues to remain a relevant debate in America’s current political affairs.

Kinzer served as New York Times’s bureau chief in Turkey, Germany, and Nicaragua and as The Boston Globe’s Latin America correspondent. He is a senior fellow at the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs at Brown University and writes a column on world affairs for The Boston Globe.

On Monday, June 19, Historian Sarah Crabtree will tell the story of William Rotch, who had the unusual and unfortunate distinction of being accused of disloyalty four separate times by three different governments in less than two decades. Her talk, entitled “Tinker, Traitor, Coward, Spy! The (Mis)adventures of William Rotch,” explains how Rotch’s official charges were often complicated and varied in each case, but the underlying accusations were strikingly similar and, for Rotch, incredibly tiresome. She explores how Rotch suffered greatly during this time period, but also profited enormously and found success in an increasingly globalized economy through his male family members.

Sarah Crabtree on NantucketSarah Crabtree is an Assistant Professor of History at San Francisco State University. She is an National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Fellow at the John Carter Brown Library in Providence, Rhode Island, which has brought her home to the East Coast to complete the research for her book on William Rotch.

New England Aquarium’s Dr. Rosalind Rolland will present “50-Ton Patients: Adventures of a Whale Veterinarian at Sea” on Monday, June 26. She’ll discuss her research on whale health and reproduction, and what whales can reveal to us about the ocean’s health in general.

In 1999, Dr. Rolland, a research veterinarian, embarked on a mission to understand why highly endangered North Atlantic right whales were having so few calves. Since that time, Dr. Rolland and her colleagues have developed unique approaches and non-invasive methods to study health and reproduction in these 50-ton leviathans. Her research at the New England Aquarium is focused on development of non-invasive methods to study health, reproduction, and stress responses in free-swimming large whales. She pioneered methods to measure an array of hormones in whales using a variety of sample types including scat, baleen and respiratory vapor (blow). Dr. Rolland and her colleagues created a method to monitor endangered North Atlantic right whales using photographs to assess the health of individual whales and health trends at the population level. She has led projects investigating diseases, marine biotoxins, and the effects of underwater noise on large whales.

Dr. Rosalind (Roz) Rolland is the Director of Ocean Health and a Senior Scientist in the Research Department at the New England Aquarium.She also holds a Research Faculty appointment at UMASS-Boston and has held faculty appointments at Tufts, Harvard Medical School, MIT, and the University of North Carolina-Wilmington.

Ticket price for each of these lectures is $10, and admission is free for NHA members. Advance ticket registration for these lectures is recommended at nha.org/ticket. Doors open at 5:30 pm, with the lectures beginning promptly at 6 pm.

In addition to the lectures, during the month of June the NHA is also hosting a behind-the-scenes Curator Tour of their new exhibit Out of the Box: Unpacking Nantucket Stories on Thursday, June 8; a talk on Gospel Music and the African American Experience by Professor Robert Darden on Wednesday, June 14; a concert entitled Lessons from History: Oh! That Cello! on Thursday, June15; and a performance by Ann Martindale and Richard Busch entitled Jazz at the Museum on Tuesday, June 20.