MV Obsession

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


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Plymouth, MA – Plimouth Plantation …

Part 2 of our trip into the past to visit our ancestors..Plimouth Plantation…

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DSC_0092Our visit to Plimouth Plantation was interesting and fun, I wish history had been this alive to me when I was in school eons ago 🙂

According to Wikipedia:

{Plimoth Plantation, founded in 1947, is a living history museum in Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA, that shows the original settlement of the Plymouth Colony established in the 17th century by English colonists, some of whom later became known as Pilgrims. They were among the first people who immigrated to America to avoid religious persecution and to seek religious separation from the Church of England.

In the 1627 English Village section of the museum, interpreters have been trained to speak, act and dress appropriately for the period. At Plimoth Plantation they are called historical interpreters, and they interact with their ‘strange visitors’ (i.e. the modern general public) in the first person, answering questions, discussing their lives and viewpoints and participating in tasks such as cooking, planting, black smithing and animal husbandry.}

Let’s begin…

Before we got to the Pilgrim settlement we stopped at the re-creation of a Wampanoag home site where modern day Native People from a variety of nations, dressed in traditional dress demonstrate how their ancestors lived and interacted with the settlers.

pizap.com14452951552681Onward now to the village, founded in 1947,  where we see how the Pilgrims lived…

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and talk with some ‘historical interpreters’…

Governor William Bradford and friend

Gov Wm Bradford

William Brewster, Ruling Elder of the Plymouth Church

William Brewster
and Myles Standish

Capt Miles Standish

 We sat down to rest and two ladies walked by and smiled and said we looked so happy and would we like them to take our picture… tah dah…

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🙂 🙂 🙂

This concludes part 2 of our trip… next up… Miles Standish burial ground and the John & Priscilla Alden House…

(pictures are mine and Deb’s)

 


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The Former Daggett House …

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I stayed a few times at the Daggett House Inn before it was renovated and turned into a private residence. One of the things I remember most is their famous Grape Nut bread/toast.

On the lower level of the inn was the breakfast room. According to the Guide to Martha’s Vineyard:

“The room was the first tavern on Martha’s Vineyard to sell beer and ale. In 1660 the taverner, John Daggett, was fined five shillings for “selling strong liquor.” In 1750 the Daggett House was added to the building. Through the years the Daggett House was a custom’s house, a sailor’s boardinghouse, a store, and during the whaling era, a counting house. ”

An interesting feature of the Daggett House was its secret room. I’m not sure what it was used for in the 1600′s or so but during the past years as a B&B it was a guest room, provided they could find the secret door and providing the GHOST wasn’t in residence!!!

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The back of the Daggett House had a nice expanse leading to the edge of Edgartown Harbor. A perfect place to have a breakfast or sit and read.

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I stayed at the Daggett House twice… once in the main house and once in the charming 2 room house in the garden.

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Grapenut Bread from the Daggett House.

(This recipe was a staple of the Daggett House Bed & Breakfast on Martha’s Vineyard until it closed. They used to readily hand out recipe cards so I’m assuming there are no copyright issues. But just in case there is, I’m giving full credit here to the inn as it’s their recipe)

Makes 2 loaves

Mix:

2/3 c Grapenuts

1/3 c wheat germ

3 T butter

1/4 tsp salt

1/3 c dark brown sugar

1 1/3 c boiling water.

Stir and let cool to barely warm.

Then, combine 1 T yeast, 1 tsp sugar and 2/3 c warm water, and let stand until bubbly.

Add yeast to the dry mixture. Add 4 c all-purpose flour.

Knead until soft and smooth, then return to bowl and let rise, covered, until double in volume.

Punch down and divide into two loaves, knead for a few minutes, and put into greased loaf pans. Let rise until double in size.

Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes.

Freshly baked Grape-Nut bread…yum

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(In all fairness I have to give credit to my daughter Deb who baked this delicious bread).


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A Vineyard School House …

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My mother’s step-cousin was born in this house in Indian Hill in 1911. He lived in this house, built in 1752, until he died. He was quite a guy. He was a master at building things and he could fix absolutely anything. Over the years he added on to the family homestead, and when there wasn’t anymore he could do there he turned his sights to –

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— the one room school house up the road where he’d gone to school. He purchased the school house and set about renovating it.

When his daughter got married she and her husband moved into it. I had the pleasure of going there for dinner and I was in awe. The original wooden floors had been beautifully restored, but more than that, you could see clearly the marks where the desks had once been. A couple of the desks had been salvaged and were part of the living room. The closet was, of course the former cloak room with, the original coat hooks. And to top things off the school bell was once again working. I hardly ever enjoyed being in a classroom quite as much as I did that night at dinner many years ago.


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The House Story Updated …

This is the house of my godparents, the house of my childhood summers, the house that holds a special place in my heart.

The house I wrote this short story about (CLICK HERE) and this post where I’d been inside the house in the 1980’s after 40+ years and what I found there… (CLICK HERE).

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This is the house that I drive past each and every time I’m on the Vineyard.  This is the house that looked sad and showed its age… the house that needed people to see its potential and give it the TLC it deserved for so long.

Then one day I got an email….  it was titled something like ‘we bought your house’!!  They had had their eye on the house for awhile and when it went on the market they bought it.  The house couldn’t have been luckier.  This couple and their family obviously love this house and have already made it more beautiful than its ever been… and they’re not even done yet.  I firmly believe that certain houses have a ‘soul’… maybe it’s my deep connection to this house but when I saw it recently it looked happy and even better there was a feeling of warmth and contentment when you walked inside.

Look at the house now …take a close look at the detail work and how they’ve made it stand out.

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My creation

I recently met the new owners and had the pleasure of going into the house and stepping back into time…    this is some of what I saw…

When I walked into the living room the first thing I recognized  was the mirror over the fireplace…  it had previously been in the dining room over the sideboard.  The sideboard, dining room table and china cabinet are all original to the house and they are still beautiful.

This house was built around 1907 – 1911…  we think my godparent’s were the original owners but one thing’s for sure… a lot of the furniture is original…like for instance…

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… the iron beds and some of the side tables.

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But the one that I really got emotional about was in this room pictured below…  the only twin bed in the house… MY BED… the bed where I spent every summer of my childhood.

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To get to my room in those days I had to climb the steep stairs which led to a long, long hall … at least it seemed like a long hall then …

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however, on the nights I listened to ‘The Shadow’ on the radio with my godfather the hall seemed like this.

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Me and the house, 1950 and 2013… not much difference in my height 🙂

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Thank you my new friends for letting me revisit the past, to share with you what little I know about the history of the house, and thank you to you and your family for giving back to this house the heart it had been missing for so long.

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Forks And Friendships …

 My friend Will Jones and I were always looking for things to keep us busy and out of trouble during our summers on MV.  Someone showed me how to make little flowers by using yarn and forks… I immediately showed Will.   We set about our tasks, me at my house, he at his.

The next morning Will’s mom called my mom asking if he was at my house ?  Seems she went looking for a fork and couldn’t find any !!!  A few moment later Will was at my door, and yes, he had all his mother’s forks with him and they were filled with yarn.  Seems I had neglected to show him how to get the yarn off the forks to make the little flowers…

                  

 Will had carried those forks from his house way on the other side of Oak Bluffs …

  up Circuit Ave …

 … to my house where we freed his mother’s forks of their yarn.  I have no recollection of what we did with the yarn flowers.
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(Will’s mom – my mom)

Our moms were childhood friends, as were Will and I.  Our moms graduated from Oak Bluffs High School together (long before the regional high school was built).  Our moms moved to Newark, NJ after graduation and it was there that they met their future husbands, our dads, who were also childhood friends. ( In 1907 Will’s mom, Bertha Carter, was the first child born in Oak Bluffs after its name change from Cottage City.)

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(my dad – Will’s dad)

Will and I spent every day of the summer together. We went swimming, rode the Flying Horses, read, drove our parents crazy and were inseparable. For many years his parents owned a bowling alley in Oak Bluffs across from the Flying Horses.  Long before automation the pins had to be set by hand, I even did it from time to time myself.

Being a summer kid on the Vineyard was the best thing in the world… it still is.

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Will is older than I am by 18 days and I never let him forget it.  We still see each other from time to time and talk a lot about our childhoods on the Vineyard.