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Wilmington Historical Society
Minutes of Meeting
Wednesday June 5, 2013
Wilmington Community Center

Karen Peters
Doug Wolfe
Merri C. Peck
George Buck
Guy Stephenson
Gilbert Dyke
Linda Joss-Dyke
Donna Griffin
Barbara Rothman
Maurice E. Fletcher
Nancy Cressey
Bob Cressey

Karen Peters called the meeting to order. She opened the meeting by presenting a Certificate of Appreciation to outgoing treasurer, Robert Cressey for his ten years of service to the Wilmington Historical Society. The members enjoyed cake provided for the occasion by the Country Bear Bakery. After the presentation we began our open discussion on the “History of Adirondack Guides.” Karen showed a slide presentation on guides in Wilmington. The first slide was an excerpt from the Whiteface Mountain House Record Book written by Dr. James Romeyn in which he gave an enthusiastic recommendation of Andrew Hickok, one of the first guides in the area. There were quite a few photos of Cassius and Asher Winch and the camps that they maintained for hunters and fishermen. Karen passed around a number of newspaper articles about Asher Winch who had a reputation as being quite a character. Linda Joss-Dyke mentioned that the town is now selling a CD donated by Mr. T. J. Swan of audio recordings of Fran Betters talking about his life, fishing, and his stories.

The business meeting began immediately following the discussion. First on the agenda was the election of officers and one trustee (Linda Joss-Dyke’s position). Current nominees are as follows: President – Karen Peters, Vice-President – Merri C. Peck, Secretary – Nancy Cressey, Treasurer – Donna Griffin, and Trustee – Linda Joss-Dyke. Since Donna Griffin has not previously held office Karen read a brief biography of her. Based on her previous experience she is highly qualified for the position of treasurer. No new nominees were added and Linda moved to close the nominations. Gil seconded the motion and all voted in favor. Karen then passed out ballots to all members in attendance and the election was held by secret ballot. Bob Cressey counted the votes and announced the results that all nominees were elected unanimously. Gil then moved to close the vote and Bob seconded the motion. All voted in favor.

Karen handed out copies of the draft annual report and asked for discussion. Doug Wolfe recommended that we include mention of planned giving or estate planning in the last paragraph titled “Special Message to Members & Supporters.” Bob made a motion to accept the report as amended and Gil seconded the motion. All voted in favor. Nancy Cressey will determine how many copies of the report are required for mailing and advise Karen. She will also print the mailing labels.

Karen then called for the secretary’s report. Guy Stephenson offered a motion to accept the May meeting minutes as read. The motion was seconded by Gil and it carried unanimously. Bob then passed out copies of the treasurer’s report. Our bank balance is $4,336.81. During the past month we had income of $645, including $465 from memberships, $179.40 from publications and 60 cents in donations. Our only expense was $55 for membership in the Museum Association of New York. Gil moved to accept the treasurer’s report. Guy seconded the motion and all voted in favor. Bob reported that since signing our contract in May 2012 we have spent a total of $345.10 for production of the Arcadia book. This does not include money spent on postage and supplies such as flash drives.

Due to the change in the treasurer position Karen had all the newly elected officers sign paperwork for the bank. The bank also requires a copy of the meeting minutes stating that Donna Griffin has been elected treasurer. As soon as all of this paperwork is received by the bank the transition of the treasurer position will become official. Bob will meet with Donna to transition the files, explain our procedures and answer any questions she may have.

The Board of Trustees held a special online meeting to address concerns about our reference policy. As a result a new revised reference policy has been approved and is now in effect. This change arose from the need to clarify that when people purchase photos from us they are responsible for the copyright. If they wish to use the photos in a book or for some other commercial purpose they must obtain the required permissions. The new reference policy added a signature line to this effect and also updated contact phone numbers.

Karen reported on communications. We received a thank you note from Nancy McNabb for help with genealogy research provided by Merri and Karen during her visit to Wilmington. Karen sent a thank you letter to the Sheridan County Public Library in Wyoming for sending us blueprints they found for the Upper Toll House (now called the Castle) on Whiteface Memorial Highway.

We had two acquisitions this month. Dennis Keegan sent a photo of his father Tom Keegan standing in front of the Whitebrook Motel and Bob Peters donated a post card of the Hobby House.

We received a request for information on the Call family. Karen was unable to find information for the individual in question so she suggested that the requester contact the town of Jay or the Essex County Historical Society. The Olympic Region Development Authority (ORDA) manager asked for help in tracking down a scale model of the castle but research has not revealed anything thus far. In response to a query the National Archives and Records Administration did send an image of a poster announcing the visit of Governor Franklin Delano Roosevelt to Wilmington. We also received a request for a roster of area people involved in the War of 1812.

Merri reported for the Library, Museums and Historical Sites Committee that we received three CDs and five books from the Wilmington book series. These were the chattel mortgages and the general store records.

Nancy reported for the Membership and Nominations committee that we received ten memberships in the past month. The total membership now stands at 118. Nancy will send the membership reminder letters and emails out sometime after the Annual Report goes out.

Karen reported for the Publications and Programs Committee. Lora Bushy wrote an article about tonight’s meeting that appeared in the Lake Placid News. Our program schedule for this year is finalized. One issue has arisen. Since we are co-sponsoring the film night on skiing with ORDA and using their facility, we will not be allowed to bring our own refreshments. Centerplate will provide soda and popcorn at a cost of $3.50 per soda and $2.00 for popcorn. The WHS will pay for refreshments consumed plus a service fee. ORDA will provide use of the room for free. While it was thought that the cost of refreshments seems high, we agreed that the ski center is the most appropriate place to hold this program.

Barbara Rothman mentioned that there is a Marble Mountain ski film. She will speak to Joan Dreissigacker about obtaining a copy for the WHS.

Guy Stephenson reported that he is trying to meet with Greg Winch and the cemetery committee members about getting headstones set upright and repaired.

Karen spoke to Jennifer Pratt, our representative with Arcadia books. The proof will be sent to us shortly for review to insure that captions are correct. The book is scheduled for publication in August. We decided that we will order 200 books initially instead of 100 as previously planned. While this will deplete the treasury substantially, we believe that we will quickly sell enough books to bring our balance back up based on the interest that people have expressed in the book. This will give us an increased discount for purchase of the books plus free shipping.

Linda reported that the sale of Great Escape tickets has been extended for two weeks due to low sales. She put out addendums to all the posters around town plus a few new posters to try and generate more sales. Linda also reported on raffle tickets for the Noah John Rondeau painting. We can order 300 tickets for $35 plus a $25 charge for graphic design. Linda will order 300 tickets. For the sticker fundraiser she has found three merchants who have agreed to sell the stickers, Candy Man, Up a Creek and North Pole. Candy Man asked that we make up a sign indicating “All proceeds go to the Wilmington Historical Society.” We decided to sell the stickers to the stores for $1.25 each.

The Wilmington book series volumes 1 – 21 is complete. Karen will ask Patrick McIntyre to update our website with the new dates for sale of Great Escape tickets. Patrick has provided us with statistics indicating that we have had about 1093 hits per year on our website. From September 2012 to March 2013 there were 1331 visits to the website. Merri suggested that we ask Patrick to give us the statistics quarterly.

Total attendance at WHS programs and events for 2012 was 398. We had 36 volunteers in 2012 for a total of 3049 hours.

The Festival of Colors will be September 14th. We will be raffling the Noah John Rondeau painting and Doug and Gill are working on a camera display. Sid Ward will be selling his cutting boards to benefit the library this year.

Karen spoke about the Fran Betters Memorial Statue Project. Friends of Francis Betters are raising funds to commission a life-size bronze statue to be placed near the Lake Everest Dam, to honor and memorialize the Ausable River fly-fishing legend. Donations are tax deductible and can be sent to: Town of Wilmington, Fran Betters Statue Project, PO Box 180, Wilmington, NY 12997. Mr. T. J. Swan donated an audio CD that includes 74 minutes of Fran talking about his life, fishing, poems and his great stories. A CD will be given for a donations of $25 or more.

Barbara Rothman made a motion to adjourn the meeting. It was seconded by Guy and all voted in favor.

Respectfully Submitted,
Nancy Cressey
Wilmington Historical Society


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