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The Thompson-Ames Historical Society
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10/25/07 - November Meeting / December Plans

Written by: Kathy Lacroix

Although we are enjoying the beautiful fall foliage, members of the Gilford Historical Society are looking forward to our fall meeting in November and are making plans for our Holiday Open Houses at the Rowe House in December. Consequently, this article will cover two topics, our November meeting and then our plans for December.

On Monday, November 5th, Bob Cottrell, the Executive Director of the Remick Country Doctor Museum in Tamworth, will be the featured speaker at the Meetinghouse at 7:30. His topic will be “A tour of the Notches: White Mountain Art, History and Nature.” The program will last about one hour and he will present many paintings and photos of the places taken today that show the scenes that were painted, it will be in a PowerPoint format. The program will look at the history and nature behind the art, the geological formation that attracted the artists, waterfalls, flora and fauna, the tools and techniques they used in their paintings, drawings and prints, the history they captured in their work such as farm and village life, fences, bridges, and livestock.

Knowing next to nothing about White Mountain Art and Artists I decided to go to Google to learn about the topic. After reading and viewing some of the paintings, I left the site with an appreciation of a part of our historical heritage that I had been unaware of. I realized that that is one of the goals of any historical society, to increase our knowledge and appreciation of our shared heritage. I hope that those of our readers who, like me, know nothing about this topic, will go to the following web site and come away interested enough to come to the Monday meeting to learn more. The following information is “reproduced from the web site of White Mountain Art and Artists authored by John J. Henderson and Roger E. Belson. Visit their Web site at http://www.whitemountainart.com/” “It was early in the nineteenth century that artists first began to travel to the White Mountains of New Hampshire to paint and sketch. Those early painters portrayed a dramatic landscape with an emphasis on nature. One of the early artists …was Thomas Cole (1801-1848). His painting, “A View of the Pass Called the Notch of the White Mountains” was perhaps the finest example of these early paintings.” That painting and many others can be viewed at the web site.

I then called Bob Cottrell and learned more about his topic. I was pleased to learn that the above-mentioned painting would be part of his visual program. He will give a brief history of some of the paintings, telling about the stories and legends associated with the scenes that the artists painted. Since he is the executive director of the Remick Museum, he is especially interested in the portrayal of farm and village life in the area and will share that with us. It should be an interesting and enjoyable presentation.


As part of our plans for the Holiday Open House, the Rowe House will once again be decorated with holiday greens and flowers throughout the house, the lighted Dickens Holiday Scene will be in the dining room, and sugar cookies to be decorated by boys and girls in the kitchen. However, this year we plan to add something new, or perhaps I should say, something old. One person has already offered to lend us some of her treasured toys from her childhood, dating back to the 40’s, to be exhibited around the lit Christmas tree in the parlor. We would love to be able to have a variety of toys to exhibit in the bedroom also. If you have a treasured toy or game from your childhood and would be willing to share it for this special exhibit, please let Kathy know at 524-3390. You might have toys, a special doll, etc., from the 30’s 40’s, 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, or later. It would be like a walk down memory lane to see them displayed during the holiday season. But, in order to make this happen, we NEED YOU!

Last year, we were contacted by Boy and Cub Scout leaders who were interested in having their packs tour the house as part of their work in earning a badge. Our volunteers were glad to be there at their regular scout meeting time. Although our regularly scheduled Holiday Open House is set for December 2, from 1pm-4pm, we will be glad to open the house for a special Holiday tour for any group requesting it-area Scouts, clubs, etc., just contact us at the above number.

For information concerning Gilford’s Historical Society, go to www.gilfordhistoricalsociety.org or e-mail at thoames@worldpath.net or call at 527-9009.