Born on a Catskill Mountain farm in 1837, John Burroughs grew up to become America’s premier nature writer, author of 23 books, an inspiration to Theodore Roosevelt and the founders of the American conservation movement. A lifelong agrarian at the time America was becoming an industrial power, Burroughs upheld an ethic of simple living in harmony with nature. Now, a century after his death, Burroughs remains the voice of The Catskills, the apostle of life lived in nature’s rhythm.
Dr. Bill Birns is the President of John Burroughs’ Woodchuck Lodge in Roxbury, NY, dedicated to maintaining Burroughs’ historic mountain home and promoting his enduring legacy. Bill is the author of four Catskills-themed books, including A Catskill Catalog and I Was Corning a Beaver Like You Do: John Burroughs, Joe Hewitt, Mountain Culture. An active Delaware County citizen for 45 years, Bill taught a couple generations of Catskill Mountain kids, both at Margaretville Central School and Onteora High School. A Doctor of Philosophy in Rhetoric and Linguistics, Bill’s 1986 dissertation is the most in-depth study of the dialect of the Catskills.
LOCATION: The Greenport Community Center, Town Hall Drive, Hudson NY. It’s the last building on the left, opposite Town Hall.