hill country observerThe independent newspaper of eastern New York, southwestern Vermont and the Berkshires

June 2017   Facebook linkHill Country Observer TwitterHill Country Instagram page NEWS ARCHIVE



Teacher connects stories from World War II, Holocaust

Matthew Rozell began to discover his mission in the late 1980s as a young history teacher at Hudson Falls High School. Frustrated by the limited time available to cover a topic as complex as World War II, Rozell came up with a way to supercharge the learning experience: by having his students interview the war’s veterans face to face and report back on what they had learned. He soon found this approach had benefits beyond capturing his students’ attention and imagination. Rozell became so interested in the stories collected by his students that he began interviewing veterans himself, at their homes and in question-and-answer sessions with his students. The result was the Hudson Falls High School Living History Project -- and a Web site that collected the stories of veterans and Holocaust survivors and shared them around the globe

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Pedal power for the masses

Bike-sharing program to start in July in Saratoga, Troy.
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Some in region warn of fallout in net-neutrality battle

The future of the Internet is at stake in regulatory changes now being debated in Washington, and the effects of these changes could soon be felt in local offices, living rooms and libraries, local advocates say. Last month, the Federal Communications Commission voted to start the process of repealing “net neutrality” rules that supporters say were intended to ensure access to the Internet remains equal and open. At issue is whether the infrastructure of the Internet will be regulated as a public utility, like electric or natural gas lines, or if it will be considered strictly a commercial enterprise, with rules, prices and availability determined by market forces and Internet service providers such as Spectrum, Verizon and AT&T.

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Hoosac Tunnel inspires new children’s exhibit at MoCA

Colorado artist Wes Sam-Bruce’s new installation at Mass MoCA takes its inspiration from a local engineering marvel with a rich and sometimes dark history: the Hoosac Tunnel. The railroad tunnel, whose perfectly straight bore stretches nearly five miles through the mountains of the Hoosac Range, was the second-longest tunnel in the world when it was completed in 1875, after nearly 25 years of effort. The tunnel has captured the public imagination ever since, but not just as a triumph of technology.
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Belcher Hollow Forge, Handforged iron