STOUGHTON HISTORICAL SOCIETY FOUNDED 1895
(Regular meetings third Monday at 7:30 PM)
Volume IV, Number 4 - May 1973
AT THE APRIL MEETING we were very interestingly entertained by Past President Phyllis Batchelder with her presentation on 'Bitters Bottles and Other Collectibles". The range of bottles displayed by Phyllis covered a vast period in bottle making right up to the very collectible Avon bottles of today. From that portion of her program devoted to bitters bottles, which contained cures for everything from head to toe, including cancer, we have extracted one recipe; that being for the Stoughton Bitters. Take 4 parts of orange peel, 16 parts of gentian root, 8 parts of Virginia snaka root, 1 part each of American saffarin and red Saunders (?), 104 parts of alcohol and 56 parts of water. Mix either by percolation or maceration. This mixture, designed to cure all and sundry ailments, was to be taken early in the day or one hour before meals. If taken too often, the maker warned, it could weaken the stomach! Mrs. Batchelder held a question and answer period after her talk and was very well received. (Editor's note: Once again, we have called on one of our members and were rewarded by the talent. What is your subject?? We can use a new program each month, but do not wish to call on the same folks continually.)
OUR WALLS and CELLINGS in our meeting rooms are plastered and painted, the floors are refinished, some furniture has been refurbished and some cleaning completed. HOWEVER,... there is seldom a large group at work on Thursday evenings at seven and there is always something to be done...and will be. The Heritage Tour and Open House draw very very near and, unfortunately we can thank only a few people for the appearance of our rooms and the early preparation of the program for May 12.
THE HERITAGE TOUR on May 12 from eleven to four will include seven historic places, some of them lovely homes of special interest and will cost $2.50 in advance by calling Marie Sheehan at 344-9719 or Angeline McEachern at 344-2014. Your program/ticket will be waiting for you at the door. If you make your donation at the door it will be $3.00. . . hopefully, you have already made your donation and have your tickets. We will have three mini-lectures along with displays of artifacts not seen before and guides will be at every point along the Tour to help answer your questions. Musical entertainment will be the background at one or more stops; and refreshments in the Lucius Clapp Memorial, where the Tour begins, are included with the prcgram/ticket. We have invited prominent guests to the formal opening of the Open House at 10:45 a.m. to "kick-off" the day.
THE NEW NOTEPAPER has arrived and will be sold at the same price as earlier. The addition of some background of the Lucius Clapp Memorial and its connection with our Society increases the value you now get.
TO ANSWER QUESTIONS: yes, Virginia, there is a Pilgrimage. This year it will be in June and details are being worked out by committee members Jim and Caroline McCormick and Esther Hill. We should have a report from them at the May Meeting. As Usual, the Society will pay admissions, if any, and will arrange transportation. Members will pay for their own lunches is in the past recent years.
PATRONIZE OUR HERITAGE TOUR...many folks are involved (or will be when you read this)... show them your appreciation and COME MAY 12th.
NOTES OF INTEREST. . .proceeds from the space in the flea market held at LaCivita Court in April were almost $3 5 after expenses...DUES are due, in fact, now overdue... Remember your birthday bags: the money from them goes into our 250th Anniversary Fund for 1976 and you may use any method you devise for filling them: put in a coin each sunny day, put in a coin for each year of your life, put in a coin each time someone does something nice for you, put in a coin anytime you feel like doing something nice for the Society, but Use your birthday bags regularly and bring them to the meetings. Gus Winroth and Cy Perkins represented us at a formative meeting for the New England area of the Archivists of America; and both gave informative reports at the April meeting.
GIFTS RECENTLY RECEIVED have been a ten-volume History of Abraham Lincoln from Helen Miller, a carpet Sweeper purchased at the old Webster & Smith store and given in the name of Esther Snowdale by her son Warren, news clippings of local interest from Carl L. Smith; family pictures from Genevieve Glennon, and class pictures from 1903 and other turn-of-the-century years from Ruey Burnham through the kindness of Eugene Toomey.
OUR HOSTESSES for the evening were Helena Blum and Katherine Leahy who served us from a delightfully decorated table set with a spring motif.
MASS WAS SAID in Stoughton as early as 1840 but the Catholic residents were too few to support a church or priest. The more devout, however, frequently went as far as Quincy to hear Mass. When Father Rodden of Quincy visited this town in 1848 he found no more than fourteen Catholics in the locality. The diocesan records show that in 1849 Father Fitzsimmons celebrated Mass in an old Historic house owned by Robert Porter and known as the Austin House. Fr. Flatley and Fr. Callahan visited Stoughton in the early 1850s and with a substantial increase in the number of Catholics between 1850 and 1860 Fr. Flatley made preparations to build a church. A neat little church of Roman design was erected on a half acre of land at School and Canton Streets and was ready for occupancy in November, 1859. However, it was not until 1861 that Mass, was regularly held in Stoughton and not until 1872 that the first resident pastor, Father Norris, took up his abode in town. In 1878 Reverend James Kieley succeeded Fr. Morris as pastor and continued his work here for thirty years, being himself succeeded by Fr. Stanton (History of Norfolk County-1918 )
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