Ever wonder how we got the words we use? A light hearted attempt at the story ….
Ever wonder how we got the words we use? A light hearted attempt at the story ….
We are having book signing and presentation for the “Roton Point” book at the following locations:
1. Reading Garden at Black Rock Library, 2705 Fairfield Ave, Bpt Sept. 13th 6:30pm, Rainy Faye Books will be supplying the event.
2. Darien Library, 1441 Post Road Darien, Sept. 14th 1:30pm
3. New Canaan Library, Oct. 17th 7:30pm
4. We will be doing a SOUTH NORWALK LIBRARY presentation and book signing on “Roton Point” on
Tuesday, November 1 at 6:00 pm there will be Food with a local SoNo restaurant, the presentation starts at 6:30pm with a signing at 7pm. Come one! Come all!
From the 1880s until 1941, Roton Point Park in Rowayton was a frequent destination for New Canaan church picnics and families, and the Town even had an opportunity (not realized) to buy it at the start of WW II. Now there’s a new book that covers Roton Point’s fabled history as an amusement park and big band venue, as told through the picture postcards of the day.
Book signing and presentation about “Roton Point” by the Roton Point History Committee; Lisa Wilson Grant, chair and members Cam Hutchins, Mary Ellen Pastore, and Pat Atkin.
Old maps are an important. Often, records of what was aren’t kept over the years but maps can tell the story of lost streets and the history of an area. Here’s a short WSJ video of the Hector Rivera. He is the Topographical Bureau Associate for Manhattan Borough office. The bureau has over 5,000 maps of Manhattan.
The Norwalk Preservation Trust is holding their Vale Weber Fay Preservation Leadership Awards on November 21st from 3 to 5:30 pm at Fat Cat Joe, 3-5 Wall Street. More information is available at www.norwalkpreservation.org.
From the ringing of the bell to signify the declaration of independence to the exhibits of Norwalk history, July 4th photos:
Norwalk Historical Society Hosts Annual Independence Day Celebration
“Happenings Around the Historic Norwalk Green”
Sunday, July 4th, 2010
The Norwalk Historical Society is again pleased to host its annual Fourth of July program. This year’s “Happenings around the Historic Norwalk Green” will run from 12:00pm to 1:30pm and will again include activities held simultaneously at Mill Hill Historic Park, St. Paul’s on the Green Church and the First Congregational Church on the Green.
Visitors are invited to discover Mill Hill Historic Park, Two East Wall Street, home of the Norwalk Historical Society. Guests will be welcomed to tour the Town House Museum (1835) by Norwalk Town Clerk Andy Garfunkel, portraying Revolutionary War Town Clerk Samuel Grumman. All ages will delight in learning about early Norwalk education under the tutelage of “schoolmarm” Samantha Kulish in the Downtown District Schoolhouse (1826) and will enjoy touring the Gov. Thomas Fitch Law Office (c. 1740) with John Atkin portraying Norwalk’s lively colonial governor. At 12:00pm, guests will also learn about some of the town’s Revolutionary War citizens during a Mill Hill Burying Ground tour led by local historian and NHS board member Madeleine Eckert.
St. Paul’s on the Green, 60 East Avenue, will present an open house of the church, the fourth structure built on that site since its beginnings in 1737. St. Paul’s holds the distinction of being the oldest same site organization in Norwalk.
An open house at the First Congregational Church on the Green, Three Lewis Street, will feature an exhibit of historical artifacts from its early history. This year the church will also feature a special Amistad display. The Congregational Church is the oldest religious organization in Norwalk, having been founded in 1652.
At 1:30 pm, the Independence Day Celebration continues with the Let Freedom Ring!™ National Bell Ringing Ceremony on the Historic Norwalk Town Green, with the reading of the Declaration of Independence by a costumed Revolutionary War reenactor. At exactly 2:00pm, the bells from both churches and the Town House will toll 13 times to commemorate the founding of the 13 original states.
This will be followed by a procession to the Mill Hill Town House, where guests will be entertained with musical numbers performed by Norwalk’s renowned Crystal Theatre under the direction of NHS board Advisor Cheryl Kemeny. There will be guest speakers and the latest edition of the popular presentation, “Did You Know? Little Known Facts About Norwalk During the American Revolution.” This year’s edition of “Did You Know?” includes newly discovered evidence that further proves the Eckerts’ theory concerning the Battle of Norwalk. As always, refreshments such as Muster Day Gingerbread and Aaron Burr cookies, made from authentic Revolutionary War-era recipes, will be served.
The Norwalk Historical Society was incorporated in 1899 with the purpose of promoting and encouraging historical research in Norwalk. That vision is kept alive today with the re-establishment of the NHS in 1949 and the continued focus on “the research, preservation, and promotion of interest in the history of Norwalk.”
All donations received will be used to fund the programs of the Norwalk Historical Society.
from a press release:
Subject: Volunteering at the Museum
The Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum is currently looking for volunteers. Museum Tour Guides and Gift Shop attendants are needed. Please call Joy Romeo at 203/838-9799 for more information.
Norwalk has had some interesting historical relationships with it’s historical assets. I think pretty much everyone knows that at one point the City political flunkies circa 1960 had plans to raze the Lockwood Mathews Mansion after using ti to store voting machines and yard machinery. They built a police station in Mathews Park, I guess because they had fears about zombies or something. They didn’t object with the state DOT decided to build I-95 through the historic center of Norwalk — exit 16 being the site of the former Governor Fitch house amongst others. I could go on, but I think you get the point.
So the mansion was spared, thanks to a private not for profit group Lockwood Mathews Mansion Museum, that has managed the property on behalf of the City. But the City, through its Historical Commission, retains oversight on just what building restorations and modifications are allowed. Which brings us to the current spat between the Lockwood Mathews Mansion Museum and the Historical Commission.
Each month over the past year or so, on the Historical Commission agenda is the report from the Lockwood Mathews Mansion Museum (LMMM). And each month neither a representative, nor a report is submitted. When it came time to move forward with some restoration work, suddenly representatives appeared form the May 26th Historical Commission meeting. On that meeting’s agenda was the Historical Commission’s review of a $299,875 award for engineering services and infrastructure improvements. The item was on the agenda for a recommendation following the April executive session meeting. Action on the project had been tabled because there was concern that somewhere along the way, the steps and procedures of the bidding process allegedly did not get followed to the satisfaction of Historical Commission members.
Typically in a bidding process, a selection committee sets criteria upon which the bids are to be evaluated. A review of those items is then rated on a point system 0-5, on the completeness of the bid. A review of the bid evaluations revealed a troubling anomaly. Under the heading Schedule: Preliminary schedule of time needed to initiate and complete the project and identifying key phases of design, one of the bidders was awarded the top score, 5 by several selection members, when the bid in fact did not have a timeline included.
As it turns out, the bidder who skipped this criteria also scored the highest ranking, yet was not the lowest bid.
Just who was evaluating the bids?
I’m sort of curious why there’s no trained architect on the selection committee, but I digress. There were other issues concerning the grading of the bids that raised concerns all coming to a boil on the May 26th Historical Commission meeting.
The infrastructure services specifically relate to the mechanical systems, which include an elevator and sprinkler system. In a building that innovated air conditioning in the late 1800s, how that mechanical infrastructure was implemented was going to be tricky. Maybe this should have been something delved into as part of the interview process and reference check, but it those items were not checked on the winning bidder’s submission.
The Historical Commission asked the LMMM to at least interview the 3 lowest bidders as a result of the May meeting, yet LMMM has not done so.
Your Green Old House
“Old is the New Green”
Presented by the Norwalk Preservation Trust
Panel discussion with participants from Norwalk Preservation Trust, Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation, and National Trust for Historic Preservation
Saturday, June 5
10:00 am – 12:30 pm
Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum
295 West Avenue
Norwalk, CT 06850
$5 for NPT members, $10 for non-members
Join and/or register online at www.norwalkpreservation.org
The phrase “historic preservation” probably does not immediately bring to mind visions of energy efficiency, sustainability, or conservation – but it should. Our existing buildings are one of our greatest renewable resources. Americans already embrace as common sense the need to recycle aluminum cans, glass, and newspapers. Why not apply that same common sense approach to our historic homes? Many historic and older buildings are remarkably energy efficient because of their site sensitivity, quality of construction, and use of passive heating and cooling. Historic buildings can go green without compromising historic character.
The first of three workshops this Summer, the “Old is the New Green” event features four experts: historical architect Lee Levey, preservation contractor Jeffrey Meier, historic home sustainability expert Rebecca Williams from the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and architectural historian Chris Wigren from the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation. Each speaker will address aspects of upgrading and greening a historic home from their professional points of view, followed by a question-and-answer period.
Tulip Tree Site Design
Fat Cat Pie Co.
Fountainhead Wines & Distillations
Norwalk Arts Commission
Norwalk Redevelopment Agency
Burning of Norwalk
Saturday, May 29 @ 7:30 & Sunday, May 30 @ 7:30
Ben Franklin Theatre
British General Tryon is campaigning to incinerate Connecticut’s towns, including Norwalk! Virginian Lieutenant Thomas French comes to Norwalk with dispatches from General Washington, falls for the local innkeeper, patriot Abigail Arnold, and then gets arrested as a spy when Abby’s jealous Tory boyfriend, Lucas Bouton, sets him up. Join us for this revolutionary-era musical performed by our high school group.
More info: www.crystaltheatre.org