Chittenden Historical Society Program: Kip Clark, World War II POW from Chittenden

On May 10 at 7:00 PM at the Chittenden Grange Hall at 3 Lower Middle Road in North Chittenden, the Chittenden Historical Society will present a taped interview with Leland Clark by Marko Svoren about Lee’s father Kip Clark and his experiences as a Prisoner of War in Germany during World War II.

Marko was the Society’s Muzzy Davenport Award winner in 2020, but Covid restrictions prevented presentation of the program. For his eighth-grade history project at Barstow Memorial School, Marko, son of Jan and Elana Svoren of Chittenden, chose to write a paper about Chittenden resident Merald Paul Clark, known as Kip to his friends and family, who spent time as a POW in World War II. Following his interview at the Chittenden Historical Society in March with Kip’s son Leland Clark which was taped by then Society president Steve Welch, Marko wrote a 2,217-word paper using facts from the interview plus further research.

Marko was encouraged by teacher Jamie Gallagher to submit his paper, “ ‘Kip’ Clark: Vermont Local and American POW,” to the 2020 Virtual Vermont History competition. sponsored by the Vermont Historical Society. Marko was the Junior Division Winner. Moreover, he placed second overall in the competition, qualifying him to present his paper at the National History Day Event in Washington, DC.

The Society is very pleased to have had a small part in Marko’s achievement, and we welcome the opportunity to share the interview. The program is free open to the public. All are welcome to attend. Refreshments will be served.

Chittenden Historical Society Hosts Amateur Genealogist

Please join the Chittenden Historical Society on Tuesday, April 12, at 7:00 PM at the North Chittenden Grange Hall at 3 Lower Middle Road in Chittenden. Amateur genealogist Elaine Meyers will give the program. In retracing her family’s westward migration, Elaine discovers a surprise relationship. Elaine also gives the process leading to her discovery so others can follow a similar journey.

First Meeting

The Chittenden Historical Society will hold its first meeting of 2022 on Tuesday, March 8, at 7:00 PM at the Historical Society at 337 Holden Road in Chittenden. This is our organizational meeting  that determines the programming for the year. Everyone is invited and welcome to attend.

Town Meeting Bake Sale

The Chittenden Historical extends a thank you to all who baked for out Town Meeting Day Bake Sale. After last year’s sale was skipped for the pandemic considerations, we certainly enjoyed visiting with everyone again. Our total for the day was $638.02, including sales, donations and memberships. Our thanks goes to all who helped make this a success.

2021 Chittenden Historical Society Activities

Chittenden Historical Society, Inc.

Although the Chittenden Historical Society building has been closed since March 2020, first by the pandemic and then for water quality considerations, we still managed to host a few events.

• Memorial Day observance at Memorial Park – no singing this year, but notable addresses.
• The July Ice Cream Social at the Grange Hall at which Ardan Niering, son of Colleen and Jacob Niering of Chittenden, was awarded the Muzzy Davenport Award for his research of Oliver Erastus Churchill, Civil War veteran from Chittenden.
• Business meeting in August at the Grange Hall to plan future programming.
• In September Justin Lindholm’s presentation spotlighting the Brad and Janet Mead family, founders of Pico Ski Area, with special guest Karl Acker, II, in attendance. Also featured was a motion picture capturing the opening day at Killington Ski Area.
• October Vermont Humanities Program with speaker Bill Mares “From Homebrew to the House of Fermentology.”
• The November Annual Meeting dinner and election of officers held at the Fox Creek Inn was both delicious and delightful.

Despite our “office” being closed by the pandemic considerations, our collections have been improved by significant donations from the Robert Baird family and from Sandra Davenport Avery. We are grateful to receive all of these items reminding us of earlier times in Chittenden, and we look forward to the day we can show them to you.

The following officers were elected to serve in 2022: President, Karen Webster; Vice-President, Joseph Meyers; Secretary, Elaine Meyers; and Treasurer, Marcia Lertola. Bob Muzzy and George Butts were reelected for two-year terms as directors. They will join directors Reggi Dubin and Dave Sargent, whose two-year terms expire next year. We thank Steve Welch for his valuable leadership as recent President of the Society.

As per preferences expressed at the November dinner, programming next year will focus on more “history walks” and local history. The Society meets the second Tuesday of each month, March through November. Our meetings are open and free to the public. Please join us!
For more information, please contact Karen at (802) 483-6471.

Historical Society Meets September 14th

The Chittenden Historical Society is so pleased to announce their first program of 2021 on Tuesday evening, September 14th, at 7:00 PM in the Grange Hall in North Chittenden.

The Society will host Justin Lindholm, who will give a film presentation of the 1958 Opening Day at Killington Ski Area.  Justin will add a short history of Brad and Janet Mead, founders of Pico Ski Area and the parents of two-time Olympic gold medal winner Andrea Mead. Included in the presentation will be some of the Meads’ history in the Towns of Chittenden and Mendon before developing Pico.


The Grange Hall is located at 3 Lower Middle Road, south off of Stoney Hill Road. The program is free and open to the public. For more information, please call 483-6471.

Ice Cream Social at North Chittenden Grange Hall

The Chittenden Historical Society is very happy to announce that we are again holding our annual Ice Cream Social on Tuesday evening, July 13th, at 7:00 PM. This year, the event will be at the Grange Hall on 3 Lower Middle Road in North Chittenden.
The 2021 recipient of the Muzzy Davenport Award for demonstrated excellence in local history is Barstow eighth-grade graduate Ardan Niering. He and his family will be our guests of honor as he shares his project about Oliver Erastus Churchill who served with the 10th Vermont at the battle of Cold Harbor in 1864.
Following the program, we will dish out the ice cream with strawberries, chocolate and whipped cream and get reacquainted after our year of no CHS events. This is always a good time to renew or start your membership.
Our CHS building will remain closed until September 2021. We are sorry for the inconvenience. Meanwhile, meetings will be transferred to the Grange Hall until further notice.

Memorial Day Observance at the Monument

The Chittenden Historical Society is pleased to sponsor a Memorial Day Observance at Monument Park next to the Civil War Monument in Chittenden on Monday, May 31, at 10:00 AM.

Several guest speakers have been engaged by Historical Society President Steve Welch. Gene Sargent will explain the reason the flag is folded into a triangle. Bob Webster will again recite the Gettysburg Address.

The Chittenden Volunteer Fire Department will direct traffic for the event.

Society Announces New Aquisitions

Despite our “office” being closed by the pandemic considerations, our collections have been improved by two significant donations.

Bob Muzzy donated items related to the Barstow family. A little pamphlet contains the purpose and agreement of the Barstow Endowment Funds. Two copies of a leather-bound booklet of the “Frederic Duclos Barstow Foundation for American Samoa Barstow Foundation in Samoa,” are a reprint of the article appearing in the Mid-Pacific Magazine in April 1933 by Frank E. Midlafff. A second leather-bound booklet was written by Frederic Duclos Barstow himself. “Under the Southern Cross” tells of his adventures travelling to and in American Samoa. Additionally, a scrapbook kept by Juna Rollins, great-aunt of Bob Muzzy, containing interesting news clippings, poems and obituaries of the time was donated.

In July, the second donation was by Lynn Chernoff of items from her grandmother Clara Atwood’s days as a member of the Arza Noyes Grand Army of the Republic Women’s Relief Corps No. 82. Included were three journals from the Corps’ initial meeting in 1907 through 1928, which were very exciting to see. They have provided answers to questions we have had about their endeavors, such as when the Civil War monument fence was put in.

The journals note that purchase of the Civil War monument was proposed in October 1911. A town-wide meeting the following April determined its placement, and the monument was dedicated in October 1912 — quite an endeavor because we have learned that it cost $900. The surrounding curbing was installed “immediately” after the November 1912 meeting, and now we know that the fence apparently was not erected until 1926.

Other items include a book with details of the Women’s Relief Corps national convention that was held in Rutland, Vermont, in May 1933. Some beautiful needlework sample items were part of the donation. They are now wrapped in conservation tissue, and we will work out a way to display some of them.

We are grateful to receive all of these historical items, and we look forward to the day we can show them to you.

2020 Muzzy Davenport Winner

     Even though Covid-19 social distancing restrictions and closure of town buildings deleted our Ice Cream Social this July, there IS, however, a Muzzy Davenport Award winner: Marko Svoren, son of Jan and Elana Svoren of Chittenden.
     For his eighth-grade history project, Marko chose to write a paper about Chittenden resident Merald Paul Clark, known as Kip to his friends and family, who spent time as a POW in World War II. Following an interview at the Chittenden Historical Society in March with Kip’s son Leland Clark (which was taped by Steve Welch), Marko wrote a 2,469-word paper using facts from the interview plus further research.
     Marko’s paper, “ ‘Kip’ Clark: Vermont Local and American POW,” was submitted to the 2020 Virtual Vermont History competition. sponsored by the Vermont Historical Society. Marko was the Junior Division Winner! Moreover, he placed second overall in the competition, qualifying him for the National History Day competition! Congratulations to Marko, his parents, his teacher James Gallagher, and Barstow School!
     At some point in the future, the Chittenden Historical Society hopes to host Marko for a presentation of his paper before the Society. The Society does have a copy of his beautiful, insightful, well-written and documented paper, plus a video of the interview with Leland Clark, son of “Kip.”