Karen Peters called the meeting to order at 6:30pm. We began our open discussion “Wilmington/Jay in the War of 1812--Battle of Plattsburgh.” Karen gave a synopsis of the War of 1812 and recounted the history of Stephen Partridge who was killed in the skirmish of Culver Hill at the beginning of the Battle of Plattsburgh. Partridge is recognized on a monument in Beekmantown. Karen showed a list of all the soldiers from Jay in the ninth regiment who fought under the command of Major Ruben Sanford. She had various newspaper articles relating to the Battle of Plattsburgh and the participants from Wilmington/Jay.
Karen called for the secretary’s report. We had a correction to the April minutes from Guy Stephenson who pointed out that Doug Nemec was not named to head the cemetery committee as stated in the minutes. The corrected paragraph reads, “Guy reported that the town has hired Doug Nemec to work for the Parks Department which takes care of the cemeteries. He is the new sextant in charge of burials and will be working on getting cemetery records and maps in order.” Guy Stephenson moved to accept the minutes as corrected and Bob Cressey seconded his motion. All voted in favor.
Donna Griffin presented the treasurer’s report. She noted that most of the activity in the past month has been expenses for the Whiskey Run. Our books are still at H&R Block while they work on our IRS Form 990 which is due May 23rd. Our bank balances as of April 30, 2018 are: Operating account - $7,940.83, Money market - $5,906.37, Building fund - $100.00, Petty cash - $100.00, Adirondack Foundation - $51,092.51. Guy then made a motion to approve the treasurer’s report and Gil seconded the motion. All voted in favor. Our annual appeal raised $2,650. Karen reported that she submitted the paperwork to change our property from taxable to nontaxable. She said the person that she spoke to from the state suggested that we get registered with the Charities Bureau because that will make it easier to get grants.
Karen then reported on communications. She sent thank you letters to Ralph Schissler and Janet Bliss for pro bono services donated in support of the WHS land purchase. A thank you was sent to Sam Haselton for sponsorship of the Wilmington Whiteface Whiskey Run in the amount of $1,000. Finally, thank you letters were sent to Kathleen Corley and Jane Ennis for contributions to the WHS Ruth and Thomas Keegan History Center Fund. Karen sent an email to Dave Fitz-Gerald to ask about the value of the Boylan Fitz-Gerald painting donated by Dennis Keegan and Merri Peck received an email from Tom Lohrman Printing Services offering to help us. Merri wrote a thank you for their offer.
Guy received a photo of the Wilmington Village school from a family in West Chazy. He did not yet receive a deed of gift.
Merri reported for the Library, Museum and Historical Sites Committee that she finished researching a question for the O’Brien family. Our next research day will be Wednesday, May 16th from 10am to 1pm.
Karen reported for the Publications and Programs Committee that Guy Stephenson will lead an Iron Mine Tour Hike on May 12th. The Whiskey Run was publicized in the Adirondack Sports Newspaper. We paid $50 to Sandra Geddis for Whiskey Run PR on social media. We are also in the Press Republican North Country Races supplement. Merri will work on a history display for the Festival of Colors.
Nancy Cressey reported that our membership total for 2018 is now at 90. Membership renewals are coming in more slowly now and reminder letter will be sent out sometime in June. Linda Joss-Dyke nominated all the incumbents for the positions up for election next month. Nominations will remain open.
Linda reported on fund raising. She asked to meet with Jess Ano for the Whiskey Run by Monday. She said that she has contacted 38 food vendors and has only one confirmed so far. She is still looking for one more. She is working to confirm vendors and artisans for the Heritage Weekend. She needs someone to volunteer to manage the smaller fundraising projects such as the books and stickers. She also said that she is trying to arrange a raffle for a trip, such as a bus tour to New York City or some other attraction. The raffle would start at Pourman’s during the Whiskey Run for the drawing to be held at the Festival of Colors.
Karen reported that our website is now up to date. We still need to update PayPal so that it can be used for purchases, even if it is necessary to hire someone to do this.
Guy reported that the Gatling gun is now safely stored under lock and key and the trailer has been removed from town property.
The Boylan Fitz-Gerald painting donated by Dennis Keegan is now framed thanks to Bob Peters. Dave Fitz-Gerald will be doing a 50-mile hike to commemorate the hike done by Denny Miller in 1963 from Lake Placid to Plattsburgh. Dave will hike in the reverse direction, from Plattsburgh to Lake Placid, starting at Skyway shopping plaza just after midnight on May 5th. He expects to arrive at the Bookstore Plus in Lake Placid by 5 or 6pm. He is doing this hike as a fundraiser for the Wilmington Historical Society. We need people to cheer him on.
Karen reminded us that the Santa’s Workshop documentary will be at the Lake Placid Arts Center on June 23rd and we should get tickets now before it sells out.
Karen applied for and received a Quick Grant from New York State for $500 to help pay for the cost of the reenactors and music by Don Perkins at the Heritage Weekend celebration. We received a certificate from New York State to allow us to raffle whiskey.
Tony Beck and Karen went to a workshop on public relations and found it to be very helpful. They received a PR toolkit. Merri suggested we get a Bluetooth speaker so that if we play a video at a meeting or program it will be able to be heard by everyone in the room. She also said that we need another external hard drive because the old one is full. She will look into prices. We also discussed getting a projector that can display an object up on a screen. It would be useful when we have objects to display them rather than have to pass them around the room. Tony will find out what this is called.
Donna moved to adjourn the meeting and Gil seconded her motion. All voted in favor.
Wilmington Historical Society