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Wilmington Historical Society
7:00 PM, Wednesday, August 17, 2005
E. M. Cooper Library


Karen Peters
Doug Wolfe
Steve Connor
Bob Cressey
Nancy Cressey
Merri Peck

Karen Peters called the meeting to order at 7:04 PM and called for the secretary’s report. Steve Connor made a motion to accept the minutes as read. Bob Cressey seconded the motion and it carried unanimously.

Bob Cressey gave the treasurer’s report. Our bank balance is $2,730.57. During the month we paid out $25 to the Whiteface Visitor’s Bureau for Sid Ward’s table at the Festival of Colors. We received $132.27 in book sales and $78 for the Iron Mine Tour. Steve introduced a motion to accept the Treasurer’s report and it was seconded by Doug. All voted in favor.

Guy Stephenson’s Iron Mine Tour on August 6th was very well received. A total of nine people were on the tour, including Guy and Charles Terry who is a medical technician. The group visited three mines. Bob will send Guy a check for $78 for the tour. Guy has indicated that he may do a repeat of this tour sometime in October since there seems to be more interest.

Karen reported on communications. She had inspected some logs that were from a historic lodge. They were in poor shape and she emailed the owner that we are not interested in purchasing the logs at this time.

The Northern New York Library Network is sponsoring the Clinton/Essex County Roundtable on Saturday, September 10 from 9:30 to 1:00 in Westport . The subject is increasing financial support. We should try to have someone attend.

We received the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) Dispatch. The AASLH is working on getting federal formula grants for museums. These grants are now available to other institutions, but not museums. The legislation they are proposing would set aside a percentage of the grant funds for small institutions. AASLH also reported that they have a database of traveling history exhibits that you can bring to your own site. The database is available on their website and provides cost and other information about the exhibits.

The Upstate History Alliance is offering an eight week course on collections management online beginning January 2006. Details will be available on their website, upstatehistory.org, in September. We received the Westport Historical Society newsletter. We will be sending them copies of our minutes and any newsletter or other information that we may publish.

We received the July and August newsletters for Region 4 Archives. The 2006/2007 Grant Application materials are available online.

We had an e-mail from Lee Manchester about the Wilmington History walking tour. He would like to do the tour and write an article. Karen will set this up for spring 2006.

Merri reported for the Library, Museum and Historic Sites Committee that the computer is up and running and Past Perfect is installed. We need to get Word and Excel installed also. Nancy Cressey will look into this. Merri also mentioned that we need to transfer some of the files we have on floppy disks to CDs because the new computer does not have a floppy disk drive. This can either be done on another computer or Bob and Nancy will loan their external floppy drive to accomplish the file transfers. Merri and Karen plan to meet on the first Tuesday of September to discuss the entering of items into Past Perfect. Karen also plans to meet with Jeanne Ashworth regarding our request for storage space in the Town Hall and setting up research hours.

Karen reported that her cousin George donated to the WHS the Haselton school bell that was from the Helen and Earl Warren estate. She also received a donation of a cannon ball from their estate. We have the deed of gift for the bell but not for the cannon ball yet.

Doug Wolfe reported for the Publications and Programs Committee that his contact Sarah, for the Archaeological presentation has agreed to give the program sometime during the third week in October. We need a firm date by mid September so that Karen can arrange for the publicity. Doug also mentioned that the garden club hosted a lecturer who gives a very good presentation on historical plants. Doug has his card, but his fee is higher than we have budgeted for speakers. Perhaps we can cosponsor a presentation with Essex County or another historical society. Doug will work on this for the fall.

Thursday, August 24th at 8:00 Doug is presenting a modified version of the program he did on getting the Olympics out to the world. He suggested that we put a donation box and some of our membership brochures out. Merri agreed to handle this. Karen will email our membership about the program.

Karen mentioned that she sent out an email about the historic Wilmington postcard that is now available for sale at the Corner Stone. She also said she has reserved the Town Hall from 9:00 to 3:00 on Saturday October 15th for our Old Photo Meet and Slideshow. The Old Photo Meet and Slideshow, “ Wilmington : Then and Now” will be held from 10:00 to 2:00 in observance of Archives Week.

Bob and Nancy reported for the Membership and Nominations Committee that we received two memberships today.

Karen mentioned that she had talked to the Visitor’s Bureau about the possibility of a birding event to take advantage of the great interest in the Bicknell’s Thrush on Whiteface Mountain .

Steve reported that the work on establishing a grid for Haselton Cemetery is completed. Nancy and Bob still have some work to do photographing new headstones and cleaning up the locator list of names. They will get the large map of Haselton Cemetery copied and put the grid on the map. At this point we are waiting for the sign to be completed before we can proceed. Doug asked if we plan to map the Pleasant View Cemetery on Bonnieview. We will not be able to accomplish that before next year.

Under concerns for the Board of Trustees Karen reported that we are starting to look for a building and she will be talking to the Adirondack Community Trust for advice on fundraising.

There is a concern about the area around our storage trailer. Our volunteers have been doing the weeding and watering, but no one is cutting the grass. The person who does mowing for the town does not want to do it because he is concerned about the stumps. This is something that we need to get resolved. Doug also mentioned that we need to get the little building by the electric meter moved and the site cleaned up.

Steve is planning a trip to Saratoga to try to determine the value of the cannon for insurance purposes. There is still a question regarding ownership of the cannon. Steve said many of the town records are missing. We need to get the town to get the records inventoried and organized.

Karen reported that she noticed several weeks ago that our events are not on our website. She said she emailed Patrick to add the events but she had not checked recently. We need to be sure the website is up to date and possibly we should put past events on the site as well.

Doug reported on the dam history research he has done regarding getting a plaque for the dam for the current upgrade. An 8X10 brass plaque would be about $60 but may not hold up to the weather. A cast bronze plaque would be very expensive. Engraving may be an alternative. Doug said information on the dam is available, but it will be a large project to compile it all. He suggested that it would make a good project for an interested high school student. Bob gave Karen some pictures from the dam rededication ceremony to put in our photo library.

Karen said that she will be giving a talk tomorrow on the history of the Wilmington dam to the Ausable River Association at their monthly meeting in Ausable Forks.

Merri reported on the meeting today with Jerry Bruce and Dave Lowrey about grant possibilities for the book of old town records. Ed Hood was unable to attend. Merri passed out notes from the meeting regarding what needs to be done to obtain the grant. The deadline for this is December 1, 2005. Dave Lowrey will help in any way he can and will meet with us once more before the deadline, but he cannot approve the final draft. He can only answer questions throughout the process.

Karen and Doug will work on the Wilmington History Tour over the winter. Films on the Ausable is set for Saturday August 27th . Steve and Guy will do gate collections and Merri and two of her kids will help Anna Court with the concessions. Ginny Crispell designed and made a poster to put up around town and Bob Peters made a large sandwich board sign that we can use to advertise all of our upcoming events.

Karen has confirmed that Robert Schneider will again play the Irish immigrant C. Michael Sheridan at the Festival of Colors. Julia Roberts will do antique appraisals and Sid Ward will sell cutting boards with all proceeds going to WHS. Dave Heim will bring his virtual reality simulator and charge $5 per ride with all proceeds going to WHS. We will have photo displays of Wilmington : Then and Now, and the Wilmington books will be available for sale. Steve will bring a 10X20 shelter and Karen will provide 2 tables.

Steve mentioned that he attended the Lewis bicentennial with the idea in mind that Wilmington will have a bicentennial in a few years. He bought a copy of their bicentennial book and made it available for the members to read.

Doug made a motion to adjourn the meeting and Bob seconded it. All voted in favor.

Respectfully submitted,
Nancy Cressey


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