HERITAGE BOOKS TO RELEASE "THE BIG GREEN BOOK" & "THE STUYVESANT CONNECTION" BY TOM RILEY

Heritage Books in Maryland will soon be releasing THE BIG GREEN BOOK and THE STUYVESANT CONNECTION by Tom Riley.  The two Illustrated books will be for sale at www.theorphantrainriders.com and Heritagebooks.com.  

Mr. Riley will donate $2.00 from every book sold to WFP (The World Food Program run under the auspices of the United Nations to relieve Hunger in the Sudan).

Upcoming Events for April and May 2017

CONGERS RAILROAD STATION ORPHAN TRAIN ERA

Sunday,  April 23rd, 2017 from 12:00-3:00pm at
The Congers Railroad Station - Congers, NY
Lecture/video
For more info: 
totrwriter@aol.com
or View Flyer

Annie Courter was 7 years old when she was taken in by a farm family in Congers, New York in 1878.  The family picked out Annie among the assembled children sent out on an Orphan Train by the Children's Aid Society.  The Orphan Train Era (1853-1929) was the largest migration of children in American history.  Over 273,000 children departed Grand Central Station in NYC and were sent all over the United States.  They were America's first foster children.  Tragically Annie Courter passed away three months after being taken in.  The Congers Railroad Station will be hosting the program on Sunday, April 23rd, 2017 from 12 noon to 3pm.  There will be handouts, posters and memorabilia related to the Orphan Train Era.
 



THE ALBANY IRISH AMERICAN HERITAGE MUSEUM TO HOST AN ORPHAN TRAIN ERA

Wednesday,  April 12th, 2017 at 6:30pm at
The Albany Irish American Heritage Museum
- Albany, NY
Lecture/video
For more info: 
Contact the museum at
518.427.1916

The Albany Irish American Heritage Museum will be hosting an Orphan Train Lecture/Video presented by Tom Riley on

April 12th, 2017 at 6:30PM.  The Museum is located at 370 Broadway in Albany, NY.  You can call them for more information at 518-427-1916.  At the height of The Great Hunger (1845-1852) over 30,000 Irish orphans were roaming the streets of New York City living in alleyways, cardboard boxes and sewer pipes.  Charles Loring Brace founded the Children's Aid Society along with Theodore Roosevelt Sr.  He initiated The Orphan Trains in an effort to relieve the abject poverty of the Orphans.  By sending them all across America to be taken in by farm families in need of labor he felt he was solving the problem and preventing revolution from occurring in NYC.  Over a 75 year period over 273,000 children were sent out of NYC on Orphan Trains.  The Albany Irish American Heritage Museum is considering hosting a permanent Orphan Train Exhibit.


ORPHAN TRAIN PROGRAM AT THE WEST HARRISON LIBRARY

Monday,  May 1st, 2017 at
The West Harrison Library
- West Harrison, NY
Lecture/video
For more info: For more info: 
totrwriter@aol.com

Upcoming Events

THE ORPHAN TRAIN ERA

Thursday,  March 3rd, 2016 at 1:00pm 
at the Montville Library - Montville, NJ - Lecture/video
For more info: pogorman@montvillelibrary.org

THE ORPHAN TRAINS & IRISH Famine

Tuesday,  March 15th, 2016 at 7:00pm
at the Nanuet Library - Nanuet, NY Lecture/video
For more Info: kward@rcls.org

THE ORPHAN TRAIN ERA

Tuesday,  March 23rd, 2016 at 6:15pm 
at the Warwick Library - Warwick, NY - Lecture/video

THE ORPHAN TRAINS & IRISH Famine

Wednesday,  April 20th, 2016 at 6:30pm
at the Goshen Library - Goshen, NY - Lecture/video
For more Info: eleanor@goshenpubliclibrary.org

 

THE ORPHAN TRAIN STORY COMES TO THE SHREWSBURY, MASSACHUSETTS LIBRARY

Tom Riley spoke before 80 people at the Shrewsbury Library and did a Lecture/Video on the Orphan Train Era.  Before the lecture/video a meeting of The friends of the Shrewsbury Library was held.  The new Shrewsbury Library will open next year and The Friends of the Library have a very active fundraising arm to aid the new Library.

TOM RILEY SPEAKS BEFORE THE IRISH HISTORY   AT THE TENNIS HALL OF FAME IN NEWPORT, RHODE ISLAND

Ann and Tim Arnold and Mike Slein, the director of the Irish History Museum in Newport, Rhode Island invited Tom Riley to speak about The Orphan Train Era (1853-1929) in America and its relationship to the Great Hunger (1845-1852) in Ireland.  Over 150 people showed up for the presentation and another 50 people had to be turned away because of over capacity.  Refreshments were served and $330 was raised for The Oyster Bay Railroad Museum and The Coalition for the Homeless.

THE NEXT ORPHAN TRAIN LECTURE/VIDEO WILL BE AT THE NEW CITY LIBRARY OCT 26TH AT 7PM AND THE SLOATSBURG LIBRARY AT 6PM, NOV. 9TH


TOM RILEY WILL BE TEACHING 4 NON-CREDIT COURSES AT WESTCHESTER COMMUNITY COLLEGE

Beginning September 16th, 2015, Tom Riley will be teaching at WCC in Valhalla, NY.  If you are interested in any of the following Courses please email:  www.sunywcc.edu/ce or call 914-606-6830 and sign up.  The courses run 6-8 hours.

1)  THE ORPHAN TRAIN ERA (1853-1929)  #83069
2)   FREELANCING FOR FUN & PROFIT#83063
3)  THE HISTORY OF POSTAL SERVICES#83020
4)  STAMP COLLECTING FOR FUN#83024


HERITAGE BOOKS RELEASES "HAPPY VALLEY SCHOOL: A HISTORY AND REMEMBERANCE"

In 1853 a group of women of the Ladies Guild of the Methodist Episcopal Auxiliary concerned about the roving gangs of orphaned children, many of them sickly and malnourished and resorting to crime and prostitution met and established The Five Points of Industry to alleviate their condition.  They quickly bought an old brewery and established a church, school, dormitory, hospital and dining area, meeting room in the 5 storied building.
Men would sign pledges to refrain from drinking alcohol and children and teenagers were fed, sheltered and healed of vermin and infections and inculcated in Christian values.  The women were later joined by their husbands and the City of New York recognized their extraordinary charitable works and aided them with funds.  In 1911 a Diphtheria epidemic struck New York City and a Board member, William Church Osborne donated 311 acres in Pomona, New York and established Happy Valley Colony later to be renamed Happy Valley School for the care and welfare of children.  He was concerned many of the children were in danger of contacting the disease.  Happy Valley School was in existence from 1911 to 1974 and thousands of children called it Home.

Tom Riley spent 10 years of his life growing up there and has written about his experience as a resident there. 
 

UPCOMING EVENT SCHEDULED:

Mel Hancock, who spent time there has produced a documentary called "The Happy Valley Miracle" which will have a debut showing at the Presbyterian Church located at:
64 North Main Street in Haverstraw, NY onThursday, August 20th at 7:30pm.

  


HERITAGE BOOKS RELEASES "THE ORPHAN TRAIN TO DESTINY"

Tom Riley's latest historical novel, THE ORPHAN TRAIN TO DESTINY completes a trilogy he has written about the Orphan Train Era (!853-1929).  This novel has it all: adventure, edge-of-your-seat action scenes, martial arts, a little history, and a touch of romance.  Marvel at John Brady's survival of childhood hardships, join him as he ventures into the rugged Alaska Territory in the late 1800s, walk the streets of early Juneau, Alaska, then, hang on tight during the harrowing dog sled race, meet a cast of characters as tough and unique as the wilderness they inhabit, and enjoy a front row seat to frontier justice with a martial arts twist.


LEARN ABOUT THE LARGEST MASS RELOCATION OF CHILDREN IN AMERICAN HISTORY AT THE FOLLOWING LECTURE/VIDEOS

In the beginning the Great Hunger in Ireland (1845-1852) initiated the American Orphan Train Era (1853-1929) here in America.  The Irish Famine caused the death of over 1.2 million people and the emigration of 2,000,000 people to America, Europe, Australia and Canada.  In 7 years the population in Ireland was reduced from 8,000,000 to 5,000,000 citizens.  On any given day in New York City in 1852, 12,000-15,000 orphaned children lived in alleyways, box cartons and sewer pipes for protection against the elements.  In an era where there was no social safety net, children resorted to theft, gambling, prostitution and gang warfare in order to survive.  As time went by immigrant children of every ethnic group rode the Orphan Trains in search of a home and an escape from war, poverty, disease and homelessness.  We do know from records that over 273,000 children departed from Grand Central in New York City and were sent all across America and were taken in by farm families and business professionals.  The Children's Aid Society and the New York Foundling Hospital depended on the kindness of strangers and for the most part the people in the heartland of America came through.  The trains also ran in Boston, Chicago & Philadelphia but the records have not been found.  Learn about the Orphan Train Era from Tom's web site: www.theorphantrainriders.com.  TomRiley will be doing a free lecture/video at the following venues.

 

1)  SPRING LAKE, NJ-- BOOK FESTIVAL----AUGUST 23RD  (Call 732-449-6655 for more info)

2)  GOSHEN LIBRARY ORPHAN TRAIN PROGRAM---SEPTEMBER 5TH, SAT--10AM

3)   STONY POINT LIBRARY---SEPTEMBER 8TH AT 6:30PM--ORPHAN TRAIN PROGRAM

4)  MONROE LIBRARY---SEPTEMBER 9TH AT 6PM--ORPHAN TRAIN PROGRAM

5)  SHREWSBURY PUBLIC LIBRARY, SHREWSBURY, MASSACHUSETTS---OCTOBER 7TH AT 7PM