To invite Tom to speak at your non-profit event, visit the Pennsylvania Humanities Council.
To read about some of Tom's speaking engagements, visit the Tom's Journal and Blog page. To view an excerpt of his speakers' program, visit the Video and Music Samples page. To see and read about the Miners' Traveling Museum, visit the sub-page under this Speaker Series page.
Program Title: Steelown, Coalfields, and The Unbroken Circle http://www.pahumanities.org/resources/presentations.php?speaker=36
Program Description: Teaching artist Tom Breiding delivers unique musical stories of life in American towns that span the last century. From the coalfields of West Virginia to Pittsburgh's forgotten steel mills and points in between, Tom shares his original compositions and traditional folk tales. With his guitar, banjo, and harmonica accompaniment, Tom captivates an audience while they learn about the history behind West Virginia's coal industry, about early life in the coalfields, the struggles of the U.S. labor force to organize, and specific events surrounding the West Virginia mine wars of 1921. Tom also delivers songs depicting generations of workers in the steel, coal, and glass industries of Pittsburgh and complements these ballads with a recollection of his visit to the Edgar Thompson Works in Braddock and the cast house at its Number 3 blast furnace. This entertaining program delivers a perspective on the significance of past events in shaping today's America and pays homage to the laborers of Western Pennsylvania and the Ohio Valley regions who made great sacrifices to build our country.
Miners' Traveling Museum Courtesy of Mrs. Orlanda Hahn, Schoolteacher at Shaler Elementary School, Pittsburgh, PA
Miners' Helmet, Canary Cage, Lantern, Flint Box, Miners Rescuer circa 1880's, Miners' Locker Basket, Lunch Bucket, Company Scrip, various coal samples and display accompany Tom to all of his school shows and speaking engagements. All items were generously donated by Mrs. Orlanda Hahn, a schoolteacher at Shaler Elementary School in Pittsburgh, PA, for use at Tom's program Steeltowns, Coalfields, and the Unbroken Circle.