Marlow Historical Society Minutes - May 2008

Executive Board Meeting Marlow Historical Society / May 8, 2008, Chapel

The meeting was called to order at 6:30 pm. These people were present: Maria Baril, Mary Blank, Gen Ells, Loisanne Foster, Tom Fuschetto, Pam Little, Art Schmid, and Candy Wiggum.

Loisanne Foster read the Secretary's report which was accepted as amended. Mary Blank passed out and reviewed the Treasurer's Report. The total in all accounts was $3386.86 with several amounts set aside for particular projects.

Lydia Stevens

Maria announced that Lydia Stevens passed away during the night. Lydia has done much for restoration of Jones Hall and other historical Marlow buildings, for Monadnock Music in Marlow, and for MHS. We are grateful for her initiative in restoration and her years of dedication to Marlow. We agreed that Loisanne should immediately send Leon Stevens a card expressing our sympathy.

Letter from Lorraine Landroche

Maria shared a letter from Lorraine Landroche which praised our MHS Museum cards and expressed appreciation of our new MHS web site, the "lens" which highlights the relationship between Marlow and Lyme, Connecticut. Maria also noted that we have a new member from Massachusetts, Tina Peters [descendant of John Raymond].

Donation from the Davis Family

Mary noted that we have received a $50.00 contribution from David and Sharon Davis. Loisanne will send a thank you note.

Hearse House

Tom Fuschetto reported that he has cut the brush and cleaned up all around the Hearse House so it is ready for Ed [Bucky] White to paint. Tom will shore up the back center and jack it up. He will put in wedges and a 2' x 4' to sustain the back wall on a level.

Tom Fuschetto's  Report on Greg Farcqhar's Presentation on Lead Paint Re Jones Hall

Tom Fuschetto reported on Greg Farcqhar's report to the Selectmen on lead, particularly lead paint as it pertains to bids for the Jones Hall painting project. Greg spoke as a lead-safe renovator for which he took an eight-hour course, receiving his certificate on Feb. 13 of this year. He claims a total of 42 hours of course work. The certification is for electricians, painters, and plumbers and involves knowledge of lead safety issues.

Tom said that Greg had reviewed and commented on the bids for painting the outside of Jones Hall. His point is that eventually we will have to treat lead in public buildings as we treat asbestos. The leaded paint chips must be contained. Paint chips must be shipped in a special air-tight container to New York for analysis. If there is lead present, the cost of scraping and painting would be substantially increased. We know that, every time Jones Hall has been painted, it has been scraped. We think that there is no lead above the allowable amount in the Federal Guidelines, but we don't know. Tom suggested that, to avoid the possibility of future lawsuits, Jones hall paint chips should be tested for lead content. The cost is $500.00. Tom recommended that we recommend to the Selectmen that they have Jones Hall paint tested for lead content, and we agreed. 

Tom reported that the Selectmen believe we should have Jones Hall paint tested for led content, and the Town will pay for it. After the test, they will come back to us, and together we can decide what to do. Tom said that Ross Malcolm said that the laws requiring certified persons to deal with lead paint pertain to residential housing, not public housing. Still, we agreed that we need to know what we are dealing with. Ross Malcolm also provided a list of risk assessors and a list of certified lead-removal contractors.

Jones Hall Painting

Tom reported, and we certainly agree, that the moisture problem needs to be addressed before new paint is applied. The Marlow Fire Department now has an X-ray machine to look for "hot spots" in which air does not circulate. If such spots can be located and air can be made to reach them, that could possibly solve the moisture problem. We can only hope! Previously, we had discussed the idea of wedges inserted under the siding in the offending spots to allow air circulation.

The last time Jones Hall was scraped and painted on the outside was 1978. The cost was $17,000 all together. $11,000 was paid by the Town and $6,000 was paid by the MHS Preservation Fund which also provided restoration funds for The Odd Fellows Hall [Marlow Academy] and the Methodist Church. Tom Fuschetto made the point that we must not accept bids with variables, as that could set us up for a much larger expense than we had anticipated. Art Schmid reemphasized that we absolutely must have the test for lead content done as a first step.  We are looking at a possible date for Jones Hall painting as the end of August or beginning of September, but, of course, it depends on several factors. Mary reports that the Selectmen now have Fred's recommendations for paint choices, including California paint brochures.

Selectmen's Meetings

The Selectmen have asked that more MHS Board members attend the Selectmen's meetings after the results of the paint test comes in.

Village Cemetery Grave Stones

The Cemetery Trustees are getting quotes for repair and preservation of gravestones at the Village Cemetery. Work will begin this year.

Letters for the Conservation Commission

In keeping with our mission to work with the Marlow Conservation Commission, we wrote two letters in support of their bid for a grant to assist them in a Historical Resources Inventory.

Town Pound Sign

The Town Pound Sign has been removed to the Highway Bar. The frame has rotted, and the sign needs to be replaced. We need to get quotes for a new sign board, and we need to purchase vinyl lettering. One person (a non-member) has agreed to donate to the cause. Tony Davis has made a new frame.  Candy Wiggum suggested that we at MHS cover whatever expense needs to be covered after the donation, and added, "This is part of our mission." We agreed to do this.

Gravestones in the Vault

The Cemetery Trustees needs volunteers to inventory and trace the gravestones (halves and whole) in the vault. This inventory would then be used to find homes for these stones. There are 44 halves to be matched. The McCourt family has given $50,000 in Trust to make repairs to Marlow cemeteries. This yields about $2,000 each year for the work.

Burnap House

Pam Little had written a letter on behalf of MHS to Audio Accessories informing them that results of our research show that we cannot accept their proposal because we cannot legally place the two houses, the James Burnap home and the Aldrich house, on the designated Pockett property; however, we still wish to save the Burnap House, and we are open to other proposals. So far, we have had no response.

Candy suggested that we propose a solution.  Pat Gallup could donate the Pockett property to Audio Accessories rather than to MHS, and the Aldrich house could be moved onto it Audio Accessories would have the Pockett property and the Aldrich house in exchange for giving us the Burnap house. Pam Little will write a letter to that effect on behalf of MHS.

Elm Trees

Our three remaining elm trees in pots are in good condition and have been watered twice already this year. Mary will arrange with the highway crew to plant the trees.

We still need volunteers to adopt a tree or trees to water this summer.  We will list the trees to be watered and post the needs. Candy suggested that we invite the children to care for the elm at Perkins School. We agreed.

Gerry Plotts will visit The Elm Institute to learn what they have to tell us about fertilizing.

Gen congratulated Candy on the tulip plantings by the elm trees at The Quiet Place.

Chase Family and Shrubs

Gen proposed that we thank the Chase family for caring for the six shrubs recently planted. All agreed.

Painted Drapery

We have five painted backdrops. Three are in Jones Hall, hanging. MHS had one of those restored about six years ago. Two more were found wadded up under the now removed stage of Murray Hall (The Grange), now owed by the Historical Society. Most Marlow citizens have seen the restored one. Mary had written to the Project Director of VT Painted Theater Curtains of Burlington asking for advice

Chris Hadsel of the VT Painted Theater Curtains Project 

Would be willing to come to see Marlow's painted scenery curtains. She writes, "...We charge $50 per treatment proposal, but not more than $200 total, even if you have more, plus a tank of gas. This gets you a written conservation proposal for each piece including the whole question of how and where to hang them... The document is what you need to apply for grants or do other fundraising..." She speaks of a "Curtains without Borders" Project. "We work on-site, right in the hall. You provide the tables, volunteer assistance, and overnight accommodation... We keep the costs to a bare minimum because our primary interest is preserving these wonderful pieces for your people for another 100 years."

With so much on our plate just now, we tacitly tabled this project, but it bears consideration.

Adam Plumb

Since Adam has not been attending our Board Meetings for many months, we wonder if he is still interested in being a Director. We realize that his first job is his schooling and that he is quite busy with his Eagle Scout Project. Mary will call him and broach the subject of continued Directorship. We also speculate that perhaps the Conservation Commission might be an appropriate recipient for his outdoor project.

Town-Wide Yard Sale

Maria volunteered to oversee a book sale outside Murray Hall for MHS and later perhaps take likely unsold books to Toadstool Book Shop for sale among their used books.

Memorial Day Services

We planned our part in the Memorial Day Services. Al and Mary will do the "fans and flags" for the village. Rock will take care of the cost of geraniums, and Mary will plant the red geraniums on the Green. Candy will vacuum the Museum in preparation for its opening on Memorial Day. Mary will host at the Museum until after the Service. Gen Ells will serve after the Service. Maria will help with the memorial Day refreshments.

Glen Knoblock on New Hampshire Cemeteries

Our program sponsored with The NN Humanities Council is ready for May 15, 7:00 pm at Jones Hall. Gen, Pam, and Loisanne will bring cookies, and Mary will provide the drinks.

The meeting was adjourned at 9:05 pm. The next meeting will be Thursday, June 5 at 6:30 pm.

Respectfully submitted,
Loisanne Foster