Fulton County hires new historian

JOHNSTOWN – A Gloversville woman was appointed Monday by the Fulton County Board of Supervisors as the county’s new part-time historian.

She replaces former Historian Peter Betz, who resigned after he was accused of stealing a coffee maker from the county building.

Samantha Hall-Saladino was appointed during a closed-door executive session conducted by the board.

The county historian coordinates the acquisition and retention of historical documents, chronicles important events and serves as a resource for local municipal historians.

According to a news release issued this week by county Administrative Officer Jon Stead, Hall-Saladino expressed initial goals of expanding website access for Fulton County’s historical objectives. He said she also wants to use Facebook as a medium to connect the county’s “rich heritage to new audiences.”

She is expected to assume her new duties in mid-December and will receive an annual salary of $6,256.

Hall-Saladino has a master’s degree in museum studies from the University of New Hampshire, as well as dual bachelor’s degrees in history and English from Russell Sage College.

She is employed as education coordinator at the Shaker Heritage Society in Albany. That experience includes designing and implementing educational programs, workshops and lectures related to Shaker history and the society’s ongoing mission.

Hall-Saladino also interned at several museums and institutions, including the Strawberry Banke Museum in Portsmouth, N.H., the American Independence Museum in Exeter, N.H., and the USS Slater in Albany.

She has written and presented articles on a variety of topics such as “Rum and Rebellion: Taverns and Their Role in 18th Century New Hampshire Society” in 2011.

Betz resigned in August. He was charged by Johnstown police May 7 with misdemeanor petit larceny. Police said Betz stole a commercial Keurig coffee maker from the Fulton County Office Building and replaced it with another one.

Police said the theft of the $125 item occurred in the grand jury room in the building’s basement April 9. That room is down the hall from the historian’s office.

The case was adjourned in contemplation of dismissal in Johnstown City Court in July.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at manich@leaderherald.com.