Does anyone else like learning the history of their town?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by StephenA, Sep 16, 2004.

  1. StephenA

    StephenA Screenwriter

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    I definitely do. I love hearing the way my town looked when my grandmother first moved here almost 80 years ago. The thing I like hearing about most is how trolleys were still in use, the schools were one room school houses, that the Rockingham Race Track and Canobie Lake Park were the biggest attractions(still are), and that my house was the last on the street. Here's a comparison picture on how an area of Route 28 in my town has changed in 54 years:

    [​IMG]

    The pasture the cows used to go to is covered mostly in trees now. My grandfather worked at the farm that owned the cows and bridge. The bridge was built so the cows didn't have to cross the street to get to the pasture. The farm has long since gone as well as the pasture.
     
  2. John Watson

    John Watson Screenwriter

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    Yes, and your graphic is very neat.[​IMG]

    I just moved to the town I live in 3 years ago, and know relatively little about it.

    Some distant ancestors are buried in an almost abandoned cemetary about 20 miles from here, and we are trying to trace the family tree to include those kinds of details. I still have an Aunt in her mid 80's who takes an interest in this kind of stuff, and is able to answer some questions that turn up regarding old photos. I have some old journals and scrapbooks to work from as well.

    It's a lot of fun looking into these things, and trying to piece together information.
     
  3. Paul McElligott

    Paul McElligott Cinematographer

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    Paul McElligott
    Since the history of my current town goes all the way back to 1991 (!), it's not that hard for me to do. I've lived here for all but three years of that.

    My home town dates back to the late-19th/early-20th century however and I enjoy digging into its history.
     
  4. StephenA

    StephenA Screenwriter

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    John Watson: I found that while lookinf for old pictures of my town

    Here's the old entrance to Canobie Lake Park with a trolley leaving:
    [​IMG]

    The penny arcade at Canobie:

    [​IMG]


    A car racing at Rockingham Race Track:

    [​IMG]

    An old picture of Howard Johnson's with a caption:

    [​IMG]
     
  5. StephenA

    StephenA Screenwriter

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    Some other things I found out about my town:

    Robert Frost lived right down the street from where I live when he was a child. His mother was a teacher here and taught 5th through 8th grade.

    The actress Pam Gidley was born and grew up here. She's not too well known, but has been in a few things. My mom knew her at one time.

    While filming the original Thomas Crown Affair with Steve McQueen, they filmed the glider scenes here in my town. The gliderport is long gone, but when I was a kid my dad and I would often go there and fly the gliders.

    Sonny and Cher, the Yardbirds, the Searchers, Herman's Hermits, and Peter and Gordon are some of the people who performed at Canobie Lake Park.

    There's some old man made structures here that they don't know who built, though the structures have been messed with many times. The place has been dubbed America's Stonehenge. History's Misteries from the History Channel even did a show on them.

    At one time it was part of Massachusetts.
     
  6. John Watson

    John Watson Screenwriter

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    Stephen, as you probably know, there is fanatical interest in local history among some people.

    Is there an historical society in your town or county? You might be able to connect with some very knowledgable folks, and maybe you can be first the write the book on your town's history, or at least update it.[​IMG]

    In trying to track ancestor's lineages, some of the pitfalls are recurring names, compound families after remarriages, and so many things people wrote down without giving any dates.

    I'm looking at one picture, and it's either a lady who lived from 1817-1901, or her mother, who died in 1842 or so. There's a clue that says the picture was a photo taken of a Dageuerrotype, so when I figure out when Daguerrotype pictures were taken, I might be able to feel more certain which lady it is.

    BTW the remarriages back then were usually because of a spouse's death, not divorce.
     
  7. Phil_L

    Phil_L Second Unit

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    I love finding out about the history of the places I live. My hometown history was documented in two books, so I have seen lots of great old pics. In fact, alot of the cities and town in Rhode Island (where I grew up) have been documented in individual volumes. I am sure the same is true in other states. The books for RI are found at Barnes & Noble and at other places I am sure. Check your bookstore, you may find something interesting.

    Here is the link to the second volume of the history of Pawtucket, RI, the city I grew up in. (also home of the Pawtucket Red Sox [​IMG] )

    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...glance&s=books
     
  8. StephenA

    StephenA Screenwriter

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    Phil_L: I have family friends who are from Pawtucket. My town has similar books of those you linked to as well, which my grandmother owns one of each volume.
     

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