The Society produces "Historically Speaking" monthly on PEG TV Channel 15. The series includes interviews and historical pictorial material in a rather flexible TV magazine format. The programs can be seen every Wednesday at 4:00 P.M., Thursday at 1:30 P.M. and Friday at 7:30 P.M. DVDs of the following episodes can be obtained from PEGTV:
Episode # 1 - Elaine Purdy, President of the Society, and Jake Sherman, Chairman of the Board of Directors, discuss the range of Society activities. The program includes some pictorial material of Society activities.
Episode # 2 - James Cassarino, leader of the First Republic Brass discusses the history of the organization. The program includes a number of video clips from First Republic Brass concerts. There is a discussion of Rutland's musical history and some pictures and commentary on the Society's summer dance program.
Episode # 3 - This program, entitled "A Climb To the Star," features still photos of the interior of the Congregational Church tower from the entrance of the church to the top of the tower. The program ends with a series of beautiful panoramic views of Rutland from the tower. Architectural features of the church, in and out, and some historic photos are included.
Episode # 4 - Pat McCormack, Program Chairperson, and Jim Davidson discuss the 30th Anniversary Celebration of the Society. The program includes a brief biography of Julia Dorr and a reading of two of her poems with illustrations by Zulma DeLacy Steele, Julia's daughter.
Episode # 5 - Jim Davidson narrates a video that was created from a single glass plate panorama of Rutland that was taken from the tower of the Congregational Church in 1890. The first half of the program prepares the viewer for the tour by a study of the 1890 maps of the Rutland stores and businesses.
Episode # 6 - Morris Tucker narrates a series of still photos that sample the items and activities that can be found at the Farm Museum at the Vermont State Fair in Rutland.
Episode # 7 - Jim Davidson hosts this program that features photos from the photo album of David H. Sawyer of Rutland who took most the photos around 1898. The photos show buildings and streetscapes of 100 years ago in Rutland. Clothing and everyday and seasonal activities are also illustrated. Jim provides a narration of identification where possible and a narrative commentary on life of that time.
Episode # 8 - This program features videotape excerpts from a program on Revolutionary War musicians that was presented at the Rutland Historical Society by George Behnke and two young reenactors. The program explains the uniforms and equipment worn and the use of music for signaling troop actions. A number of musical selections by fifes and drum are presented. On location camera work was by Tom Donahue.
Episode # 9 - Tom Carpenter presents an illustrated program on Banks, Banking and Money that is a video adaptation of a program that he presented at the 1999 Annual Meeting of the Society. The program provides a copiously illustrated discussion of early Vermont coinage and paper money. It also traces the history of Rutland banks, including photos of most of them.
Episode # 10 - Jim Davidson hosts this program that features Dorothy Whitford, Society Research Committee Chairperson, in an interesting conversation about how Dorothy got involved in genealogical research. Dot tells a number of research stories both humorous and intriguing.
Episode # 11 - Jim Davidson hosts a video program developed and narrated by Angela Hinchey of the Society on the art and life of the Sioux Indians of the Standing Rock Reservation in North Dakota at the end of the 19th Century and the beginning of the 20th Century. The Society's Ella Bean Livingston Collection of Native American materials provided most of the elements for this program. Angela has been working on an educational kit on the Livingston Collection for loan to the schools and this video will be one part of that kit.
Episode # 12 - Dot Whitford hosts Carole Curry in a fascinating program on "The Restoration of Antique Wedding Gowns" and the reuse of other antique fabrics. Mrs. Curry is a professional restorer of antique clothing and offers numerous ideas on the reuse of pieces of antique fabric. Young and old, men and women, will be delighted with the great ideas shared by Mrs. Curry.
Episode # 13 - Tom Carpenter hosts George Bates of the Loyalty Day Parade Committee in a discussion of the history of the Loyalty Day Parade. The program includes still photos of Rutland parades from the Civil War era into the 20th Century. Rutland has always loved a parade and has always been a great parade city. The program also includes a series of wonderful video clips from Loyalty Day parades of the 1990's.
Episode # 14 - Jim Davidson hosts a program with Marissa Johnson, a senior history major from Castleton State College, as his guest. Marissa volunteered at the Society during the Spring Term to gain some hands-on experience in a local historical society. The Society provided experiences with archives, library materials, artifacts, exhibits, publications and hosting. Marissa shares her experiences that are illustrated by a series of still photos. The program provides an interesting overview of the multitude of volunteer activities that take place at the Society.
Episode # 15 - Tom Carpenter hosts Jim Proctor, State Commander of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, in a far-ranging discussion of the Sons of Union Veterans and their activities. The discussion includes a focus on the Ripley Camp (or post) that is based in Rutland and its activities. Jim Proctor was the leader of the Rutland Camp for the last few years prior to becoming state commander. Other camps are in Montpelier and Chelsea, Vermont.
Episode # 16 - Tom Carpenter hosts Dennis Charles, Civil War presenter, in a program in which Dennis models and describes the clothing, shoes and equipment used by the Civil War soldier. The program notes the changes and variations in these items throughout the Civil War.
Episode #17 - Jim Davidson presents a program on the tour of the Mediterranean and the Near East taken by Egbert C. Tuttle and Dr. John A. Mead, both of Rutland, in the spring of 1903. The program features selected items from E. C. Tuttle's three scrapbooks of the tour. The two-month trip included stops at the Madeira Islands, Gibraltar and Spain, Algiers, Malta, Athens, Constantinople, Smyrna, Beirut, Palestine and the Holy Land, Egypt, Naples, Rome, Monte Carlo, and Nice and Paris, France.
Episode # 18 - Tom Carpenter presents an overview of the types of coins, stamps, and paper money that were used by the North and South prior to, during, and just after the Civil War. The coins shown include the half cent, various one, two, three, five, ten, twenty, twenty-five, and fifty cent pieces as well as dollar coins and various gold pieces. The Confederate one cent and fifty cent pieces complete the coins section. Various stamps, both United States and Confederate, are covered as well as various Internal Revenue stamps. Paper money of obsolete banks, United States currency and Confederate currency are depicted. The program includes some Canadian coins and paper money of the period.
Episode # 19 - The Ad Hoc TV Committee edited and shortened an 1994 videotape which documented the selecting, cutting and transporting of the 1994 National Christmas Tree from Vermont to Washington, D.C. The Green Mountain Bulldawg Chapter of the Antique Truck Club of America was prominently involved in the moving of the tree. The program is introduced by Tom Carpenter. Thanks to the original video, the program is replete with seasonal music and makes a very timely piece. The program concludes with seasonal best wishes from the Rutland Historical Society.
Episode # 20 - Dorothy Whitford, Chairperson of the Society's Ad Hoc Glass Plate Committee, is the guest on a program about glass plate negatives. The program briefly discusses the proper care of glass plates and then highlights a number of samples from a collection of glass plates recently acquired by the Society. The samples include both Rutland and Rutland County items. Many are identified by Dorothy but there are some for which we do not know the location or subject. The program is hosted by Jim Davidson.
Episode #21 - Michael Dwyer, Chairman of the Board of Directors, is the guest on a program about genealogy and family history research. Michael, a high school history teacher and a genealogist, uses a nearly 20 year search that he made for the roots of Nora Higgins Tree as a case study of the problems and difficulties to be found in family history research. He makes particular note of the technological advances in the computer world that greatly reduce the time involved in research and greatly increase the efficiency of the search. The program is hosted by Jim Davidson.
Episode # 22 - Patricia Wiley, Museum Educator and Coordinator of the Annual Meeting of the League of Local Historical Societies, was the guest of "Historically Speaking" in April. The program discusses the program of the League meeting on 5 May 2001 that was held in Rutland and hosted by the Rutland Historical Society. Jim Davidson of the Society and local arrangements coordinator was host. The program highlighted the various offerings of the program that was held at the Grace Congregational United Church of Christ and the Rutland Historical Society.
Episode # 23 - Jim Davidson of the Society prepared a sampling from eight of the Society first 22 programs to represent the variety of topics and types of programs offered during the first two years of the Society's "Historically Speaking" series. This program is a celebration of the Second Anniversary of "Historically Speaking".
Episode # 24 - Tom Carpenter hosts this program in which Jim Davidson offers a brief history of the big bands that are to provide the music for this summer's big band dance program offered by the Society in cooperation with the Rutland Recreation Department. The program includes pictures of the bands and their leaders as well as short samples of their music. This summer the music of these 18 bands will be available for dancing and listening on Saturday nights at the Godnick Center.
Episode # 25 - Jim Davidson hosts Society President Helen Davidson and Vice-President Dorothy Whitford in a discussion of the volunteer needs and opportunities at the Rutland Historical Society. Success in Society operations is generating more interaction with the public. This increase in activities requires more volunteers to meet present and future needs. This program, which appeals for additional volunteer help, details the needs of specific Society activities.
Episode # 26 - Jim Davidson hosts Dorothy Whitford of the Society and her guest, Sherwin Williams of Rutland Town. Sherwin provides an overview of growing up on a Rutland Town farm. In addition he shares locations of neighboring farms and discusses the changes in farming during the 20th Century. This program provides a wonderful, though brief, story of life at the Williams Farmstead on Route # 7 in Rutland Town.
Episode # 27 - Tom Carpenter hosts Michael F. Dwyer who offers a program on Franco-Canadian immigrants to the Rutland area. After a brief discussion of the change from French names to English names, Michael relates the periods and causes for Franco-Canadian immigration to Rutland. Anyone doing family research in French-Canadian families will find this program of immense aid.
Episode # 28 - Jim Davidson hosts a conversation about history in Vermont with Gainor Davis, Director of the Vermont Historical Society. The conversation ranges from the nature of history to its proper role in the schools. The importance of state and local history and the societies that preserve, interpret and disseminate that history is discussed.
Episode # 29 - Dorothy Whitford hosts Donald Wickman who presents an illustrated history of the American Revolutionary activities at Mt. Independence during 1776-1777. The program includes colored views of the site's features today and a number of historic colored images of the officers, men and places involved in the events of 1776-1777.
Episode # 30 - Jim Davidson hosts Michael Seward, local antique appraiser, and Dorothy Whitford, who loaned a number of pre-WWII toys to the Society, in a program devoted to a discussion of some samples from the December-January exhibit at the Society entitled "Traces of Holidays Past". Michael provides an in-depth historical view of the objects selected while Dorothy adds a number of personal notes regarding the toys.
Episode # 31 - Jim Davidson hosts a program about Rutland's early aviation history with Robert Laird, author of Wings Over Vermont, as his guest. The program discusses some of Rutland's early aviators and airfields and the risks of early airflight. Bob shares some of his youthful memories of association with some of these early flyers.
Episode # 32 - Luther Brown of the Multiracial Alliance of the Rutland Area (MARA) talks about the history and purpose of MARA. Jim Davidson of the Rutland Historical Society describes the "Black Presence In Rutland in the Late 18th and Early 19th Century Up To the End of the Civil War". Rutland had a number of black persons of significant achievement. Persons of color also comprised over one percent of the Rutland population by 1860. Rutland contributed 20 black members to the Massachusetts 54th Regiment (black).
Episode # 33 - Michael F. Dwyer makes a presentation on "Polish Immigration To the Rutland Area". The program includes an historical and geographical background to the late 19th Century Polish immigration to Rutland. A significant portion of the program is devoted to what happened to Polish names. It also presents an extended discussion of how to use the Ellis Island web site to search for family members of Polish ancestry. The web site provided in the program is no longer valid. Please use http://www.ellisisland.org/
Episode # 34 - Jim Davidson hosts Helen Davidson, President of the Rutland Historical Society, in a program reviewing Society activities and describing opportunities for volunteers to become active in the Society. The Society's image as an important participant in community activities has grown and with this growth has come a need for additional volunteers.
Episode # 35 - Jim Davidson hosts Gainor Davis, Director of the Vermont Historical Society, in a discussion of the Vermont Historical Society's new center in Barre in the old Spaulding Graded School. The program also discusses the 2002 Vermont History Expo at Tunbridge, Vermont, on Saturday and Sunday, 22 and 23 June.
Episode # 36 - Tom Carpenter hosts a program on the 225th Anniversary of the Battle of Hubbardton. His guests include: Grace Calvin, President of the Hubbardton Historical Society, George Davis. Chairperson of the Hubbardton Selectboard and Jim Dassatti, Executive Director of the Living History Association. The program reviews the plans for activities on Saturday and Sunday, 6 and 7 July at Hubbardton Battlefield.
Episode # 37 - Tom Carpenter hosts Michael F. Dwyer in a presentation on the Italian Immigration to Rutland in the early 20th Century. Michael discusses the problems in finding ancestors names in the Ellis Island records, which are now accessible online, and offers solutions to the problems. He also talks about the two major locations in Italy and Sicily from whence most of Rutland's Italian immigrants came. This program has been very popular.
Episode # 38 - Jim Davidson hosts a program entitled "The Changing Ways That History Is Conveyed". The program offers brief vignettes from Rutland's beginning to the 1920's. There is a sampling of visual material from sketches, paintings, photographs and even early movie film from 1914. Textual material is delivered through poetic verse, narration, and documents. There are even a couple of artifacts used to illustrate the point that Rutland's history can be, and has been, conveyed in many ways during the community's past.
Episode # 39 - Jim Davidson hosts Michael Dwyer in a program on the Irish immigration to Rutland. This program is the fourth in a series on Rutland immigrant groups and the challenge to find their ancestors. Name variations can cause serious problems for the novice family history searcher. Another problem is the all too common use of the same names in multiple generations. Michael brings a great deal of light to the problems of Irish immigrant searches. Many Irish in Rutland came through Canada. Sources for tracking this problem are offered.
Episode # 40 - Jim Davidson hosts Anna Whooley for a discussion for her research on the Irish immigration experience in Ireland and America. A highlight of the program is Anna's ten-minute monologue presentation in costume of "The Plight of the Irish Mill Girl". Anna writes her own script and designs and makes her own costumes.
Episode # 41 - Jim Davidson of the Society presents a video program on the Flood of 1927 which is devoted to pictures of the flood's destruction in the Rutland and Proctor areas. Jim provides a narration which identifies the various pictures and ties them into the story of the flood in the Rutland area. This was the 75 th Anniversary of one of Vermont's greatest natural disasters.
Episode # 42 - Jim Davidson hosts a program on the Physical Activity Coalition of the Rutland County Area. A far ranging discussion between his guest, Dr. Ben Thompson, a leader in the local Physical Activity Coalition, and host Jim Davidson of the Society, traces the history of the Physical Activity Coalition and the involvement of the Society in the Coalition.
Episode # 43 - Tom Carpenter hosts Michael F. Dwyer in a program on "Jewish Immigration To Rutland". The program describes the background of Jewish immigration to the Rutland area from Eastern Europe. It includes some brief commentary on individual families that came to West Rutland and Rutland in the early 20th Century. Mr. Dwyer again directs the viewer on how to find such ancestors on the Ellis Island web site. He notes some of the problems that may be encountered with names. This is the fifth program on genealogy and ethnic groups in the "Historically Speaking" series.
Episode # 44 - Jim Davidson hosts Tim Grover, Associate Professor of Geology at Castleton State College. Professor Grover describes the geologic history of the Rutland County area from 500 million years ago to a more recent time of two million years. He explains what happened during these early geologic times and the causes of the changes that took place. His presentation includes a discussion of the formation of the many minerals under the surface of the earth in Vermont. The mining potential in Vermont is stunning. The present historic era of about 2,000 years pales in comparison to the over four billion years of the earth's life.
Episode # 45 - Tom Carpenter hosts Jim Davidson in a program regarding the purported horse race from Galveston, Texas, to Rutland, Vermont, in the fall of 1886. Frank Hopkins claims to have won this race but there was absolutely not one piece of evidence that the race ever happened. But the hoax didn't stop there. Frank claimed to have been hired by Buffalo Bill for his wild west show which also seems to be totally untrue. (See News From Nickwackett, Vol. 10 No.1 p. 3 for a brief summary of this hoax.)
Episode # 46 - Jim Davidson hosts Kevin Graffagnino, new director of the Vermont Historical Society. The interview ranges from Mr. Graffagnino's views of history to his views on the future of history in Vermont. The interview also discusses the upcoming Vermont History Expo of 2003.
Episode # 47 - Tom Carpenter hosts Michael F. Dwyer in a program discussing health in Rutland one hundred years ago in 1903. The program covers the prevalent diseases and illnesses of the day and the treatments of that period. Death accompanied many conditions that would be considered minor today. Public health was just beginning to be overseen by a public health officer. Much of the material for the program came from the city records for deaths in Rutland in 1903 and the city report of the public health officer.
Episode # 48 - "The Health of the City" continues with a second program that focuses on the impact of the influenza epidemic of 1918-1919 on the City of Rutland. In October of 1918, perhaps the single most deadly month in America's history, there were over 700 cases of influenza in Rutland. This program highlights the stories of families who were impacted by this health crisis.
Episode # 49 - Jim Davidson hosts Dylan Duncan, one of the producers of Ghosts of Vermont, a video production which focuses on four Vermont ghost tales. The program includes the Whipple Hollow ghost story of Frank Kurant. Jim Davidson provides a short historical segment on the history of Whipple Hollow. The program discusses the genesis of the idea for the production and some of the difficulties that had to be overcome.
Episode # 50 - Michael Dwyer hosts WorId War II and Korean War veteran Frank Fressie in "Remembering Korea". Fifty years after the armistice which ended the Korean War, Mr. Fressie shares his reflections about serving in this conflict and how it impacted his life. He also shares his thoughts on this war's larger place in history between World War II and Vietnam. Viewers will find Fressie's testimony moving.
Episode # 51 - Tom Carpenter hosts Michael F. Dwyer in a program on "Greek Immigration To Rutland". The program examines the conditions that brought Greek families to Rutland at the close of the 19th Century. The program also profiles some of the early Greek families in Rutland including their names and occupations. There is also a brief history of the founding of St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church in Rutland.
Episode # 52 - Jim Davidson presents a program on George Schmitt, Rutland pioneer aviator. This program is filled with old photos of Schmitt's very short career. It also includes some items from Schmitt's diary, extracts of which his brother Charles published in the "Oread", the Rutland High School magazine of the time. These diary entries were only recently discovered purely by chance. George Schmitt began flying or attempting to fly in 1910. By 1912 and 1913 he began to set records for flights. During the winter of 1912-1913 he flew numerous sucessful flights in the Caribbean and Central America. In September he returned to fly at the Rutland Fair where he suffered a fatal crash on 2 September 1913.
Episode # 53 - Michael F. Dwyer interviews Cynthia Bittinger, Executive Director of the Calvin Coolidge Memorial Foundation. Although the political background of Calvin Coolidge was in Massachusetts, the values developed in his youth in Plymouth, Vermont, always influenced his life. The interview highlights some of the myths of Coolidge's life. He was not so silent as his speeches attest. He also had a good sense of humor. Ms. Bittinger also talks about Grace Goodhue Coolidge, Calvin's wife and Vermont's only first lady. Ms. Bittinger is currently writing a biography of Mrs. Coolidge.
Episode # 54 - Jim Davidson interviews Roger Bailey, coordinator of Vermont History Expo 2004's co-operative Mining and Quarrying Exhibit. Over 20 local societies have agreed to focus their exhibits this year on the extractive industry in their town or city. This aspect of Vermont's history as a mining state certainly challenges the stereotypical view of Vermont. The program also includes a five minute video clip from the 2003 Vermont History Expo and a brief overview of other events to be seen at the 2004 Vermont History Expo. There is a brief note about the exhibit of the Rutland Historical Society.
Episode # 55 - Jim Davidson hosts Michael F. Dwyer in the seventh of the series of episodes on the genealogy of ethnic groups in Rutland. This episode discusses the immigration of Swedes to the Rutland area. The program exposes the myth that most Swedes were farmers. The important role of the Lutheran Church in preserving the records of Swedish families is highlighted. The program also explains the confusing elements of Swedish names which can be daunting to the uninitiated.
Episode # 56 - Jim Davidson hosts Jessamyn West, Outreach Librarian at the Rutland Free Library, in a program on how to begin using "Heritage Quest", a web site that is available free to library card holders. This genealogical resource can be used from the comfort of your home if you hold a library card. This is one of many free services offered by the Rutland Free Library and will be of great interest to those pursuing family history research. Access to the manuscript U. S. Census records is one of the great benefits of "Heritage Quest". Check the Rutland Free Library's home page for further information.
Episode # 57 - Jim Davidson hosts Dave Knipes, local circus and carnival historian, in a program on the Rutland Fair from the 1930s to the 1960s. The program centers on the "World of Mirth Shows" at the Rutland Fair and includes numerous photos of miniatures of the complete "World of Mirth Shows" as they appeared at the Rutland Fair. These miniatures are the work of Dave Knipes.
Episode # 58 - Michael Dwyer hosts Dr. Kevin Thornton, teacher of history at the University of Vermont, in a program on "Political Messages in Ordinary Objects". Dr. Thornton explains the subtle messages contained in a number of 19th century objects from the collections of the Shelburne Museum and how they fit into the political climate of the early 19th Century.
Episode # 59 - Dorothy Whitford hosts Jim Davidson in a discussion of the history of the Rutland Courts and their court records. Jim and Dorothy have been involved in the organization of the recently acquired Rutland Munipal Court Records and have a number of stories to share from their perusal of these records. The program includes pictures of the various Rutland court buildings.
Episode # 60 - Jim Davidson hosts Michael Dwyer in a program exploring the information that can be gleaned from a photo of the late 19th or the early 20th Century. Photos, both posed and unposed, can offer great amounts of information about ordinary life at the turn of the 19th to the 20th Century if one knows how to go about. This program helps to fill this gap in our knowledge.
Episode # 61 – Tom Carpenter hosts a program that discusses the new web site of the Rutland Historical Society. Committee members Jim Davidson and Patty Pickett join Tom, who is also a committee member, in a fast paced overview of the numerous sections of the site which is now available to the public. The site can be reached at: http//www.rutlandhistory.com.
Episode # 62 – Jim Davidson hosts Tony Romeo, Sons of Union Veterans, Ripley Camp # 4, and Mary Ann Goulette, executive director of the Downtown Rutland Partnership in a program about Rutland History Days, 30 April and 1 May 2005. History Days is an attempt to develop an activity on Saturday to accompany the annual Loyalty Day Parade on Sunday. It focuses on Living History military encampments and programs. It is a free program sponsored by the Rutland Parks and Recreation Department, the Sons of Union Veterans, the Rutland Historical Society and the Downtown Rutland Partnership.
Episode # 63 – Jim Davidson hosts Michael F. Dwyer in a program on “The Family Photo Album As Social History”. The program focuses on the period from pre-World War I through the 1920s. It shows the viewer how to extract social history from a variety of photographs that are typically found in the family scrapbook or photograph album.
Episode # 64 – Jim Davidson hosts Anna Whooley in a discussion about her new dramatic show, “The North and South: A Woman's Perspective” which will have its first presentation at the 2005 Vermont History Expo. The program shows Anna in the costume of one of the two characters that she will portray. The discussion revolves around her choice of subject, research problems and a behind the scenes look at how the script and program are put together. There is also a brief notice of the Society's exhibit at the Expo.
Episode # 65 – Jim Davison hosts Michael F. Dwyer in a program commemorating the men and women who served the country in World War II. The program also covers life on the home front in a war that was a total war for survival. Michael lists the names of those serving from Rutland . Now, 60 years removed from the end of World War II, it would be so easy to dismiss this generation that many have called “The Finest Generation” as just another piece of history. This program is devoted to an effort to see that we never forget what this generation contributed. There was not a household that was not in some way directly touched by the war.
Episode # 66 – Jim Davidson hosts Monty Butterfield of the Rutland Railway Association and Linda Doty, Chairperson of the Proctor Fall Festival in a presentation on Rutland Railroad Day 2005 and the Proctor Fall Festival which were held on 24 September 2005. The program discusses briefly the history of the Rutland Railway Association and the Proctor “Our Yard” project. Details of the events of the day are thoroughly discussed. The day included a train trip from Center Rutland to Proctor and back to Center Rutland. The program emphasizes the partnership aspects of the day's events. The Rutland Railway Association has a web site at www.rutlandrailway.org .
Episode # 67 – Jim Davidson hosts Larry Kelley, Family Researcher, in a discussion about the Kelley Family that in the early 19 th Century settled on and owned most of what is today the Creek Road. For years the road from the Dorr Bridge south to the Town Line was called Kelley Road because the land was donated for the road by the Kelley Family. The long gone Park Street covered bridge was also originally called the Kelley Bridge. Larry offers many stories of the area that have been found in his research of the Kelley Family.
Episode # 68 – Jim Davidson hosts Michael F. Dwyer in a program devoted to ten tips for family researchers when they get stuck in their research. In a lively interchange, Michael shares some key strategies for getting past the “stone wall,” that researchers run into sooner or later. These tips are the practical “down to earth” advice from a long experienced genealogist.
Episode # 69 – Michael F. Dwyer hosts a program entitled “Young Eyes Look At Long Ago Proctor”. Michael interviews his guests, Proctor Elementary School teacher Maureen Dobart and her students, now in the 3 rd grade, about their local history projects from last year. Students include Christopher Clain, Noelle Flanders, Jazmin Goetz and Cody Landon, who present their actual models and stories about Proctor one hundred years ago.
Episode # 70 – Michael F. Dwyer introduces John Peterson who plays the role of “Sam Slick”, a fictional itinerant peddler of the 1830s. John's wife, Laura, plays the role of Mrs. Folger, a typical housewife of the time. Mr. Peterson presents the pitch and barter of the country salesman in a wonderful and humorous manner. He also reports about a visit to a woolen mill.
Episode # 71 - Tom Carpenter hosts Jim Davidson of the Society in a program on "The Black Presence in Rutland". Jim discusses the role of blacks in early Rutland and emphasizes the number who lived in Rutland before the Civil War. He also notes that most were born in Vermont. He makes particular note of the Reverend Lemuel Haynes and the Freeman family, including Martin Freeman. The large contingent of black men from Rutland who joined the Massachusetts 54th Regiment (Colored) in the Civil War is also discussed. The program concludes with discussion about the late 19th and early 20th Century black presence in Rutland.
Episode # 72 - Jim Davidson hosts a program on "Rutland's Spring Heritage Activities". Representatives from the Downtown Partnership, the Sons of Union Veterans and the Loyalty Day Parade briefly cover the "All Aboard, Rutland" railroad project, the History Days living history activities and the Loyalty Day Parade.
Episode # 73 - Michael F. Dwyer hosts Mary Fregosi of Proctor in a program entitled "Practicing History". Mary recently retired from a long career in education but has kept busy researching and writing articles and books on local history. Michael converses with Mary about her historical projects which have engaged and enriched her retirement hours.
Episode # 74 - Jim Davidson hosts a program entitled "West Rutland in the 1920's As Seen Through the Camera Lens of Frank Hinchey". The program is filled with individual and group photos of West Rutland in the 1920's. All the photos are from the family archives of Frank Hinchey who was involved in West Rutland education for over 40 years as teacher, coach and administrator. Few people know that Frank took hundreds of photos of what went on around him. Fortunately, many of his negatives survive. His daughter, Angela Hinchey, and "Red" Sutkoski of West Rutland are guests on the program andhelp to identify many of the people and places in the photos. However, numerous photos still be identification.
Episode # 75 - "Vermont's Forgotten President: Chester Alan Arthur". One hundred years after his death, Vermonth's first president deserves a new appraisal of his life and times. Mary Fregosi interview Michael Dwyer on the subject of the 21st president.
Episode #76 - Jim Davidson hosts Paula Baker, Director of the Rutland Free Library and Jake Sherman Library historian, on the occasion of the library's 120th birthday. The program blends an historical overview of the library with how libraries are rapidly changing in the technological age.
Episode # 77 - Jim Davidson hosts Chuck Piotrowski who presents a power point program entitled "Turning Your Junk Into the Stuff of History". This is Part One of a two part offering.
Episode # 78 - Jim Davidson hosts Chuck Piotrowski who presents part two of his power point program entitled “Turning Your Junk Into the Stuff of History”. Part two emphasizes the treatment of photographs and other illustrative material.
Episode # 79 - Jim Davidson hosts Michael F. Dwyer who presents a power point program on his favorite images from the 1978 pictorial history of Rutland entitled “Rutland In Retrospect”. In the program Michael addresses the rationale for his choices. This program offers an opportunity for viewers to see a high quality sampling from a long out-of-print work.
Episode # 80 - Jim Davidson hosts Michael F. Dwyer, President of the Rutland Historical Society, in a program entitled “Multi-Ethnic Rutland”. By focusing on the 1910 Census and its ethnic information, the program demonstrates that Rutland has had a rather large and diverse number of ethnic groups. The first individual considered is Eliza Johnson, wife of Charles Johnson, a barber, who was part of the Rutland black community. His program also discusses George Haddad who was born in the Lebanon district of Syria and Sam Lung, a Chinese laundryman who came to Rutland .
Episode # 81 - Jim Davidson hosts Tom Giffin, President of the Vermont Old Cemetery Association, in a program on “The Restoration of Old Cemeteries”. Tom is joined by Chris Book, Chairman of the new Cemetery Committee of the Rutland Historical Society. Both guests are commissioners of the Rutland City Cemetery Commission.
Episode # 82 - Sam Gorruso, Master of Ceremonies for the Loyalty Day Parade and Jim Davidson, program host and a member of the History Days Committee discuss the Living History encampments of Saturday 5 May, 2007 and the Loyalty Day Parade of Sunday 6 May 2007. Sam Gorruso talks about the history of the Loyalty Day Parade, now in it's 44th Year. Jim Davidson concludes the program with a mystery object to be identified in the next episode.
Episode # 83 - Tess Taylor, Manager of the Vermont History Expo 2007, and Helen Davidson, Chairperson of the Rutland Historical Society Exhibit Committee, discuss the 8th Annual Vermont History Expo 2007, which is to be held on 23 and 24 June 2007 at the Tunbridge Fairgrounds. Tess Taylor gives a pictorial overview of the activities and exhibits that were seen at the 2006 Expo. Helen Davidson describes the local Society exhibit, which, in keeping with this year's transportation theme, is the Rutland Railroad. The answer to last episode's mystery object is a gambrel stick, used in the butchering progress.
Episode # 84 - Michael F. Dwyer presents a program entitled "Remembering the Flood of 1947". June of 1947 is the 60th anniversary of one of Rutland's most disastrous floods. Michael offers a pictorial review of the causes, the damage and the recovery efforts that highlighted life in Rutland in June 1947. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 85 - Chuck Piotrowski, past archivist of the Society for American Baseball Research and currently Vice-president of the Rutland Historical Society, provides an illustrated history of the Rutland Royals of 1938 - 1941. Scrapbooks of the pre-war Rutland Royals given to the Society by the Martin Family provide material for a detailed history of the Royals and the Northern League. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 86 - David Wright, of the Middletown and Rutland Historical Societies presents still pictures of the Long Trail Lodge. David and his family were intimately involved with the lodge for many years and David is able to relate many stories connected with the history of the Long Trail Lodge. The Lodge not only had a close connection with the Long Trail but was also a major meeting place for many Rutland groups. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 87- Michael Dwyer presents an excellent view of Vermont rural life on the eve of U.S. entry into World War II. In 1941 the Farm Security Administration sent photographer Jack Delano to Rutland to photograph the Rutland Fair. This assignment was intended to photographically document rural life in Vermont. Additional photos by Delano can be found on the web site of the Library of Congress. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 88 - Dr. Richard Brown of the Rutland Herald presents the photographs of Aldo Merusi. Aldo Merusi was the chief Rutland Herald photographer for thirty years. His widow left a large collection of the negatives of his photos to the Rutland Herald. Dr. Brown has been placed in charge of the project to scan the negatives to provide viewable prints and to attempt identification of the people, places and events in the photos. The Rutland Historical Society has agreed to help in the identification process. This episode is the first attempt to bring some of the photos to the attention of the public through the medium of television. It is hoped that the public may help in the identification process. This program includes a brief biographical notice about Aldo Merusi and his work. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 89 - Bill Reardon, a long-time employee of the Rutland Recreation and Parks Department and host Jim Davidson discuss Rutland's Halloween Parade. A chronology of the Parade's nearly 50 year history, created by Betty Mumford, aids the discussion. Bill shares his many memories of the participants, the weather, changes in the parade and problems during its history.
Episode # 90 - Chuck Piotrowski presents"The Treasures of the Society: Part 1" which offers excerpts and comments from his program at the 2007 Annual Meeting of the Society. Part 1 focuses mostly on the artifacts in the Society's collections. Chuck makes the point that the term "treasures" is not to be taken in a monetary sense but for the valuable insight they offer about Rutland's history. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 91- Chuck Piotrowski presents "Treasures of the Society: Part 2" which continues his program from the 2007 Annual Meeting of the Society. Part 2 focuses on the papers, books and photos of the collections. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 92 - Dr. Richard Brown of the Rutland Herald offers a new selection of photographs taken by Aldo Merusi. Also Merusi was the chief Rutland Herald photographer for thirty years. His widow left a large collection of the negatives of his photos to the Rutland Herald. Dr. Brown has been placed in charge of the project to scan the negatives to provide viewable prints and to attempt identification of the people, places and events in the photos. The Rutland Historical Society has agreed to help the identification process. This is a second episode bringing additional photos to the attention of the public through the medium of television. It is hoped that the public may help in the identification process. Dr. Brown includes a short biographical sketch of Aldo Merusi and his work. Jim Davidson hosts the program .
Episode # 93 - Chuck Piotrowski presents "The Pico Raceway, 1951-1952" which is a visual story of a short-lived stock car race track in Rutland, Vermont, that on occasion drew over 4,000 people at an event. Although a product of Rutland's recent history, there is still much to be learned about the Pico Raceway from those with memories of the track. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 94 - Chuck Piotrowski presents some pieces from the collections of the Society that illustrate the wide range of material that the Society holds. These materials range from the 1880s until today and include many eras of Rutland baseball from paid professional and semiprofessional leagues to organizational and industrial leagues to high school and American Legion baseball. Rutland's rich baseball history begs development of a more complete history. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 95 - Deborah Clifford, an independent scholar who has done a great deal of research on Julia Dorr's life and work, shares an illustrated overview of Julia's life. Deborah as been active with the Vermont Women's History movement and Julia Dorr has been a great example of a 19th Century Rutland woman who let her talents shine in Rutland and throughout the American literary scene. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 96 - Megan Smith, executive director of "Dimensions of Marble", is the guest in this episode. The development of a marble trail along the marble valley of western Vermont is a prominent activity of this organization but not the sole activity. Other projects of the organization are discussed and the wide reach of the organization's goals and activities merit viewing by the general public. Jim Davidson hosts this presentation.
Episode # 97 - Susan Schreibman of the Rutland Regional Planning Commission is the guest for this episode. Susan briefly relates the history of the development of this pathway from Giorgetti Park to the College of St. Joseph. She also reports on the rapid progress of the project to the engineering of the first two segments of the path. Jim Davidson of the Society and host for the episode shares images of 16 identified historical sites along the pathway which provide a wonderful glimpse of Rutland's economic, recreational, religious, and cultural history.
Episode # 98 - President Chuck Piotrowski and Curator Jim Davidson present a video tour of the Rutland Historical Society web site. Various sections are explored and Chuck and Jim explain some of the material to be found in each section and some of the uses of the sections. There is also some note of future improvements to the site. Notice is given that the site will receive its one millionth visitor this fall.
Episode # 99 - Chuck Piotrowski is the guest presenter of a program on the history of electricity in Rutland called "Electric Rutland". The program includes some of the technical progress in generating and distributing electricity, the issue of mergers and advertising and creating a public awareness of electricity.
Episode # 100 - The production of 100 episodes of" Historically Speaking" seemed worthy of a special acknowledgement. "The Talegatorz", a 1920s old time jazz band, accepted our invitation to be part of our celebration. The members of this group bring the viewer back to the 1920s and the era of vaudeville.
Episode # 101 - The year 2009 is the 40th anniversary of the founding of the Rutland Historical Society. It seemed timely to look at where the Society has been and where it might be going in the future. Curator Jim Davidson has been a member since the beginning of the Society and shares his reflections on the history of the Society and its tomorrow.
Episode # 102 - "Rutland's Greatest Fire: The Bates House Fire 1906". On 18 February 1906 this fire consumed all the buildings on the northeast corner of Merchants Row and Center Street and halfway up the north side of Center Street. Although there were no deaths in the fire, the amount of destruction has not been rivaled in Rutland's history. Chuck Piotrowski narrates a pictorial tour of the fire and its results.
Episode # 103 - "Resources for Rutland History: 1850 - 1890". Jim Davidson, Society Curator, reviews a wide range of resources available to understand Rutland's history in the era 1850 - 1890. He also makes some suggestions on how to work through the maze of material in a most effective manner.
Episode # 104 - "New York Giants vs. Rutland All-Stars - 1916". Dick Leyden, Vermont baseball historian, discusses the baseball game at the Rutland Fairgrounds on 22 October 1916. This game was played during the "deadball era" when pitchers were able to "doctor" the ball in many ways and only one ball was used for the whole game. Thus home runs were few and far between. Dick's presentation provides a wealth of information on the participants and background on baseball in this era. The Rutland game was arranged by the New York Giants as part of a post-season "barnstorming" tour despite baseball's official disapproval of "barnstorming." Betting was a large part of such challenge games that were quite popular, as the attendance of 3,500 people attests.
Episode # 105 - History of Vermont Weather. Jim Davidson interviews Dr. Lesley-Ann L. Dupigny-Giroux, Vermont State Climatologist, in a fast-paced discussion of the history of Vermont weather. Lesley-Ann talks about the various weather professions and their roles. Farmers were the ultimate non-professional climatologists. The discussion mentions a number of Rutland weather observers and the connectedness and impact of weather and climate in Vermont history. Dr. Dupigny-Giroux carries on a continual search for Vermont weather history and invites historical weather information.
Episode # 106 - "The History of Rutland High School". Paul Crossman, author of the recent quarterly on the history of the Rutland High School is the guest on this episode. He and host Chuck Piotrowski discuss the changes in the high school and its various locations over time. They touch on a number of points to which the public may say "I didn't know that".
Episode # 107 - "Around Pittsford". Peggy Armitage of the Pittsford Historical Society is the guest for this episode. "Around Pittsford" is a picture history that includes numerous views from Pittsford, Proctor and Chittenden. Peggy, who edited the book, shows a number of selected photos from the book, especially Proctor, and tells a tale about most. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode #108 - The Rutland 1884-Map [NOTE: In the last Newsletter # 108 was identified as the Rutland Cemeteries program. The Program Chairperson apologizes for the error.] Clifford Giffin, Jim Davidson, and Chuck Piotrowski were members of a team that put together the scanned CD version of an 1884 Map of Rutland that is approximately five feet by five feet. The program illustrates some of the equipment used and the steps taken to bring this fascinating map to a CD. Some samples of the CD are shown.
Episode # 109 - The Cemeteries of the Old Town of Rutland Chris Book and Tom Giffin, Rutland City Cemetery Commissioners, are guests for this program. The program includes images of most of the cemeteries, old and new, of the old Town of Rutland. The program also discusses some of the issues and problems in the proper preservation of cemeteries. The programs for the preservation and care of the graves of military veterans are also discussed. Jim Davidson hosted the program.
Episode # 110 - History of the Rutland Free Library Jake Sherman provides an overview of the history of libraries in Rutland culminating in the history of the Rutland Free Library. Jim Davidson who hosts the program, shares some insight into life in the library in 1920 as gained from a group of five letters from a former employee.
Episode # 111 - "Faces of the Past 1". Jake Sherman relates biographies of several characters of early Rutland history that appeared in the Rutland Historical Society calendar for 2010. The program also shares the 14 images of these people who were born in the 1700s. The availability of these early images is truly amazing. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 112 - "The Long Trail". The Rutland Historical Society has nearly 100 glass slides of views along the Long Trail from about 1913-1930. These are integrated in to a story of the Long Trail prepared by quest Bob Perkins, Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 113 - "History of Agriculture in Rutland". The Rutland Historical Society developed a multimedia presentation for its exhibit at the Vermont Historical Society Expo in keeping with the Expo theme of agriculture. This program is an adaptation of that presentation for "Historically Speaking". The presenter is Chuck Piotrowski and the host is Jim Davidson.
Episode # 114 - "Two Early Rutland Films". Jim Davidson and Chuck Piotrowski co-host the showing of a 1914 movie film of events at the Rutland Carnival in downtown Rutland and at the 1914 Rutland Fair. This 10-minute film is the oldest Rutland film in the Society's collections. The second film is a 9-minute 1919 film taken at the Rutland Fairgrounds on the occasion of an honor day for the Rutland County veterans of World War I. The films are silent films with brief textual commentaries.
Episode # 115 - 'Internet Archive". Jim Davidson presents a program on the Internet Archive that offers computer users a wonderful free access to text, music and film that is now in the public domain. This program focuses on the books that can be read online or downloaded in a few minutes at no cost. These items are in a searchable PDF format. Jim suggests some ways to search for titles to consider for reading or downloading in order to gather an astounding collection of Vermont and Rutland history publications for a personal library on your computer.
Episode # 116 - "Faces of the Past: Part II". Jake Sherman, of the Rutland Historical Society, provides a biographical commentary on the 14 people whose images and bios fill the Society's 2011 calendar issue of its Quarterly. Most of the people were important in Rutland in the era after the Revolution and before the Civil War. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 117 - "The Rutland Jewish Community". Jacob Sherman was the guest presenter for this program. He offered a brief history of the early Jewish community including the various locations where they met before acquiring the old Baxter Library where the synagogue is currently located. He particularly discussed the growing role of the women in the Rutland Jewish Community.
Episode # 118 - "Highlights From the History of Rutland Town" - Ann Glagola and Lloyd Davis, long-time town residents and members of the Rutland Historical Society, are guests for a program highlighting some of the history of the Town of Rutland. The program begins with the early years of the Town until its division in 1886 and 1892. The 20th Century focuses on the town, as the "donut" around Rutland City, changed its economy from agriculture to retail and industry. The program offers numerous pictures and anecdotes by the guests. Jim Davidson moderates the program.
Episode # 119 - "Rutland in Retrospect On Disc" - Jim Davidson of the Society describes and demonstrates many of the features to be found on the computer disc re-issue of the long out-of-print "Rutland In Retrospect." Chuck Piotrowski hosts and manages the many illustrations and features of the disc as described by Jim. The disc reissue of the pictorial history offers new features including a table of contents, searchable captions and text and an ability to enlarge images to three times the original size. All offered at a bargain price of $ 20.
Episode # 120 – "Civil War Exhibit" – Robert Ranftle of the Rutland Historical Society Exhibit Committee reviews the Civil War Exhibit currently on display at the Society. Bob is also the editor of the last two issues of the Society’s Quarterly magazine which are devoted to Rutland and the Civil War. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 121 – "Behind the Walls" – President Carolynn Ranftle of the Rutland Historical Society takes the viewer on a video tour of the inner workings of the Rutland Historical Society. The many activities of the Society’s volunteers present an imposing view of the group’s challenges and accomplishments. Jim Davidson is host for the program.
Episode # 122 - "Rutland All Dressed Up”. This program takes a look at selections from the Textile Collection of the Rutland Historical Society. Carolynn Ranftle is the guest commentator and Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 123 -"Who is Julia?" is presented by Michael F. Dwyer of the Rutland Historical Society. This genealogical mystery will hold the viewer spellbound. It also serves as an engaging guide for anyone who is thinking about getting involved in a family search. Michael follows a path of names mysteriously connected throughout Julia's family. He finally reaches an obvious conclusion as to who Julia really is.
Episode # 124 - The 2013 Calendar of the Rutland Historical Society entitled "Faces of the Past IV: A Calendar." Jake Sherman reviews biographies of the people in this calendar. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode #125 - "Who is Frank Eugair?" is presented by Michael F. Dwyer. This is another genealogical mystery story in the manner of his recent presentation of "Who is Julia?" This story deals with a man, a different ethnic group, and some issues different from "Who is Julia?" The story is filled with all the challenges of a good mystery.
Episode # 126 – “Lincoln Iron Works”. Jack Crowther presents this program on the history of the development and demise of the Lincoln Iron Works. This industrial complex was one of three major heavy industries in the heart of Rutland City. Established in 1868, it operated until the 1960s. Numerous businesses occupied the buildings until 2012 when the Vermont Farmers Food Center purchased the complex for a winter farmers market. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 127 - “The Rutland Winter Carnival, 1951 – 1960”. Jim Davidson presents a brief history of the Winter Carnival. Although the winter carnival lasted only ten years, it was a February weekend highlight of the winter tourist season. The selection of a Carnival Queen and her court was a community social event. Community support was great but the weather didn’t always cooperate. There is a brief discussion of why the carnival was dropped. Tom Carpenter hosts the program and joins Jim in a sharing of winter activities in the past.
Episode # 128 - "The Rutland Railway Association". Peter Fisk, Secretary of the Rutland Railway Association, was the guest of host Jim Davidson of the Rutland Historical Society. The Association houses a railway museum and a model railroad club which Peter describes in some detail. The program includes views from the 2012 Rutland Train Show and some details of the 2013 Train Show.
Episode # 129 - "Civil War Medical Care." Bob Ranftle of the Rutland Historical Society presents a brief overview of medical care in Vermont prior to the Civil War. During the Civil War problems in medical care led to major changes, many of which were led by Dr. Jonathan Letterman. Some Rutland doctors serving in the Civil War were also leaders in the changes. The Civil War became a turning point in the history of American medicine.
Episode # 130 – “The Rutland Historical Society Thru the Years”. Jim Davidson presents a visual history of some of the major events in the history of the Rutland Historical Society. The program includes significant people, places and events in the Society’s history from its founding in 1969 to date. Tom Carpenter hosts the program.
Episode # 131 -"Did You Know That...?". This program describes the Society's national and global identity. It also comments on the Society's publications program and its free website, all of which has been accomplished by volunteers. Tom Carpenter talks about some of the financial help that these volunteers need. The program is co-hosted by Curator Jim Davidson and Treasurer Tom Carpenter.
Episode # 132 - "The Vermont Digital Newspaper Project". Three members of the project talk about its nature, its source, and its funding. Samples of the use of the material, which is available from the Library of Congress through the Rutland Historical Society website, are demonstrated. The topic of the investigation was Viro Small, an Mrican-American wrestler from Vermont, also known as "Black Sam," and his subsequent travels in the U.S.
Episode #133 - "Presidential Visits". Mary Fregosi of the Proctor Historical Society talks with host, Jim Davidson, about her recent Quarterly entitled "Three Presidential Visits To Proctor and Rutland in 1891-1902."The program includes some images and stories not found in the publication.
Episode #134 - "Family & History". Michael Messier, the guest on this episode, has spent the last few years exploring his own family genealogy on a global scale. What has developed is a new understanding of the French settlement in New France and its background in Europe. This early French history has had more impact on Vermont than many historians have acknowledged. Michael and his family are in the midst of this massive web of history. This exploration French history in America leads into the history of Rutland before the English occupation.
Episode # 135 - "Rutland Train Show -2014". This episode provides a brief background of the Rutland Railway Association and their Center Rutland home. Guest Paul Rondinone, Treasurer of the Association, comments on the variety of model railroad activity at the Show. Host, Jim Davidson, describes the Rutland Historical Society's presentation table at the show at the Holiday Inn.
Episode # 136 - "Gouger Hill". Guest William Powers was the author of a Quarterly entitled "Tales from Gouger Hill." It was known that Irish alcohol-fueled activities in the area lead to the naming of Gouger Hill. What Bill and his fellow researchers uncovered is that there was a real character named "Gouger" McDonough. The McDonough Family story and other tales of Gouger Hill are reviewed in this program. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 137 - "An Awards Celebration". Three Society members were invited to share the story of their state-wide or national awards that were recently received within weeks of each other. Ben Burdge and Carolynn Ranftle won awards from the Vermont League of Historical Societies & Museums. Michael F. Dwyer was named a Fellow of the American Society of Genealogists. The awards of each were celebrated in a full ranging discussion program. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 138 -"The 1931 Rutland Fair.” This program centers on a brief silent film of the 1931 Rutland fair. The original was located in a dump, and was salvaged and digitized by David Knipes, an historian of Rutland Fair carnivals. David is the guest on the show and provides a ten minute introduction and background of the Fair as it was in 1931. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 139 -"A History of Women in Rutland." Carolynn Ranftle, Society Vice-President, is the host and narrator of a series of slides showcasing women and their many roles throughout the history of Rutland. Carolynn has amassed a large and wonderful collection of names images of women as a contribution to Women's History Month. Many individual slides can also be seen on the Society Facebook page.
Episode # 140 - "Rutland Barbers Union". Bill Mazzariello, a Rutland barber who has been researching the history of Rutland barbers, is the guest on this episode which revolves around the discovery of an early Rutland Barbers Union record book at the Vermont Historical Society. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 141 - "Midway Diner". Tom Tresch, original diner owner, and David Zsido Of the Rutland Historical Society and author of "One Last Coffee at the Midway Diner," are guests for this episode of Historically Speaking. Power Point images of the diner's history are included. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 142 – “Rutland Railway Association Train Show” – Paul Rondinone of the Rutland Railway Association is the guest on this episode which provides an overview of the RRA’s location and facilities and some background to their Fourth Annual Train Show on 26 September 2015. The show also previews some highlights from the presentation of the Rutland Historical Society at the train show. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 143 – “Nickwackett Nick” – Jim Davidson interviews Nickwackett Nick, the Rutland Historical Society squirrel mascot. The program explains why the squirrel was selected as the Society mascot. “Nickwackett” means “place of the squirrel”. The program includes images from the 2006 Loyalty Day Parade and the 2006 Halloween Parade. There is also a recruiting appeal for “ghosts” to be in the parade.
Episode # 144 - Rutland Civil War Recap - Robert Ranftle of the Rutland Historical Society presents an overview of local Rutland life during and shortly after the Civil War. This is an adaptation of his presentation to the Rutland Historical Society at its annual business meeting in October 2015. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 145 – “The Rutland Newsliner” – Jake Sherman of the Rutland Historical Society is the guest on this episode which provides an overview of the Society’s December 2015 Calendar and the Society’s CD of over 500 pages. The “Newsliner” CD offers a complete collection of the Rutland Railroad’s in-house magazine which was published from 1952 to 1960. The magazine includes much railroad information and numerous pictures from years before 1952. Fortunately the pictures are well identified. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 146 - "Rutland Area Vermont State Historic Markers" - Guest Tom Carpenter of the Rutland Historical Society locates and talks about each marker in the Rutland area. An interesting tale concerns a marker at the location of the old Statehouse and Court building that stood on the north side of West Street. For about t30 years this marker had been missing. The missing marker was recently found in the stolen property locker of the New Jersey State Police. A marker will be restored to its original location near the top of West Street hill.
Episode # 147 - "Rutland Women in History - 2016" - Carolynn Ranftle, Vice President of the Rutland Historical Society, presents a Powerpoint program about a number of Rutland women whose stories bring to light the lesser known individuals of local history. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 148 - “Doshisha University”. Host Jim Davidson presents the story of how an 1874 meeting at Grace Congregational Church in Rutland provided Joseph Hardy Neesima seed money to establish a private Christian College in Japan, now known as Doshisha University. Recently a group of Doshisha students visited the sacred historic site where the dream of Doshisha began. The students also visited Castleton University where President David Wolk hosted them at a luncheon. Guest Patrick Liu, Director of International Enrollment at Castleton, briefly describes some of Castleton’s international programs.
Episode # 149 - "August Events" - This show, hosted by Jim Davidson, focuses on two events occurring the same week in August 2016. First, is the visit by Gejus van Diggele who collects ball announcements printed or written on the backs of early playing cards. Mr. van Diggele is from the Netherlands. The second event is the new week for the Rutland Fair and provides numerous images from the Farm Museum.
Episode # 150 - "Memories of 1947 Rutland" -Jim Davidson hosts a program taking viewers down memory lane in post-World War II 1947 Rutland. The program includes music from the hit songs of the era and reminders of the hit movies seen at the local theaters. Bus, air, and auto transportation is not ed. Businesses, industries, banks and social clubs are included, as is a brief segment on the Flood of 1947.
Episode # 151 – “History in the Digital Age” – This program features Eileen Corcoran of the Vermont Historical Society and Jim Davidson of the Rutland Historical Society. Ellen and Jim provide an overview of the League of Local Historical Societies & Museums Annual Meeting & Conference co-hosted by the Rutland Historical Society at Castleton University. The meeting sessions are focused on the changes brought about by the digital age
Episode # 152 – “Rutland Fair Photos” – Host Jim Davidson of the Rutland Historical Society delves into the Image Gallery of the Society website in this latest episode of Rutland Fair photos. In part one there are photos from the 1900-1920 era. In part two Frank Hinchey’s Rutland Fair images are from the 1920 – 1939 era. Jim indicates that there are many more images in the Image Gallery of the Society website. Other information on the Rutland Fair can be found in the text and video sections of the website.
Episode # 153 - “Website: Rutlandhistory.com” - Doreen McCullough, Society Webmaster, is the guest on this episode. She focuses on the history and developmental structure of the Society’s website. Opened in February 2005, the site has rapidly grown in content. Significant accomplishments are noted as is the global reach of the site. In the second part of the program host Jim Davidson takes the viewer to various files and demonstrates how to search in them.
Episode # 154 - "Bridges of Rutland". Tom Carpenter is the guest on this history of Creek bridges. Time did not allow consideration of the bridges over numerous brooks the bridges throughout the old t own of Rutland. The number of bridges in the old town of Rutland is immense. The program focuses on the history of the bridges over the Otter Creek and th e East or street bridges or railroads bridges. Jim Davidson hosts the program.
Episode # 155 - “Loyalty Day Parade 2017”. Jim Davidson of the Rutland Historical Society hosts Ron Fairbanks, Parade Director, and Gerry Garrow, Parade Committee, in a conversation about the 2017 Loyalty Day Parade. The program includes highlights from past parades and information about the joint presentation of the Vermont Farmers Food Center and the Rutland Historical Society. The presentation honors Vermont farmers as home front heroes.
Episode # 156 - "What's It?" In this episode of Historically Speaking Jim Davidson of the Rutland Historical Society reaches into a grab bag of historical objects to see if he can stump the viewer and PEGTV staff members Amber Dumas and Eva Clark. Challenge yourself.
Episode # 157 - "A Mystery Painting". The Rutland Historical Society received a gift of a painting that upon c loser inspection led Angela Hinchey-and Carolynn Ranftle into a research project that determined the painter was Alvah Bradish, who painted the portrait in 1857. Further research led to the high probability that one of two sisters is the lady in the portrait. Jim Davidson hosts the program that offers a fascinating research trail.
Episode -# 158 - "Photos from rutIandhistory.com." Jim Davidson hosts this program that looks at sample photos from the various collections in the Image Gallery, which has over 800 images. Each collection can be viewed in its entirety on the rutlandhistory.com website in the Image Gallery section. Many collections have 80 or 90 images each. In the Society's Quarterly Publications section, the website has numerous issues that are filled with illustrative photos. The historical videos section also contains still photos.
Episode #159 - "The House of Correction." This program offers a brief history of the House of Correction and a photographic tour of the building and its facilities as it was in 1909. The photos are from an album kept by J.O. Best who was a keeper and an instructor at the House of Correction.
Episode #160 - “Daughters of the American Revolution”. Guest Barbara Giffin, regent of the Ann Story Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution presents a power point program on the DAR. The program includes a history of the DAR and a description of its many current activities. The program includes a discussion of how a woman may become a member of the DAR.
Episode #161 - "Winter Photos Louis Brehmer". In this episode host Jim Davidson from the Rutland Historical Society features Winter Photos by Rutland photographer Louis Brehmer. These early twentieth century photos for the most part come from stereographic cards when viewed through a stereoscope give the illusion of a three-dimensional picture.
Episode #162 - “Website: Collections”. In this episode Jim Davidson takes you to our Collections page on our website. Jim discusses the different topic areas found on our Collections page that our web viewers may not be aware of.
Episode #163 - “Images at Rutland Historical Society Website”. In this program, Jim Davidson and Doreen McCullough (Webmaster) provide a tour of the “Images” section on our web page. The focal point centers on the variety of image collections, and historical maps found on the website.
Episode #164 – “Calendar Enhancements”. In this episode Jim Davidson and Doreen McCullough (Webmaster) discuss the recent enhancements to the new Quarterly Calendar. Monthly images are examined and linked to the Society’s Moments In History series on our website.
Episode # 165 - "As the World Turners: Tom Leypoldt's Ancestor". Tom Leypoldt, Executive Director of PEGTV, has been on the other side of the camera for many past episodes of "Historically Speaking." This time, as Michael Dwyer's guest, he learned whether some of the family stories he heard about his mother's family were truth or legend.
Episode #166 - "Nightingale at 200: Remembering Our Nurses". Michael Dwyer hosts a bicentennial retrospective on the impact of Florence Nightingale on the nursing profession within his family and at Rutland Hospital.
Episode #167 - "Adventures in DNA: How does it change our history"? Michael Dwyer gives an overview and provides examples of how DNA results have impacted the research of his extended family. First of two episodes on this immensely popular topic.
Episode #168 - "Adventures in DNA: Sequel." Host Michael Dwyer answers a series of questions from Webmaster Doreen McCullough generated from the last program. Topics include differences among various companies, differences in ethnicity estimates, and ethical considerations for DNA testing.
Episode #169 - "Health of the City Revisited: The Influenza Epidemic of 1918–1919." Michael Dwyer takes a new look at Episode #48, filmed in 2003, and offers a fresh perspective from the current COVID crisis of how Rutland reacted to the influenza pandemic. This episode draws on images from the Rutland Herald's digital archives.
Episode #170 - "The Wolk Family Migration." Host Michael Dwyer interviews David Wolk through Zoom and takes him on a journey of discovery to uncover the roots of Dave's great-grandparents who emigrated from Lithuania to Vermont.
Episode #171 - "Centennial of the 19th Amendment." In this episode of "Historically Speaking", host Michael Dwyer acknowledges the Centennial of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. 2020 marked the 100th anniversary of Women's Right to Vote.
Episode #172 - ""Bringing Life to a Uniform: Service of Dr. Harry L. Frost." Michael Dwyer hosts former student Richard Elnicki who discovered a soldier's uniform and other items in a trunk after a house was sold to classmate Robb Spensley. From these items, they reconstructed unusual Red Cross mission of Dr. Harry L. Frost to Serbia.
Episode #173 - "Prohibition in Vermont." Host Michael Dwyer takes a look at the Vermont experience with Prohibition before and after the passage of the 18th Amendment to the Constitution.
Episode #174 - "Early Black Families of Rutland County, Vermont." Host Michael Dwyer provides an overview of how families of color were counted in censuses and revisits some biographical material on the Pearson Freeman family from Episode #71, recorded in 2006, "The Black Presence in Rutland." This presentation includes pages from the archives of the Rutland Herald.
Episode #175 - "U.S. History Remembered Through Stamps." Host Michael Dwyer shares images from his childhood stamp album as a way of reflecting on how key people and events were portrayed on stamps from the end of the 19th century through the 1960s.
Episode #176 - "Community College of Vermont 1970–2020." Host Michael Dwyer interviews Dr. Fern Fryer, a faculty member of VCC for almost three decades. Dr. Fryer presents some highlights of the college system's history and innovations over the last fifty years.
Episode #177 - “Stories from Civil War Pensions.” Host Michael Dwyer shares anecdotes and insights from his extensive collection of Civil War pension files. These documents offer a glimpse into the lives of veterans and their families long after the war ended.
Episode #178 - "Immigrants from Czechoslovakia: The Elnicki Family.” Host Michael Dwyer interviews former student Rich Elnicki as they discover his family's origins in the former Austrian Empire.
Episode #179 - "Symbols for the New Republic. " Host Michael Dwyer evaluates some of the new symbols of a new nation. These images include the Great - Seal of the United States, early Liberty coins, and paintings and engravings of George Washington.
Episode #180 - "Civil War Veteran Nathan E. Hayes and Extended Family." Michael Dwyer researches this Black soldier from Rutland and his three daughters, two of whom married Vermont soldiers who also served in the Massachusetts 54th Regiment.
Episode #181 - "A Look Back on Two Centuries in 2022 from the Rutland Herald ." Michael Dwyer shares newspaper images and insights from 1822 and 1922 as well as how journalism has changed over the last 200 years.
Episode #182 - “The Chaffee Art Center: The Family, The Home, The Gallery.” Host Michael Dwyer interviews Sherri Birkheimer Rooker, Executive Director of the Chaffee. Special guest: Luigi.
Episode #183 - "Syrian Immigrants to Rutland, a story of neighborhoods." Host Michael Dwyer explores the history of the Webb and Kessop families who lived across from one another on Granger Street.
Episode #184 - “From the Play-House to the Paramount, Part 1”. Michael Dwyer recounts some of the early history of what became the Paramount and its first manager, Thomas Boyle. This episode includes a video clip narration by Don Hirsch of the 1998 restoration.
Episode #185- “From the Play-House to the Paramount, Part 2”. Eric Mallette, Executive Director of the Paramount Theater, takes Michael Dwyer on a tour of the theater's historic interior.
Episode #186- "From church bells to train whistles: Rutland and the Ripleys, 1837–1958." Michael Dwyer interviews Julia Purdy who presents a slide slow on the imprint of the Ripley family on the Rutland landscape.
Episode #187 - "The Borden Murders Revisited." Host Michael Dwyer, who grew up in Fall River, Massachusetts, discusses with Jim Boughton whether or not Lizzie Borden could have committed the horrific murders of her father and stepmother on August 4, 1892.
Episode #188- "Mistakes, Half-Truths, and Lies: Why records are wrong, Part 1." In the first installment, host Michael Dwyer covers a wide variety of examples of why records pertaining to genealogical research do not always reflect full or accurate information.
Episode #189- "Mistakes, Half-Truths, and Lies: Why records are wrong, Part 2." Michael Dwyer continues his examples of misremembered lore, obfuscation, and outright lies within various records.
Episode #190- "Memories of Messiah in Rutland.” Michael Dwyer hosts a conversation with Betty Clark and Alastair Stout about Handel's beloved oratorio performed in Rutland over the last sixty years.
Episode #191- "End of an Era: The Closing of Immaculate Heart of Mary Church.” Host Michael Dwyer presents an overview of the history of the "French Church," founded in 1870 as Sacred Heart of Mary Church. He pays particular attention to the interior of the building and how its aesthetics reflect traditional Roman Catholic devotional practices.
Episode #192 - "Reminiscences of E. B. White." Michael Dwyer hosts Katherine Romans Hall. Kathy became friends with the renowned author of Charlotte's Web as she worked through his papers deposited to Cornell University.
Episode #193 - "Libraries: Past, Present, Future." Host Michael Dwyer interviews Randal Smathers, Director of the Rutland Free Library. Their conversation focuses on not only the continuity with print culture that libraries provide but also how libraries have adapted to the digital age.