The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Opinion

June 16, 2014

History lesson

Summer Chautauqua begins 20th educational series today

ENID, Okla. — Fun and educational.

Summer Chautauqua pretty much is those two things. The series begins its 20th time today at Cherokee Strip Regional Heritage Center and continues through Saturday.

This year’s theme is “A Crisis of Confidence: War That Changed the World” and focuses on World War I.

Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Edith Wharton, Emma Goldman and Henry James will be brought to life by scholars. Each day includes workshops at 10:30 a.m. and noon, as well as an evening performance. The evening performances include concessions 6-7:15; entertainment at 6:30; and portrayals of the historical characters at 7:30 p.m.

The characters to be highlighted this year are:

• Edith Wharton was born to a society family in New York and spent most of her childhood in Europe. Karen Vuranch will portray her. Wharton was the first woman to win the Pulitzer Prize.

• Emma Goldman was a anarchist and often was arrested for speaking on anarchism, wartime conscription and birth control. Sally Drucker will portray her.

• Henry James was an expatriate American writer who moved to Europe in 1875, according to John Anderson, who will portray James.

James accepted the chairmanship of the American Volunteer Motor-Ambulance Corps in France, writing appeals for funds and publicizing the automobile as a new technology for helping the wounded.

• Woodrow Wilson, the president who asked Congress in 1917 to declare war, leading the nation into World War I, was given the 1919 Nobel Peace Prize in 1920, based on his role in forming the League of Nations.

Paul Vickery will portray him.

• Theodore Roosevelt, often characterized as a bombastic warmonger, won the Nobel Peace Prize 1906 for negotiating peace in the Russo-Japanese war in 1904-1905. Roosevelt also resolved a dispute with Mexico by turning to the Court of Arbitration at The Hague.

Doug Mishler will portray Roosevelt.

We encourage you to get out, support Chautauqua and enjoy learning about our country’s history.

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