The Quarterly Newsletter of the
Montgomery Historical Society
P.O. Box 47
Montgomery, VT 05471
Click here for a printer friendly pdf version
Bill McGroarty,Vice Chair
The MHS Board meets the third Thursday of the month at 5:00 p.m. Pratt Hall in the Summer, Public Safety Building Conference Room in the Winter.
Montgomery History Quiz:
According to the 1939 report of “Agricultural Trends in Montgomery, Vermont” (UVM Extension Service), the number of cattle between 1890 and 1935 held steady from 1,300 - 2,700, but the ratio dramatically shifted to milk cows from meat stock and oxen.
1. The number of horses in town between 1860 and 1935 remained between
2. The number of sheep increased or decreased?
3. The number of hens increased or decreased?
CHAIRMAN'S MESSAGEAs I write this I note that Montgomery is now light blue on the State's "positive cases" map, indicting between 1 and 5 cases. COVID -19 has forced us to do things differently and cancel a number of programs and events:
We were able to award scholarships and make repairs to our front entrance.
We canceled our Memorial Day ceremony but nearly every Board member was present to place a wreath at the Village Green monument.
We held back our membership mailing until late May.
The Farmers Market was canceled for want of vendors.
Our Annual Meeting and dinner looks doubtful.
We may host a small wedding in August. Another wedding in October has been postponed for a year.
Our painting project is on track and we should see the building's exterior renewed in August and September.
The Board has had two Zoom meetings and will probably have more.
We will adapt and move forward. We appreciate your understanding and patience.
This newsletter contains our Annual Report of the State of our Society which is normally given at a June meeting. As always we appreciate your membership support and will work to keep our organization strong. Stay safe and positive.Scott
PRATT HALL PAINTING PROJECT UPDATE
We were awarded a $10,000 painting grant! Probably starting in August the entire exterior of Pratt Hall will be scraped, then primed, then given two coats of finished paint by Precision Coatings of Vermont. This will be the first time the entire building has been painted since 2006. The grant amounts to about one third the anticipated cost.
This project was assisted by a preservation grant made possible by a partnership between the 1772 Foundation and the Preservation Trust of Vermont. Thank you!
PRATT HALL ENTRY REPAIRS
Jay Day and crew finished the new entry work as weather and COVID restrictions allowed. Four damaged engraved bricks were replaced and eight new bricks were added to the walkway. A new railing by Steve Hathaway will be added comparable to the previous one. The upper wheelchair ramp is now raised by a drill powered jack. (Click on video link at the top of this page))
New entry deck
We are sorry to report the death of Tony Peters in late
April. He and Sue, a former Board member, were strong Society
supporters and attended many MHS events. Donations can be made to
the Montgomery Library in his memory.
Also long time member Carol Kremer left us in late April. She and husband Herman were regulars at our summer concerts and holiday events. Contributions in her memory may be made to the "Carol Usher Kremer Memorial Fund" for the School of Social Work c/o McGill University.
Finally, Wenda Restall, wife of MHS president and board member emeritus Steve Hays, died suddenly in June. She suffered a heart attack while working in her garden in Montgomery. Plans for a memorial service are on hold due to the Corona virus. Contributions in her memory can be sent to the Drama Studio or New England Public Radio, both in Springfield,MA.
Our condolences to all families and friends in this sad time.
HISTORY QUIZ ANSWERS
1. The number of horses in town between 1860 and 1935 remained between 200-300, even as cars began to became more common.
2. The number of sheep decreased 96%, with only 50 remaining in 1935.
3. The number of hens increased 56% to nearly 2,000 in 1935.
ODDS AND ENDS
We are told we will be featured in the Preservation Trust of Vermont's first ever Annual Report. We are also standing by to support a local author working on a book on the hidden history of Franklin County.
MEMBERSHIP DRIVE FINALLY UNDERWAY
Hopefully you have received our annual membership reminder letter. You can renew / join online anytime.
Revenue from membership dues is the life blood of our Society. Dues and donations fund our operating costs (e.g. heat, water, power, insurance, grounds), and our programs (e.g. preservation, speakers, concerts, holiday events).
2020 MEMORIAL DAY OBSERVANCE
2020 SCHOLARSHIP WINNERS
It was very competitive this year. Noah Sorin was selected for the Lalia Pratt Hays/Amy Booth Meyers scholarship. He plans to attend Boston University. Lydia Bowen was selected for the Joe and Irene Scott scholarship. She plans to attend the University of Rhode Island. Congratulations to both and to their moms and dads.
THIS QUARTER IN MONTGOMERY HISTORY
July 1881: Montgomery's Catholic Parish established.
August 1954: Montgomery Fire Department organized.
1910: Telephone service established by a line between the Center and the Village.
1973: First officers of the newly organized Montgomery Historical Society elected.
Our thanks to George and Mary Roberts for donating photos, books, and ephemera related to the Parker family and store in Montgomery Village. Also to Cathie Paradee for donating a pair of pillow cases decorated by Montgomery's Marion Towle.
Thanks for your support! Not a member... why not join us?
2020 Annual Report
(as of June 24, 2020)
This year we mourn the passing of four great friends, Tony Peters, Winston Lewis, Carol Kremer, and Wenda Restall. We thank them and their families for their support and the many fond memories of time together.
This year Noah Sorin was awarded the Lalia Pratt-Hays/Amy Booth-Meyer scholarship and Lydia Bowen was awarded the Joe and Irene Scott scholarship.
2019 Annual Meeting Minutes
MONTGOMERY HISTORICAL SOCIETY
Minutes of Annual Meeting
Pratt Hall, Montgomery
Friday, June 21, 2018 @ 6:00 PM
THESE ARE THE UNOFFICIAL MINUTES UNTIL APPROVED BY THE BOARD.
Board Members and Members present:
Board Members – Scott Perry, Bill McGroarty, Marijke Dollois, Elsie Saborowski, Bob Cummins, Pat Farmer, Patty Perl, John Kuryloski
Scott called the Meeting to order at 6:00 PM and welcomed everyone to the 45th Annual Meeting.
1. Recognition visitors/guests:
were 54 members present, including
2. Powerpoint presentation:
Scott welcomed everyone present followed by:
Review of by-laws and purpose of MHS
N. W. Clapp’s Essay in Abby Hemenway’s 1871 Historical Gazetteer:
“Montgomery is…surrounded by mountains and hills on all sides,…Jay Mountain, on the east, is by far the most lofty of the range—the Peak ranging next to Camel’s Hump in the State, in altitude. It is sometimes resorted to by pleasure-seekers, but the distance is found to be too far from civilization and carriage roads to have the pleasure amount to much.”
In Memoriam of long-time members:
Elizabeth Rawlinson – wife of Sidney Sundell
Florence Vavoudis – served in WW II in the Marine Corps
Joe and Irene Scott Scholarship – Henry Haase
Lailia Pratt Hays – Amy Booth Meyers – Claire Ellis
Neither winners could attend as they were at orientation at their respective colleges in Boston. They will receive a check for $500 each, a certificate and Town of Montgomery book.
2018 LLHSM Award Winner – Tim Murphy. He could not be present as he was celebrating his wedding anniversary. He will be hosting “Montgomery Stories” at Pratt Hall in the near future.
Steve Hays made a Motion, seconded by Bob Cummins to approve the Annual Meeting Minutes of June 29, 2018 as written; Motion passed unanimously.
Treasurer’s Report – 06/21/18:
Checking balance............................................ $ 6,409.00
Money Market Checking Account..................... $ 39,760.00
Total:....................................................... $ 46,169.00
Two pie-charts were shown to indicate visually of income and expenses by groups. The biggest expense is insurance.
Bill McGroarty made a Motion, seconded by Steve Hays to approve the Treasurer’s Report of June 21, 2019 as presented; Motion was unanimously approved.
So far in 2019 123 members of which 6 new and 5 business partners for $7,126.00 (2018 total 180, 4 and 8 - $11,321 respectively).
Board of Directors:
The slate of officers presented:
Scott Perry, Chairman John Beaty
Bill McGroarty, Vice Chairman Elsie Saborowski
Marijke Dollois, Secretary Sue Wilson
Pat Farmer, Treasurer Patty Perl
Jo Anne Bennett Bob Cummings
Tim Chapin Andre LaBier
Noela McGroarty made a Motion, seconded by Marsha Phillips to elect the slate of officers as presented; Motion passed unanimously.
Events/Activities overview for 2019:
- Memorial Day
- Northern Bronze Concert
- Farmers’ Market
- Buildings & Grounds
- Holidays Programs
The MHS had 5,000 brochures on the covered bridges printed that will be distributed in the area to local businesses. Photographs were shown of the Jewett brothers, builders of the covered bridges; Scott also gave information about the lives.
Scott thanked everyone present for their support.
Noela McGroarty made a Motion, seconded by Pat Farmer to adjourn at 6:30 P.M. Said motion passed unanimously.
49 of those present moved across the road to partake in a dinner at the Black Lantern Inn.
Respectfully submitted, Marijke M. Dollois
2020 Annual Membership Report
2020 Annual Treasurer’s Report
2020 Annual Chairman's Report
I believe the State of the Society, as reflected in the 2019 end of year numbers and early 2020 statistics, is strong. Our membership numbers remain steady, our revenues consistent and adequate to pay our bills, we sponsor popular programs that are well attended, and we meet the four primary mission areas called out in our bylaws.
Section 1: The Mission of the Montgomery Historical Society is to enhance the Town of Montgomery and the knowledge of its history by preserving the past, exploring the present, and preparing for the future.
Section 2: The Purpose of the Montgomery Historical Society shall be to:
Preserve Pratt Hall, structures, artifacts and memorabilia of historical interest to residents of the Town of Montgomery and friends of the area;
Provide a venue for local exhibits and for artists and artisans to share their talents;
Sponsor programs that foster knowledge of the history and heritage of the Town and State, preserve town history, and foster cultural events and a sense of community;
Annually award scholarships to a
graduating high school senior (12th grade) from Montgomery going on to
post-high school education as funds allow.
Section 3. All programs will be available to the general public.
While the COVID-19 response has severely limited our programs so far in 2020 we will continue to plan for a return to our normal operations when appropriate. In the meantime we will focus on programs and activities that do not depend on, or promote, social gathering. These include maintenance and repairs to Pratt Hall and our property and grounds, working with the State for installation of Historic Markers, adding content to our website, and supporting other community organizations where we can.
We welcome your comments and appreciate your support.