. . . N E W S L E T T E R . . .
STOUGHTON HISTORICAL SOCIETY FOUNDED 1895
(Regular meetings third Monday at 8PM)
Edward Meserve, Editor, 39 Plain Street, Stoughton, MA 02072
Volume 1, Number 2 - March 1970
ON FEBRUARY 16 the Society met in their rooms with First Vice President Carl Smith presiding. Mr. Gus Winroth gave highlights of the February 11 meeting with a representative of the Board of Selectmen and committees of the Youth Advisory Board and the Historical Society. We are to retain all the basement rooms and the stairway to the main floor rear is to be floored over, the existing railings to be removed with care and stored.
Mr. Robert Benson presented a letter from Douglas P. Adams, President of the Bay State Historical Society, urging us to have officers of our Society write letters to Gov. Francis Sargent and Sec'y John F.X. Daveren requesting additional funds for the Massachusetts Historical Commission. We are further urged to back up these letters with our personal letters to the Governor and the Secretary at the State House in Boston.
Miss Bertha C. Reynolds, past secretary of the Society, was unanimously voted Secretary Emeritus for Life, an honor earned through many years of faithful service. Mrs. Esther Hill made the original motion.
Guests were Master Juan Pistor and Mrs. Ada Meserve of Stoughton and Mr. Walter Hatch of the Easton Historical Society. Mr. Hatch is one of the diligent workers presently restoring the Easton Railroad depot, recently acquired by the Easton Society as a gift. .
An autographed copy of Miss Reynolds' book "An Uncharted Journey" was presented to the Society along with some items from Marion Corbett, Mrs. Vickey, and Mr. George Corbett.
THE PROGRAM consisted of the showing and description of some of the artifacts from our collection. Mrs. Esther Hill, Miss Bertha Reynolds and Mrs. Ruth Pistor spoke interestingly on the significance of the items displayed.
THE FOLKS to thank for cleaning up and rearranging our rooms include: Hank Herbowy, Clyde Holmes, Esther Hill, Amy Terrell, Ruth Pistor, Gus Winroth, Phyllis Batchelder, Carl Smith and Gertrude Morrill. We are fast acquiring more and more room in which to display some of the long filed-away treasures from the history of our Town and its older families and important landmarks.
OUR NEWSLETTER will succeed most surely if we continue to receive items, short and long, from our members. Ye ol' ed will do his level best; but please contribute and see your name in print. DEADLINE for, material for the April issue is APRIL 6. We have already received replies in answer to our request for suggested names for the NEWSLETTER. Most desired is a name fitting both the Town and the Society. Maybe it will remain the NEWSLETTER but let's give it a whirl.
HAROLD M. DROWN, one of our members and Publicist Emeritus of the Sons of Union Veterans, presided to Park Square, Boston, at the annual observance of Lincoln's birthday. We shall all recall the many occasions on which Mr. Drown has delivered the Gettysburg address at home and abroad.
THANKS TO Hank Herbowy for the donation of a radio (which WILL play the better music) for our enjoyment during work sessions; and special appreciation to Bob Benson for clearing the steps after the snowfall just prior to the last meeting.
COME TO our meetings and bring a friend...who might become a member. NEXT MEETING is March 16, another interesting date on your calendar. We will have slides of the Stoughton depot. Remember MARCH 16.
DID YOU KNOW. . .that Stoughton had three steam railroads operating in the town during the development of early rai1 transportation? The Stoughton Branch RR was opened from Canton Junction on April 7, 1845. On May 16, 1855 the Easton Branch was opened to North Easton, both branches then being operated by the Boston and Providence Railroad Corporation until 1866. On September 24, 1866, the Dighton and Somerset RR opened from Mayflower Park, Braintree Highlands, to Stoughton Jct. (near the present Fish and Game Club.}. Where a switchman's tower was located. Evidences of this junction are to be seen today behind the home of Duncan Fleming. (Remember to use extreme care while on railroad property!) The Easton Branch RR was bought out by the Somerset and Dighton in 1866 and deeded to the Old Colony and Newport RR in 1871. The Stoughton Branch RR Co. merged into the Boston and Providence RR Corp. on March 4,.1873; the Easton Branch RR then already being a part of the Old Colony R.R. During these years there were depots at West Stoughton, North Stoughton, South Stoughton and Stoughton Central (the present depot is located, quite near the latter site.) Most of the Old Colony Rai1 road system was made up of merged lines East of Stoughton and operated along the South Shore as far as Provincetown on the Cape and to New Bedford. Old Colony RR mileage in 1892 was 608.5 plus steamboat routes of 418 miles. (This material was compiled by Carl L. Smith, past President of our Society...and edited somewhat to fit our space.) Related to the above is a new book release: "The New Haven Railroad, Its Rise and Fall", by John L. Weller.
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