Note: The above ad for The Valley Players production of Arsenic and Old Lace is from my forthcoming book to be published later this year on summer theatre on Mt. Tom, Holyoke, Massachusetts. More on that to come.
Visits to City and Seacoast, Farm and Factory, Mountains and Valleys. And Miles to Go Before I Sleep.
The Berkshire Theatre Group has launched a new play called The Bakelite Masterpiece that will be at the Unicorn Theatre in Stockbridge, Massachusetts for the next three weeks. The subject matter (which, by coincidence, I used as a plot device in my mystery novel Whitewash in the Berkshires, published earlier this year) involves a fascinating art forgery in Europe at the end of World War II. Here is the synopsis from the press release:
The Unicorn TheatreThursday, September 29-Sunday, October 23
SPEAK OUT BEFORE YOU DIE - 2nd book in my "cozy mystery-noir-romance" series is currently FREE for the eBook, today and tomorrow, August 31st. Take at look over at Amazon and download your FREE copy.
The series is set in New England in the post-World War II era, a world in flux, where our centuries-old cities were being sliced through with super-highways, where city dwellers were moving to a place that used to be farmland and now was called suburbia. Even in a place as old as New England, there was newness -- and it was sometimes very strange, especially for a guy like Elmer Vartanian, who had spent seven years in prison.
The second in the “Double V Mysteries” series reunites wealthy Juliet Van Allen and ex-con Elmer Vartanian on New Year’s Eve, 1949. Guests are gathered in a snowbound Hartford, Connecticut, mansion for the wedding of Juliet’s widowed father to an elegant younger woman just after the clock strikes midnight. When Juliet finds what appears to be a threatening note directed at her father, she calls Elmer to pose as a hired servant to help ferret out the danger…but midnight is approaching and time is running out. There may be murder as the old year dies.
On GROWING UP IN PRESCOTT - LOST TOWN OF QUABBIN:
Linda Carraway said...
What a wonderful story! My mother, nee Esther Lindell, and her family lived in Hardwick from 1919 until 1922, and I have always been fascinated (yet saddened) by the story of the lost towns.
Can you imagine my surprise when I read this and came upon the name of Marion Kelly? Miss Kelly was the principal of Pines School in Wilbraham when I was there in grades 3-5 (circa 1950-1953) and my mother, having attended Westfield Normal School, was the third grade teacher! Boy, was she hard on me!
Thank you for these memories. You can never know how many hearts and minds you will reach.
Linda Johnson Carraway, Tampa FL
September 19, 2016
On Starring Chester, CT - http://newenglandtravels.blogspot.com/2012/05/starring-chester-connecticut.html
I just watched the movie again last night and was looking for information on where they filmed it. It looks like several towns have claimed credit but after seeing your pictures it's obvious most of it was shot in Chester. I hope to get back that way and see it in person someday soon.
On the Hammersmith Farm:
Lynn Shoen said...
The month after Jackie died, I took my three young nieces from Nevada to Hammersmith Farm. It was owned by Camelot Gardens at the time, and was open to the public. Since the Rhode Island schools had not recessed for the summer, we had the entree house and grounds to ourselves for the day. The guides let us go wherever we wished, into Jackie's bedroom, her bathroom, the kitchen, the deck room, and the wonderful sun porch. It remains one of the most memorable days of our lives, since the house was truly a family home, and we felt so welcome. Lynn Shoen
August 28, 2014
Paul Fox said...
I'm the son of the last owner of Brigham's, Paul F. Fox. He operated the store from about 1948 until it closed in 1970. At that time the store was still somewhat successful, but my father correctly believed that he would have to establish branches in the suburbs as Forbes & Wallace and Stieger's were doing. He did not want to run such a large operation.
Paul G Fox
August 2, 2014
On Forbes & Wallace - Springfield:
Helene Kelly said...
Thanks so much to all of you for keeping the 'old downtown Springfield alive. I am the niece of George Legos, the former owner and key cook of the Nuttie Goodie Tearoom. He just passed away this morning at the age of 80 from a long battle with pancreatic cancer. He was a wonderful uncle and a great man. So many people have fond memories of my family's downtown Springfield landmark, the Nuttie Goodie Tearoom. Helene
On Iwo Jima Memorial - New Hampshire:
This article is rubbish. I am Rene Gagnon's grandson and this article seems to pull untrue information out of its ass. My grandfather never tried to capitalize on anything, he was never an alcoholic (who writes this stuff?) He wasn't embittered, and he never worked a menial job... in fact he owned a travel agency with my grandmother.
May 25, 2012
tammy chalbeck said...
Just found out by my brother that Rene Arthur Gagnon was my grandmothers uncle..makes me proud to know that I am related to this man...wish I had heard the same stories from my grandmother that my brother did but I was young...my grandmothers name was Lillian Gagne...would love to know more about him and wish she was alive to tell me! Thank you Tammy Chalbeck
May 28, 2012
On The Ames Mfg. Company:
Yuki said...Hi, I loved your article. Very informative and well executed. I have 2 Ames Swords and was wondering if you know what year the business was sold to Ohio and who the company was it was sold to? Thanks! Still enjoying your article many years after it was written.September 27, 2013
Thomas Fowler said...Thank you so much for this well researched and interesting article on the Ames family and its swords. We are a Southern family near Danville, and have an Ames non-commissioned officer's sword...captured, of course. This is beautiful research, well presented. Thos. B. Fowler August 27, 2013
Mrs. LaFlamme said...
Fascinating article. I grew up in Chicopee and traveled past the old Ames Manufacturing Co. on my way to high school every day. I learned so much from your well documented article.
August 16, 2012