Friendswood Library offers art, genealogy, tax prep classes

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“Astrospies: The Art of Neil Jacobe” is on display at the Friendswood Library.

Jacobe created amazing acrylic paintings of NASA’s Manned Orbiting Laboratory in the 1960s.

His life and art will be discussed Thursday, Feb. 23 at 6:30 p.m. by presenter Dr. John Charles, Space Life Sciences Manager at the Johnson Space Center, historian, researcher, and author.

No registration is required to attend.

The discussion centers around 18 original space art paintings that illustrate a secret manned spy satellite program of the 1960s. They are from a set of three dozen paintings by Neil Jacobe of McDonnell Douglas Aircraft Co. depicting aspects of “Astro-spies” living and working in weightlessness inside the cramped Manned Orbiting Laboratory, or MOL, for month-long classified missions to spy on Cold War adversaries.

These paintings, rescued from oblivion, and this lecture describing them and the MOL program, will educate young viewers and remind older viewers about the Cold War fears that still shape today’s world, and about the human spirit that gave the world Space Age technology.

Also at the library will be a four week series, Genealogy Research Class (GR01), March 1-22 through Friendswood ISD Community Education.

The class is for both beginners starting to research a family history and seasoned researchers.

Those taking the class can discover and practice using several free and subscription-based online resources that can be accessed from home.

They will learn tips to effectively search and filter information to find ancestors in various types of records including census, military, newspapers, land, court, immigration, family and local history books.

Discussion will also center on several ways to save, preserve, and share the information found.

The online resources covered in class include HeritageQuest, MyHeritage, FamilySearch, Chronicling America, USGenWeb and

Those taking the class are welcome to bring family history information, laptop, or mobile device for use during class.

This class will be held at the Friendswood Public Library Community Room.

Registration through FISD is required. Online registration is available at

On Monday, March 13 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., AARP Free In-Person Tax Preparation Assistance will be offered at the library. The free class is for anyone of any age – especially ages 50 or older or can’t afford paid tax preparation. Individuals will be served on a first come first serve basis.

The Book Club will meet Tuesday, March 14 at 7 p.m. to discuss this month’s selection, “Our Man in Havana” by Graham Greene. The Book Club meets the second Tuesday each month at 7 p.m. Refreshments are provided.

The Friendswood Library is located at 416 S. Friendswood Drive. For more information, call 281-482-7139.

Story by Karolyn Gephart

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