“Night for the Museum” with a Dr. Steve Kirkikis “A Look at Minden’s International Branches”
The July 14th, 2008 “Night for the Museum” will be a night to remember. Dorcheat Museum’s director; Schelley Brown, announces another special historic venue event. Monday, July 14th, 2008, Dr. Steve Kirkikis one of Minden’s past citizens will be the guest speaker at The Dorcheat Historical Association’s “Night for the Museum”. Don’t miss this exciting and entertaining evening of hearing our parish history as told by a member of one of the many immigrant families that had such a huge and important influence on Webster Parish. This informative night dealing with Webster parish’s families that made it to Minden via Ellis Island is sure to be well received by all those attending. Dr. Kirkikis’s parents were Gust A. Kirkikis, and Malamo Papanastas, of Greek ancestry whom came from Turkey to America and to Minden in the early 1920s following displacement by World War I. They were married in Minden on October 25, 1925. Ms. Brown exclaimed, “Ellis Island is a symbol of America’s immigrant heritage. It is hard to imagine, that in the time between 1892 -1954, nearly twelve million men, women and children landed there in their search of freedom of speech and religion, and for economic opportunity. Imagine arriving on a huge ocean liner and seeing the Statue of Liberty and the New York sky line for the first time! To see Minden and the United States through their eyes will be a different perspective of history for our parish. These families changed our parish and brought a cultural flair to our area that didn’t exist until they arrived. At the end of Dr. Kirkikis’s talk, several other invited guests such as; Tony Elzen and members of the Michael and Mourad families will be asked to come forward and hopefully speak about their families experiences.”
A bronze plaque inside the Statue of Liberty speaks volumes, to those that take time to read its message. It is a strong reminder of how fortunate we as Americans are to live in a free country.
The New Colossus
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,With conquering limbs astride from land to land;Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall standA mighty woman with a torch, whose flameIs the imprisoned lightning, and her nameMother of Exiles. From her beacon-handGlows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes commandThe air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame."Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries sheWith silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"Emma Lazarus, 1883
The new museum members are glad that they are able to capture, this important aspect of our community. These stories need to be recorded and remembered for future generations. Everyone will enjoy hearing the wonderful cultural and inspirational stories that Dr. Kirkikis has to tell; about his life in Minden and his knowledge of the other families from faraway places that came to call Minden their home!
Mark you calendars now and keep the second Monday of every month open for “Night for the Museum Historic Events”. These type events will eventually be held in the museum, when the area to be known as the “Children’s Learning Center” is completed. Museum coordinators are again expecting a large turnout, so you may want to bring your lawn chairs again just in case of a shortage of seating! The last four months performances by Mr. Frank Griffith, Marcus Wren, Webster Nation and George Turner were held to packed houses. These types of events are something the museum wants to offer on a regular basis as entertainment and a living history lesson. July’s event will be held at Christopher’s located at 615 Main Street in Minden, Louisiana. Refreshments will be provided by Charlotte Martin and sponsored by Ty Pendergrass of Argent Financial. Refreshments will be served at 6:00 P.M. and an opening welcome from Mr. Thad Andress; President of the Dorcheat Historical Association & Museum, Inc. and introduction by Webster Parish historian; John Agan. Program will begin at 6:30 with a special gift basket with items from the Ellis Island Museum to be given away to a lucky attendee at the end of the evening!
Museum director Schelley Brown stated, “With the help of Phil Demaline, these speaking engagements are being recorded so that we will have a digital record for the museum of all our local history. Our last three DVD’s featuring Mr. Griffith, Mr. Wren and Mr. Nation are still available for $10. Sound system will again be provided by Durwood Blake allowing everyone the opportunity to not miss a single word. A tour of the museum will be available to everyone following the program. This will give everyone the chance to see the museum just one day before its official opening on June 10th at 10 a.m. “Even though the museum is a long way from completion we are going to open so that people can appreciate what we are doing and where we are going with this project. It is always going to be a work in progress. A museum changes daily as people bring in artifacts and documents. For anyone that has taken a tour they know that this museum is so far beyond what people expect. It is going to be a huge asset to Webster Parish”, stated Ms. Brown.
Don’t miss your chance at hearing some exciting stories of Minden’s past from people that remember many important events and families that changed our community and are forever markers in time for Minden. Admission is free of charge and everyone is welcome. For more information on “A Night for the Museum” please contact Schelley Brown at 318-423-0192 or visit http://www.museuminminden.blogspot.com/ . Reservations not required first come first serve seating.
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Help Us Keep History Alive In Webster Parish
In return for your support, you will receive not only a tax deduction, but also, invitations to all museum activities. Please give every consideration to helping with this endeavor. Be a part of Webster Parish history by becoming a proud supporter of the Webster Parish Dorcheat Historical Association and Museum.
All contributions may be mailed to:
Dorcheat Historical Association Museum
PO Box 1094
Minden, Louisiana 71058.