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Speaker Series


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The nave at Old St. Andrews.

JHS Speaker Series

JHS presents monthly lectures on a diverse range of historical subjects, each presented by speakers of note, including historians, dramatists, experts and artistic presenters. Annually, the series includes 10 to 12 major program opportunities. The subjects are diverse and highlight North Florida history. Most of the presentations involve multimedia with presenters.

The lectures are usually held at Old St. Andrew’s Church, 317 A. Philip Randolph Blvd. (across from VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena). Evening programs are free to members with a suggested $10 donation for non-members. Members and their guests are invited to join the speakers at a reception before each lecture. During this time of the Coronavirus pandemic, programs are being held virtually, on Zoom, then posted to our YouTube channel.

Topics scheduled for 2021 include:

January: This Old Church, a panel of clergy and laypeople, was led by Dr. Alan Bliss, on January 28, via Zoom. Click here to watch the presentation.

February:  Jacksonville’s Most Worshipful Grand Union Lodge by Jerry Urso, on Thursday, February 18, via Zoom. Click here to watch the presentation.

March: Women’s History Month featuring Nancy Hogshead-Makar, Champion for Women, on Tuesday, March 16, via Zoom. Click here to watch the presentation.

April: Heca Utimile/Our Land: Crafting an Indigenous History of Northeast Florida, by Dr. Denise Bossy and Dr. Keith Ashley; Thursday, April 15. Click here to watch the presentation.

May: National Historic Preservation Month: Jacksonville’s Most Endangered Buildings. View it here on YouTube.

June: From This Place: Musical Tour of the Sites and Sounds of Jacksonville; by Mitch Hemann. Enjoy Part I in the series on YouTube.

July: Murder Capital: Stories of Murder and Mayhem in Jacksonville, by Dr. Tim Gilmore, author of the book “Murder Capital”; Thursday, July 15. View it here on YouTube.

August: The Real Origins of Florida Tourism, by John Foster, professor emeritus, Florida A&M University; Tuesday, August 10. View it here on YouTube.

September: A History of the Sunshine State’s Historic African American Homes, by Jada Wright-Greene, African American museum activist and author of Florida’s Historic African American Homes. Thursday, September 23, 7 p.m. via Zoom. Click here to view it on YouTube.

October: Jacksonville’s Hispanic Heritage, by Rebecca Dominguez-Karimi, oral historian, Florida Humanities Council speaker; October 14, 7 p.m.; at Old St. Andrew’s Church, 317 A. Philip Randolph Blvd. Click here to register for the program.

Past Lectures

The 2015 series included the topics, Spies, Schemes and the Sons of Liberty: The Shadier Side of East and West Florida during the American Revolution (buy book); Mr. Flagler’s St. Augustine (buy book); Mary Nolan: Jacksonville Suffragette and her Night of Terror; Mining for Florida History: All Buried Treasure is Not Owned by Pirates!; It Came to Pass on the Banks of this River; The Mad Atlas of Virginia King (buy book); The Ten Most Amazing People for Jacksonville (You likely never heard of).

The 2016 series included the topics Historic Jacksonville Theatre Palaces, Drive-Ins and Movie Houses (buy book); Ribault to Revolution: Shipwreck Archaeology at the St. Augustine Lighthouse; Florida’s War: The Untold Story of Northeast Florida’s Role in the Spanish-American War; Jacksonville: Rail Gateway to Florida (watch); The History of Jacksonville’s Jewish Community; Florida Founder William P. DuVal: Frontier Bon Vivant (watch/buy book); Elvis Has Left the Building: The 60th Anniversary of the King at the Florida Theatre (watch); Banned in Jacksonville: What Book Are You Missing? 

The 2017 series included the topics Towers in the Sand: A History of Broadcasting; Civil Rights Struggles: From the Beach to the Courthouse; Florida’s Fleet: A Shrimping Legacy from the First Coast; Andrew Jackson in Florida: An Evening with Mayor Jake; Jacksonville’s Historic St. Nicholas Cemetery: Tales from the Crypt; Emerging Florida and the Women Who Changed the World; Winterling and Weather: A North Florida View; Lindberg Jacksonville: The 90th Anniversary.

The 2018 series included the topics Jacksonville’s Jews: We Really Mean Business; Black History Month at the Ritz; The Melting Pot: The Diverse Cultures of Northeast Florida; Jacksonville’s City/County Consolidation: A Perspective at Fifty Years (buy book); Oral History Workshop; Goat Island Hermit: St of FL v Rollians Christopher (buy book).

The 2019 series included the topics Jacksonville: Florida’s Tourist Mecca and Its Grand Hotels: 1869 to 1926; Recovering Manhattan Beach; 2019 Endangered Historic Properties Report; Jacksonville Terminal Centennial; William Morgan: Evolution of an Architect; Deep Roots, Many Branches: The Blues in Northeast Florida; Salute to the Jax Red Caps; Touchdown Jacksonville! Winning the NFL Franchise for Jacksonville; Cemeteries as Outdoor Museums; Cuba and the “Last” Baseball Season; The Woman’s Club in the Progressive Era: 1897 to 1927.

The 2020 series, truncated by the Coronavirus Pandemic, included: The History of the Insurance Industry in Jacksonville: Fueling a Financial Center by J.F. Bryan IV; Florida’s First Historically Black College: 154 Years of Jacksonville’s Edward Waters College by Dr. David Jamison.

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