Season Three
Happy Hour Recordings
July – December 2021

Wednesday, July 28 from 5:00 – 6:00 PM (EDT)

Most of Frederic W. Schwartz, Jr.’s Seven Ages of Membership in The English-Speaking Union, with apologies to Wm. Shakespeare with Frederic Schwartz

Frederic W. Schwartz, Jr. was invited in 1964 to join the Providence Branch of The English-Speaking Union after he returned from an idyllic summer at Balliol reading metaphysical poetry under the tutelage of a great-great-great cousin of William Wordsworth and drinking too much sherry. Never having been invited to join anything previously, he accepted. When he went off to law school in Boston (unfortunately not Cambridge) he became a member of the infamous Boston Branch (you’ll find out why) and often frequented its townhouse. After law school he joined the Government and the Washington Branch almost simultaneously, and served as President for two terms (the Branch, not the United States). He was also tasked with inventing and organizing events meant to garner press attention (like The English-Speaking Union Regatta on the Potomac for Canoes) and more substantive programs, many of which will be revealed during his presentation.

He still drinks too much Sherry, and that is the libation required for this jolly hour.

Wednesday, August 18 from 4:00 – 5:00 PM (EDT)

“Unforgotten” for Generations to Come – Fubo Peace Memorial Park with Susan Moffat-Thomas

This presentation is about a little-known inspiring story of peace, brotherhood and reconciliation. It is a story of the humanity, respect and brotherhood, Shiroishi villagers in northern Japan, extended to 34 American crewmen, who perished when three B-29 bombers crashed into Mt. Fubo on March 10, 1945, within minutes of each other, returning from the raid on Tokyo. In addition to making the arduous climb up the mountain, collecting and respectfully burying them with “Bushido Spirit” in a mass grave, the villagers memorialized the crewmen in 1961 with a monument at the summit of the mountain, and in 2015, constructed Fubo Peace Memorial Park at the foot of the mountain, dedicated “in memory of the American crewman and to salute the 50 million around the world including Japan, who died during WWII”.

Wednesday, September 8 from 6:00 PM (EDT)

Queen Victoria and the Victorian Novel with Professor Elliot Engel

Not only did she reign during the only period when England was the most powerful nation on earth, but the novels published during Queen Victoria’s rule were some of the most beautiful fiction ever written. Dr. Elliot Engel first reveals the fascinating, highly unlikely circumstances which brought this 18-year-old princess to the throne, and then he illuminates the glory of the novels which blossomed forth throughout her 64-year reign.

Wednesday, September 29 from 6:00 PM (EDT)

Antique Appraisals: What is it? What’s it worth? Let’s do some! with Robin Sinclair

Everyone has that piece we wonder about. Maybe it came from grandmother, maybe it was found at an estate sale, maybe it was found in trash, but where ever it came from, there are three questions about it: What is it? How do you know? What’s it worth? This ESU Happy Hour will answer those three questions about YOUR PIECE!

As an antique appraiser with thirty years of experience, Robin (Susan) Sinclair, Ph.D., will be looking at and evaluating pieces submitted by our members in photographs and written descriptions. A veteran of many appraisal fairs, she has also appeared on Nashville Public Television numerous times. She will do a discussion of as many objects as possible within our time frame, so please submit your objects early! (Please submit by the 20th of September.) She will also show us what an appraisal is, what an appraisal is not, (very important), and how value is determined.

Wednesday, November 3 from 4:00 PM (EDT)

Rena “Rusty” Kanokogi and the History of Women’s Judo with Jean Kanokogi

Rena “Rusty” Kanokogi is recognized around the world as “the mother of women’s judo” for her immense contribution to the sport and her work ensuring women’s inclusion for the female competitors at the international level. In her more than fifty-year career, she became the first women to attain the rank of seventh-degree black belt, founded the first Women’s World Judo Championship in 1980, and was the driving force behind women’s judo inclusion in the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea. Her many credentials include international judo competitor and referee, Olympic judo coach, equal rights advocate, and sports commentator. She is interred in the Kanokogi Samurai family burial site in Kumamoto, Japan, with the inscription “American Samurai.”

Wednesday, January 19 from 4:00 PM (EST)

John Singer Sargent – The Move to London with Jan Clanton

It is often inferred that John Singer Sargent moved to London because of the scandal over his portrait, Madame X, 1883-4, and there could be some truth to that. He knew that the time was ripe to develop the English market. He couldn’t do it by copying British masters, rather he would build a clientele that embraced a distinctly modern, almost flamboyant style of portraiture. That Sargent made a success of his style in Britain passed from history into Legend.

Art Historian Jan Clanton served at the Orlando Museum of Art for almost 30 years, joining the staff of OMA Art in 1985 and retiring as Associate Curator in June, 2014. She has a B.A. in Art History from Rollins College. Previously she served as Adult Program Specialist, Special Project Coordinator, Assistant Curator of Education, and Coordinator of Educational Programs during her career at OMA.

Wednesday, February 2 from 5:00 PM (EST)

Ulysses at 100 – A Celebration with Bill Kennedy

February 2 is both James Joyce’s 140th birthday and also the centenary of the publication of his masterpiece Ulysses.

Have you read it? Is it on your bucket list? Have you tried to read it and given up? Have you been put off by its reputation?


Bill Kennedy from the Cleveland Branch will provide some guidance and insight into what has been called the greatest novel of the 20th century, the beginning of ‘Modernism’ in literature, and perhaps the greatest novel ever written. Hopefully we can all engage in a discussion of the book and its place in English literature.

Wednesday, February 23 at 5:00 PM (EST)

A Victorian Thriller: Lawless and the Devil of Euston Square with William Sutton and Roger Stacey

Roger Stacey will talk with William Sutton about his Victorian crime novel Lawless and the Devil of Euston Square, the first in Sutton’s series of three historical thrillers set in mid-nineteenth century Britain and featuring Metropolitan policeman Campbell Lawless. The conversation will touch upon Sutton’s immersion in the times, his interest in reproducing regional period dialogue, and, more generally, the enduring appeal and utility of historical fiction. There will be ample time for questions from the viewers.

Wednesday, March 16 at 4:00 PM (EDT)

Art and Power: The Royal Collection from Charles I to Elizabeth II with Professor Gerald J. Schiffhorst

The British Royal Collection of over a million items is the world’s largest art collection owned by one person and includes furniture, tapestries, and porcelain as well as paintings. The picture collection began in 1623 with King Charles I, the first serious royal patron of the arts, who brought Van Dyke and Rubens to England and acquired many Italian paintings. Ever since, nearly every British monarch has acquired works of art, often as a sign of status and power. How the collection grew over the centuries, often at such great expense that it caused political conflict, is a fascinating story, told by UCF Professor Emeritus Gerald Schiffhorst.

Wednesday, April 6 at 5:00 PM (EDT)

Dining Out: A Happy Hour Romp through the history of the Restaurant with Elliot Shore

This program was not recorded for authorship purposes.

Wednesday, April 27 at 5:00 PM (EDT)

African-Americans Play The Bard with Professor Charles Dumas

A discussion of those notable African-Americans who have played the Bard including Ira Aldridge, Paul Robeson, James Earl Jones, Denzel Washington, Morgan Freeman, Frances Foster, Audra McDonald, & Fran Dorn.

Charles Dumas is a professor emeritus from Penn State University. He is an Emmy Award winning professional actor, director, and writer. He has performed or directed in 10 Shakespeare plays including Othello three times.

Wednesday, May 18th at 5:00 PM (EDT)

Lusitania: A Story of Loss, Deception and Conspiracy From World War 1 with James W Stebbings

Lusitania was the pride of Cunard’s fleet when she entered service in 1907, the first of three great four-funnel liners built for the company. She was to become the fastest and most luxurious ship on the cross-Atlantic crossing and was popular with British and American passengers because of her speed and life-style onboard.

James Stebbings has had a life-long love of the theatre, especially the musical theatre and the world of drama and theatrical entertainment, participating whenever he has had the opportunity. After his retirement he moved to Norfolk in the East of England where he has been able to give his time to the subject he loves. This includes organizing music festivals, managing and representing some professional performers, creating and performing in historical enactments for a local museum and performing in a musical duo.

Wednesday, June 8 at 4:00 PM (EDT)

The Eccentric Billionaire John D. MacArthur – Rubies, Rascals, and Bears, Oh My, An Interview with Nancy Kriplen by her daughter, Madelyn Kriplen Nasser

The Eccentric Billionaire chronicles how MacArthur amassed his fortune, rising from a poverty-saturated childhood as the son of a fire-and-brimstone preacher to become an insurance and real estate mogul. As sole owner of Bankers Life and Casualty, he also built a real estate empire that spanned the continent. Based on interviews with members of the MacArthur family as well as previously undiscovered letters and papers, this book reveals MacArthur’s tumultuous private
life, including his quickie divorce from his first wife and his Mexican marriage to Catherine, his brother’s cute, clever teenage secretary who would help him on his climb to riches. The author also explores MacArthur’s relationships with his family and friends, including his brother, the playwright Charles MacArthur, and sister-in-law, the great actress Helen Hayes. Extensively researched and beautifully written, The Eccentric Billionaire is a revealing look at a man whose influence has extended in ways he never dreamed.

Nancy Kriplen is a biographer and journalist whose work has appeared in the New York Times, Smithsonian,, Discover and other publications. She worked on the editorial staff of TIME in New York and Scripps-Howard’s Indianapolis Times. Her biographies include Dwight Davis: The Man and the Cup (about the American tennis legend); J. Irwin Miller: The Shaping of an American Town (Columbus, Indiana); and John D. MacArthur: Empire Builder, Reluctant Philanthropist, Relentless Adversary, the subject of this ESU Happy Hour presentation.