Winter Newsletter 2015

Fall Meetings

Ice Cream Social

Victoria Quint presenting project
at the Ice Cream Social

July

At our annual Ice Cream Social, the Muzzy Davenport Award was given for outstanding work and interest in local history at Barstow. Victoria Quint, daughter of Andrew and Sarah Quint of Chittenden, presented her winning project, comparing and contrasting the old one-room schoolhouses in Chittenden with the Barstow of today, before the audience. Afterwards, everyone enjoyed ice cream, fresh strawberries, whipped cream and Vermont Sundae Sauces.

August

A report on the Society’s booth at Expo 2014 in Tunbridge was given at the business meeting held in August, along with other business of the Society.

September

Using the digitized photos in the Society’s
collection, an informal slide show of the building of Chittenden Dam and the Flood of 1947 with historical comments by Bob Muzzy was well received by the members. This completes our series of programs on the dams. Earlier we viewed photos of the building of the East Pittsford Dam and hiked to see its remnants. Also in September, we celebrated the 100th anniversary of the building of the electric generating plant on Powerhouse Road with a display at Green Mountain Power’s fall cleanup at the dam. GMP supplied hotdogs, cupcakes and t-shirts to commemorate the event.

October

The potluck supper at the Grange Hall this year
was followed by Vermont Humanities Council speaker and curator of the Precision Museum in Windsor, Carrie Brown of Etna, NH with the title “Arming the Union: How Vermont Gunmakers and the Technology that Shaped America.” Carrie explored the critical role that Windsor, Vermont, played in producing technology that not only won the war but went on to change American life with precision tool-making. Many industrial companies of today trace their roots to Windsor.

November

The annual meeting and dinner out was held this year at the Country House in Pittsford. Officers for 2015 were elected as follows: President, Karen Webster; Vice President, Marcia Lertola; Secretary, Elaine Meyers; Treasurer, Bob Webster, Trustees for two years, Reggi Dubin and Newt Wetmore. Bob Muzzy and George Butts will continue to serve as Trustees until 2016.

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Fall Activities

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In September we were excited to be part of Barstow teacher Rachel Valcour’s project to explore the historical, commercial, community and wildlife aspects of Chittenden Reservoir for Barstow 7th and 8th graders. The Society showed slides of vintage photos of the building of Chittenden Dam, followed by slides of photos and an account of the Flood of 1947.

Rachel also arranged for the students to kayak around the dam to predetermined areas where speakers were able to further enlighten them regarding commercial, community and wildlife surrounding the dam. Historical Society member Bob Muzzy talked about effects of the flood on the community. The students could identify with Bob, who had been identified in the photos seen earlier as a young boy playing where his home had been before the flood. Students later used their experiences to compare the local effects of the Flood of 1947 with Tropical Storm Irene. As part of the project, narratives of their experiences with Irene were written to provide a primary source of information of the event.

Rachel also shared the tent with us at the GMP fall cleanup at the dam with some of her “flood math” and water dynamics table.

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Projects

Ice Cream Social

We are pleased to announce our annual summer Ice Cream Social to introduce community members to the Chittenden Historical Society and invite them to join us as members. Our mission is to preserve, and share our rich town history. During the Ice Cream Social we also present a monetary award to the annual winner of the Muzzy Davenport Award and the recipient shares their project with us.

Your support helps preserve and share town history.
Come to the Ice Cream Social July 14th
and presentation by Muzzy Davenport Award recipient.


Ice Cream, Vermont Sundae Sauces, Fresh Strawberries, Whipped Cream!

During the Year

In our yearly programming, we present field trips and hikes to explore the town’s early history and historical programs at our monthly meetings. We collect and preserve photos, artifacts, buildings, oral histories, genealogies, and historical accounts of town places and events.

Many aspects of our heritage are alive and relevant today.
In a time of “instant everything,” the Society can provide a historical context for today’s current life activities and, in so doing engenders a “sense of place” in our Town of Chittenden.

Our Building

In 2013, through the generosity of the Board of Selectmen, we were able to move into the prior Town Office building on Holden Road. Our records, some over 100 years old, are now in the previous Town Clerk’s vault. At last, everything is on one floor and much more accessible for everyone. Several historical displays now in the society’s building evoke life in the early days of Chittenden. We invite you to visit.

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Notices

Special History Display at Town Office

The CHS Expo 2014 exhibit of Lena Osgood Long’s photos of Chittenden (1893-1908) has been set up for a short time at the Chittenden Town Offices for the community members to see. She photographed the building of two power dams, town activities, and local residents. Notecards of the children pictured are available for purchase at the Chittenden Historical Society.

Coming Events

See our calendar page.

Next Meeting

The Chittenden Historical Society meets on the second Tuesday of the month, March through November at 7:00 pm at the Society on Holden Road (or otherwise posted on our calendar).

Visitors and new members are welcome!

Third Edition Available

The third edition of Chittenden, Vermont: A Town History is now in! Books are available at the Town Clerk’s office or the Society for $30. For mailing, add $4 for postage. All proceeds go to the Chittenden Historical Society. For more info see the Book section.

Dues

We appreciate your membership. The Chittenden Historical Society follows a calendar year, so dues for 2014 are payable between January and our annual membership drive at the July Ice Cream Social.

To be a member, you do not have to be an officer, just follow your interests. We are a 501(c)3 corporation; all donations and memberships are tax-deductible.

The Society is a 501 ( c )3 non-profit organization and depends solely on fundraising efforts and membership dues for operating costs. It welcomes tax-deductible contributions that will enhance its collection of historic items, pictures or genealogies. The Chittenden Historical Society, Inc., also welcomes visitors and extends an invitation to membership to those interested in the Town’s history. The Society is open on Tuesday afternoons in the former Town Office from 2 until 4 pm, March through November, or by appointment. All of the Society’s programs and activities are open to the public, and visitors are welcome. Meetings are on the second Tuesday of the month, March through November, at 7:30pm in the former Town Office, unless otherwise advertised.

Grange Hall Project, Phase IV

Phase IV

Landscaped

Back of Grange Hall

Phase IV consisted of landscaping with terraces around the building and creating  driveways and the park and ride parking lot. Also some preparation for the next phase included insulating the walls with spray in foam while the windows got insulation treatments inside and out with insulated blinds and storm windows. See first Grange Hall post for more information.


 

Grange Hall Project, Phase III Framing

Phase III Framing

Kitchen and mechanical room wallsThis Phase included the installation of the accessibility lift, pouring the cement floor in the lower level and re-slating of the roof. The final steps were framing the interior of the new lower level space and addition.  See first Grange Hall post for more information.


 

Grange Hall Project, Phase II – Main Floor

Phase II – Main Floor

Original Tall Windows

Original Tall Windows

The slide show that follows shows improvements made to the main floor in 2007-2008.  See first Grange Hall post for more information.

A listing of all improvements in this Phase are included here.

  • complete architectural and engineering plans
  • all state permits required so far have been obtained
  • leveled the sagging floor
  • leveled the basement floor and add gravel
  • installed insulated sub-basement heating ducts
  • installed engineered iron support beam system under floor
  • replaced rotted southeast corner post and other damaged pieces
  • built shell of addition to house lift and baths
  • added cement block to the foundation and raise grade
  • attach well and septic service into building
  • original balcony and coffered ceiling revealed
  • restoration of the exterior shell
  • replace windows to original tall design
  • exterior painting and grading


 

Grange Hall Project, Phase II – Addition

Phase II – Addition

Roof Trim on the Addition

Roof Trim on the Addition

The slide show below shows the process in building the addition in 2007-2008. See first Grange Hall post for more information.

A listing of all improvements in this Phase are included here.

  • complete architectural and engineering plans
  • all state permits required so far have been obtained
  • leveled the sagging floor
  • leveled the basement floor and add gravel
  • installed insulated sub-basement heating ducts
  • installed engineered iron support beam system under floor
  • replaced rotted southeast corner post and other damaged pieces
  • built shell of addition to house lift and baths
  • added cement block to the foundation and raise grade
  • attach well and septic service into building
  • original balcony and coffered ceiling revealed
  • restoration of the exterior shell
  • replace windows to original tall design
  • exterior painting and grading


Grange Hall Project, Phase II – Basement

Phase II – Basement

New Steel Beam Support

New Steel Beam Support

This Phase included improvements to the building itself and in this section the foundation was improved to better support the building. See the slide show showing the basement improvements of Phase II made in 2006 and 2007. See first Grange Hall post for more information.

  • complete architectural and engineering plans
  • all state permits required so far have been obtained
  • leveled the sagging floor
  • leveled the basement floor and add gravel
  • installed insulated sub-basement heating ducts
  • installed engineered iron support beam system under floor
  • replaced rotted southeast corner post and other damaged pieces
  • built shell of addition to house lift and baths
  • added cement block to the foundation and raise grade
  • attach well and septic service into building
  • original balcony and coffered ceiling revealed
  • restoration of the exterior shell
  • replace windows to original tall design
  • exterior painting and grading


 

Grange Hall Project, Phase I

Phase I

10-11-2006-03In 2000 the society, working under the Board of Selectmen, formed the Historic Buildings Preservation Committee (HBPC) to restore and repair the town’s historic public buildings. At present restoration of the North Chittenden Grange Hall is under way. The 1833 building originally housed
a Congregational Church, but by the early 1880s it became a Grange Hall. In 1906 it was purchased by the town and used as a town hall, alternating with the one in South Chittenden. Having fallen into disrepair, it is being restored for use as a cultural and recreational center to embrace all ages of residents.

It is a landmark building sitting on a hill overlooking the village of Holden and still retains many of its original features, beaded wainscoting, period moldings, a small balcony and coffered ceilings.

Phase I was to install the well, septic field and relocate the entrance
to the original. See the completed work in the photo gallery below.




 

Grange Hall Progress 2006

Changes are taking place at the old Grange Hall in North Chittenden. The Historic Building Preservations Committee, which operates only with the approval of both the Selectmen and the Historical Society, has been planning the restoration of the historic 1830 building for a while, and now the plans are being put into action. This fall the project was broken into five phases to achieve use of the building as soon as possible. The first phase, scheduled for 2006, was to install the well and septic system and to move the access back to the original road site. And it is done!

grange_hallIn the spring of 2007, construction will begin on the shell of a small addition on the southeast side. This will also address some structural conditions on the southeast side and roof. An engineered support system will be installed under the Grange Hall floor. (The pronounced sag in the floor was one reason the Selectmen banned use of the building for safety reasons.) The finished lower level will include a catering kitchen plus a bathroom and lift in the small addition.

Later, a third phase will address the outer shell; the fourth, the interior of the hall, the addition and the lower level; and last will be the final landscaping.

The committee welcomes donations of labor, materials and expertise to keep the project’s cost to the taxpayers as low as possible. Financial support is welcome also. Please support the forthcoming fundraising activities in the works for later in the spring. Donations by check may be made to Town of Chittenden Historic Preservation Fund, Chittenden Town Clerk, PO Box 89, Chittenden, VT 05737.

Cataloging Continues in 2006

unknown_womanThis spring the Historical Society is continuing the cataloguing project by establishing a card file listing each item of the Society’s collections. Not only will this file allow better assessment and tracking of the Society’s collections, but will better enable researchers in finding material. The card file can be used to build an electronic database in the future.

This should be a fun project as we identify, classify and list the photos, letters, manuscripts and objects. On-the-job training will be provided – anyone who wants to help can work on this project. We welcome community participation. We are meeting on Tuesday mornings, weather permitting.