Working a team

The largest ox in the world in Bellows Falls in 1908.

In the old days, heavy work was done by horses or oxen. Oxen were slow but powerful animals. The Chester Historical Society has many photos of oxen at work. Some of these photos are drawing massive loads of talc or … Continued

Irina Ohl

The Irina Ohl label from the Chester Historical Society

For several years, I have been interviewed by Green Mountain High School seniors regarding John Butler. Most years I meet with two or three seniors. Bob Ulbrich encouraged John to leave his money to Chester Academy Scholarship. This was a … Continued

Community reading of Frederick Douglass’s famous speech

BELLOWS FALLS, Vt. – On Monday, Feb. 12 at 5:30 p.m., take part in a public participatory reading of Frederick Douglass’s famous Fourth of July Address at the Rockingham Library’s top floor meeting room. Volunteer readers are sought to read … Continued

Yosemite history

1904 photo of W.R. Spaulding sitting on the hand-pumper at Yosemite with his team of white horses. Photo provided by Ted Spaulding

Among the many donations, Ted Spaulding has made to the Chester Historical Society are many photos, documents, and records regarding Yosemite Firehouse. Ted’s father Ed was a fireman at Yosemite. I found this entry in the Yosemite ledger the historical … Continued

My neighborhood

Alice Bliss from the memories of little Ronnie Patch

Below are a few of my memories of growing up on High Street in Chester in the 1950s. At the intersection of High and Grafton streets is where Joe and Jackie Krupsky lived. Harry Milkman lived here later. Joe worked … Continued

America’s first plastic

Thermoplastic case open showing Lysander and case label

In recent articles I’ve written some about antique photography. This article is about the “Thermoplastic cases” that housed those antique photos. Many people confuse thermoplastic with gutta-percha. Gutta-percha is made from India rubber. In 1854, Samuel Peck received his patent … Continued

2020 calendar pictures presentation

SPRINGFIELD, Vt. – The Springfield Art and Historical Society will present “2020 Calendar Pictures” Saturday, Jan. 18 at 2 p.m. at the SAHS facility at 65 Route 16, North Springfield. Bunni Putnam will talk about the photographs in the SAHS … Continued

Fireside chat on local theatrics

A fireside chat Jan. 12 on local theatrics includes early performances at the Bellows Falls Opera House.

SAXTONS RIVER, Vt. – Main Street Arts and the Saxtons River Historical Society continue their series of Fireside Chats Sunday, Jan. 12 when the topic will be “Rockingham’s Love Affair with Theater.” The talk takes place from 5:30 to 6:45 … Continued

District 20 Schoolhouse


Below is a brief history of the stone schoolhouse at the end of School Street in Chester. It was built in the summer of 1848. In my collection is a 20th School District Clerk’s ledger beginning Sept. 24, 1847. These … Continued

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