Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Second Photograph of Phineas Gage Found

A second photograph of Phineas Gage has been found. In 1848, Gage, was working on a railroad track in Cavendish when a tamping iron went through his head. Dr. John Harlow documented his injury and recovery in various medical journals, making Gage the first well documented case of traumatic brain injury. This new image, copies of which are in the possession of two different branches of the Gage family, depicts the same subject as the daguerreotype identified in 2009. A copy of this photograph can be seen at

An article about Gage appears in the January edition of the Smithsonian Magazine

For more information about Gage, please contact the Cavendish Historical Society, or 802-226-7807

Friday, February 19, 2010

Cavendish Old Home Day 2010

The Cavendish Historical Society is planning Cavendish Old Home Day for July 3 (Saturday) on the Cavendish Green. We are sending out notices now, so community groups, artists and local business owners can plan ahead. This is a wonderful opportunity for the community to gather, enjoy time with friends, make the community aware of what you are doing, and hopefully raise some money. Last year we had the highest number of vendors to date. It's a wonderful time for many of the second homeowners to meet their neighbors and find out what's available to them locally. We also encourage our second homeowners to become involved as well. As always, there will be a kid vendor area as well as special activities for kids.

There is no charge for a booth. You are required to bring your own table, chairs, tent and be responsible for your own clean up. The sooner we know if you plan to participate, the more you can be assured of having the space you want. If you require electric hook ups, we need to know this in advance. In order to avoid duplication, please let me know what type of products you will be offering, or what other activities you might like to do.

The Historical Society has chosen the 1940s as their theme for 2010 and we will be providing games and other activities that relate to this theme.

For more information or to register for a booth, please call 802-226-7807 or e-mail

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Young Historians: Valentine's/1935

Valentine’s Day was a fun time for students in Cavendish during the 1930s. Each student made or bought a card for all of the other students in school. Cards were placed in a large box and given out on Valentine’s Day. It was a lot of fun to make the cards.

Today we will be making a special Valentine basket. We will also decorate cookies, which you can put in the basket. Go to for the directions for the heart basket. This year, the Necco Company has made changes to the hearts. They have all new sayings as well as new flavors. The candy is also softer. Learn more about this Valentine treat at

Conversation Heart candies, Sweethearts, were very popular. “Be Mine” and other sayings were on the first candies made in 1902.

We are now up to 1935 in our history timeline. President Roosevelt signed the bill for the Rural Electrification Project, which made it possible for all parts of the country to have electricity. However, it was the 1940s and in some cases the 1950’s before all of Cavendish had electricity.

1935 History Timeline

Books: Butterfield 8 by John O’Hara; Tortilla Flat by John Steinbeck

Films: Mutiny on the Bounty; Bride of Frankenstein; A Midsummer Night’s Dream; A Night at the Opera featuring the Marx Brothers

Songs: Cheek to Cheek; It’s a Sin to Tell a Lie; Puttin’ on Your Top Hat; Lullaby of Broadway; Unemployment Stomp; Red Sails in the Sunset

• Amelia Earhart becomes the first person to fly solo across the Pacific Ocean from Honolulu, Hawaii to Oakland, California
• Drought Relief Service is formed to coordinate relief efforts in the Dust Bowl states.

• Detective Leonard Keeler demonstrates the Keeler polygraph, known as the lie detector machine

• President Roosevelt purchases first Savings Bond
• New York state allows blood types to be used in court cases
• The Academy Awards includes a special award for Shirley Temple

• The Rural Electrification Administration is established. This made it possible for many parts of rural Cavendish to have electricity in the 1940s.
• The U.S. Department of Agriculture is established
• The first round the world telephone conversation takes place
• Flash Gordon, a science fiction radio program starring Gale Gordon begins on Radio
• Works Progress Administration (WPA) formed
• Black Sunday (April 14), the worst “black blizzard” of the Dust Bowl

• Cincinnati Reds and Philadelphia Phillies play the first major league nigh baseball game at Crosley Field, Cincinnati Ohio
• Earthquake in Quetta India kills approximately 50,000 people

• Babe Ruth retires from professional baseball with 714 home runs, 5,973 bases and a .342 batting average
• France’s ship the S.S. Normandie breaks speed record by crossing the Atlantic in 107 hours, 33 minutes

• The National Labor Relations Board is formed to prevent unfair labor practices

• Social Security Act creates old age retirement insurance and a federal payroll tax
• The Wealth Act Tax Act is signed by President Roosevelt, which increases income tax rates for wealthy Americans.
• Benny Goodman, the “King of Swing,” opens at the Palomar Ballroom in Los Angeles

• President Roosevelt dedicates the Boulder Dam
• A major hurricane kills hundreds in the Florida keys
• “Popeye the Sailor” a radio program based on the comic strip begins on NBC radio.

• George and Ira Gershwin’s musical, Porgy and Bess, opens on Broadway
• Religious leaders discourage Americans not to participate in the Berlin Olympics

• Jay Berwanger, a Chicago halfback, is named first Heisman Trophy Winner
• Nazi government revokes German citizenship of Jews.
• United States makes the Philippines a commonwealth
• The Committee for Industrial Organization (CIO) is formed to help workers in the steel, auto and rubber industries

• Detroit Lions defeat the New York Giants in the NFL Championship
• Experts estimate 850,000,000 tons of topsoil have blown off the Southern Plains during the year.

To learn more about 1935 go to

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Young Historians: February 3

The Young Historians are now up to 1934 in our history timeline. This was the first full year of being President for Franklin Roosevelt. He passed many laws to help ease the problems of the depression.

The combination of high winds and no rain created major problems in the middle of the country. The wind carried the topsoil off the land. In Washington D.C., Congress had Texas soil on their office windows. The center of the country became known as “the dust bowl.” Without the soil and rain, it is hard to grow food. People were starving.

While life wasn’t easy for people in Cavendish, they could still grow vegetables and hunt. President Roosevelt passed a law so farmers did not have to worry so much about the banks taking away their land if they were unable to pay their bills.

1934 was the year Shirley Temple starred in “Bright Eyes,” the film we watched a few weeks ago.

This week we will continue with the rag rug project and for those finished with their rugs, they can work on figures for our 1930s Center Road School project.

1934 History Timeline

Movies: The Thin Man with William Powell and Myrna Loy; Babes in Toyland with Laurel and Hardy Watch the previews for Babes in Toyland

Songs: Moonglow; The Good Ship Lollipop; Inka-Dinka Do; Good Night Irene; Night and Day by Fred Astair; Babes in Toyland with Laurel and Hardy

Books: Goodbye, Mr. Chips by James Hilton; Tender is the Night by F.Scott Fitzgerald; Murder in Three Acts by Agatha Christie; The Postman Always Rings Twice by James Cain. The 1930’s were considered the “golden age” of the mystery novel.

• President Roosevelt signs the Farm Mortgage Refinancing Act to help farmers pay their mortgages with easier credit terms.

• Congress passes Civil Works Emergency Relief Act, allotting new funds for Federal Emergency Relief Administration to run new programs of civil works and direct relief.

• Walt Disney wins an Academy Award for the cartoon Three Little Pigs
• First Annual Master Golf Tournament is held in Augusta Georgia
• Henry Ford restores $5.00 per day minimum wage. Note: Today’s minimum wage is more than $5 an hour.

• President Roosevelt signs Home Owners Loan Act to encourage the building of new homes
• The NHL Stanley Cup is won by Chicago Black Hawks, who beat the Detroit Red Wings 3 to 1
• Shirley Temple appears in her first movie “Bright Eyes” and sings “On the Good Ship Lollipop.” Note: We watched the video “Bright Eyes” several weeks ago.

• Bill Cummings wins the Indianapolis 500 with an average speed of 104.86 miles per hour.
• A severe dust storm blows much of the topsoil of Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Colorado to the east coast. People in Washington D. C. found the dirt on their window sills.
• Drought is the worst ever in US history, covering more than 75% of the country and affecting 27 states severely

• President Roosevelt signs the Federal Farm Bankruptcy Act stopping the foreclosures of farms.
• National Housing Administration is established
• Securities and Exchange Commission established
• Roosevelt signs the Taylor Grazing Act, which allows him to take up to 140 million acres of federally-owned land out of the public domain and establish grazing districts that will be carefully monitored. One of many New Deal efforts to heal the damage done to the land by overuse, the program stops the problem but cannot undo the damage that has already been done.

• Babe Ruth hits 700th home run.
• American League wins 2nd annual all star baseball game.
• Joe Louis wins first professional fight
• First general strike in US history takes place in San Francisco in support of striking members of International Longshoreman’s Association

• Alcatraz prison opens in San Francisco Bay. Until 1937, prisoners were not allowed to talk
• The comic strip Li’l Abner, by Al Capp appears for the first time

• World Series won by St. Louis Cardinals
• Nobel Prize in Medicine awarded to two scientists for their treatment to cure anemia

• New York Giants win NFL championship
• The Yearbook for Agriculture for 1934 states that approximately 35 million acres of formerly cultivated land have been destroyed for crop production; 100 million acres now in crops have lost all or most of the topsoil; 125 million acres of land now in crops are rapidly losing topsoil.

To learn more about 1934, go to