Book Reading At Skene – Sept. 9th at 1 PM

Join us on Saturday, September 9 at 1 PM, for an afternoon of Catskill critters!  Leslie T. Sharpe
will read from her new book,

Leslie T. Sharpe

THE QUARRY FOX: And Other Critters of the Wild Catskills, the first in-depth study of Catskill wildlife since legendary nature writer John Burroughs first chronicled the area in the 19th century. Now, Sharpe breathes new life into these storied mountains, introducing the genre to a whole new audience. Through her lyrical prose, she weaves her experiences with the seasons, plants and creatures with their natural history, revealing their sensitivity to and resilience against the splendor and cruelty of Nature.

Fans of Annie Dillard’s Pilgrim at Tinker Creek will be drawn to Sharpe’s beautiful descriptions of the Catskill wilderness.

Leslie will also show slides themed to THE QUARRY FOX and take your questions about the Catskill critters in your backyard. She will also invite Catskillers to share their stories of wildlife–and kids are encouraged to attend and share too!

Skene Memorial Library – A Proud History

Sometime around 1894, summer resident Mrs. Alexander Skene  first proposed the idea of the creation of a Library for Griffin Corners.  (As known physician Dr. Alexander Skene had a summer home east of Griffin Corners, and enjoyed their time in the Catskills immensely.   It took several years, but plans progressed, and a Board for a Library Association (one type of Library then quite popular in New York State–not municipally -President.  Other prominent citizens such as DeWitt Griffin, Mrs. T. C. Banker, and Mrs. George H. Lasher were on the board.    Plans progressed slowly.

In July 1900, Dr. Skene died,  but Mrs. Skene continued to pursue the goal of creating a library, now to be named in his memory.   Funds were raised, including a $5,000 donation from famed industrialist Andrew Carnegie.   (Carnegie endowed many libraries all over the country, but this was special to him–he and Alexander Skene had been boyhood friends.)

The cornerstone for the building was laid in November 1901, and Griffin Corners finally had its library.   Skene Memorial Library is unusual for it is one of the few area libraries built AS a library.   As people and conditions changed, the Association Library structure no longer was working here, and in 1930 the building was turned over to the Village of Fleischmanns, and Skene became a Municipal Library.

In 2001, in honor of its centennial,  Skene Library was placed on both the New York State and the National Register of Historic Places. A special Postal Cancellation was held to observe the centennial.

Skene Library in Pictures

Skene Library History in Pictures

images courtesy of the Greater Fleischmanns Museum of Memories