My dear friends,
Jane Austen's letters refer frequently to the practice of communal reading: families and friends sitting together around a fire, sewing or working at other handcrafts, whilst one of them reads aloud from the latest novel.
On the first two Saturdays in February, I'll be helping to host an open house at the King Manor Museum, New York City, where we'll attempt to replicated this early-19th-century practice.
Fellow Janeites and historical costume enthusiasts will gather in the parlour at historic King Manor (home of Rufus King, framer and abolitionist, from 1805 until his death in 1827) on the first two Saturday afternoons in February to stitch, gossip, sip tea, and read Austen's "Persuasion."
We're looking for volunteers to claim a chapter on one or both Saturdays: Volume 1 of the novel will be read on February 1st, and Volume 2 on February 8th. No performance experience necessary! For more details about being a reader, and to sign up, please click here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c054badab2aabf49-volunteer
Not a stitcher? Try your hand at Regency-style Valentines. Supplies and information will be provided!
King Manor is located in Jamaica, Queens, near the J, Z, E, and F lines, as well as the LIRR. Free on-site parking is also available.
Let me know if you have any questions, or if there is anything at all that I can do for you.
(Sarah Rose Kearns)