Berkshiremuseum Press Release
For Immediate Release: January 7, 2013
Media contact: Lesley Ann Beck, Director of Communications
413.443.7171 ext. 28;

Berkshire Museum presents
The Eskimo and the Oil Man with author Bob Reiss and
Envisioning Emancipation: Black Americans and the End of Slavery with author Barbara Krauthamer

Images available on request.

[Pittsfield, Mass.] – On Wednesday, January 16 at 7 p.m., Berkshire Museum welcomes author Bob Reiss for a multimedia discussion about his Arctic travels and his book, The Eskimo and the Oil Man (Business Plus).

On two consecutive Saturdays, February 2 and 9 at 10 a.m., Berkshire Museum brings author Barbara Krauthamer for an exploration of the question, “What did freedom look like?” through a visual narrative based on her newest book, Envisioning Emancipation: Black Americans and the End of Slavery (Temple University Press), co-authored by Deborah Willis.

In his book, The Eskimo and the Oil Man, author Bob Reiss follows the relationship between an Inupiat Eskimo leader and a top Shell Oil executive in Alaska as Shell seeks to drill for offshore oil in a region that some say may become the world’s next Saudi Arabia. Reiss has covered these environmental and political issues for various publications including Smithsonian Magazine. He has also made numerous trips to America’s Arctic over the last three years, spent time with scientists, diplomats, military planners, eskimo whale hunters, and politicians in Washington dealing with the issue. The lecture begins at 7 p.m.; tickets are $5. Books will be available for purchase during the book signing that follows the talk. The lecture is presented in partnership with Berkshire Environmental Action Team.

In celebration of the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation and based on her newly released book, Envisioning Emancipation: Black Americans and the End of Slavery, author and historian Barbara Krauthamer will explore “freedom” in this two-part series using a visual narrative of many of the 150 historical photographs from the book, including the Massachusetts 54th Regiment, abolitionist conventions in upstate N.Y., and Sojourner Truth. The talks begin at 10 a.m. on February 2 and 9. The book will be available for purchase. The talk is free with Museum admission, $13, $6; members are free. Seating is limited, so reservations are requested: call 413.443.7171 ext. 10. Unclaimed reservations will be released 5 minutes before the start of the lecture and available on a first-come, first-served basis. Seats may be reserved for one or all the lectures. Light refreshments served.

Read a New York Times Article about Envisioning Emancipation:

Berkshire Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday noon to 5 p.m. For more information, visit or call 413.443.7171. Museum admission is $13 for adults and $6 for children. Members and children aged three and under enjoy free admission.

The Museum is located at 39 South Street on Route 7 in downtown Pittsfield. Berkshire Museum is the first public museum in Berkshire County, established by Zenas Crane in 1903 as a museum of art and natural history. Little Cinema is open year-round. Feigenbaum Hall of Innovation, Aquarium, and other exhibits are ongoing.

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