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Fall 2004

To Collect and Preserve
One day when she was one hundred and three years old, Mrs. Alma Field Duckworth called the man who was her executor and asked him if he thought she was too old to buy a piece of Paul Revere silver. Certainly not, he replied. So, Mrs. Duckworth and some friends drove to an auction, where she purchased a silver tankard attributed to the renowned silversmith. On the way back, the group celebrated the event with this centenarian's first visit to a McDonald's restaurant.
Looking at Life
Verner Reed focused his lens on events, people, and places in the 1950s and '60s in New England. In 2002, photographer Verner Reed and his wife, Deborah, greatly enriched Historic New England's photographic holdings by donating 26,000 negatives made during his career.
International Style
Remarkably, feathered pelerines, or capes, were commonly seen on fashionable women in America and abroad during the 1820s and 1830s. The taste for brilliantly colored examples such as this one may have been inspired by a visit to England by the King and Queen of Hawaii in 1824.
Corn Husk Dolls
Colonel Samuel Pierce of Dorchester, Massachusetts, noted in his journal that they had gatherd and huskt the corn of one acre of ground and there was 54 Bushells of corn etc. Husking a crop of corn was such a big task that New England farm families would hold husking frolics and invite neighbors to assist in the work, offering refreshments and even dancing.
Packets Full of Paint
Anyone who has ever decorated a home is familiar with the situation--you want just the right combination of colors but can't choose between several similar hues until you actually see them on your walls. You end up buying and testing several quarts of paint. This is expensive and leaves you with the problem of disposing of the paint you don't use.
The North Wind Doth Blow
New England's historic homes are distinguished survivors, having sheltered generations of occupants through countless blizzards and ice storms. As hardy as they have proven to be, though, they must be well maintained to keep performing at their peak. Fall is the ideal time to carry out preventive maintenance so that bad weather will not turn minor problems into big ones.
Farm Days
Near the end of her long life, Amelia Little re-called her childhood on the Little Farm in Newbury, Massachusetts, with great fondness. Friends came and played with us--we played all kinds of games in the barn. We had nothing that we called a playground. You just made your own playground.
Greenhouse Bicentennial
In 1793, Theodore Lyman, a Boston merchant in the East India and China trades, acquired thirty acres in Waltham, Massachusetts, for a country seat, which he called The Vale. Owning a country house was very much the fashion among Boston's elite around the turn of the nineteenth century.
News New England and Beyond
Short news items from Historic New England Magazine.
Major Donors to SPNEA, Fiscal Year 2004
Historic New England is the new public identity for the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities. We are the oldest, largest, and most comprehensive regional preservation organization in the country. Historic New England offers a unique opportunity to experience the lives and stories of New Englanders through their homes and possessions.
A Donor's Perspective
In 1970, I taught an introductory course to Yale sophomores in the architecture major. In addition to studio projects, we took field trips, traveling with sleeping bags from Philadelphia to Boston and places in between.
Fall 2004