|Luella Butler with three of her sons taken in 2013|
Luella has lived more than a century of Cavendish history. Working at Gay Brothers and a life time member of the Grange, she witnessed some of the most astonishing advances in many fields. At the time of her birth in 1909, the average life expectancy was around 42. Thanks to vaccinations and the eradication of many childhood diseases, by the end of the century, the average life expectancy was closer to 76 years of age and by 2014 it's closer to 80.
Even though horse drawn carriages would have been part of Luella's childhood, she could have seen Lindbergh fly across town in 1927, the same year as the flood. Less than forty years later, astronauts and space exploration was underway. The telephone came to Cavendish when she was a child. Today, people are discontinuing their landlines in favor of the Internet and cell phones.
Below is a Cavendish Historical timeline of what Luella has witnessed starting with her birth up until today.
1911: Activities for the 150th anniversary of the signing of the Cavendish Charter are postponed due to a small pox epidemic. Festivities are held in 1912, which are documented in “The Vermonter.”
1918: Cavendish elected its first woman selectman, Gertrude Foster.
1938: A hurricane struck the Town. The winds blew down thousands of trees, blocking nearly every road.
1976: Solzhenitsyn, Nobel Prize winner and Soviet dissident, settles in Cavendish with his wife, children and mother-in-law. His home becomes a place of refuge for other Soviet dissidents.
1985: Donna Blanchard is the first female fire fighter for the Proctorsville Fire Department. Her sister Amy was the second female fire fighter.
1995: Sovernet Communications opens in Bellows Falls and offers internet access via “land lines.” The availability of internet service makes it possible for more people to “telecommute” from home.