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Wilmington Historical Society
Minutes of Meeting
Wednesday, Sept. 1, 2010
Wilmington Community Center


Karen Peters
Doug Wolfe
Guy Stephenson
Dana Peck
Merri Peck
Barbara Rothman
Nancy Cressey
Bob Cressey
Maurice Fletcher

The meeting was called to order at 7:02 and began with our open discussion of Wilmington Taxes. Doug Wolfe brought a copy of the Wilmington Tax Assessment Records book covering 1891 to 1900. This volume has useful records of building and land ownership. Karen Peters pointed out several references to taxes in the Emma Hinds’ Scrapbook volume and she found a Ticonderoga Sentinel Article that was complimentary to Wilmington for assessing properties at full value. Dana Peck said that Wilmington remains one of the towns most compliant with the full value assessment requirement. One interesting fact brought to light was that in the early days the townspeople were assessed days of labor for maintaining the roads where they lived. The number of days owed was based on the amount of land they owned. Real estate taxes in the present form did not appear until the 1860s. Immediately following the discussion Karen called for the secretary’s reports for both July and August. Guy Stephenson offered a motion to accept the July minutes as read. Doug Wolfe seconded the motion and it passed unanimously. Two corrections were made to the August minutes. On page 2, line 4, the word “letter” is replaced by “email,” and in the second paragraph under the heading of Business, the phrase “and present a 20 minute movie” is deleted. .Guy moved to accept the minutes as corrected and his motion was seconded by Merri Peck. All voted in favor. Karen then presented Treasurer’s reports for August and September. The August balance was $5,284.04 with expenses of $518.69 and income of $490. Guy made a motion to accept the report and it was seconded by Bob Cressey. All voted in favor. For September the balance was $5145.74 with expenses of $202.30 and income of $64.00. Guy moved to accept the report. Merri seconded his motion and it passed unanimously.

Karen reminded us that the date for our next evening research hours has been changed from Tuesday September 21 to Wednesday September 22.

Communications for the past month included a thank you to Linda Joss-Dyke for providing refreshments at our last presentation and another to Keith Herkalo for giving the presentation.

Our Acquisitions for the month included two books that we purchased. The first was September Eleventh, 1814: the Battles at Plattsburgh by Keith Herkalo and the second was the Journal of H.K. Averill, edited by Keith Herkalo.

There were several research inquiries. Karen responded to one from the Burt family and referred a question about Marble Mountain from Snow Magazine to Doug. There was one additional inquiry from the Partridge family.

Merri reported for the Library, Museum and Historic Sites Committee. We need additional people to be trained on our software. Doug suggested the possibility of trying to get some college students. Merri will investigate this.

Karen reported for the Publications and Programs Committee that the Keith Herkalo program, September 11, 1814: the Battles at Plattsburgh, was very well received. Karen did a submission for the town newsletter and Lora Bushey has done a number of articles about WHS activities.

Karen reported for the Membership and Nominations Committee that our total membership stands at 129. This is low and is at least partly due to the fact that we did not get our reminder letters out early in the summer as we ordinarily do. Nancy Cressey, now back from extended absence, agreed to help get the letters out as soon as possible.

Under Special Committee reports Karen mentioned that the Festival of Colors is coming up. The Wilmington Community Enhancement Committee has not met recently.

Discussion turned to new business. Karen reported that the WHS gave copies of CDs of the Santa’s Workshop presentations, including Bob Reiss’ audio narrations to Bob Reiss and Matt Stanley (Santa’s Workshop, Inc.)

It was decided that we will try to schedule Caperton Tissot to give a talk on Adirondack Ice: a Cultural and Natural History sometime next summer.

Karen has been working on displays featuring Wilmington September 11th history for the Festival of Colors. She has materials on Asa Lawrence for the Battle of Plattsburgh and also some recent history materials for September 11, 2001. We want to collect others’ September 11th stories as well. We plan to conduct brief interviews of people to ask where they were on 9/11/2001 and how those events affected them and their families for the short and long term. Doug spoke about a photo of Governor Roosevelt taken on September 11, 1929 when he took the first shovel of dirt for the Whiteface Highway. He also has some information about weather patterns for the period. Any other September 11th photos or objects that anyone has would be appreciated. We need volunteers to man our Festival of Colors booth. Karen will send out an email to request more volunteers.

Karen reported that New York State has asked for some more information in regards to our application for a permanent charter. She has been working on gathering the information and expects to have it completed by the end of this week.

Museumwise, formerly the Upstate History Alliance, will sponsor a Collections Care Workshop on September 17. This is a valuable learning opportunity for anyone who is free to attend on that date.

Guy made a motion to adjourn the business meeting and Merri seconded it. All voted in favor.

Respectfully Submitted,
Nancy Cressey
Wilmington Historical Society


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