Thursday, August 17, 2017

CHS Provides Opportunity to Watch the Solar Eclipse



A total solar eclipse will occur next week, on August 21, and it will be the first one in 38 years to be visible from the mainland U.S.  No matter where you are in the US, you can see it. In Cavendish we can expect to see 70% of the solar eclipse.

 In preparation, on Aug. 20 (Sunday), the Cavendish Historical Society (CHS) will hold a workshop from 2-4 pm at the Museum (1951 Main St.  Cavendish) where you can make pinhole viewers and learn more about the solar eclipse.

Please note that. NASA warns that sunglasses or homemade filters do not provide sufficient eye protection and can contribute to eye damage. Five manufacturers have certified their eclipse glasses, which meet NASA’s criteria:
• Have certification information with a designated ISO 12312-2 international standard
• Have the manufacturer’s name and address printed somewhere on them
• Are less than three years old and have no scratches or wrinkles

You can also go to the NASA website and download their pinhole template for free. Watching the following video will give you lots of other safe ways. 



On Aug. 21 (Monday), from 1:15 to 3:00 (or later depending on interest) CHS will have various devices including glasses (thank you Kem Phillips for donating) which meet NASA standards, pinhole viewers and special welding mask, set up in front of the Museum so people can safely view the eclipse. Young children will need to use the pinhole viewers.

In other parts of the state, various astronomy groups are hosting viewing opportunities including:
• Green Mountain Astronomers will be hosting an eclipse day event at the Castleton University by the observatory. Estimate for Castleton is 1:23 first contact, 2:42 largest coverage, 3:55 last contact.
Montshire Museum, Norwich, VT 

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Scribbler II Summer 2017

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PLANT SALE

Craig Rankin's Plant List
In spite of incredibly nasty weather, the annual Cavendish Historical Society Plant Sale went on as usual. A very special thank you to: the Tings of Moonlite Meadows for once again supplying the best dirt ever; Svetlana and Kem Phillips, Lu Choiniere, Margo Caulfield, Pang Ting and Pieter van Schaik for transplanting and caring for so many plants. Sale day, though it was a wet and rainy mess, was greeted with a knowledgeable plant sales team, particularly Svetlana and Pieter. Thanks Bob Naess for making sandwiches and putting up a tent so everyone stayed dry.

Craig Rankin would be thrilled to know that the sale continues and that plans are already underway for next year-mock orange and dahlias.



IT’S BLUEBERRY TIME

For the third straight year running, Bruce and Betty McEnaney have opened up their amazing organic
blueberry farm for general picking ($3 a pound). Located off Smokeshire at 354 Miner Rd, just over the Cavendish town line in Chester, it offers some of the best views in VT. The money raised from the "pick your own" is used to fund the Cavendish Town Elementary School (CTES) 6th grade trip to Sturbridge Village. We have a big class this year, so we need lots of picking if we're going to make this trip possible.

UPCOMING EVENTS

The Museum is open on Sundays from 2-4 pm and other times by appointment. Activities are free and open to the public.

August 20 (Sunday): Solar Eclipse Workshop. Make a pinhole projector for safe viewing of the eclipse. 2pm at the Museum


 August 21 (Monday): View the solar eclipse (it will be a partial eclipse) starting at 1:30 pm at the Museum. Maximum viewing will be at 2:41 pm. We will have a variety of devices for viewing. Please note that children 3 and under will only be able to use a pinhole viewer.

Sept. 9 (Saturday): Honey Festival at the Golden Stage Inn, off Depot Street in Proctorsville. CHS will once again provide an opportunity for visitors to make hand dipped beeswax candles. The festival hours are 10-4
 
Sept. 10 (Sunday): Annual Phineas Gage Walk and Talk. CHS Museum, 2pm.

Oct. 8 (Sunday): Proctorsville Ghost Walk-meet in front of the Proctorsville War Memorial, 2pm.  

 EVER WONDER WHAT THIS WAS?

If you travel along route 131, you may have noticed a structure in Cavendish Village and wondered what it might have been? Root cellar is a common thought.



It turns out that this this was a burial vault constructed in 1828 by Jonathan Atherton Jr. Two of the Athertons were buried there until they were reburied in the Cavendish Village Cemetery on High Street. 

A POLISH CHRISTMAS

Each year at Christmas time, CHS celebrates the holiday by holding a daylong series of workshops at Cavendish Elementary School based on the heritage of people who have settled in Cavendish. This year we will be celebrating the Polish, many of whom came to work at the Gay Brothers Mills.

“..In 1908 the mill at Cavendish needed more workers than it was able to find roundabout. Some Polish people had drifted into Springfield, Vermont, looking for jobs. But it was slack there. A power company was building a dam in the Black River Gorge and the Poles heard that laborers were being taken on, but by the time they got there the demand had ceased. As long as they were in the neighborhood they thought they might as well inquire at the mill in Cavendish, and there three of them were hired at once. They sent word to friends, who came to join them.
At first there was some show of hostility in the town. Vermont was for Vermonters, Americans, went the grumbling; no call for Vermonters to put up with any foreigners coming in.
But the Poles showed themselves so quickly to be good-working folk, diligent, thrifty and above all, clean, that people in the village soon fell into the way of treating them just as neighbors. “Mornin’ Isaac,” they’d say, casually, at the Post Office or the general store. And “That’s a fine rose in your garden, Tony-don’t know’s I ever saw the variety hereabouts.”
In the mill the Poles took naturally to the work. Two of those first Polish employees are bosses now, and good ones. Isaac, who was among that first three, still works in the picker room. And when anyone in town can’t get a lawn to grow just right under needle pines, or has trouble with a mulch, usually it is Tony who comes along and helps to straighten things out.

The Poles married in Cavendish and now a second generation works for the Gays too. In school the children of Polish extraction have continuously taken a lion’s share of prizes, which makes a bond between them and the environment and way of life in New England. When you have lived for years in a town, and your children have been born there, gone to school and married there, it becomes though you had really never anywhere else. During the World War period no one in Cavendish, ever had finer Victory gardens than the Polish mill people, and that included the children and their school gardens. And the Polish men, women and children have taken their fair share in social and civic events. The celebration of a Liberty Loan quota oversubscribed; or a Red Cross drive; ....
Hardly anyone in Cavendish remembers their Polish neighbors without recalling the incident of Tony’s daughter, Mary.
It was before the first World War and Mary was just beginning to learn to talk. Word came from her grandmother back in Vilna that she would like to have Mary for a visit, so her parents sent her over with some friends.
The war broke out and it was impossible to get Mary back to American. Not until she was twelve or thirteen were her parents able to arrange for her to come back. And even then there was an enormous amount of red tape. Her parents were absolutely bewildered. They followed what amounts to an informal village custom and took their problem to the Gays. Leon Gay decided that the most effective way would be to work through the Red Cross, getting passport, tickets, identification papers and so forth. For Mary’s people it all became a dream, of the great day Mary would arrive.
But, instead, a dreadful thing happened. Instead of a little girl being met by her parents and their friends at a certain train, there came a telegram, which said, “Mary dead Tuesday.”
Mary’s parents were simply beside themselves. But to Leon Gay it seemed that there was something queer about all this. A healthy child does not just die without warning. While he set in motion ways of checking every step of Mary’s journey from Vilna, he instructed the telegraph people to verify the message.
A few hours later a telegraph company clerk reported sheepishly, “There was an error in transmission-the message reads ‘Mary arriving Tuesday.’ “ Excerpt from “Neither Wealth Nor  Poverty: The History of the Woolen Mills of Gay Brothers 1869-1944,” by Janet Mabie pages 85-87

While we are assembling various projects for the students to do, if you have Polish Christmas traditions you’d like to share with the students-such as recipes, crafts, gifts etc.-please forward them using the contact information at the beginning of the newsletter.

ENDOWMENT OF CGYHP

Thanks to a generous donation from Stein (Ernestine) van Schaik, the Carmine Guica Young Historians Program is off to an incredible start.

Stein came to Cavendish as an eight year old from Holland. The youngest of a large family, she grew up on Chambers Rd in Cavendish. In making her bequest, Stein explained that the Cavendish schools were her introduction to America and in turn she hoped that the endowment would help to launch today’s schoolchildren in becoming the life long learner and educator that she has become.

Having lived on six of the seven continents, Stein now lives in Florida, but spends a portion of the summer here. Having been a teacher and a principal, as well as being bilingual in Spanish, Stein has been incredibly helpful in planning some of the “hands on” activities that CHS provides as a way of teaching history. This summer we’ve had lots of interesting conversations about immigration as well as some new ideas for the 5th graders Dias de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) annual workshop.

Thank you Stein for making such a difference in our kids’ education as well as helping to keep alive the memory of Carmine Guica who would be  thrilled.

REDFIELD PROCTOR: A CANNABIS COMPANY?

Redfield Proctor
The name Redfield Proctor is well known in Cavendish.  Born in Proctorsville in 1831, Redfield Proctor married Emily Jane Dutton, ending the feud between the Proctors and the Duttons of Duttonsville (today Cavendish village). His achievements were considerable, 37th US Secretary of War, US Senator from VT, 37th Governor of VT to name a few.

So why would a new cannabis venture name itself after Redfield Proctor, who was a well-known conservative in his day? Could it be that the president Stephen Martin of Quechee, VT, who also runs ABVaporizers, is naming the company after Proctor’s son Redfield Proctor, Jr?

Redfield Proctor, Jr.
Like his father, Redfield Jr. served as Governor of VT as well as in the Vermont House and Senate. A graduate of MIT in mechanical engineering he was a prominent business man- executive at Vermont Marble Company, president of the Clarendon and Pittsford Railroad and served on the board of directors for various groups including Boston’s Shawmut Bank and the United States Chamber of Commerce. Could his civic work as a member of the Vermont Sanitarium Board, which took care of people with tuberculosis, be responsible?

The company “Redfield Proctor” has been awarded funding as a “start-up in stealth mode focused on efficiency in the cannabis industry.”  So were one or both of the Proctors secretive in their business dealings? Or could it simply be that Redfield Proctor is a well-known name in Vermont?

Don’t have an answer but when you hear Redfield Proctor in the future it may not be the former Governors of VT.

100TH BIRTHDAY PLANNING

CHS is working with various groups in Vermont-Historical Society, Humanities, and the Russian Department at the University of Vermont-to plan activities throughout 2018 as a celebration of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s 100th birthday on December 11, 2018. Among the activities planned include a special proclamation signed by the Governor in January/February made possible by our local state representative Annmarie Christensen and our state senators-Nikitka, McCormick and Clarkson.

There will be an exhibit at the Vermont Historical Society Museum in Montpelier, which will focus on his time spent in Cavendish, where he was writing “The Red Wheel.” Various lectures, book discussions groups and more will be taking place in Cavendish and throughout the state.

BECOME A MEMBER, RENEW YOUR MEMBERSHIP, DONATE

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                            

Volunteer
___ 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           ­­–– Cemetery    __ Carmine Guica 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                             __ Solzhenitsyn Project
__ Other (please specify)                   __ Cemetery Restoration        __ Preservation Projects
    





















Tuesday, August 1, 2017

CHS Briefs August 1, 2017

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Please also check the Cavendish VT Facebook page for photo albums of various CHS activities.

WHERE HAVE THE BRIEFS BEEN?
We didn’t do a brief in June, since the 1st corresponded with the release of the Spring newsletter, and when July 1st rolled around we were up to our elbows in plants and dirt for the annual plant sale. The Summer newsletter will be out shortly, but in the mean time, here’s what we’ve been doing and some dates to put on your calendar.

WHAT’S HAPPENING

Blueberries!!!: Once again the McEnaneys have opened up their amazing organic blueberry patch for "Pick your Own." Bruce, CHS board member and blueberry expert, says they are the best ever thanks to all the rain. Proceeds from the picking goes towards the CTES 6th graders trip to Sturbridge Village. It's a large class so pick early and often. The McEnaneys is located at 354 Miner Rd. just over the Cavendish line in Chester. It's  off Smokeshire, which is off route 103. Thank you Bruce and Betty for your ongoing generosity. The kids love this trip. 
 
Stone Church: Thanks to Pieter van Schaik the powder post beetle problem has been taken care of. Whew!

Museum: Doors will hopefully be installed in August. During the torrential rainstorms this summer we’ve discovered two leaks in the Museum, which need more investigation.

Annual Plant Sale: In spite of a weekend with non-stop rain and storms, we did incredibly well and we’re already preparing for the 2018 sale. A very special thank you to Svetlana Phillips, Pieter van Schaik, Bob Naess and Margo Caulfield for braving the elements that weekend. Thank you to Kem and Svetlana Phillips for the many hours of transplanting and tending to chestnut trees and so much more; the Tings of Moonlite Meadows for the best compost ever, and particularly to Pang for helping with transplanting; Lu Choiniere-we love the diversity of your plants and it’s a real pleasure spending the morning working with you as we learn a lot; and to Tim Calabresse for the pots and carriers.

Carmine Guica Young Historians Program: We just received a significant endowment for this program, more about will be in CHS’s summer newsletter. In August, we will be meeting with each of the teachers at CTES to discuss programming that fits with their grade’s history curriculum.

Emory Benoit screening

Archeology: CHS continues to provide volunteers to the South Champlain Historical Ecology Project.  This summer, we had a 16 year old Cavendish student who spent several days on the dig to see if she’d like to pursue a career in this field. The first day on the dig, she had a chance to see a timber rattlesnake and take some incredible pictures. On her second day, she found pieces of woodland Indian pottery. In 2018, once again our 4-6 grades will have an archeology experience. We can always use volunteers for lab or field work.
 

Solzhenitsyn’s 100th Birthday: 2018 will be the 100th birthday of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. We’ve been meeting with the VT Historical Society, VT Humanities Council, Univ. of VT’s Russian Department, state representatives and various interested people. Lots of ideas are being discussed, but we have various activities confirmed including a proclamation from the Governor and an exhibit about his life in VT at the VHS Museum in Montpelier.  

SAVE THE DATE
August 20 (Sunday): Solar eclipse workshop-learn what a solar eclipse is and make projectors that can be safely used to watch the eclipse.

August 21 (Monday): Solar eclipse viewing at the CHS Museum. Will be setting up at 1:15 pm with peak viewing at 2:42. We will have a variety of ways for people to view the partial solar eclipse. Children 3 and under will only be able to use the pinhole method.

Sept 9 (Saturday). Honey Festival at the Golden Stage Inn in Proctorsville. CHS will once again be doing candle dipping with beeswax.

Sept: 10 (Sunday): Annual Phineas Gage Talk & Walk-Met at the Museum at 2 pm. Wear comfortable walking shoes for walking. The accident site is a little over ¾ of a mile from the Museum



Oct 8 (Sunday): Ghost Walk in Proctorsville. Meet, 2pm at the War Memorial in Proctorsville, which is on Route 131 (Main Street) close to the Proctorsville Fire Department and Village Clippers


HOW YOU CAN HELP
If you can help with any of the following, please contact CHS margocaulfield@icloud.com; 802-226-7807 or PO Box 472, Cavendish, VT 05142

• Do you like to paint? CHS has painting projects both at the Museum and at the Stone Church.

• CHS is looking for new board members as well as volunteers who can help with various activities.