Join New York Times best-selling author Russell Shorto for an in-person event of revelations drawn from his recently published book, Smalltime: A Story of My Family and the Mob. Shorto sensitively tackles a subject normally taboo in families, piecing together the story of his grandfather’s history as a mob boss in Johnstown, Pa., and the impact his illicit business had on his immediate and extended family. Shorto’s brings together the insights of a trained historian, the dogged research skills of a genealogist, and the talent of a master storyteller, giving attendees a rare opportunity to learn new ways of illuminating murky corners of the past. Using his grandfather’s mob career as a starting point, Shorto will share the history of small-town organized crime in Western Pennsylvania.
Beyond its fascinating subject, the talk promises to be revelatory and inspiring for anyone who is interested in sharing family history in an engaging way. Shorto offers an online course on the topic. He will share behind-the-scenes reflections about the creation of his book and offer tips and techniques for busting through research roadblocks and enlivening any family history.
Shorto will participate in a book signing directly following the event.
REGISTRATION & ADMISSION
This is a hybrid program. Attendees can participate either online or in-person at the Heinz History Center. Please register online.
Live captioning will be provided at this program.
For more information or to request additional accommodations, please contact Sierra Green at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Russell Shorto
Russell Shorto is the author, most recently, of Smalltime: A Story of My Family and the Mob, and of six earlier books, including Amsterdam: A History of the World’s Most Liberal City and the national bestseller The Island at the Center of the World. He is the Executive Director of the Diamonstein-Spielvogel Institute at the New-York Historical Society, a contributing writer at the New York Times Magazine, and Senior Scholar at the New Netherland Institute in Albany, New York. From 2007 to 2013 he was Director of the John Adams Institute in Amsterdam. In 2009 he was awarded a knighthood from the Dutch government for his work in increasing historical understanding between the Netherlands and the United States. In 2018 he was inducted into the New York State Writers Hall of Fame. He was born and raised in Johnstown, Pa.