MV Obsession

My obsession with Martha's Vineyard.. phototography..genealogy and life in general and this and that…


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RDP Friday – Carousel…

The Flying Horses in Oak Bluffs on Martha’s Vineyard are the oldest platform carousel in the United States. It was made in 1876 by early American carousel manufacturer, Charles Dare. The Flying Horses Carousel was originally built for the Coney Island amusement park in Brooklyn. In 1884 after eight years there the Flying Horses Carousel moved to the town of Oak Bluffs on Martha’s Vineyard where it still remains in operation as one of only two surviving carousels fabricated by Dare. The carousel became a National Historic Landmark in 1986, the same year it was acquired by local conservation organization the Martha’s Vineyard Preservation Trust.

I flew on these beautiful horses every day when I was a little girl. The ticket taker was a young man who would never take my tickets ! We tried everything to get him to take them… we brought him candy and cookies and tried slipping the tickets in with them… nothing work. At the end of the summer I said I wanted to buy him a gift, so off my mom and I went to purchase what I thought was a novel idea .. a tie. I was 5 years old, what did I know about buying gifts for men… he, by the way was about 13 but in my eyes he was a grown up. We put the tie in the box with all of summer’s uncollected tickets. As he came around to NOT collect my ticket I handed him the box. He smiled. Ah ha, success… or so I thought. As we were leaving the Flying Horses he came over and thanked us for the tie and as we turned to leave he handed us the tickets.

There are two ring dispenser arms situated next to the carousel that offer gold rings and the lucky rider who grabs the coveted brass ring gets a free ride

The last time I flew on the Flying Horses a few years ago my granddaughter Tiffany was with me.  I thought it might be my last time ever to ride them (I think that every time anyway)… and as my horse came around to the arm shooting the rings out I could see that the next one, the one waiting for me was the GOLD ring.  What a fantastic way to possibly end my Flying Horses ride…

 But I missed it … my fingers slipped and I couldn’t grab it.  But… right behind me was my granddaughter and she got it.  She offered me the free ride but it meant more to me that she should have it.  Perfect ending, if indeed it was.

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Rings of gold are good luck I’m told…

as for riding Flying Horses you’re never too old 🙂

Two other carousels…

New York city’s Bryant Park

Newark, New Jersey’s Military Park

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2021/06/04/rdp-friday-carousel/


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A Photo a Week Challenge: Circles on circles…

This challenge was so much fun. I wanted to stop at a reasonable number of photos but once I got started I couldn’t stop. Definitely felt like I was going in circles after a while 🙂

Food

Miscellaneous

More miscellaneous.

https://nowathome.wordpress.com/2021/06/01/a-photo-a-week-challenge-circles-on-circles/


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Remembering and honoring on Memorial Day…

Memorial Day was borne out of the Civil War and a desire to honor our dead. It was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic. “The 30th of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers, or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village and hamlet churchyard in the land,” he proclaimed. The date of Decoration Day, as he called it, was chosen because it wasn’t the anniversary of any particular battle.In 1971, Congress established Memorial Day as the last Monday in May and as a federal holiday.

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Civil War Memorial at Fairmount cemetery – Newark, NJ

Below is a photo of the veteran’s section in the Fairmont Cemetery in Newark, New Jersey, where, on my father’s side of the family my great great grandfather, Stephen Freeman is buried. Stephen did not die in the Civil War but was wounded in the battle of Antietam in 1862. He was sent home, lived another 29 years and died on May 30, 1891, which ironically was Memorial Day.

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My great great grandfather.

On my mother’s side a somewhat tragic story. My great grandfather, Joseph Littlefield fought in the Civil War and died because of his wounds. He was wounded in the Battle of the Wilderness in 1864. He was sent home to Maine to die. He died of typhoidal pnemonia on Sep 30, 1864, he is buried in Rome, Maine. Unfortunately his wife and his 3 oldest children died of the same thing shortly thereafter, leaving my grandfather, Charles Littlefield at age 10 the oldest of the four remaining children.

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Indeed a tragic story and once my daughter Deb and I learned about it felt compelled to find their graves and honor them. Their small plot is off the beaten track in Rome, Maine we found it and traipsed through the brush to get to it. Worth the trip indeed.  This was very emotional in that Joseph (41), Martha Jane (36), Margaret (18), Adison (14) and Atwood (12) have become very real to us and we feel very close to them.  We weren’t able to bring them flowers but left 5 pennies to indicate we were there and remembering them.

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My great grandfather.
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Two years ago in 2019 I was contacted by a gentleman from Maine who had been visiting this grave site for many years. This is what his email said:

I found your web site while looking for more information On your great grandfather Joseph P. littlefield . I have a summer place on the camp road that goes beside the family cemetery I visit the family cemetery every year before Memorial Day to pay my respects to him and his family and to honor his service . I often wondered what was his life like. I’m the featured speaker at the Belgrade Me. town Memorial Service next week and I plan to include him I’m my remarks honoring his service to his country.Best Regards ,

It meant a lot to me to know that my great grandfather Joseph P Littlefield was being honored and remembered 155 years after he died.

Take a moment to remember the original reason for Memorial Day and the men and women who fought for, and gave their lives for our country.


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RDP Monday: GLASS…

I love glass so this has been a fun blog post to put together. I’ve tried to keep the number of photos down 🙂

This photo is inside the Gay Head lighthouse on Martha’s Vineyard, it shows the expanse of glass and the glass of the lenses on the light.

Also on Martha’s Vineyard, window at the entrance to the Tabernacle, window at top of stairs and dewy barn window early in the morning.

Shattered glass…

Miscellaneous…

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2021/04/12/rdp-monday-glass/


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My Mom…

My mother, Maude Louise Littlefield Freeman was born in Waterville, Maine on March 11, 1907. My mother and her mother Albra Mae Flewelling Littlefield Grant Baird.

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The picture below is one of my most favorite pictures of all time…

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A friend asked me once to describe my mother…what was she like, what did she like to do. I pondered this question and found it was sort of a hard one to answer. To me my mother was funny and a little nutsy at times, a trait I’ve happily inherited by the way… she was kind and loving, a hard worker, she adored my dad, and me. She liked to crochet, she made tablecloths and doilies, when I was around 12 she went back to work the bank she had worked in before she got married.

She was a kook in her younger years and I’ve got the photo album that proves it.

The first page says ‘taken during the year 1926’.. most of the photos are of mom and her friends on Martha’s Vineyard…there are a few from NJ as well.   I love how she wrote in white ink on the black pages…and wow, what typical 1926 sayings she wrote.  My mother it seems was turning into a flapper… I love it.

For instance, the picture on the lower left says ‘The Oak Bluffs Sheik “oh daddy” “He’s a hound with the ladies.”  I’m 80% sure I know who that hound was but I’m not telling

It would have been fun to have known my mother when she was that age, to have hung out with her and her friends on the Vineyard, to be in on their inside jokes and what really went on in with the sheik of Oak Bluffs ! Okay, maybe not. Does one really want to know THAT much about their parents, some things are better left unknown.

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Yes indeed, my mother was one of my favorite people to spend time with. Some nights when my dad was working my mom and I would have our favorite supper and speak our ‘silly language’, which was to put ‘S’ in front of every word… it made for gales of laughter from both of us.

She was a strong woman, who suffered with a year long bout of agoraphobia, which for her was fear of leaving the house. She eventually overcame it and then found and reinvented herself and got a job at the bank she had worked for before she got married. I’m proud of her for that and like to think that I got some of that fortitude or spunk from her… I definitely got my quirkiness from her and I thank her for that.

Happy birthday mom…