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Stories from the Park Lecture Series – Connecticut’s Sweet Tooth: New London, the Sugar Trade, and Slavery in the West Indies

March 6 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Lyman Allyn Art Museum, 625 Williams Street
New London, CT 06320 United States

Stories from the Park Lecture Series
Matt Warshauer, Central Connecticut State University

Come mingle with friends and other guests in Lyman Allyn Art Museum’s elegant Hendle Library during a reception with wine and light hors d’oeuvres, visit the museum’s exhibits, and hear stories about Island Affairs of the Thames during this 5-part series.

New London and the Thames River region was once the most important port of trade in all of British North America. At a time when sugar was king and trade with the West Indies islands represented the pinnacle of Puritan economics, New London served as a hub for a dizzying array of goods that were collected via an intricate trade network and then shipped south to the Caribbean. Connecticut ships returned with their holds packed with sugar, molasses, and rum. What was the single most valuable item that the colony’s merchants shipped? Exactly how many chickens cackled their way to the islands? You’ll have to join us for the story of “Connecticut’s Sweet Tooth” to find out.

This series will be held on the first Wednesday of the month through May 2024 at the Lyman Allyn Art Museum and begins with a reception at 6 PM featuring wine and light hors d’oeuvres immediately followed by the monthly lecture at 7 PM.


Regular Pricing
TRHP + LAAM Members – $15
Non-members – $20

Early Bird
TRHP + LAAM Members Early Bird* – $10
Non-member Early Bird* – $15

*Early bird rate is valid through February 28, 2024.

Purchase Today:

Thames River Heritage Park Foundation is pleased to present its 2024 lecture series: Stories from the Park: Island Affairs of the Thames. Probing the historical impact and influence of the connections with islands near and far to the Thames River, the 5-part series will explore the “power of place” from social, cultural, political, economic and ecological perspectives along with its impact and influence on life on the Thames – historically and up to the present time.

This program is made possible thanks to grants from Connecticut Humanities and Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut.

Author Bio
Matt Warshauer is a professor of history at Central Connecticut State University, his under-graduate alma mater, where he learned that passionate, devoted professors can change lives. Originally bored and uninterested in school, he bounced around the country with his family, attending three different high schools in four years – from California to Illinois and then ultimately to Connecticut. He didn’t even want to attend college, but compromised with his parents by going to Norwalk Community College for a few semesters and then transferring to Central. Even upon his initial arrival at CCSU, Warshauer’s focus was not particularly academic. He studied marketing, but majored in partying. It wasn’t until he met professors like Norton Mezvinsky (History) and Barry Leeds (English) that Warshauer’s mind was turned on. He has been fascinated with American culture ever since and, basically, trying to figure out how the United States got to where it is today. One of his key interests is the paradox – a core dispute about the meaning of the nation – that has always existed in American society and which is so apparent today with the election of Donald Trump and the extreme divisions that cut to the core of who we are as a people. Warshauer’s study of “the paradox” first focused on early American political and constitutional history, particularly from the nation’s founding to the Civil War. Books and articles on Andrew Jackson, slavery, and the political divisions that led to the Civil War were the result. Most recently, Warshauer has turned his focus on 9/11 and memory.


March 6
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Event Categories:


Thames River Heritage Park


Lyman Allyn Art Museum
625 Williams Street
New London, CT 06320 United States
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