Local author Barbara Jones will sign copies of her book, The Role the USS Casablanca (CVE-55) Played in World War II in the Pacific on Saturday, March 13 at the Lewiston Public Library starting at noon.

The book traces the history of the USS Casablanca (CVE-55) from her conception to her sale for scrap after the end of World War II. Her existence is placed in contexts of place and time as she served as a platform for training precommissioning crews of future sister ships and for pilots as they qualified for carrier duty, and then as she carried men, aircraft, and supplies into the Pacific and brought troops and damaged aircraft back to the West Coast. Casablanca’s history is told as seen through the eyes of the men who served aboard her; their stories were obtained mainly through personal interviews and memoirs.


St. Patrick’s Day Celebration at The Lewiston Public Library.

Students of the McCarthy School of Irish Dance will once again provide an evening of dance, music, stories and interesting facts to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at the Lewiston Public Library on Monday, March 15 at 6:30 PM in the Children’s Room.

The annual spring celebration will include a selection of traditional Irish dances including the reel, the jig and the hornpipe This energetic performance will make you want to dance too!

This event is sponsored by the Friends of the Lewiston Public Library. Recommended for the entire family, this event is free and open to the public.


The Lewiston Public Library will close to the public at 3 p.m. on Saturday, February 27 for installation of new carpeting in the meeting room, the Jon F. Popkey Genealogy Room and the magazine reading area. While the building is closed, residents will be able to return materials using the bookdrop.

The Library appreciates our customers’ patience and understanding as we work to complete this important project as quickly as possible. We will reopen on Monday, March 8th at 10 a.m. For more information, contact the Library at 754-4720.

Burke’s Descriptive Guide, or the Visitors’ Companion to Niagara Falls

Burke’s Descriptive Guide, or the Visitors’ Companion to Niagara Falls

By Andrew Burke, 1851

Perhaps you are familiar with the usual Niagara Falls guidebooks…this is not of that ilk. Compact and neat, it would fit into your wallet. When you open it you are immediately offered aticket on the Buffalo and Niagara Falls Railroad andoff you go into the Twilight Zone. Your tour includes the cholera epidemics, a tragic suicide, a hog’s back, “the three profiles,” a hermit, human remains, white canoes, and “old Neptune himself.”

View this book in the Local History Room at the Lewiston Public Library.

Winter Break Activities

Are you looking for something to do over the winter break of February 16th through February 20th ? We invite you to join us for the following activities at the Lewiston Public Library.

Movie buffs will enjoy our “Movie Marathon” on February 16th.. The first feature is “Night at the Museum” which will start at 10:30a.m followed by the second feature “Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian.” In between we will take a short break for Pizza. Admission is free and open to the public but reservations are requested so we can make sure there is enough pizza for everyone.

On Wednesday, February 17th from at 3:00p.m. to 4:30p.m. we will hold our “Snow Party.” There will be games, crafts, food and fun for children of all ages.

The NY State Parks Department will present “Nature in Winter” on Thursday, February 18th at 3:00p.m.. Join us to learn what animals do to survive throughout the winter- hibernation, migration and adaptation. The program is open to all, but is geared for children ages 5-10.

Have you ever made a snowman with colored water? If not, then consider joining us for “Snowman Making” on Friday, February 19th from 1:00p.m. until 4:00p.m. This activity is to be conducted outside if the weather permits. We will use spray bottles and colored water to make our snowmen on the snow. If there is no snow we will make snowmen out of Styrofoam balls inside.

On Saturday, February 20th from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00p.m. we will hold our “Winter Craft Time.” Join us for a time of craft making with a winter theme. Please dress in play clothes as some of our crafts are messy.

As always, our programs are free and open to the public. Please call Miss Ann at 754-4720 or feel free to stop by to register. The Library is located at 305 South Eighth Street in the Village of Lewiston.

Virginia County Records, Vol. 1, Spotsylvania County, 1721-1800

Virginia County Records, Vol. 1, Spotsylvania County, 1721-1800

Edited by William Armstrong Crozier

For all of those with southern ancestry…we are happy to

do lookups in our special Southern Family History Collection. This particular book contains mostly wills and deeds and is searchable by surname. If you are a history buff…feel free to take a peek into some of the types of records that Alex Haley may have used to research his own ancestors while writing, Roots. In fact, there is a book mark on page 204, which leads to an entry added on Septr. 5, 1768, in which one brother leaves another “one negro” as payment for a debt.

It is believed that this was the exchange of the famed Kunta Kinta.

This book is available for viewing in the Bob and Rita Giannetti Southern Family History Room

“Record of Marriages, County Niagara, State of New York, 1838-1841”

Thanks to the very gracious director of the Lewiston Museum, Pam Hauth, I was granted special permission to transcribe some very early marriage records which are now available on our Lewiston Public Library website (www.lewistonpubliclibrary.org) and in the Local History Room.

While volunteering in the museum over the summer I found myself drawn to some court dockets which contained a binder with the name of one of the Odd Fellows I had been researching, Mr. Jonathan Bell. As I had also been transcribing the early meeting notes for the Odd Fellows, of which Mr. Bell was noted as the recording secretary, I felt almost a personal acquaintance of this gentleman who had been born about 150 years before my own birthday. While leafing through the pages of this 18th century manuscript I noticed that when turned backwards and upside down, the book was also a ledger of all marriages performed by Mr. Jonathan Bell, Justice of the Peace for Lewiston.

The ink was slowly, but surely, fading, pages crumbling, and there were lines so indistinct that I was forced to take the book out into the sunlight. Ultimately, when completed, there were ninety five marriages performed by Mr. Bell, including sixty four marriages of Canadian couples, one of residents of the Tuscarora Reservation and one of a couple who resided in Pennsylvania.