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tv   American History TV  CSPAN  January 1, 2015 3:52pm-4:01pm EST

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say as events unfold on the c-span networks, c-span radio, and c spoon.org span.org. new congress, best access on c-span. throughout 2014 c-span city's tour has featured the hit of communities throughout the country with the help of our local cable partners. here is a look at one of those cities. we are always asked what exactly is a chautauqua. a chautauqua is a retreat generally in a beautiful place for enrichment, enlightenment entertainment, and coming together, and it started in far western new york on lake
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chautauqua. a movement grew out of that place and that time and really spread across the country coming to boulder in 1898. interestingly, the texas board of higher education came to colorado looking for a place to establish a summer mountain retreat for teacher training and they embraced the chautauqua movement, which was really sweeping the country at the time. they found a very willing participant in the city of boulder and boulder residents who already had espoused the university of colorado here and loved the idea of bringing more intellectual stimulation and entertainment to the community. so interesting public/private partnership of the city, this group from texas and a railroad that would transport at the time texans between texas and boulder, colorado. it also was very much from the
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very beginning intended to serve the local community. that was part of the quid pro quo quo. programming for the locals and the economic benefit for the community of having visitors. at the time summer only. now year round. i believe the reason this location was so desirable is the incredible views of what we call the flat irons really one of the front faces of the rocky mountains. two adjacent ranches were acquired, and the ranch to the west of what is now the chautauqua really is -- it's a city of boulder crown jewel trade head that really serves our entire region. people from all over colorado and all over the world come not only to chautauqua but to hike at the adjacent open space. the purpose of the chautauqua is in the movement across the country was to bring education to the masses, to bring speakers of the day, discussions of current events and
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entertainment and enlightenment of various kinds to small towns across the country that didn't have the opportunity. this was before television before radio before people took vacations or went to opportunities like that. the opportunities came to them. the people who were intended to be the audience of the chautauqua were really what we would call the middle class. for some people it was an education experience. for some it was a supplement to their education. the programs at most of the chautauquas were very similar. i'll speak to the ones i know about here at the colorado chautauqua. a combination of the speakers of the day. it's hard for us to imagine, but thousands of people would gather to hear an orator, a famous person of the day like william jennings bryant. also a variety of both what we might consider high brow and low brow entertainment. opera, classical music, and probably what would be
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considered the vaudeville of that day. colorado chautauqua hasn't changed all that much over the years. the biggest change is that our climate and our buildings allow us to operate year round. this was initially a tent community with the first two buildings being the dining hall and the auditorium but people staying in tents but the buildings are substantially intact, and they are still used for the most part for their original uses. the dining hall is still the place to dine. the auditorium is still where we'd have the majority of our programs. the lodges and cottages are winterized. that's a big change so they are available year round, but the actual use is the same. we just welcome folks 12 months a year now. this colorado chautauqua is more than just about boulder's history. it has -- while it is physically very much the same as it was in its earliest days, it has
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evolved to remain relevant. it's not just about the past, and a lot of people don't even know the stories of the past. it still feels relevant to them today. it feels meaningful today. it feels special. >> the c-span cities tour takes book tv and american history tv on the road traveling to u.s. cities to learn about their history and literary life. this weekend we partnered with time warner cable for a visit to austin, texas. >> we are in the private suite of linden and lady bird johnson. this was a private quarters for the president and first lady. when i say private, i do mean that. this is not part of a tour that is offered to the public. this is -- this has never been open to the public. you're seeing it because of c-span's special access. vips come into this space just as they did in lyndon johnson's
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day, but it's not open to our visitors on a daily basis. and the remarkable thing about this space is it's really a living breathing artifact. it hasn't changed at all since president johnson died in january of 1973 and there's a document in the corner of this room signed by among others, the then archivist of the united states and lady bird johnson telling my predecessors myself, and my successors that nothing in this room can change. >> so we're here at the 100 block of congress avenue in austin. to my left just down the block is the river, the colorado river. and this is an important historic site in the city's history because this is where waterloo austin's predecessor was. it consisted of a cluster of cabins occupied by four or five families including the family of jay carroll. i'm standing at the spot where the cabin was.
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this is where mirabella mar was staying when he and the rest of the men got wind of this big buffalo herd in the vicinity. so lamar and the other men jumped on their horses. congress avenue or -- wasn't really the avenue but in those days was just a mud ravine that led north to the hill where the capitol sits and the men galloped on their horses. they stuffed their belts full of pistols and ride into the midst of beautiful yelling and shouting. he shot this enormous buffalo and from there he went to the top of the hill where the capitol was and there's where he told everybody this should be the seat of a future empire. >> watch all our events from austin saturday at noon eastern on c-span's book tv and sunday afternoon at 2:00 on american history tv on c-span3. >> next on american history tv, author and brooklyn college professor benjamin carp examines the link between alcohol and politics. in prerevolutionary new york
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city. as central meeting places, taverns stimulating discussions about british policies and helped fostary patriotic spirit leading up to the revolutionary war. the fraunces tavern museum hosts this hour-long event. >> all right. i feel like 13 toasts would have been an appropriate way for us to get started too. everyone who grabbed a drink, you're in the right spirit. so i'm going to start with a story. on january 3rd 1775, john case walked into drake agencies tavern on water street. case was a 60-year-old loyalist from suffolk county and drake's was an odd place for a loyalist to be. the tavern was a popular hangout for sea men and revolutionaries and jasper drake himself was the father-in-law of eye sick sears. the tavern's patrons included sears

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