My blog has been changed to make it more appealing for those who have New England ancestors and want to see the area through photos. Things I’ll include are typical white New England churches, libraries showing their genealogical collection, historical societies, cemeteries, war memorials, in general, anything to do with history.

For four years I’ve blogged mostly about my personal genealogy in New England (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire), New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, and the Eastern Townships of Quebec, Canada. I still will, can’t forget my own roots.

Please check out the labels on the right side for articles. The header tabs at the top are a work in progress.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

There Is A Lot to Like About Lowell -- Series #8

"There Is A Lot to Like About Lowell" is the city slogan

We Love Our Smokestacks and Hate it When They Come Down

 (The above photo is not that of the one damaged by lightning.)
On Saturday late afternoon, September 6th the weather was pretty wild in Lowell. Another tornado warning for our area had been posted and all our attention was on the weather reports. Soon we had a major Thunder and Lightning storm, but felt relieved when the tornado warning was lifted. Soon after, we heard a huge lightning strike, it sounded like no other. It wasn't until a few hours later that we learned it had hit the Hood smokestack about 6 p. m.

Fortunately, nobody was hurt when the strike put a 40-foot gash in the old beloved 100-foot smokestack. For quite a few days, residents wondered if it could be saved or if it had to be taken down. From the photos below, you can see the Thorndike Factory Outlets is a very old and large complex, which was recently purchased in January by Sal Lupoli of Sal's Pizza fame. He, "plans to renovate the building into apartments and commercial space," per Lowell's The Sun newspaper, September 7, 2014.

For five days, I went to see the process of taking it down. Our first visit was early Sunday morning.
Photos taken Sunday morning (above and below). The unusual building on the left used to be the jail*, then Keith Academy, and now has condos.

It took several days to make a decision to remove it and to get the equipment up and running. Fortunately, there is a large park across the street for viewers to watch and take photos.

Another visit, yes, it's all down.
Last visit, I saw this metal liner, and assumed it was inside.
This is behind the complex, and I was standing very close to the train station.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

There Is A Lot to Like About Lowell -- Series #7

"There Is A Lot to Like About Lowell" is the city slogan

Jack Kerouac  --  Life and Times, Birth and Death

Jack Kerouac
b. 1922
Lowell Historic Board

Jack Kerouac Memorial in Lowell, Massachusetts
Wikipedia has a huge write-up about Jack, who was born in Lowell 92 years ago, and is buried in Lowell (see below). 
In the spring, I hope to take better photos, before the trees are full.

Mill Girls and Immigrants Exhibit at the Visitor's Center (above) and the exhibit of personal belongs at the Boott Mill Boarding House (below).

The anniversary of his death is in a week, and this week there will be many tourists coming to Lowell, some making their annual pilgrimage to the city in celebration of Jack's life.

The photos below were taken the day after the new monument* was installed on Sept. 30th, and I took these the following day. 
"The Road is Life"
May 22, 1922     PFC Sebastian Sampas    March 2, 1944
Massachusetts 51 Station Hospital, World War II

1910      Vee Kay Sampas Eisentraug     1975
1909     Harold C. Eisentraut     1977
1888     George K. Sampas     1961
1893     Maria C. Sampas     1981
March 12, 1922     John Louis Kerouac     October 21, 1969
November 11, 1918     Stella Sampas Kerouac     February 10, 1990   
 Directions to Jack's marker at Edson Cemetery
Lowell, Massachusetts

Article from the Boston Globe (Sept. 30, 2014)

Friday, October 10, 2014

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Lexington, Massachusetts -- One monument with 77 Names

After living in this town for 8 years and attended grades 4th through 11th, I thought I knew quite a bit about what was there to see. That was, until I toured the newly renovated Buckman Tavern two days after it opened this spring. As I walked around the grounds, I noticed the back of a memorial, it was inscribed with names, and that was new to me, since I had always just looked at the front. (As a genealogist, it reminded me to always walk around four sides of a cemetery never know what could be written unless you look first.) I've incorporated photos taken just a year ago with some taken in early spring to show some popular sites on the green.


APRIL 19, 1775

John Parker
Joseph Simonds
Joel Viles
Ebenezer Parker
William Tidd
Daniel Harrington
Samuel Sanderson
William Diamond
Robert Munroe
William Munroe
John Munroe
Jonathan Harrington

Ebenezer Bowman
Jedediah Munroe
John Bridge Jr.
John Munroe Jr.
James Brown
Nathan Munroe
John Brown
William Munroe 3rd
Solomon Brown
Nathaniel Mulliken
John Chandler
Isaac Muzzy
John Chandler Jr.
John Muzzy
Joseph Comee
Jonas Parker
Robert Douglass
Jonas Parker Jr.
Isaac Durant
Nathaniel Parkhurst
Prince Estabrook
Solomon Pierce
Nathaniel Farmer
SGT. Francis Brown
Isaac Green
Joshua Reed
William Grimes
Joshua Reed Jr.
Caleb Harrington
Nathan Reed
John Harrington
John Robbins
Jonathan Harrington, Jr.
Phillip Russell
Moses Harrington 3rd
Benjamin Sampson
Moses Harrington Jr.
Joshua Simonds
Thaddeus Harrington
John Smith
Thomas Harrington
Phineas Smith
Isaac Hastings
Simeon Snow
Timothy Blodgett
Phineas Sterns
Samuel Hastings
Jonas Stone Jr.
Samuel Hadley
John Tidd
Thomas Hadley Jr.
Samuel Tidd
John Hosmer
Joseph Underwood
Micah Hagar
Benjamin Wellington
Amos Lock
Enoch Wellington
Benjamin Lock
John Winship
Reuben Lock
Thomas Winship
Ebenezer Lock
Sylvanus Wood
Abner Mead
James Wyman
Ebenezer Munroe Jr.
Nathaniel Wyman
Thaddeus Bowman Esq.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Keene Public Library, Keene, New Hampshire

Visiting this library was a little different than all the others. There is no free parking, but meters are available, and they have a tiny genealogy / history collection. I shouldn't have been surprised because the town's Historical Society of Cheshire is among the best I've ever been to. That is where a researcher should go to first if you have ancestors in Cheshire County. I first went about 14 years ago to check it out and found information on my ancestor, as described below.

When I asked the librarian if I could see the older section of the building (I was still in the newer part), he happily gave me a nice tour. I'm posting those photos first, then I'll share my nice surprise.
Keene, Cheshire Co., New Hampshire

Private room, kept locked and I appreciated his offering to show me.

The Library Director's office is behind this stained glass.
The library does have maps, lots of very old city directors, and very few books. I wish I had taken a photo of the row with the earliest directories, but when I saw the 1831 book, I just grabbed it and opened it quickly. There was MY ancestor listed! At least I took a photo of the cover and part of the page with my Wilder listings.

Line three is for Abel Wilder, jail keeper, Washington Street.
One of my favorite posts was about him, he was known as The Happiest Man in Town. He lived until 91. My post explains one of my problems trying to find his burial spot, and the Historical Society was a huge help in my solving it. Also, see the beautiful house he built, photographed in the spring and fall.
New part of the Library.
Next four photos are of the town, shown for their color.

I have been to Keene many times, and decided to check on my two ancestor's tombstones.
Abel Wilder, my 4th great-grandfather, mentioned above is buried in the Washington Cemetery, Keene.
His mother-in-law, Elizabeth Johnson, my 5th great-grandmother is below and was buried in the Town Cemetery in Dublin, New Hampshire.

A list of all the libraries, with genealogy departments, I've visited in New England and New York is below. All are linked to my posts.