We have been busy as bees these past few months. Our 2006 Program Brochure is ready. At the time of this writing the Historical plaque is being made for the Madison Corner School and we hope to place it on the building sometime this spring. I have been working with other Carroll County Historical Societies to publish a booklet on local historical interests in Carroll County.
And, the biggest task of all has been the Madison Historical Society Museum building preservation project. Let me start from the beginning. This fall the CIP (Capital Improvement Program) Committee requested that we get quotes on building needs we have. At the time the building only needed electrical work and exterior painting. I was then informed that we needed to look at our foundation and concerns that it may need some repair. I contacted H.E. Bergeron Engineers to inspect the structural integrity of the building. The good news is that the building is in good condition for a building of its age, however it does need some major work to preserve it. These repairs or renovations include lifting the building, excavation work, installing a new 4-foot high concrete frost wall foundation and footing added to the perimeter of the existing foundation, repairing all rotted floor joists by "sistering" new joists beside the rotted joists, possible need of upgrading the girders, repairing a cut-off roof rafter in the attic, and upgrading the electrical and mechanical systems as required to comply with code requirements. That is it.
Built in 1884 as Madison's Town Meeting Hall, later called the Recreation Hall, the building was used for meetings and other functions until the early 1950s. The Madison Historical Society met in the building for the first time on July 15, 1959, for its annual meeting. The Society building was dedicated on August 12, 1959.
From minutes of the Madison Historical Society:
January 21, 1959:
We talked on the possibility of securing the old town hall as our home and inserting an article in the warrant.
February 18, 1959:
It was voted into the town warrant an article to grant the Society use of the old town hall.
March 16, 1959:
Thanks were expressed to Alice Ward for her speaking at town meeting to aid in granting to the Society the use of the old town hall. Secretary was instructed to write a note of thanks to Jesse Currier for his interest and work and aid in securing for us the building.
On a historical note, this is one of few buildings in town with historical significance. The Town of Madison retains ownership and has been responsible for keeping the building in repair.
Additionally, the Town pays for the electricity and heat.
In December I assisted the Town office in writing up a LCHIP grant to help with the cost of this project, about $70,000, which includes some of the needed electrical work and all of the exterior power-washing and painting, including painting of the roof. I do not know when we will hear about the grant money and the Town will have a warrant article for this March Town meeting for the needed funds. If you are a Town resident, please come out to vote "yes" on this issue. Thank you for your support.
Spring is just around the corner. Enjoy the rest of the winter!
Mary K.W. Lucy
1. Executive Board Secretary
2. Program Coordinator
3. Vice President
4. Lap Top Computer
5. Donations toward new
6. Donations of rough sawn
timber for the Pound or
funds toward the efforts.
7. Donations towards
expanding our Tool Shed
for more exhibit space.
Mary K.W. Lucy, President
Becky Knowles, Treasurer and Curator
Lisa Hayford, Publicity
Olive Clayton, Mailings
BLAST FROM THE PAST
This is taken from an old newspaper article, probably
from The Reporter, sometime after the Madison Historical Society meeting dated February 21, 1962.
Madison Historical Society
The Madison Historical Society held its February meeting at the hall. There were 20 members and 5 guests present. We gladly welcomed our young guests. Mr. Percy Blake opened the meeting with a flag Salute and a patriotic song. Mrs. Bernice Harmon was the organist.
The treasurer's report was read. Our youngest donator was Miss Louella Blake five years old who wove us a very colorful potholder for our kitchen.
Mr. Arthur Taylor sent us some very interesting clippings from various newspapers.
Mr. Herbert Weston will work with Mr. Russell regarding the school essays.
Mr. Percy Blake gave a very interesting talk on Lincoln and his platform.
Mr. Herbert Weston read a paper on the life of Washington bringing before our society, outstanding facts about the life of this great American.
The program of the evening was prepared and given by Mr. Harry Harmon. He was assisted by Mr. George Shaw. Mr. Harmon brought a map of Madison showing all of the early mill sites while Mr. Shaw told the owner and a short story of each.
Blaisdell's mill at East Madison was built around 1804. These mills were the back bone of the early communities, men gathered to grind their corn, gather the news, discuss town affairs. There was a woolen mill by Albion Twombly's, a lumber mill near Deer Hill, a grist mill by Bert Chick's.
The cooper shop run by J.R. Hunt turned out chairs, barrel staves, shook bed steads, butter churns, salt boxes and coffins. This was situated near what is now Madison Corner. A number of families in town have some of the chairs, which was his principal production.
The Chicks lumber mill was first started by a Banfill, near the bridge by Harry Harmons. One of the mill stones is still there. It was sold to the Chicks and moved several times before finally going to Silver Lake. This is a history in itself and hope some member of our society will give a program on this mill.
Mr. Harmon mentioned twenty six mills in all, between 1804 and 1912.
Mr. George Shaw told about the tannery at Asa Jackson's and the clay pits on Stacy Mountain. This was one of our most colorful and instructive programs involving a great deal of work. Bricks were made at Ossipee Lake and the lead mine was in full operation at various times.
Two muzzle loaders were brought for display, one was Mr. Harmon's great uncle Colby Harmon's. The guns were used during the civil war.
Our hosts for the evening were Mr. & Mrs. Meader who served us very delicious Washington pie and plenty of coffee.
Taken from the Town of Madison Annual Reports of Municipal Officers for the Year Ending Jan. 31, 1929, Board of Selectmen; George Chick, Bertwell P. Gerry, and Guy W. Nickerson, page 57:
Madison, N.H. Feb. 9th, 1929
Through the kind generosity of Mrs. H.H. Shepard, Mrs. C. Dana Webster, and Mr. Arthur W. Cate, all Grandchildren of Col. John March, a former resident and leading citizen of this Town, we have been presented with a very fine portrait, to be kept in some public place.
For the benefit of those who do not remember Col. March, the following is a brief biography: ---
Col. John March (of Portsmouth, Greenland, and Eaton, N.H.) was born in England, March 1771* and died in Madison, N.H., Sept. 19, 1831.
He married Abigail Hodgdon at Greenland, Feb. 22, 1798.
Col. March came to America when eight years old, 1779, with an older brother.
He was made Colonel in the war of 1812.
There were eight children.
Abigail M.H. married Atkinson; Mary Ann married Abram Colby; Caroline married Churchill Langdon; Eliza Ann married Whittaker, later Sam Allard; Mittie Sherburne married Artenas Harmon; George Washington; Sarah Ann married Horatio Neal Cate.
The town records of Eaton show that Col. March first held office in 1802 when he was elected Moderator. Other records follow:
1803 Pound Keeper 'Clerk of said Vendue'
1804 Member of Committee to divide the town into school districts.
1807 Member of Committee to meet in convention at Knights, for purpose of dividing the County.
1814 First Selectman
1818 – 1819 Moderator & Representative to Congress.
1821 Candidate for Senator, 99 votes
1822 Candidate for Senator, 107 votes
1824 State Representative
1826 Candidate for Senator, 150 votes
1827 – 1831 Moderator
The record on Col. March'ss tombstone at Madison, New Hampshire, is as follows:
John March, Esq.
* According to the Jesse Harmon Records, File #89: It was Col. John March'ss Great-Great-Grandfather, Hugh March, 1620 – 1693, who was born in England and settled in Newbury, Mass. Hugh married 1st Judith Truman. Col. John March's Great-Grandfather was James March, born 1663, married Mary Walker. His Grandfather was Benjamin March, born 1690, married Elizabeth Small, who was born in 1695. Col. March's father was James March, 1728 – 1785, married Margery Jones. Col. John March, March 23, 1777 – September 19, 1831, married Abigail Hodgdon, 1775 – 1857. Col. March was born in Portsmouth (not in England). He settled in Eaton (Madison) in 1800. Their eight children were: Abigail, born in 1800, married in 1819 to Sam Atkinson, who was born in 1794; Mary A., born in 1802, married in 1824 to Abraham Colby; Caroline, born in 1807, married in 1824 to James Churchill; John L. (Langdon?), born in 1810, married Sally Churchill; Eliza Ann, born in 1812, married 2nd Samuel Allard (1814 – 1887); Mittie S., born in 1814, married Artemas Harmon; George Washington, born in 1814, died in the South; and Sarah A., born in 1819, married Horatio N. Cate.
Where is the portrait of Col. John March? If anyone knows, please contact the Society.
"Haying In Madison"
Who are these hard workers?
When and where was this picture taken? Anyone have a guess?
We have many old photos without any information about them. If you can help out, let us know.
Would you like to share your stories of Madison? We are always looking for articles to add to our newsletters. Please e-mail your stories to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail them to the attention of Mary Lucy, Madison Historical Society, P.O. Box 505, Madison, NH 03849.