Connections to our Collections
Connections to our Collections – the Van Bergen Overmantel
We love when researchers make connections to our collections. We recently welcomed author Debra Bruno, who is writing a book tentatively titled, “A Hudson Valley Reckoning: Uncovering the Secrets of Enslavers in My Colonial Dutch Family” (under contract with Three Hills, an imprint of Cornell University Press). The book’s Afterword is by Eleanor Mire.
As Bruno and Mire dug deeper into their investigation of slavery in our region, they were hit with the realization that the people pictured in the Van Bergen Overmantel in our collection were likely ancestors of them both. Debra and Eleanor, Beverly, and Jake Mire traveled to Cooperstown to see the painting for themselves. It was a powerful reminder of how art can help us understand ourselves and our past.