Local East Amwell historian Jim Davidson returns to Hopewell, on Wednesday, September 13th and Wednesday October 4th, with a two-part lecture covering the life and times of Charles and Anne Morrow Lindbergh, two of the most accomplished, popular, pestered, and tragic figures of the twentieth century. Each lecture will be held at the newly reopened Hopewell Theater at 7pm, as part of the Hopewell Public Library’s Wednesday Night Out series, and will be accompanied by a powerpoint presentation with dozens of period photographs. The series is free and open to all.
Part One, on September 13th, will chronicle the early life of Charles Lindbergh, his epic flight across the Atlantic Ocean in May of 1927, with his accolades and triumphs. Anne Morrow’s early life and writing career will be discussed, culminating in when she first met Charles in Mexico during Christmas of 1927, where her father was the American Ambassador. Their marriage, in 1929, and early flights together will be discussed as well as their journey to the Sourland Mountains to build their first house, Highfields. Discussion will lead to that fateful night of March 1, 1932 when their first born, Charles Jr. was kidnapped from his crib, setting off the greatest manhunt in history.
Part Two, on October 4th, will cover the search for the Lindbergh baby and the “Trial of the Century” in Flemington NJ. The talk will include Charles’ work with Nobel Prize winner Alexis Carrell on a perfusion heart pump, the Lindbergh’s flight to England to get away from the press, and Charles’ affection with Nazi Germany and involvement with the America First movement. Anne’s prolific writing career later in life, as well as her affair with her doctor, will be discussed. Charles writing the Pulitzer Prize winning Spirit of St. Louis will be reviewed. After Charles’ death in 1974 and Anne’s death in 2001, the world would find out that Charles had three secret families in Germany, resulting in seven illegitimate children.
Growing up in Flemington, Jim Davidson’s life has been intertwined with that of Charles Lindbergh. Early on, he began collecting Lindbergh memorabilia and now has one of the largest national collections. Trained in history, at Muhlenberg College and later Lehigh University for graduate work, he taught history at Hunterdon Central High School in Flemington. But local history has been his main love. As the East Amwell historian, he writes a monthly history article for a local newsletter and gives numerous local history and Lindbergh talks. Recently, he worked on the Arcadia Press book entitled “East Amwell.” However, his biggest challenge was working with Mark Falzini on the first ever pictorial history of the Lindbergh Kidnapping and Trial. Their finished work, “New Jersey’s Lindbergh Kidnapping and Trial,” was published in 2012. Mr. Davidson and his wife live across from Highfields, the Lindbergh Estate on Lindbergh Rd.
The Hopewell Theater is at 5 South Greenwood Ave. in Hopewell Borough. The Hopewell Public Library’s Wednesday Night Out lecture series is usually held at 7:00pm on the first Wednesday of each month at the Hopewell Train Station and speakers include local authors, environmentalists, artists, and experts. For more information contact the Library at 466-1625, Facebook, or the Library website at redlibrary.org.
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