HINGHAM — The Hingham Historical Commission is pleased to share details on its inaugural Virginia Tay Memorial Lecture Series event, which will feature presidential historian and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Jon Meacham.
Saturday, Sept. 10, at 1 p.m.
Hingham Town Hall’s Sanborn Auditorium, 210 Central St.
Meacham’s lecture is entitled “The Soul of America,” also the title of one of his bestselling books, published in 2018. He will lecture on “Hope through History” with commentary about “The Soul of America” and “The Art of Leadership: Lessons from the American Presidency.”
Meacham will be introduced by James B. Conroy, an author, Hingham resident and member of the Hingham Historical Society Board of Directors. Conroy will moderate a discussion following the lecture, and facilitate a question-and-answer session with the audience.
The Virginia Tay Memorial Lecture Series, co-sponsored by the Hingham Historical Commission and Mary Anne Donaldson, along with the Town of Hingham, is in honor of Donaldson’s late identical twin sister, Virginia Tay. Tay was active in all facets of historic preservation in Hingham.
When Tay moved to Hingham in the 1990s, she took an avid interest in restoring the 1822 country federal home she purchased. She served on various historically-oriented entities, including as Chairman of the Hingham Historical Commission, President of the Hingham Historical Society and Chairman of the Hingham Historic Districts Commission.
Tay was a clinical nurse practitioner and psychologist who maintained practices in Cambridge, Hingham and North Easton. She was on the faculty of the MGH Institute of Health Professions and the Graduate Nursing Program at Northeastern University, and served as a supervisory mentor at the clinical psychiatric nurse practitioner program at Harvard University.
Before her passing, she was planning a speaker series that would serve as an educational vehicle for interested South Shore residents. When Donaldson relocated to Hingham in 2021, her first priority was to continue the legacy of her sister’s mission, which was to enlighten community members with the ideas of great thinkers.
“I could not think of a more relevant speaker for today’s times than Jon Meacham. In his writings, lectures, podcasts, commentaries and interviews, he invokes the past to inform the present and future,” said Donaldson. “The scholarship, insight, and research Jon Meacham treats us to in his books also enlivens, stimulates and educates us in his lectures, interviews and media commentary.”
“We are very fortunate to have Jon Meacham as our first speaker for the Virginia Tay Memorial Lecture Series, and look forward to welcoming him to Hingham,” said Hingham Historical Commission Administrator Andrea Young. “Preserving, honoring and educating our community about our history is an important part of what we do at the Historical Commission. We are grateful to Mary Anne Donaldson for carrying on her sister’s work to bring this lecture series to fruition, and thank her for making this opportunity available to our residents.”
Lectures in the Virginia Tay Memorial Lecture Series are expected to be held annually.
The Sept. 10 lecture is free to attend and will be reserved seating only. To reserve a seat, email Donaldson at email@example.com by Sept. 3. An email confirming your reservation will be sent and the email will serve as the admission ticket to the lecture.
Attendees should note that the doors will be closed and the lecture will start promptly at 1 p.m.