2011 MID-YEAR UPDATE

Our work has focused on developing the Main Street wiki, an online building history database of structures along New London's Main Street. We hope this will become a repository for more and more information about our built environment. It is already being used by the NL Historical Society as it researches sites for upcoming walking tours of New London. You can view the progress at www.nlarchives.wikiplaces.com.

Another initiative has been the creation of an Archives blog, where brief stories related to items held in our collections are published. The purpose of this blog is to exhibit the breadth of the collection and highlight some lesser-known people and events in New London's history. So far, we have been able to research and publish two articles each month, which remains our goal. You can read all those articles on the blog, accessible through our website.

For Colby-Sawyer Library's speaker series, and with a grant from the NH Humanities Council, we created a new presentation highlighting personal stories contained in the town's many archives, not only the one here in the Old Academy Building, but also the archives at Colby-Sawyer and private collections like the Littlefield's. The illustrated talk, entitled "In Their Words", introduced the audience to the lives of Sarah Trussell, Maria Burpee, Delia Page, and Anna Littlefield through letters, diaries, and memoirs. All were New London women, whose words spanned the 19th century, touching on broad themes of agriculture, industrialization, westward expansion, and education. Despite torrential rain, the lunchtime presentation at the Ware Center was very well attended. We owe thanks to the college for proposing and hosting the event, and to Lloyd Littlefield for sharing his incredible collection of Dr. Anna's writings and artwork.

As usual, archives volunteers (and committee members) have assisted visitors, both in-person and online, with numerous requests for information. John Walters' recent article on Scytheville that appeared in Kearsarge Magazine is one example. Other topics have involved genealogical research, house histories, and organization records.

Finally, we welcome Kim Hallquist, our new Town Administrator, to the Old Academy Building. Even before her first official day, she had toured the Archives area and was impressed by the resources and obvious care devoted to keeping our town's history for future generations.


James M. Perkins
Town Archives Committee / June 2011

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