Thursday, June 30, 2016

Ten Years Ago - June 30, 2006

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Good Morning,

It's Throwback Thursday and I'm featuring some photos taken 10 years ago at Fruitland Museum in Harvard, MA. I was working at Hewlett Packard at the time and we had a team luncheon on the grounds. Most of us have left the company, but we still keep in touch with social media and occasionally for lunch.

L-R (Sue, John, Leslie, Peter, John, April)

Beautiful Place

John is a true Red Sox fan, check out the shirt

Peter and Sue


Prospect Hill is a bit easier to pronounce

Saturday, June 25, 2016

One Year Ago

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When I was a kid, I used to mow lawns in the neighborhood. I had quite a few customers. It was summer and I never bothered to wear a shirt. I would develop quite a tan although not as orange as the one sprayed on Trump. If sunscreen existed I didn't know of it and wouldn't have used it. 

In 2013 I had a sore on my ear that wouldn't heal and underwent a bit of surgery for skin cancer. In 2015 I went again for another sore on my nose. I was paying for my years of working in the sun. 

In both cases I had squamous cell carcinoma which was treated with MOHS surgery a process that involves cutting, testing and waiting. It is not the most pleasant way to spend a summer day.

My doctor is located in Keene, NH and the commute takes me along wonderful views of Mount Monandnock. I stopped in front of Perkins Pond with my bandaged nose to chat with a painter. He was visiting the region from the midwest.

A moment from June 25, 2015 - 11:31 AM

Mount Monadnock seen across Perkins Pond

Wet Paint

Thursday, June 23, 2016

The Sky Was On Fire

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Good Morning,

Nothing is as fleeting as a sunrise or sunset. The light and patterns change from second to second. One year ago on June 23, 2015 in New Ipswich, NH, we had an afternoon summer storm. It was followed by a rainbow which was noteworthy enough but the real display occurred at sunset when the entire sky lit up. 

Somewhere over the rainbow in New Ipswich
June 23, 2015 - 7:33PM

The sky is ablaze
June 23, 2015 - 8:30 PM

Strange Light

The entire sky was  aglow

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

M. E. Church - New Ipswich

Good Morning,

Years ago my mother purchased some New Ipswich postcards at a yard sale that dated back to the early 1900s. I found them of interest because I can identify most of the locations. However there are some mysteries. This postcard shows a church identified as M.E. Church which was located near the old Congregational Church on Main Street (the building with the steeple in the background).

The Methodist Episcopal Church (M.E. Church)eventually formed the Methodist Church in 1968, eventually to become the United Methodist Church. I'm curious where this building was located. The Congregational Church was rebuilt at the same location after it was burnt following a lightning strike.

Postcard - January 24, 1908

Saturday, June 18, 2016

National Housing Emergency, 1946-1947

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I was born shortly after the end of World War II. I was in the first wave of the baby boom when a child was born in the United States every 7 seconds. Like many of my fellow boomers I will become a septuagenarian this year,

There was a shortage of housing for all the returning veterans and their families which was addressed by President Truman (Source URL)
An act of congress, May 22, 1946, declared a national housing emergency and clothed the Executive Branch of the government with special powers to deal with it. The special powers were to continue in existence until December 31, 1947, for it was believed that the acute shortage of housing could not be overcome before that date. Under the emergency program more housing was built during 1946 than in any peacetime year since 1928 but the new construction fell far short of meeting the accumulated demand. Veterans returning from the theatres of war were finding as much difficulty in obtaining suitable living quarters sixteen months after the close of the war as they had immediately after V-J Day.
The government's emergency program was sharply revised, and all but reversed, by President Truman, Dec. 14, 1946, although he said there would be “no major modification in the objective of rapidly and adequately housing our veterans.”
I am determined that a vigorous housing program will continue to be carried out in 1947 [the President said]. The techniques we will use are those that will work today. I am convinced that this 1947 program will produce results.… We, as a nation, owe the veterans an opportunity to have homes. We will see that they get them.
We lived in a rental house located in Stamford Connecticut for the first 12 years of my life. The houses were build by the government and were completely identical. In 1960 the neighborhood was razed to make way for Rippowam High School. I believe the parking lot was the location of my early home. We lived on 50 Horan Avenue in the neighborhood. All the streets were named after veterans who were killed in the war. I always thought those names should have been reassigned to new roads.

Location (Approximate) -  41°05'06.9"N+73°32'46.9"W

50 Horan Avenue - 1947
The floor plant was quite simple. There were two bedrooms, a living room, kitchen, bathroom with just a shower and utility room. The house had no cellar. It had a central coal stove for heat which we converted to kerosene. It had a cesspool at the end of the driveway but thankfully had town water. I shared the bedroom with the two windows with my sisters. The house had wooden clapboards and I believe it was painted pale yellow. All the homes were painted in various pastel colors.

My sister blows bubbles while my cousin looks on. This is the backyard porch. To the right was a big tank of kerosene for the stove. To the right of that was a large coal bin with an opening into the house. My father re-purposed that to hold his outboard motor, gasoline, tools, a cool blowtorch and other dangerorus items. This photo was taken probably in 1954.

My dad loved to fish and striped bass was his favorite. This big boy is almost as big as I am. This shot gives an idea of the backyard. The entire area behind the house was undeveloped for several years and was a great place to explore. This photo was taken in the 1950s

My first haircut in 1948. My dad loved to fish and figured putting a fishing pole in my hand would inspire me. It didn't work. Note the next door neighbor's house which is exactly the same. The entire neighborhood was filled with veterans with kids my age. There was no lack of things to do.

The Bridge over the Souhegan West Branch

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In 2010 the Smithville bridge located at the end of Goen Road was replaced. A rusted culvert was removed and the bridge was rebuilt with large preformed concrete tunnels. The bridge that predated that was constructed of wood. I discovered a photo that showed something else quite interesting.

Location - 42°44'12.1"N+71°52'14.2"W

Bridge over the Souhegan West Branch
Photo taken June 1, 2011 
Same location undated photo
At that time the house on the right had a full porch. There is an extra building on the left side that might have been a fire station.

A blend of new and old

Friday, June 17, 2016

Turnpike Road

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Good Morning,

Where on Turnpike Road was this photo taken? I'm guessing this was taken just south of the center of town. What a nice place for a stroll.

Turnpike Road (Undated Postcard)

Turnpike Road - June 18, 2016
Could this be approximately the same location?


Thursday, June 16, 2016

Highbridge - New Ipswich, NH

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Good Morning,

I was a bit premature in announcing the retirement of this blog. In spite of the number of dead links and missing photos I see that it still gets a fair number of visitors.

There is a song by Marty Robbins named "Only a Picture Stops Time". I've decided that should be the theme of this blog, a look backwards over the decades. We'll start with a a bridge that has been around for some time.

Highbridge Postcard - 1908
Bridge repair reveals the top of the original structure
April 25, 2015

The new bridge spans the old bridge without depending upon it for support
August 02, 2015
The new bridge is wider, safer and has a sidewalk (right side) for walkers and folks that want to view the river
October 08, 2015