Heritage Award Sponsors

The 2016 Heritage Award Dinner, held on April 13, 2016, is made possible in part to the efforts of our most gracious sponsors:

PRESENTING SPONSOR: CAPE COD FIVE CENTS SAVINGS BANKCC5_Oval_302_FDIC_Tag

 

 

 

 

 

ADMIRAL LEVEL SPONSOR: M. DUFFANY BUILDERSDuffany logo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CAPTAIN LEVEL SPONSOR: WOOD LUMBER COMPANYWood Lumber Company logo

 

 

 

 

LIEUTENANT LEVEL SPONSOR: ISLAND QUEEN FERRYIsland Queen

 

 

 

 

 

ENSIGN LEVEL SPONSOR: BOSTON MARINE SOCIETYBoston Marine Society

 

Tuesday, April 12, 7 pm: Lou Ureneck, “The Great Fire: One American’s Mission to Rescue Victims of the 20th Century’s First Genocide

The year was 1922: World War I had just come to a close, the Ottoman Empire was in decline, and Asa Jennings, a YMCA worker from upstate New York, had just arrived in the quiet coastal city of Smyrna to teach sports to boys. Several hundred miles to the east in Turkey’s interior, tensions between Greeks and Turks had boiled over into deadly violence. Mustapha Kemal, now known as Ataturk, and his Muslim army soon advanced into Smyrna, a Christian city, where a half a million terrified Greek and Armenian refugees had fled in a desperate attempt to escape his troops. Turkish soldiers proceeded to burn the city and rape and kill countless Christian refugees. Unwilling to leave with the other American civilians and determined to get Armenians and Greeks out of the doomed city, Jennings worked tirelessly to feed and transport the thousands of people gathered at the city’s Quay.

With the help of the brilliant naval officer and Kentucky gentleman Halsey Powell, and a handful of others, Jennings commandeered a fleet of unoccupied Greek ships and was able to evacuate a quarter million innocent people—an amazing humanitarian act that has been lost to history, until now. Before the horrible events in Turkey were complete, Jennings had helped rescue a million people.

Thursday, April 21, 7 pm: Christopher Daley, “Murder and Mayhem in Boston: Historic Crimes in the Hub”

Boston’s history is checkered with violence and heinous crimes. In 1845, a woman lured into prostitution was murdered at the hands of her jealous lover who used sleepwalking as his defense at trial. A leg was found floating along the Boston Harbor, wrapped in a burlap bag that would later be connected to a woman who was brutally murdered and dismembered by her handyman. In the 1970s, a string of seemingly unconnected murders led to a killer who became known as the Giggler. Christopher Daley explores the tragic events that turned peaceful Boston neighborhoods into disturbing crime scenes.

Saturday, April 23, 2 pm: William Geroux, “The Mathews Men: Seven Brothers and the War Against Hitler’s U-Boats”

Mathews County, Virginia, is a remote outpost on the Chesapeake Bay with little to offer except unspoiled scenery—but it sent one of the largest concentrations of sea captains and U.S. merchant mariners of any community in America to fight in World War II. The Mathews Men tells that heroic story through the experiences of one extraordinary family whose seven sons (and their neighbors), U.S. merchant mariners all, suddenly found themselves squarely in the cross-hairs of the U-boats bearing down on the coastal United States in 1942. From the late 1930s to 1945, virtually all the fuel, food and munitions that sustained the Allies in Europe traveled not via the Navy but in merchant ships. After Pearl Harbor, those unprotected ships instantly became the U-boats’ prime targets. And they were easy targets—the Navy lacked the inclination or resources to defend them until the beginning of 1943. Hitler was determined that his U-boats should sink every American ship they could find, sometimes within sight of tourist beaches, and to kill as many mariners as possible, in order to frighten their shipmates into staying ashore. As the war progressed, men from Mathews sailed the North and South Atlantic, the Caribbean, the Gulf of Mexico, the Mediterranean, the Indian Ocean, and even the icy Barents Sea in the Arctic Circle, where they braved the dreaded Murmansk Run. Through their experiences we have eyewitnesses to every danger zone, in every kind of ship. Some died horrific deaths. Others fought to survive torpedo explosions, flaming oil slicks, storms, shark attacks, mine blasts, and harrowing lifeboat odysseys—only to ship out again on the next boat as soon as they’d returned to safety.

Wednesday, April 27, 7 pm: Joseph Bagley, “A History of Boston in 50 Artifacts”

History is right under our feet; we just need to dig a little to find it. Though not the most popular construction project, Boston’s Big Dig has contributed more to our understanding and appreciation of the city’s archaeological history than any other recent event. Joseph M. Bagley, city archaeologist of Boston, uncovers a fascinating hodgepodge of history—from ancient fishing grounds to Jazz Age red-light districts—that will surprise and delight even longtime residents. Each artifact is shown in full color and accompanied by description of the item’s significance to its site location and the larger history of the city. From cannonballs to drinking cups and from ancient spears to chinaware, A History of Boston in 50 Artifacts offers a unique and accessible introduction to Boston’s history and physical culture while revealing the ways objects can offer a tantalizing entrée into our past.