Category Archives: Local History Room

Anything local history related

Happy Father’s Day

Norma Drew poised to jump from a tree stump to her father Clarence Drew
Norma Drew poised to jump from a tree stump to her father Clarence Drew, c. 1925

In honor of Father’s Day this weekend, here is a sweet moment captured by Kingston historian and photographer Emily Fuller Drew of her niece, Norma, jumping into the waiting arms of her father, Clarence Drew (Emily’s brother).

 

Source: Image from the Emily Fuller Drew Collection MC16.

June 1924

Group of children from the Center Primary School
Center Primary School students, June 1924

This photo from June 1924 shows an especially happy bunch of schoolchildren from the Center Primary School, renamed the Faunce School later that same year in honor of Walter H. Faunce, a former teacher, superintendent of schools, and town selectman.

 

Source: Image from the School Photograph Collection IC5. 

60 Main Street

Four people, two sitting and two standing, in front of the Elbridge G. Winsor house
Elbridge G. Winsor house at 60 Main Street, c. 1905

In this photo, a group of people (unidentified) appear to be enjoying the shade on a nice, sunny day.  One of the women is holding a small dog in her arms. They’re gathered in front of the Elbridge G. Windsor House at 60 Main Street, built around 1860.

 

Source: Image from the Delano Photograph Collection IC11.

Letter from a mother to her daughter on the day of her wedding

Note from Hannah Thomas Brewster Adams to Hannah Thomas Adams, likely January 1, 1857
Note from Hannah Thomas Brewster Adams to Hannah Thomas Adams, likely January 1, 1857

 

On January 1, 1857, Hannah Thomas Adams married Azel Washburn, a 27-year-old fisherman. Her mother, Hannah Thomas Brewster Adams, wrote her a note which reads:

To Hannah on the day of her marriage

Dear and only daughter in part Farewell! Ever since your birth you have been with me and an object of my greatest care and attention, Now we part! One roof no longer shelters us, our homes are not the same—You go to a new sphere of action new cares, connections and dutys [sic] attend you without doubt new anxieties and troubles—May you conduct with prudence and discretion performing every part conscientiously as far as in your power—

We are left alone, as when we commenced life together—But not the same as the hoary? head, the dim eye, and feeble step plainly tell. May we each and all live peacably [sic], be provided for comfortably, perform each and every duty faithfully, and at last receive the welcome reward of faithful servants of our Lord

From your Mother

 

Source: Letter from the Helen Adams Collection MC23. 

Combating an Invasive Species: The Gypsy Moth Infestation

Illustration of gypsy moth caterpillar and adult
Illustration from “The Home and School Reference Work, Volume IV” by The Home and School Education Society, H. M. Dixon, President and Managing Editor, published in 1917 by The Home and School Education Society. Image file found here.

 

Today, we may see gypsy moths outside our homes or in our woodlands and think nothing of them, but this insect has a tumultuous history in the United States.

In 1869, an amateur entomologist imported this species from Europe to his home in Medford, Massachusetts. He intended to use the moths to breed a silk-spinning moth that would be more resistant to disease than the domestic silkmoth. Unsurprisingly, several adult moths escaped from their enclosures, setting a number of problems in motion that we continue to grapple with today.

Stop by to learn more about Kingston’s efforts to eradicate this pest in this month’s local history exhibit!

Black and white photo. Two large blooming trees

Arbor Day

Orchard behind C. Drew's house, c. 1925
Orchard behind C. Drew’s house, c. 1925

 

Happy Arbor Day! Here are a couple snapshots of some lovely trees from the orchard behind “C. Drew’s house” on Summer Street. C. Drew either refers to Charles Drew or Christopher Prince Drew, co-founder of C. Drew and Company, both of whom lived on Summer Street.

 

Orchard behind C. Drew's house, c. 1925
Orchard behind C. Drew’s house, c. 1925

 

Source: Images from the Emily Fuller Drew Collection (MC16).

A flyer inviting people to attend a Centennial Military and Fancy Dress Party.

A Centennial, Military and Fancy Dress Party

Invitation sent to Horatio Adams for "A Centennial, Military and Fancy Dress Party," 1876
Invitation sent to Horatio Adams for “A Centennial, Military and Fancy Dress Party,” 1876

 

1876 marked the 100th anniversary of nationhood for the United States. On April 12th of that year, a “Centennial, Military and Fancy Dress Party” was held at Fuller’s Hall (which burned down in 1900) in support of the “Massachusetts Women’s Centennial Fund.” The invitation above was sent to Horatio Adams, Kingston resident and self-proclaimed “Capitalist.”

Attendees must have enjoyed a night of dancing, as Joyce’s Quadrille Band provided the music for the evening. The quadrille was a type of group dance commonly featured at events such as this during the nineteenth century. Four couples faced each other in a square formation, performing a set of figures to music with eight-bar phrases. It was popular in part due its familiar figures and its numerous variants, like the waltz, polka, schottish, Esmerelda, and mazurka.

 

Source: Document from the Invitations and Calling Cards Collection PC8.