Category Archives: Town of Kingston

A post about a post

Town post, 1927. Photographer: Emily Fuller Drew
Town post, 1927. Photographer: Emily Fuller Drew

From Emily Fuller Drew’s card file:

In early days, all public meetings both religion and secular were held in the old meeting house and all notices of meetings were posted on the front of the meeting house for parish and town were one. After the formation of separate religious bodies and the building of the Town House, certain notices continued to be posted nearby the meeting house, and for this purpose, a small bulletin board was set up on the post where the wall of the burying ground and the fence around the Green met. This was the Town Post, the post and bulletin board where town notices were posted. Notices were certainly posted there until 1911 and I am told there were notices posted there later but not regularly.

The Town Post still stands just between the Training Green and the First Parish Church.

“Motors of such power and design”

Special Town Meeting

At a special Town Meeting held May 28, 1906, the following votes were passed:

Voted that the committee chosen by the Town to settle with the City of Brockton* be authorized to purchase for the town an electric motor or motors of such power and design as in their judgment shall be suitable, and install the same at the pumping station.

New pumping station machinery, 1906
New pumping station machinery, 1906

Voted, That the Committee chosen to settle with the City of Brockton be authorized to contract with the Plymouth Electric Light Co. for the extension of the lines of that company to connect with the pumping station.

Voted, That the committee chosen to settle with the City of Brockton be authorized to purchase such additional pumps and other machinery, and other apparatus as may in their judgment be necessary for the proper operation of the pumping station.

New pumping station machinery, 1906
New pumping station machinery, 1906

At a meeting held June 29, 1906, the following vote was passed:

Voted, In order to provide money to be expended for the improvement of the water works, including power therefor, as voted at the special town meeting held May 28, 1906, that the Treasurer be, and hereby is, authorized to borrow a sum not exceeding five thousand, five hundred dollars, and to issue therefor the notes of the town each for the sum of five hundred and fifty dollars, bearing interest at a rate not exceeding 4 1/2 per cent. per annum, payable semi-annually, dated August 1st, 1906, and payable on at the end of one year from said date, and one at the end of each year thereafter until all are paid. The said notes are to be signed by the Treasurer, and countersigned by a majority of the Selectmen.

* This committee  had been appointed in 1905 and “authorized to settle all claims which the Town has or may have against the City of Brockton for the taking the water of Silver Lake.”  Members included the Water Commissioners — George B. Holmes, Edward G. Brown and Truman H. Fuller — along with Charles H. Drew and James L. Hall.

Source: IC-7 LHR General Photographs; Annual Town Reports 1905 and 1906

For what it’s worth

In 1924, the Kingston Highway Department did a good deal of work on the roads — particularly West Street, Pembroke Street, and Maple Street — and a new “highway beacon” was installed.

While discussions of municipal spending on roadways dates back to the earliest town meetings, automobile traffic — that “modern method of travel” — was a new and rapidly growing concern.  Highway Surveyor Warren S. Nickerson did his best to balance repairs, new construction and snow removal within his budget.  He pointed out in his annual report that costs were held down by judicious purchase and careful maintenance of equipment.

Some of those parts came from the Buffalo-Springfield Roller Company.

Buffalo-Springfield Company bill to Kingston Highway Department, 1924
Buffalo-Springfield Company bill to Kingston Highway Department, 1924
Buffalo-Springfield Company bill to Kingston Highway Department, 1924
Buffalo-Springfield Company bill to Kingston Highway Department, 1924
Payment receipt to Buffalo-Springfield Roller Company for Kingston Highway Department, 1924
Payment receipt to Buffalo-Springfield Roller Company for Kingston Highway Department, 1924

 

Sources: Town of Kingston Annual Reports; TOK-5 Accounting

New Exhibit: The Elm Street Bridge

The Elm Street dam and bridge over the Jones River, before 1920
The Elm Street dam and bridge over the Jones River, before 1920

Sometime before 1920, Emily Drew photographed the wooden dam at Elm Street before it was replaced by a concrete structure.  She also captured the old iron bridge constructed in 1889 to carry Elm Street over the Jones River.  Stop by the library to learn more about the bridge.

 

New Exhibit: Summertime

This month’s exhibit celebrates summer in Kingston with picnics and parades, fresh sweet corn from the farmer’s market, swimming, fishing, and just lounging on the grass eating ice cream.

Horse-drawn float in the 200th Anniversary Parade, 1926
Horse-drawn float in the 200th Anniversary Parade, 1926

Here’s the front of a float in Kingston’s 200th Anniversary Parade, which rolled on August 20, 1926.  The four boys behind the float seem very interested in whatever’s going on behind that shack…

Bathing beauties on 200th Anniversary Parade float, 1926
Bathing beauties on 200th Anniversary Parade float, 1926

Well, yeah, that’s why!

View looking north, no date

View of Kingston looking north from Horatio Adams' House, no date
View of Kingston looking north from Horatio Adams' House, no date

From Abram’s Hill, you can see a quite a way.  This view shows the back of the Frederic C. Adams Library at lower left and the houses along Summer Street down through Kingston center.   The Reed Community Building was not yet standing (it would be at lower right), so the photograph dates between 1898 when the Library was built and 1926 when the Reed Building went up.

Bills, Bills, Bills!

January is not only cold and snowy, but usually swamped with bills from the previous month’s holiday extravagances. For example, in December of 1893, the Town of Kingston spent $2.50 at John C. Dawe’s establishment.  Eschewing groceries and grains, bypassing sails and spars, avoiding coffee and varnish, the Town settled on a single item: a new feather duster for the hearse house.

Stop by the Library to see a selection of Kingston bills in the exhibit case.

"Feather Duster for Hearse House," 1893
"Feather Duster for Hearse House," 1893

Kingston Cops

In 1954 Town Meeting

Voted: That the sum of $2,200 be transferred from unappropriated available funds in the treasury for the purchase of a so-called station wagon type vehicle, to be used as an ambulance for the Police Department and authorize the Selectmen to turn in the present Hudson now owned by the Police Department, and apply the allowance thereof to the purchase price of the new vehicle.

Chief James Goonan, Patrolman Kenneth Cram and Patrolman Donald Elwell, circa 1955. Photo by Loren St. Onge.
Chief James Goonan, Patrolman Kenneth Cram and Patrolman Donald Elwell, circa 1954. Photo by Loren St. Onge.

They got the new station wagon type vehicle — a Dodge — just after that Town Meeting in March.

Chief Goonan and the new patrol wagon, circa 1955
Chief Goonan and the new vehicle, circa 1954. Photo by Loren St. Onge

In his year-end report, Chief Goonan wrote that

64 ambulance trips [totaling 5,196 miles] were made with the new station-wagon type police car that was purchased after the March town meeting.  On many occasions this piece of equipment has saved a life, and in so doing has paid for itself many times.  Your cooperation in helping us to obtain this much needed piece of equipment is greatly appreciated.

Maybe one of those trips ended here…

Sergeant Arthur Moskos and Chief James Goonan with an unknown woman, Plymouth Police Station, circa 1950
Sergeant Arthur Moskos and Chief Goonan escort an unknown prisoner into the Plymouth Police Station, no date.