Friday, October 31, 2014


Essex Heritage Early November Events

Essex Heritage Semi Annual Meeting
Essex Heritage's Annual Fall Meeting was on Thursday, October 23, at The Governor's Academy in Byfield with 8AM: Continental Breakfast Reception and 8:30 - 10AM: Business Meeting
In the next edition of this BLOG, I will report on the results of this meeting.

Featured Partner Event: True Yankees
November 6, 2014 at 7PM• Salem Visitor Center, 2 New Liberty Street, Salem, MA, 01970
Drawing on private journals, letters, ships’ logs, memoirs, and newspaper accounts, Dane Morrison, Professor of Early American History at Salem State University, will discuss America’s earliest encounters on a global stage through the exhilarating experiences of Yankee seafarers.

Regional Education Forum
November 12, 2014 at 8:30AM to 2:30PM• Maritime Gloucester and Cape Ann Museum, Gloucester, MA, 01930
Essex Heritage is hosting another education forum for heritage sites, organizations, and education professionals to share best practices, encourage collaboration, and learn about opportunities. Join us and your professional colleagues at the next forum on Wednesday, November 12.

Seven Lectures at The Seven Gables: The Schooner Fame
November 19, 2014  at 6PM• The House of the Seven Gables, United States, 115 Derby Street, Salem, MA, 01970
Capt. Mike Rutstein will share Schooner Fame’s story: its plan, the selection of trees and building in Essex.

Featured Partner Event: Mutt Strut with Greenbelt
November 23, 2014 • Tompson Street Reservation, Fernald Street, Gloucester, MA, 01930
Join Greenbelt's Land Conservation Director, David Santomenna and his dog and Greenbelt mascot, Shiloh, for a dog-walk within Greenbelt's largest reservation.

We wish all a safe Halloween and a Happy Thanksgiving.
We certainly hope that all of you enjoy the spectacular American family holiday of Thanksgiving.  For most of us, it is a day of family dining and local community football sporting events.

In the case of Salem and other communities in this region that celebrate Halloween, we hope that the events connected with the holiday are special and economically profitable.

Other Regional News
Boys and Girls Club Information
The Danvers and Salem Ninety Nine Restaurants are raising funds for our Club by selling special Boys & Girls Club meals, hosting a breakfast, selling t-shirts, holding a Jack O'Lantern silent auction, a raffle and more to raise funds to support our Club. Please stop by the Ninety Nine Restaurants in Danvers and Salem. 
Here is how you can help according to the Ninety-Nine Restaurants:
The Ninety Nine will donate $1 to your local Boys & Girls Club chapter when you order the Boys & Girls Club Sandwich, Entrée or Slice of Pie, and we’ll donate $3 when you take home a Whole Pie!
Purchase a commemorative bracelet for $5.
Add $1, $3, $5 or more to your guest check.
All the funds raised in these ways will go to the Boys and Girls Club.

Bike Safety
The Boston Globe regional issues have been expanded with more content and in a recent issue of the North Region, it was noted that bike accidents in this region are up by almost 10%.  Essex Heritage is one organization that has espoused the increase of recreational trails in the region.  This position may have helped drive the accident higher, but I suspect that the majority of the increase  in accidents and even deaths has come from city street accidents.  I expect these accident numbers are too high and the local government leaderships should take these issues seriously and consider changes in signage, road markings  and intersection re-configurations, when possible, to help reverse the accident, injury and death trend that is climbing.

Update on New Danvers Town Manager
The Town of Danvers has conducted a series of interviews and has made a preliminary offer to
Mr. Steve Bartha of Avon, Connecticut.   The thought is that the Danvers Selectmen and Mr. Bartha are close to an employment agreement and he could begin work in Danvers in early December. 

Last Report on Recently Resigned Town Manager Marquis
The North Shore Elder Service Organization annually holds a “We Give Thanks Award Evening” and as a member of that Board I have nominated Wayne Marquis for the Civic Engagement Award. The process of choosing a winner in this category is ongoing and may be crowded, but regardless my nomination was offered.
Update on Salem Police Chief
Kim Driscoll, the Mayor of Salem, is investigating methods to open up the application process for the next police chief in Salem.   This process will include looking outside the standard Civil Service process.  This process is a real effort for the Salem Mayor as the current Chief is the odds on favorite to win the November election to replace Salem State Representative John Keenan. 

City of Salem Eligible for Federal Funds
The City of Salem was one of ten communities across the Commonwealth that is eligible.  The funding included planning and safety and controls.  The City will be legible for a $4 to $5 million annuity from the Department of Transportation.   In a statement from Mayor Kim Driscoll she indicated how pleased she was for the award and the grant would help complete local streets.

Recent Dedication of Housing
The Town on North Andover recently held a dedication service to celebrate the completion of the first Veteran Housing created in that community in over a half a century. A run down and foreclosed three story building been renovated and offers three apartments  to veterans and families that will now be occupied after a $60,000 commitment was made by the Town Meeting to complete this task.

Danvers Historical Society
From the Danvers Historical Society News
The following letter was recently sent to the Preservation Committee by officials of The Danvers Historical Society to preserve and protect the identified historic homed in Danvers                         
Dear members of Danvers Preservation Commission Town Hall
Sylvan Street
Danvers, MA 01923
Dear Members:
The Danvers Historical Society was established in 1889 to educate present and future generations of the public about the history and development of Danvers. The town has the good fortune to have a number of homes that are significant, due to their architecture and/or their historical connection. Though the Danvers Historical Society continues to preserve several fine structures as house museums open to the public, our town’s rich heritage includes many other structures just as significant as the ones we maintain. To loose Danvers homes which are so important to local, regional, and even national history would be both a tragedy to our heritage, and a loss to our community.
Presently two such dwellings are under the threat of obliteration: the ca. 1660s “First Period” Porter-Bradstreet House on upper Locust Street, and the 1895 “Queen Anne Revival” A. F. Welch House next to St. Mary of the Annunciation Church at 22 Conant Street.
Both of these houses are wonderful and visually superb examples of their architectural era. They posses a rich history, and are an essential part of their neighborhood, streetscape, and environment. To lose such signature structures forever to mundane uses would be a travesty to the present and to future generations.
We urge those good people in whose hands rest the power to destroy part of our communal heritage, to find a viable solution to preserve both these dwellings so they are not just a memory and a statement of crass 21 century development, but rather a shining example of how thoughtful people can preserve the best of the past for their own benefit and for the benefit of their community.

Danvers Council on Aging Material
From the Social Senior Supportive Day Program:
Our Supportive Day Program has begun the process of accepting applications for participation in our unique program. We have increased days of operation from 3 to 4 days per week. The new days of operation are Monday-Thursday from 9am-3pm. This program can benefit both participant and caregiver alike by providing services tailored to individual need and interest. If you or someone you know could benefit from socialization with others in a caring and friendly environment, please give us a call. We are happy to offer a risk “FREE” trial day to experience all we have to offer. Danvers residents 60 and older may be eligible for financial assistance through the generosity of the Clara & Harvey Pillsbury Foundation. Call (978) 762-0208 and ask to speak with Allison Jopling, R.N., Program Coordinator.

Town Wide Open House
The Town Open House Program was held on Thursday, October 9th from 4-7pm. The Danvers Senior Center highlighted the various TRIAD programs that were designed for the safety of seniors in Danvers. Don’t forget that you can hop on the Trolley from the Senior Center to visit Danvers Fire Department, Electric Department, Town Hall, Police Headquarters and the Peabody Institute Library.  The event was well attended and is held annually to point out community resources to residents.

Fall Recreational Reading
As always, I have spent a great deal of my free time with a book in hand.  Recently the book of choice was the third and final book in a much read and highly praised Ken Follette trilogy.   I had previously read and enjoyed the first two books of the series, Winter of the World, and Fall of Giants.  The final book of the series was called The Edge of Eternity.    The following is a brief recap of the work taken from the internet review to provide an overview of the work.

Ken Follett’s Century Trilogy follows the fortunes of five intertwined families—American, German, Russian, English, and Welsh—as they made their way through the turbulent twentieth century. The book has been called by many including me as “potent, engrossing” and “truly epic” The publication USA Today relates that “You actually feel like you’re there.”
Edge of Eternity, the finale in the Trilogy covers one of the most tumultuous eras of all: the 1960s through the 1980s, encompassing civil rights, assassinations, Vietnam, the Berlin Wall, the Cuban Missile Crisis, presidential impeachment, revolution—and rock and roll.
East German teacher Rebecca Hoffman discovers she’s been spied on by the Stasi for years and commits an impulsive act that will affect her family for generations… George Jakes, himself bi-racial, bypasses corporate law to join Robert F. Kennedy’s Justice Department and finds himself in the middle of not only the seminal events of the civil rights battle, but also a much more personal battle… Cameron Dewar, the grandson of a senator, jumps at the chance to do some espionage for a cause he believes in, only to discover that the world is much more dangerous than he’d imagined… Dimka Dvorkin, a young aide to Khrushchev, becomes an agent for good and for ill as the Soviet Union and the United States race to the brink of nuclear war, while his twin sister, Tania, carves out a role that will take her from Moscow to Cuba to Prague to Warsaw—and into history.
These characters and many others find their lives inextricably entangled as they add their personal stories and insight to the most defining events of the 20th century. From the opulent offices of the most powerful world leaders to the shabby apartments of those trying to begin a new empire, from the elite clubs of the wealthy and highborn to the passionate protests of a country’s most marginalized citizens, this is truly a drama for the ages.
With the Century Trilogy, Follett has guided readers through an entire era of history with a master’s touch. His unique ability to tell fascinating, brilliantly researched stories that captivate readers and keep them turning the pages is unparalleled. In this climactic and concluding saga, Follett brings us into a world we thought we knew, but now will never seem the same again.

The book and the entire trilogy series was a great read and I recommend the books.  The Edge of Eternity was over 1100 pages long, and at the end of the read, I was rationing my reading to make the experience last longer and that is a sure sign of a great book.    

Friday, October 3, 2014

Essex Happenings … October 2014

Essex Heritage News
Board of Trustees Elections Held
This fall, the Essex Heritage Board of Trustees elected the following members as new officers for the organization:
·         Vice President – John Farmer, Eastern Bank (current Essex Heritage Treasurer)
·         Treasurer – Kevin Rourke, Salem Five Bank
·         Assistant Treasurer – Timothy Felter, Newburyport Five Cent Savings Bank

Five Essex Heritage Commissioners were also elected to be new trustees:
·         Gary Coon, Managing Director, Major League Investments, Inc., Salem
·         Wayne Eisenhauer, President, Danvers Historical Society
·         James Rudolph, Managing Partner, Rudolph Friedmann, LLP, Boston
·         Thomas Sullivan, Law Office of Thomas J. Sullivan, Haverhill
·         Pamela Yameen, Butcher Boy Market, North Andover

Other Essex Heritage Matters
Move It: Essex Heritage has teamed up with the YMCA of the North Shore for  Move It! 100 Miles in 100 Days challenge – a new program inspiring individuals and families of all ages to get active.

Yankee Magazine Award: Essex Heritage was named a 2014 “Best of New England — Editors’ Choice” Winner by Yankee Magazine for the film "Salem Witch Hunt: Examine the Evidence"

Regional Visitor Center Information Desk: Essex Heritage had a Grand Opening Celebration on September 16 to mark the opening of the new Essex National Heritage Area Visitor Information Desk.  Located within the National Park Service’s Regional Visitor Center, the Essex Heritage staff will provide information on things to do and places to visit all over the 500 square mile Essex National Heritage Area region.

Trails & Sails: This annual  Two Weekends of Walks and Water was again held on the last two weekends of September.  With wonderful weather and great events, it was a great success and there were more than 5,000 participants who explored the 150+ FREE events all around Essex County.

Annual Fall Meeting: On October 23, Essex Heritage will hold its Annual Fall Meeting at The Governor’s Academy in Byfield. Your participation is welcome at this very valuable morning of networking and regional engagement.  For reservations contact Essex Heritage at 978-740-0444 or contact them at .   The event is free, most informative and rewarding.  The Governor’s Academy is the oldest continuously operating boarding school in the US.

Regional News
Local financial institutions completed merger on September 1
North Shore Bank and Saugus Bank have completed their merger under the banner of North Shore Bank on September 1ST.  David La Flame will continue to be the CEO and Kevin Tierney will be the President.  David is a Trustees at Essex Heritage and Kevin is a former Trustee and also served as President of Essex Heritage for several years.  At this time we are uncertain how the merger will impact their connections with Essex Heritage.

Town of Danvers Fireworks Decision
As reported in last month’s BLOG, the volunteer board of Family Festival, due to the costs and safety issue connected with this event, have canceled the fireworks feature of this month long celebration.  Now Danvers town leadership has wisely decided that those burdens will not be borne by the community.  So the spectacular event will be just history.

Preservation of Historic Farmhouse on Locust Street in Danvers Urged by Residents
Staying with news in Danvers for this report, a local developer is attempting to create an over age 55 residential property on land in Danvers that has been used recently by the Clark School.  The property is a first period house and a number of area residents have come out in favor of preserving the property in its present condition.  The Town’s Preservation Committee will soon be holding a public hearing on this issue.

Essex County Foundation Seminars for Non Profit Corporations to be held in Wenham
The Essex County Foundation, among its efforts to raise funds for worthwhile organization in the county, has announced that it will be offering a four part  series of workshops for the local leadership of non-profit organizations in this region.  The events will take place into the first week of October and will be held at the Wenham Museum and the Community House in Hamilton.  For more details information on times and costs contact the Foundation at

City of Peabody announces ten flu clinics for its residents.
This year the City of Peabody will be partnering with a number of local organizations to attain the broadest participation.  For dates, times and locations please contact the city public heath nurse at 978 538 5931.

The Town of Danvers will also offer flu shots at the Senior Center - call then for time and dates.

Follow-up on Boys and Girls Club of Greater Salem
The Boys & Girls Club’s Drop-In and Teen Program opened on Wednesday beginning at 2pm to 8pm at the Collins Middle School for boys and girls ages 8 to 18. The annual membership fee is $25. Children will be able to take buses from their schools to the Club at Collins just as they did in the past to when the Club was located at Hawthorne Blvd.

We are excited about our strong staff who will be directing our Club programs this year. Meghan Murtagh-Martin is the Program Director for the after School Drop-In Program.  Meghan did an incredible job leading our After School License Child Care Program for the past two years and is enthusiastic about leading our Drop-In Program.  Our new Arts & Education Director is Keshia DeLeon, and Keith Langlais is returning as our Athletic Director.
Andre Daley is back as our Teen Director, and Grace Duran is our new After School License Child Care Director.

Parents may rest assured that any child who would have taken a Salem School bus to our Hawthorne site will be able to take a school bus to our Collins site. Programs at Collins will include all the regular ones for children ages 8 through 12, and those for youth ages 13 through 18.  There will not be licensed childcare at Collins for children younger than 8 years old.  Children at Witchcraft Heights, Saltonstall and Horace Mann Elementary Schools may still receive Boys & Girls Club licensed after-school care at those schools.  Children at Bates, Bentley, Carlton, and Bowditch, who want a Boys & Girls Club licensed program, may be transported to Witchcraft Heights.  For more information about this new chapter in the Club's history, please visit our Facebook page, Boys & Girls Club of Greater Salem or our website; or call the Club at 978-744-0915.

Court facility in Salem To Be Named for Former Judge
Governor Deval Patrick formally announced recently that the Essex County Probate and Family Court in the County Court Complex on Federal Street in Salem will be named in honor of Judge Thaddeus Buczko who served as the Presiding Judge in that court until his retirement in 1996.  Judge Buczko is lifelong resident of Salem and served in a number of elected municipal and State positions including that of State Auditor.   Ted Bucko was a distinguished member of the Armed Forces, serving in two conflicts.  He has long been a fixture in Salem and was a person you could look to for advice on difficult situations. A formal naming event will take place in the future when the currently refurbished building is finished.

Personal News
Golf in Norton, MA
Prior to losing my leg, the game of golf was one of my favorite pastimes.  Last Saturday, I attended with my family the PGA event in Norton, Mass.   The event was most entertaining and we all enjoyed the event while watching the strong group of participants.  We are most appreciative of the efforts of our financial advisor who provided the tickets to us.

As a personal comment, I have not ever experienced an event or a group of volunteers that were any more aware of the needs of people with handicaps   There were special buses, golf carts and caring volunteer everywhere we went that day.  The sponsoring Deutsche Bank should be most proud of their volunteers.

Abilities Expo in Boston
On a Saturday early in September my wife brought me into the Boston Convention Center for our first visit to that great location for the Abilities Expo.  We viewed a great deal of material for people with handicaps and Marge received some specific information about how to easily move my wheelchair  in and out of the back of our car without having to physically lift it out each time which is getting more difficult with each passing day.

COPAA Information
As you know. I have been very involved in a locally based organization focused on assistance to people with amputations.   The organization has recently opened a web site to provide information.   Unfortunately, the term COPAA was already used and the next best internet name that was available was www. Please visit the organizations and find pertinent data. The site can be accessed at  Log on and take a look at

We also just received word that the IRS has declared contributions to COPAA are tax deductible.   If you have any inclination to make a contribution to COPAA, check our website for information on where gifts might be sent.

Back in the swing at Tedesco CC Sponsored by Spaulding Hospital
I have participated in a three week program offered by the Adaptive Sports Program of the hospital that was most helpful in my rehabilitation – Spaulding of the North Shore.   The program featured balance and swing principals, and after the sessions, I believe I am ready to attempt some golf with the help of family.

St. John’s Prep News
Admission Open Houses!  
Admission season is underway and this is an especially busy year with the Prep’s new Middle School opening in September 2015.  All interested families are invited to attend fall Open Houses to learn more.  Additional information can be found on the website.
•  High School Open House: Sunday, September 28 and Saturday, October 25.
•  Middle School Open House: Sunday November 2 and Wednesday December 10.

Homecoming at the Prep – October 18-19
Save the date! The School would love to see you and your family back on campus for Homecoming on Saturday, October 18.  Activities will include the rededication of Cronin Memorial Stadium; varsity football vs. BC High; varsity soccer vs. Catholic Memorial; an alumni soccer game; and a family BBQ.  On Sunday, October 19, a Memorial Mass will be celebrated in the Administration Building Chapel at 9 am. More information and registration can be found here.

FYI, the class of 1954, of which I am a member of a fast shrinking group of former gradates, will be holding its 60th reunion during that weekend.  We will be venturing into Salem for dinner where we will challenge Halloween crowds at the Hawthorne Hotel, owned and operated by a fellow classmate, Mike Harrington.
Professional Sports in Boston
The New England Revolution signed a USA World Cup star and went on a short term winning streak
The Patriots started poorly but have as in the past and have a record of 2 wins and1loss after three weeks.   They have improved as they progress through the year.  The first couple of weeks in October are more difficult the year.  Let’s hope for success.

Red Sox Future
As the difficult 2014 season is mercifully coming to an end the Red Sox are looking to the future with young pitchers getting a chance to show their skills and a recent signing of a Cuban player shows promise.  It seems that the decades long cry of the Red Sox of “wait until next year” might be a correct one in 2014.

Bruins Hold Captain’s Practice
The Boston Bruins are currently holding Captain’s practices, and the pre-season Training Camp and Exhibitions games are not far away.  The Team has some positional holes to fill and the first weeks of this month will be important to team development.