Friday, October 29, 2010

Dutton House

The following article is from The Dutton house, which once stood on the Cavendish Green, was built in 1782 and was relocated to the Shelburne Museum in 1950. It has since been restored to appear as it did in 1820. Two of the caretakers of the Dutton House at the Shelburne Museum visited Cavendish recently and met with the Cavendish Historical Society. Not only did they want to see the Museum, for possible items that may have been in the Dutton family, but they wanted to see where Salmon Dutton was buried (Cavendish Cemetery). When asked about the “ghosts,” neither of them had experience with anything paranormal in the Dutton house, but did say it had a “special feel to it.” Pictures of the house, as restored, are available on-line

Group hunts for ghostly activity year-round-Dutton House
With Halloween just a short way away the idea of ghosts is a frightening possibility. But, for the Green Mountain Paranormal Society this time of year is just as spooky as the rest.

They search for paranormal activity and were recently at the Shelburne Museum doing just that WCAX reporter Gina Bullard went along for the investigation.

It all started in Cavendish Vermont. The Dutton family built their house in 1781. The house has seen a lot including being a store, inn, boarding house and tavern. By the early 1900s more than 11 people had died in the home -- and it was left abandoned for the next 40 years. It was then moved and donated to the Shelburne Museum....

....Now it’s said to be haunted.

Supervisor of museum security Dan Cole said, "People have had experiences here. There are several guides that will not work here. Some staff that are concerned about things they've seen or heard here"

Bullard: Those things people have witnessed range from footsteps and people in the attic to a girl crying at the edge of a bed. The Green Mountain Paranormal Society is now on the case and wants to see if they can see or hear any paranormal activity happening in the house…we went along with them for that investigation.

Cole: "Be careful it's dangerous. The best explanation that I've heard that the people were upset the Dutton's descendents or Duttons themselves are upset the house was moved from Cavendish."

Bullard: "One woman who was training to be a tour guide here swears she saw a man in tattered clothing sitting in this corner right here, growling at her. After that experience, she said she would never enter back into the Dutton home."

Bastian Gadouas says, "There's stories surrounding the place and there's a lot of history around the place so there's potential of something of several eras to be here whether it's hearing a sound or catching something on vid."

Cole explained, "We've had paranormals here before. This is something the museum has done to find some answers if we can and see where it goes."

The group uses scientific technology to hunt for signs of paranormal activity. Starting with quiet time, they break up and sit in different parts of the house and just listen. Then they report back on what they all heard.

Jennifer says, "The quiet time is for us to get a base reading of our natural senses of what the house sounds like quiet without people."

Next they send groups into certain rooms for electronic voice phenomenon - EVP sessions -- where they try to communicate with spirits.

Bastian Gadouas "First of all we could start out, what's your name?"

Gadouas says, "These things are manifesting with energy. This reads energy, so if this thing gets close by it, the idea is that it will make the lights light up."

Those lights did just that moments later in the green room, a confirmed spook, in a home famed for it's ghost stories.”

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Young Historians 10/27/10: Fantasia

Happy Halloween!

In the 1940’s there was no “trick or treating.” Instead, there was a big party at school. Kids bobbed for apples, ate donuts off a string and dressed up.”

We will be watching parts of the Walt Disney movie “Fantasia.” First shown in 1940, it is one of the most popular films of all time. Each of you will be given the hit candy of the 1940’s-Bazooka Bubble Gum. There weren’t a lot of new candies in the 1940’s because of the war. Sugar and even certain types of candy wrappers were limited. Hershey Kisses stopped being made because the foil wrapper was needed for the war effort.

Today’s timeline is 1941, the year the United States entered the war.

1941 Timeline
• Japanese Attack Pearl Harbor, America enters WWII
• Churchill and Roosevelt's Atlantic Charter meeting establishes war and peace aims.
• The US Occupies Iceland in attempt to prevent a Nazi invasion
• Germany invades Yugoslavia, Greece and the Soviet Union
• The German Blitz of London is at its peak
• Jeep Invented
• President Roosevelt talks of Four Freedoms in his Sate of the Union speech.
• Manhattan Project Begins
• Civil Air Patrol formed
• Mount Rushmore Completed
• M & M’s” Plain Chocolates are introduced
• Bob Hope began broadcasting his first USO radio show from March Field at Riverside Ca.
• USOs (United Service Organizations) began and provided free coffee, doughnuts and entertainment to US Military
• Commercial black and white television broadcasting begins. “Truth or Consequences” became the first commercial TV program

Movies: Citizen Kane, The Maltese Falcon

• Books: “For Whom the Bell Tolls” by Ernest Hemingway; Newberry Winner: Call It Courage by Armstrong Sperry; Caldecott Winner: They Were Strong and Good, by Robert Lawson

Songs Chattanooga Choo Choo Glenn Miller; God Bless the Child Billie Holiday; Take the A Train Duke Ellington; Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy The Andrew Sisters

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Young Historians 10/20/10 Spotter Exercise

Today we will practice being plane spotters. You’ll have to listen for the sound of the plane. You will then note where it’s coming from and where it’s going. The final step is to “call Albany” and report what you have seen.

The three spotter towers were located as follows:
• Above the Duttonsville School
• East Road in Cavendish across from the Moonlite Meadows Farm (the place that has the cows and sheep)
• Off of Blood Terrace in Proctorsville.

All three places would have a good view. It would have been easy to see the planes.

Today we will start with the Timeline of the 1940’s. In 1940, the United States had 132,164,569 people. The war was taking place in Europe. The United States was watching and waiting.

1940 Timeline

• Winston Churchill becomes prime minister of England
• Italy declares war on the Allies and invades southern France
• Germany invades Denmark and Norway
• Nylons on the Market
• Stone Age Cave Paintings Found in France
• The Great Smoky Mountains National Park dedicated
• Truth or Consequences became a radio show
• The first televised baseball game took place on WGN-TV featuring the White Sox vs. the Cubs in an exhibition game.
• The first showing of high definition color TV.

• Movies: The Philadelphia Story, Road to Singapore, Grapes of Wrath Fantasia, Pinocchio

• Books: The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers; Newberry Winner: Daniel Boone by James Daugherty; Caldecott Winner Abraham Lincoln by Ingrid & Edgar Parin d'Aulaire

• Songs: In the Mood by Glenn Miller; You are My Sunshine Jimmie Davis

Monday, October 11, 2010

Young Historians 10/13/10: Apples

This Wednesday, the Young Historians will be making apple pies for the Historical Society's annual meeting and recognition dinner on Oct. 17, 5 pm at the Cavendish Elementary School.

The most popular apple in Vermont is the McIntosh. These apple trees came to Vermont in 1835 from Ontario, Canada. Today, 65% of all Vermont apples are McIntosh. Other popular apples are Cortland, Red Delicious, and Empire. You can learn more Vermont apple facts at Vermont Apples.

In the fall, children of the 1940s would pick apples and help their mothers make pies, cider, applesauce, and apple butter. Below is the apple pie recipe we will be using today.

3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 t salt
3/4 c canola oil
8 T of apple cider (you can use water)
Mix dry ingredients together with a fork. Mix wet ingredients together. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the wet. Blend with a fork until it forms a ball. Wrap in wax paper and chill while you make the apples. Roll out between two sheets of wax paper.

Filling for one pie
6 cups sliced tart apples
3/4 cup sugar (
1/4 cup flour
1 t cinnamon, 1/4 t Nutmeg, 1/4 t cloves
2 T apple cider

Mix the filling and either pour into a dish pie dish that’s been greased or has a crust bottom. Cover with a top crust. Make slits in the crust and bake at 425 for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 and bake for 30 minutes. Serve it warm or cold, with out without ice cream or cheese.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

CHS Newsletter: Scribbler II Fall 2010

As we prepared the report for the upcoming Annual Meeting on Oct.17, we were even a bit surprised by all we have accomplished this year. We couldn’t have done this without the support of our members, town, donors and the many volunteers who have given of their time and skills.

These are just some of the activities volunteers did this past year: planning and staffing programs for the Young Historian’s; cutting the lawn of the Old Stone Church; cleaning gravestones; letting us run hoses from their homes to clean the gravestones; organizing and running the plant sale (a special thanks to Pieter Van Schack for taking this over after Craig Rankin died); cleaning the Stone Church prior to the quilt show; restoring the Grange Hall Painted Curtain; deciding that the Joshua Parker Green loom could be restored and taking steps to make that happen; crawling up inside the cupola of the Museum to make sure it was in good shape; painting; carpentry; staffing the various booths at Old Home Day; shoveling snow in front of the Museum; hiking up Hawks Mountain in the continuing search for the rumored cannon; bringing water to volunteers; keeping a watchful eye on the Museum; donating items for the WWII Museum Exhibit-who else but Carmine would dash home and loan us his uniform for the summer; and spending many hours providing information about town history and genealogy.

For their gift of time, we would like to thank the following: Donna Allen; Ron Bates; Jackie and Joe Blanchard; Gene Bont; Pam Bruno, Dan Churchill, Winston Churchill, David Churchill; Tracy Churchill; Danielle Dulaney; Bradley Goodrich, Abe Gross; Carmine Guica; Jenn and Jarrod Harper; Tim Jefferson, Nancy Kelley; Gloria and Seymour Leven; Peter LaBelle; Cheryl and Carl Liener; Jennifer McBride; Bruce McEnaney; Diane McNamara; Chris Merrill; Priscilla Mound; Mary Ormrod; Jon and Bev Owens; Alex Provance; Bob, Spenser and Cooper Naess; Mike Pember; Chris Quinn; Wendy and Allen Regier; Sandra Russo; Pieter Van Schak; John Snarksi; Carolyn Van Tassel; Pang Ting; Linda Welch; Dwayne Warren; and Gail and Leon (Woodie) Woods.

Every donation we receive is a valued contribution. People give what they can and we appreciate it. A special note of thanks to Stanford Durkin; Dan Churchill, Winston Churchill; Theresa Schrag; Foster Johnson; Sandra Russo; Gary Wheeler; Otis Heald; and Patty Derr.

We also want to recognize and thank:
• The Town of Cavendish
• The Cavendish Library
• The Cavendish Community Fund (CCF) and Wendell Smith Foundation for funding several of our programs
• The Vermont Country Store for their generous donations to the Young Historians Program
• The Cavendish Community and Conservation Association (CCCA) for their continuing support of the Cavendish Update, which keeps our community informed about what’s happening as well as a record of “tomorrow’s history .”
• The students of Cavendish Town Elementary School-grade 4 for helping to open and close the Museum , grades 6 and 4 for their assistance in the care of the Proctor Cemetery and our Young Historians.

Annual Meeting/Recognition Supper
The Annual Meeting of the Cavendish Historical Society (CHS) will be October 17, 5 pm at the Cavendish Town Elementary School. In the past, this has been a potluck supper. This year, we would like to thank our community, donors, members and volunteers, so the CHS board is preparing dinner. To ensure that we have sufficient food, we are asking that you let us know if you plan to come. You can do this by calling 802-226-7807 or e-mailing by Oct. 11.

One of the highlights of the evening will be drawing the winners of the Carolyn Van Tassel quilt and the Instant Wine bar.

Cavendish During WWII
The Young Historian’s Program is underway for students in grades 3-6 at the Cavendish Town Elementary School. This school year we will be doing activities related to the 1940s, with the first part of the year devoted to WWII. Below is some of the history we’ve collected. If you would like to add information, please send it to PO Box 472, Cavendish, VT 05142, e-mail

• 168 men and one woman served in the 1941-45 period. Imogene Baxendale served as an Army nurse.

• Proctor Reel and Shook opened in the old Black Bear Mill in Proctorsville and employed about 50 people. The company made, among other items, the large wooden reels for electric or telephone wire.

• There were classes on how to spot enemy planes, rules for air raid drills, blackouts, a Red Cross War Drive and Springfield machine shops would now train women for the workforce.

• Civil Defense was very active. Residents were telephoned and told the date of air raid drills (black outs). Drills were held regularly, with air raid wardens patrolling the villages and farms to make sure that lights were out and shades were drawn.

• Because of the machine shops in Springfield, the entire area was considered at risk for bombing by the Germans. Three “spotter” towers for aircraft were set up. These were manned by volunteers for two hour shifts, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Women, high school students, and men not in the service helped with spotting.

• School children collected milkweed for the war effort. The milkweed silk was used for life vests.

• Rationing began in 1942. Sugar, meat, butter, lard and coffee were the main foods rationed. Gasoline rationing went into effect, causing many Cavendish residents to travel to Rutland by train. Tires were also in short supply.

• Defense savings stamps were sold to school children and rallies were held to sell war bonds.

• Drives were held to collect scrap iron and rubber . Red Cross Home Nursing Classes and Civil Defense meetings were held in addition to the meetings of the Farmers’ Clubs, the Sunshine Society and the Home Demonstration Club.

• Gay Brothers was “the chief war industry of our town where 300 people worked producing 30,000 yards of woolen blankets, Navy uniform cloth and Khaki flannels each week for the United States Government.

• In 1942, the town voted to exempt every soldier and sailor from taxes.

• When the war ended in Europe V-E day, May 8, the celebration was subdued. However, when V-J Day (Japan’s surrender) came, August 14, Mill whistles and church bells were sounded from about 7 pm until midnight.

Genealogy On-Line
At the request of CHS genealogist Linda Welch, we have been adding new information about families to our blog. Note the listing of families on the right hand side of the page.

CHS Wins Local Historical Society Awards

We just received word that CHS is receiving an award from the Vermont Historical Society for two of our program, It is with great pleasure that I write to inform you that the Local Historical Societies Awards Committee met today and has overwhelmingly agreed that you nominations for both the Cemetery Care and Maintenance Project and Young Historians Program are both meritorious and worthy of award. The committee was very impressed with the well thought out, diligent implementation and community wide resonance of your programming. It was felt that your programs are exemplary and can serve as excellent models for other organizations.

If you have not joined the Cavendish Historical Society, need to renew your membership, and/or would like to be a volunteer, please complete the form below and sending a check, payable to CHS, to CHS, PO Box 472, Cavendish, VT 05142. All contributions are tax deductible.

Name: _______________________________________

Address: _______________________________________________

Phone Number: _____________________ E-Mail: _____________________________

Membership Level

__ Individual Member $10 ___ Senior Member 65+ $5 ___ Sustaining Member $500
__ Household Member $15 ___ Contributing Member $250

___ I would be interested in serving, as a volunteer .I would be interested in serving on the following committee(s):

__ Program Planning __ Fundraising __ Building (Museum)
__Archives __ Budget ___ Young Historians

Donations are always welcome and can be designated as follows:

__ For general purposes __ Educational Programs __Publications
__ Archeological Activities __ Museum & Archival __ Special Events
__ Rankin Fund __ Williams Fund __ Young Historians
__ Other (please specify)
___ Cemetery Restoration

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Message from the President

As part of the Cavendish Historical Society's Annual Meeting and Recognition Dinner on Oct. 17, the President of the Board has issued the following statement about this year's activities:

Message from the President
It is amazing what can be accomplished with a dedicated group of volunteers and staff. Below is a list of our on-going activities:

• Archeology: As funding permits, we will continue to “dig up” our history.

* New in 2010:Cemetery Preservation Project: Working with the Cavendish Cemetery Commission and the Cavendish Elementary School, CHS has organized a group of volunteers that are cleaning and repairing gravestones in the town’s seven cemeteries. As part of this project, CHS has developed a handout based on the National Park Service’s brochure on Monument Cleaning. This is available from CHS, the Town Office and the Cavendish Library.

• Educational Outreach: CHS offers the following programs:
* New in 2010: In-service for teachers
* New in 2010 Curriculum learning. CHS offers programs to all grades of the Cavendish Elementary programs, which combine local history as it pertains to a specific area of study. While aspects of this have been offered in the past, school year 2010 represents the first year that we have curriculums from nearly every grade at the Cavendish Town Elementary School.
- Young Historians: A weekly program for students in grades 3-6, volunteers provide hands on learning about Cavendish history. Last year we focused on the 1930’s and are learning about the 1940’s this year.
- Community education through special events, such as the upcoming Celebrating Proctorsville pictorial display at the Cavendish Library.

• Genealogy: One of the most requested areas of information, CHS has a series of books, Families of Cavendish, which were developed by our genealogist Linda Welch.
* New in 2010-The CHS blog now has a special genealogy section so that Welch can provide immediate access to new information.

• Museum: CHS operates a museum from June-mid October. Staffed by volunteers, the Museum is open on Sundays from 2-4 pm and at other times by appointment. Archival work is done year round. Restorative work of the Museum’s collection is mainly done during the summer months.
* New in 2010: Repair and restoration of the Cavendish Grange Hall Curtain
* New in 2010: Restoration of the Joshua Green Loom

• Newsletter-Scribbler II: A bi-monthly newsletter, which provides information about current CHS activities as well items of historical interest.

• Old Home Day: Held the Saturday prior to July 4, 2011 will be an important year, as it will be the 250th anniversary of Land Grants, which is responsible for the founding of the town.

• Oral History: Interviews, many of which are being videotaped, are done year round.

• Today Becomes History: In addition to understanding what has happened in our town, CHS maintains information about current events for future generations. CHS is one of the supporters of the “Cavendish Update,” a weekly electronic newsletter about Cavendish. It is available on-line and can be obtained via e-mail by sending an e-mail to with “subscribe Cavendish Update” in the subject heading.
- Cavendish Business Directory: Updated at least early, CHS includes business information, for businesses located in Cavendish, and/or are owned by Cavendish residents.

* New in 2010 Walking Tours: CHS has developed two walking tours-Phineas Gage and Celebrating Proctorsville.

As we move into 2011, the 250th anniversary of the founding of Cavendish, we are planning a town wide celebration that will take place throughout the year. For our many friends that live out of town, make Cavendish a destination this coming year.