The Lifelong Learning Monthly Lecture Series aims to bring outstanding speakers to our community. Join us for refreshments at 9:15 AM followed by presentations from exceptional speakers from 10:00 to 11:00 AM in the Franciscan Center. Alternatively, you may attend online. You may also join these lectures via Zoom using the links below the lecture’s title.


A Century of Music

10:00-11:00 AM, Friday, May 20

Meeting ID: 813 0577 7622

How many Toledo institutions have lasted 100 years? The Toledo Choral Society stands out in this class for its commitment to bringing the finest in classical and contemporary choral music to our community. Today, the Toledo Choral Society boasts nearly one hundred members from the northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan region. Singers from diverse backgrounds are united by their passion for performing outstanding choral works.

Join Mike Holtgrieve, Historian, and Judy Harris Szor, longtime member and past President, on a trip through a rich century of history. We will showcase the personalities that drove this organization and the impact they had on the Toledo musical community, as well as the music performed for greater Toledo audiences.


Somersett, Benjamin Franklin, and the Masterminding of American Independence

Phillip Goodrich

10:00 – 11:00 AM, Friday, June 17

 Set aside everything you thought you knew about the American Revolution and the events leading up to it. The goal of unifying thirteen diverse American colonies into a common cause against the British Empire can now be traced back to a single individual uniquely placed in the 18th century, with the political contacts, the determination, and the insight into human nature to bring his dream to a reality, and that individual was Benjamin Franklin. Tragically, one motivation which he realized would bring the colonies into open revolt, slavery, continues to resonate in our nation 250 years later.

Phillip Goodrich is a prize-winning author in the history of the American Revolution and will join us via Zoom. His audiobook Somersett: Benjamin Franklin and the Masterminding of American Independence was a finalist for best audiobook in history or biography for 2021, for both the Society of Vocal Arts and Sciences, and the Audio Publishers Association (the “Audies”).


Queen of the Con in Toledo

Tom Crowl

10:00 – 11:00 AM, Friday, July 15

Mrs. Cassie Chadwick first gained widespread attention in the late 1880s when she posed as a European clairvoyant, Madame Devere, in Toledo. By passing forged promissory notes, engaging in blackmail and borrowing the identity of a wealthy Cleveland lady, Cassie swindled $20,000 –over $500,000 today– in Toledo before she was arrested. Her audacious crimes were front page news across Ohio for months. What Cassie learned in Toledo set the stage for even grander schemes that marked her as one of the greatest imposters in American history.

Joining Lifelong Learning via Zoom, Thomas Crowl is a retired veterinarian and amateur historian. His research into Ohio’s history has given rise to three books: Murder of a Journalist, Opdycke’s Tigers in the Civil War and Queen of the Con: From a Spiritualist to the Carnegie Imposter. He currently resides in Kentucky.