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Allen Public Library

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  1. Randy Hopper and the Big Texas Boys, an exciting country band that combines the best of blues and rock, performs 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 27, at the Allen Public Library. View https://www.cityofallen.org/Calendar.aspx?EID=6959. A native Texan, Randy began playing guitar and writing country music as a teenager in Blue Ridge, Texas. Some of Randy’s original songs include “The Cowboy Way” and “I Love Country Life.” Playing with his band throughout Texas for the past 40 years, he has also performed with Zane Williams, Kylie Rae Harris, and other well-known musicians. Big Texas Boys has played at the Cottonwood Festival in Richardson, American Legion post in Denison and Love and War in Texas. The band is comprised of Randy Hopper on guitar, Stan Ragsdale on bass, JP Evanston on drums and Mark Lafon on guitar. Their CD, Randy Hopper and the Big Texas Boys, will be available at the concert. Employed with the City of Plano, Randy and his wife, the Honorable Linda Hopper, live in Bonham with their three dogs. Sponsored by the Allen Public Library, the concert is free. The library is located at 300 N. Allen Dr. Call 214-509-4911 for additional information.
  2. The adoption of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920 represented a huge victory for American women by securing their inalienable right to vote. Texas was the first state in the South to ratify this hard-fought-for change. Learn more about the champions for Texas women’s suffrage, political strategies, anti-suffrage sentiments, efforts to amend the Texas Constitution, primary suffrage, and, finally, the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment with Melissa Prycer at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 25, at the Allen Public Library. Melissa Prycer is the president and executive director at Dallas Heritage Village. She holds a master’s degree in public history from North Carolina State University in Raleigh, North Carolina. Prior to joining Dallas Heritage Village, she worked as an intern at several museums in Dallas. This program is sponsored by the Allen Public Library, located at 300 N. Allen Drive. Call 214-509-44911 for additional information.
  3. The original Southfork Ranch for the famed television show Dallas was on Preston Road in Frisco and owned by the Cloyce Box family. Hear Douglas Box discuss his recollections of one of Texas’ most famous ranches and the rise and fall of his family dynasty at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 18 at the Allen Public Library. The Box family was once a formidable player in the Texas business world, controlling a diverse portfolio of public and private companies, especially oil and gas, cement manufacturing, and real estate. Following Cloyce’s sudden death and a litigious four-year family ordeal, Douglas led the sale of the family’s oil and gas business. Today, Douglas is a certified family business advisor, author, and public speaker. He helps clients with succession planning, corporate governance, dispute resolution, and family meetings. Texas Monthly’s Skip Hollandsworth notes, “There is nobody more prepared to write the saga of a great Texas family than Douglas Box. His legendary father Cloyce is like someone out of central casting. And what happened to Douglas and his three brothers is something out of a best-selling novel. Get ready to shake your head in pure amazement.” In 2014, Douglas published, Cutter Frisco, Growing up on the Original Southfork Ranch. In October of 2016, he published a more extensive memoir about his father called Texas Patriarch – A Legacy Lost. Call 214-509-4911.
  4. The Grape Man of Texas T. V. Munson Learn the fascinating story of T.V. Munson, the Grape Man of Texas, at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 11, from Sherrie McLeRoy at the Allen Public Library. During the nineteenth century, a scourge erupted in Europe that decimated the wine and grape industry. Farmers destroyed their vineyards all over Europe in a desperate attempt to protect the next year’s crops. In France, over 70% of the vines were dead. A resident of Denison, Texas, T. V. Munson was a recognized expert in native American grape species, and the French government requested his assistance. He developed an insect- and fungus-resistant rootstock from native Texas grapes. Cuttings were shipped to France and grafted onto French vines. The hardy Texas grapevines thrived in the French soil and saved the vineyards of France. The French government sent a delegation to Denison to present T.V. the “French Legion of Honor” in 1888. In France, monuments were erected in his honor. The Honorable Ben Munson declared, “I am proud that the highest honor that is bestowed by the French government was awarded to a Texan and family member.” Sherrie McElvoy is the co-author of Grape Man of Texas: The Life and Times of T.V. Munson and author of Texas Adoption Activist Edna Gladney: A Life & Legacy of Love. Sponsored by the Collin County Master Gardeners and the Allen Public Library, the program is free. The library is located at 300 N. Allen Dr. Call 214-509-4911 for additional information.
  5. Alexander Hamilton was a statesman and visionary whose life continues to shape America today. The Allen Public Library will feature a presentation by Dr. Edward Countryman discussing this founding fatherat 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 28, 300 N. Allen Dr. Dr. Countryman will examine Hamilton’s role during the Revolutionary War and Founding period (1774-1804). The Sons of the American Revolution Color Guard will be in colonial costume to present the flag Hamilton rose from an orphaned, 15-year-old West Indies immigrant to George Washington’s war time aide, and at age 32, our nation’s first Secretary of the Treasury. Hamilton championed four causes — ratification of the constitution, the abolition of slavery, and creation of both the New York Stock Exchange and National Bank. Alexander Hamilton’s efforts led to his picture being on the ten-dollar bill. Today, many most remember him for the duel with Aaron Burr that led to his death. As an aid to General Washington during the American Revolution and later the Secretary of Treasury, he played a pivotal role in helping shape our nation. His policies created the mechanism for modern financial systems to develop. Those policies facilitated the growth of capital markets and afforded businesses the ability to create capital. Edward Countryman is University Distinguished Professor at Southern Methodist University, a highly acclaimed American Revolution historian, and the author or editor of nine books, including six on the Revolution, with another on the way. He also has a strong interest in how creative artists, including Lin-Manuel Miranda, have understood the Revolution on canvas, on film, and on stage. His first book, on post-independence New York, included close study of Hamilton in the 1780s. It won Columbia University’s Bancroft Prize as one of the two best books on all of American history in its year of publication. His most recent book explored what both free and enslaved Black People did with the opportunities that the Revolutionary era presented. Refreshments based upon recipes from the Colonial Williamsburg will be provided by the Friends of the Allen Public Library.
  6. 911 Wildlife Learn about the behaviors of coyotes, bobcats and other animals that live in urban environments from Bonnie Bradshaw in a free program, 7 p.m. Thursday, March 21, at the Allen Public Library. Recent coyote attacks against human adults in Frisco are unprecedented, and Bonnie will present the latest information on these assaults. North Texas’ very own coyote whisperer wants us to know how to be safe and avoid wildlife conflicts—learn tips to keep you and your pets safe. The president of 9-1-1 Wildlife, Bonnie’s presentation will cover wildlife ecology and behaviors, as well as types and causes of animal conflicts. An animal and wildlife removal relocation and control service, 9-1-1 Wildlife’s philosophy regarding animal removal is quite different—no traps or poisons. Bonnie is a frequent presenter for community organizations and has appeared on various television and radio stations. This program is sponsored by Animal Control Services. The library is located at 300 N. Allen Drive. Call Deborah Michnick at 214.509.4379 for additional information.
  7. Learn about the behaviors of coyotes, bobcats and other animals that live in urban environments from Bonnie Bradshaw in a free program, 7 p.m. Thursday, March 21, at the Allen Public Library. Recent coyote attacks against human adults in Frisco are unprecedented, and Bonnie will present the latest information on these assaults. North Texas’ very own coyote whisperer wants us to know how to be safe and avoid wildlife conflicts—learn tips to keep you and your pets safe. The president of 9-1-1 Wildlife, Bonnie’s presentation will cover wildlife ecology and behaviors, as well as types and causes of animal conflicts. An animal and wildlife removal relocation and control service, 9-1-1 Wildlife’s philosophy regarding animal removal is quite different—no traps or poisons. Bonnie is a frequent presenter for community organizations and has appeared on various television and radio stations. This program is sponsored by Animal Control Services. The library is located at 300 N. Allen Drive. Call Deborah Michnick at 214.509.4379.
  8. Ben Milam, Freedom Fighter Most Texans are familiar with the contributions by Davy Crocket, William Travis and Jim Bowie to the Texas independence movement, but Ben Milam’s role is less well known. Join three collateral descendants of Ben Milam portray his life through music and drama at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 14 at the Allen Public Library, 300 N. Allen Dr. Free. View https://www.cityofallen.org/Calendar.aspx?EID=6768.
  9. The 1913 McKinney Store Collapse January 27, 1913, marks a tragic day in Collin County history. Eight people were killed when the Odd Fellows building collapsed without warning. Leslie Bush, son of Allen pioneers William Martin Bush and Nancy Gholson Elkin Bush, was among the deceased. Carol O’Keefe Wilson will discuss her new book “The 1913 McKinney Store Collapse" at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 7, at the Allen Public Library. On the fateful and cold day, the Cheeves Brothers store was holding a ladies’ white-goods sale and thus, more customers than normal were probably in the building. While shoppers and clerks were enjoying the warmth of being inside, suddenly that and The T. J. Tingle Implement Company, which sold farm implements and surreys collapsed. The grinding sound of falling debris resonated throughout McKinney. Observers across the street at the courthouse watched in horror. Volunteers came from all over the county and worked into the night to look for survivors and uncover bodies. Residing near Allen, Leslie Bush was a respected businessman and stockman. Arriving in Texas by horseback with his parents when he was eight years old, he married Lula Jane Franklin and was the father of six children. The Bush family name adorns the stain glass windows at the historic Allen Christian Church in Allen Heritage Village. Sponsored by the Allen Public Library, the program is free. The library is located at 300 N. Allen Dr. Call 214-509-4911 for additional information.
  10. COUNTERFEIT PRINCE OF OLD TEXAS Slavery and Texas Hear the fascinating saga of swindler and slave smuggler Monroe Edwards from author Lora-Mare Bernard at 3:00 p.m. Sunday, February 24, at the Allen Public Library. After Edwards died in Sing Sing prison in 1847, penny dreadfuls memorialized him as the most celebrated American forger in history. Bernard unravels the unbelievable story of one of the most notorious criminal adventurers ever to set foot on the soil of the Lone Star State. Monroe Edwards’ contributions to Texas settlement, revolution, and annexation were sadly funded by his activities as a slave smuggler. Discovering new information on the Texas slave trade, Lora-Marie will discuss the slavery and the transfer of cash from its origins in Africa to the Caribbean and then to Texas. Author of The Counterfeit Prince of Old Texas: Swindling Slaver Monroe Edwards and Lower Brazos River Canals, Lora-Marie Bernard writes non-fiction books about Texas people and places.
  11. Allen Community Band Honors Educators Allen Community Band (ACB) will present its Midwinter Concert at 7:30 p.m. Friday, February 22, 2019 at the Allen Public Library Civic Auditorium, 300 N. Allen Dr. Free. Educators, past and present, from all segments of the educational spectrum will be honored at this concert. You may have seen the bumper sticker that reads “If you can read this, thank a teacher”. This will be an opportunity to do just that! 2018 marks the centennial birth of Leonard Bernstein, one of America’s most renowned composers and conductors. Perhaps his enduring composition for the stage, and later the screen, is West Side Story, which opened at New York's Winter Garden Theater on September 26, 1957. To honor this great American musician, selections from West Side Story will be performed. For more details, visit www.allenlibrary.org. Call 214-509-4911.
  12. Private Jeff Morgan Tucker First African-American casualty from Collin County during WWI The name Jeff Morgan Tucker does not appear in the numerous articles and books written about America’s involvement during World War I. In 2017, Collin County Historical Society volunteer and genealogist Kristin Spalding uncovered information about Private Jeff Morgan Tucker from an old McKinney Courier-Gazette newspaper article and learned that he was the first black soldier to be returned to Collin County from the war. Hear about Private Jeff Tucker and other African American doughboys from Spalding at 3:00 p.m. Sunday, February 17 at the Allen Public Library. Private Tucker was born and raised in McKinney and was living in Greenville at the time of his enlistment. He served from Oct. 23, 1918, until Dec. 19 of that same year when he died of pneumonia. His mother, Susie Daniels, was notified of his death. When he was brought home to Collin County, Tucker was buried at Ross Cemetery, the county’s segregated graveyard. While completing her research, Kristin was confronted with a daunting fact—this fallen soldier did not have a marker on his grave. A genealogist, Kristin observed, “I thought that was something that needed to happen – he needed to have a grave marker.” Private Tucker had no children, Kristin had to locate his siblings and navigate the family tree. That research was required because an application for a government headstone requires a next of kin. Kristin located Private Tucker’s family and a marker now adorns his grave. Sponsored by the Allen Public Library, the program is free. The library is located at 300 N. Allen Dr. Call 214-509-4911 for additional information.
  13. Swing to the lively jazz music of the Shelley Carrol Quartet at 7:30 p.m. Friday, February 15, at the Allen Public Library. A staple in the Dallas area jazz scene and worldwide, Shelley Carrol performs with the Duke Ellington big band as well as on his own. He has also recorded and or performed with Maureen McGovern, Tony Bennet, Nancy Wilson, Sheryl Crow and a host of others. Don't miss this great night of music. Sponsored by the Dr. ET Boon family in memory of Gayle Boon, the concert is free.
  14. Shelley Carrol Quartet Swing to the lively jazz music of the Shelley Carrol Quartet at 7:30 p.m. Friday, February 15, at the Allen Public Library. A staple in the Dallas area jazz scene and worldwide, Shelley Carrol performs with the Duke Ellington big band as well as on his own. He has also recorded and or performed with Maureen McGovern, Tony Bennet, Nancy Wilson, Sheryl Crow and a host of others. Don't miss this great night of music. Once a student of the legendary Texas Tenor greats Arnett Cobb and Don Wilkerson, Shelley attended the University of North Texas, where he earned a spot in the Grammy Nominated One O’clock Lab Band. During the same period, Shelley was invited to join the Duke Ellington Orchestra by acclaimed trumpeter Barry Lee Hall. Shelley Carrol released his CD I Heard That in 2013. On vocals, Ardina Lockhart has performed with the Grammy Award-winning GOD’s Property, pianist Roger Boykin, New Art 6, Fingerprints and others. She has appeared on Fox 4 Good Day Dallas and WFAA Good Morning Texas, as well as sang the “Star Spangled Banner” for several Dallas Mavericks games. Sponsored by the Dr. ET Boon family in memory of Gayle Boon, the concert is free. The library is located at 300 N. Allen Dr. Call 214-509-4911 for additional information.
  15. RosieLeetta “Lee” Reed portrays Johanna July, a black Seminole who served as a scout and translator, at 3:00 p.m. Saturday, February 9, at the Allen Public Library. The program is free. Johanna July was born in Nacimiento de Los Negros, the settlement established in Northern Mexico following the emigration of Indian and black Seminoles from Indian Territory. During the 1870s, the U.S. Army desperately needed translators and scouts who were familiar with the border country. To achieve this, they convinced Black Seminoles to come to Eagle Pass, Texas. After moving here, Johanna July learned to tame horses and herd the family’s goats and cattle. With the death of her father, she worked the stock as well as tamed wild horses for the U.S. Army and area ranchers. She died shortly after World War II ended and is buried in the Brackettville Seminole Cemetery. RosieLeetta “Lee” Reed is president of the Texas Buffalo Association, dedicated to preserving Texas history and the legacy of the Buffalo Soldiers. A recipient of the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Award for “Outstanding Public Service Benefiting Communities,” Reed continues to educate people about the history and heritage of Cowboys and Cowgirls of Color. Presenting for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, the National Cowboys of Color Museum, Panhandle Plains Museum and the George Bush Memorial Library, Reed specializes in presentations about Cathay Williams as well as Stage Coach Mary Fields, the first African-American woman to work for the U.S. Postal Service. The library is located at 300 N. Allen Dr. Call 214-509-4911 for more information.
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