“St. Petersburg (America Through Time)”

“St. Petersburg (America Through Time)” is the latest book by James Anthobook coverny Schnur, the Friends speaker on March 9, 2015.

Known as the “Sunshine City,” St. Petersburg gained notoriety as a popular destination for seasonal residents during the Florida real estate boom of the 1920s. However, the history of footprints along with shoreline spans thousands of years. Long before the first contact with Spanish conquistadors during the sixteenth century, indigenous cultures flourished along the abundant estuaries and left shell mounds and pottery as evidence of their settlements. After these original inhabitants disappeared, occasional fishing parties from Cuba and the Caribbean visited a largely uninhabited peninsula along Florida’s west coast. Indeed, fewer than 500 people resided along the entire Pinellas peninsula on the eve of the Civil War.

Throughout the twentieth century, waves of settlers, tourists, and residents encountered a colorful array of speculators and developers. Sometimes known as a winter wonderland for “”snowbird”” retirees, St. Petersburg tried to reinvent itself after pundits referred to the city as “”God’s waiting room”” by the early 1960s. Fifty years later, much has changed.

This book offers a visual portrait of St. Petersburg since the early 1900s. Historical and contemporary photographs in four chapters illustrate St. Petersburg’s waterfront heritage, the transformation of its downtown, the establishment of neighborhoods near downtown, and the city’s expansion in more recent years. Rather than offering an academic narrative, St. Petersburg Through Time introduces the reader to important moments in the city’s vibrant history and encourages further exploration.

The book is available from amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com.

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An Evening With James Schnur – March 9, 2105

Schnur photoThis latest event in the Friends of Mirror Lake Library author series is co-hosted by the Sunlit Festival in honor of the library’s centennial year.

Seating will be available at 5:00 p.m. The talk starts at 5:30. Join the Friends afterwards for light refreshments and a book signing with the author.

James Schnur is the USFSP librarian of special collections and archives. A native and lifelong resident of Pinellas County, Schnur joined the faculty of the Nelson Poynter Memorial Library in February 2002 and presently holds adjunct teaching appointments at Eckerd College and the USF School of Information. Schnur first attended classes at USF St. Petersburg in fall 1986 and worked as a graduate student assistant in the Poynter Library between 1991 and 1997 before becoming an assistant library director at two Pinellas County public libraries and serving as a center administrator and advisor in Eckerd College’s Program for Experienced Learners. He has also served as president of the Pinellas County Historical Society, as well as on the boards and committees of other cultural and historical organizations in Florida.

Schnur wrote “Largo (Images of America Series)” in 2012 and “Madeira Beach, Florida (Images of America Series)” in 2013. His new book, published in 2014, is “St. Petersburg (America Through Time).”

To watch “Historical Reflections Alone Mirror Lake,” a speech Schnur gave at Heritage Village last fall, see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8sg7FGUowkA.

See https://www.facebook.com/SunLitFestival for more about the SunLit Festival, March 7-15, 2015.

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Library history for our Centennial year

Mirror Lake Library history

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First Night 2015 at the Mirror Lake Library

Photos of the activities at the Mirror Lake Library on December 31, 2014, by Barbara Riddle-Dvorak.

Creating the cut-out library models

Creating the cut-out library models

More cutting and gluing

More cutting and gluing

The Friends Centennial book

The Friends Centennial book

Friends activities poster

Friends activities poster

Also at the library on First Night: St. Pete Makers

Also at the library on First Night: St. Pete Makers

St. Pete Makers 3D printer

St. Pete Makers 3D printer

St. Pete Makers table and visitors

St. Pete Makers table and visitors

Also at the library on First Night: "Midtown Through Our Eyes Exhibit"

Also at the library on First Night: “Midtown Through Our Eyes Exhibit”

For more information about St. Pete Makers, see http://www.stpetemakers.org/.

For more information about “Midtown Through Our Eyes Exhibit,”  see https://www.facebook.com/events/598345276948739/.

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Meeting minutes for December 3, 2014

The December 3, 2014 meeting was called to order by President Finley at 6:05 PM. A quorum was present. Linda Sagese read the secretary’s report; it was amended to include details of Ms. Churuti’s report concerning our 501(c) (3)application, approval and requirements and accepted.

The treasurer’s report will be presented at our next meeting.

Old business discussed was forming a nominating committee consisting of 3 members to nominate next years’ officers. It was decided that Diane would put on our website a request that people interested in serving on the board contact us.

First Night plans were finalized. It was decided that Monika, Barbara and Linda would arrive at the library around 4:30 PM to set up our program. Diane and Wayne would arrive after work. Doors would open at 6 PM. We agreed to change the library replica from a “punch out” to a “cutout” due the extreme price difference. The coffee table book should be ready for sale and to take orders.

Upcoming speakers are Prof. Les Standiford on January 21, 2015. James Schnur and Jeff Klinkenberg will, hopefully, be confirmed as the speakers to follow in the coming months.

The meeting was adjourned at 6:48 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Linda Sagese, (acting) Secretary, Friends of Mirror Lake Library

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Centennial Lecture Series – January 21, 2015

LesStandifordpostcard

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An Evening With Les Standiford – January 21, 2015

Join us for our first Friends Centennial event, An Evening with Les Standiford, on Wednesday, January 21, 2015, at 5:30 pm at the Mirror Lake Library.
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Les Standiford is the author of 20 books, including Meet You in Hell: Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick and the Bitter Partnership that Transformed America, which was the publisher’s nominee for the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize in 2005. Last Train to Paradise: Henry Flagler and the Spectacular Rise and Fall of the Railroad that Crossed an Ocean is a Florida classic in its 23rd printing and has been the “One Book” choice of more than a dozen county library systems in the state, including those of Key West and Palm Beach. It was one of the History Channel’s Top Ten picks and was read coast to coast by Dick Estell, NPR’s “Radio Reader.”

Booklist called John Deal, the recurring series character in many of his novels, “the most emotionally centered protagonist in crime fiction today,” and the New York Times has said of his suspense writing, “each scene is like a little gasp for breath.” He edited and contributed to The Putt at the End of the World (2001) and edited the anthology of crime fiction Miami Noir (2006). He also authored one of the chapters in the national best-selling satire, Naked Came the Manatee (1998), with Dave Barry, Carl Hiaasen and others.

Standiford has received the Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Award, the Frank O’Connor Award for Short Fiction, and Fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. A native Ohioan, he is a graduate of Muskingum College and holds the M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Utah. He is Professor of English and Director of the Creative Writing Program at Florida International University in Miami, where he lives with his wife Kimberly, a psychotherapist. They are the parents of three children.

Please visit the websites http://www.les-standiford.com and http://www.grandstandifordstation.com.

Standiford’s novels are Spill (1991), Done Deal (1993), Raw Deal (1994), Deal to Die For (1995), Deal on Ice (1996), Presidential Deal (1998), Black Mountain (2000), Deal With the Dead (2001), Bone Key (2003), and Havana Run (2004). His other critically acclaimed works of non-fiction include Washington Burning: How a Frenchman’s Vision for Our Nation’s Capitol Survived Congress, The Founding Fathers, & the Invading British Army and The Man Who Invented Christmas: How Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol Rescued His Career and Revived Our Holiday Spirits. Washington Burning was the publisher’s nominee for the Pulitzer Prize in 2008. The Man Who Invented Christmas was a New York Times “Editors’ Choice” in 2008.

In March 2011, Ecco Press published Bringing Adam Home, an account of Det. Sgt. Joe Matthews’ 27-year quest to solve the 1981 kidnapping and murder of Adam Walsh. The book became a New York Times best-seller and a #1 Wall Street Journal true-crime best-seller. In November 2012, Harper Collins published Desperate Sons: The Secret Bands of Radicals Who Led the American Colonies to Revolution. The book, described as a “real-life political thriller,” traces radical activities in the colonies from 1765-1775, including the exploits of well-known and lesser-known patriot-activists such as Samuel Adams, Patrick Henry, and John Hancock.

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