News From Terre Haute, Indiana

March 18, 2010

Learn about ‘My Antonia’ at Big Read programs coming up at library

The Tribune-Star


This year’s Big Read selection, “My Antonia,” uses the Nebraskan landscape as a character in the novel. There is frequent reference to the “rough, shaggy red grass.” On Thursday, beginning at 12:10 p.m. at the Main Library (Seventh and Poplar), hear Mark O’Brien from JFNew discuss “Indiana Grasses: History and Planting.” JFNew specializes in ecological restoration and is home to one of the largest native plant nurseries in the nation.

Sustainability is one of their key landscaping principles and that is based on naturalistic design, native plant functionality and the right plant in the right place. JFNew is now working with the City of Terre Haute on a no-mow park at 500 Maple Avenue and the ongoing trail system being developed. More detailed information is available from

Attendees can bring their lunch if they wish. No reservations are required for this event.

“My Antonia” also focuses on the immigrants who settled Nebraska. With the help of Marylee Hagan from the Vigo County Historical Society, “A Taste of Heritage” will explore immigrants who came to Terre Haute and Vigo County around the turn of the 20th century. The program will take place at the library at 7:30 p.m. March 26. A $5 reservation is required to secure a place and reservations are limited.

Call (812) 232-1113, ext. 2281 or 2282 for information.

In the census of 1910, Germans were the largest group, followed by English, Irish, Russians and Hungarians. To celebrate our history, the evening will feature food from the German Club, Hungarian Lodge and Bit of Britain. The Women of Erin will play Irish music.

Hagan will look at the challenges and accomplishments of these early residents. She will touch on those who became “famous” and successful in business and industry as well as those who quietly labored to provide for their families. Immigrants from many countries found their way to Vigo County, and Germany, Russia, England, Ireland, Hungary, Scotland, Wales, Italy, Romania, Syria and France will be included.

The Big Read is an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Library Services and Arts Midwest.