A Valley News Publication

Do you have historic photographs of the Samuel Hewes House, built in Lyme in 1780?

If so, the Lyme Heritage Commission would like to hear from you, as they currently do not know of any historical photos of the house. From a listserve post on the house’s history:

Sadly, we know of NO historic photos of this house and are eager to locate some, even if the house appears in the background. Please contact us if you know of a photo we can copy.

Adair Mulligan can be reached at adair.mulligan@gmail.com.

Hartford police has had enough of your snowy road videos

The post says: “We are seeing a lot of videos which appear to be filmed of the driving conditions in our town. If you are the driver and are caught doing this it would be a $230 fine and 5 points on your license. Please put the phones down and drive safely.”

Seriously, y’all. It’s not safe. Put the phones down.

After kitchen remodel reveals 1920s love letters hidden in West Lebanon ceiling, Upper Valley Facebook reunites them with the couple’s granddaughters

(Originally posted Tuesday, March 13. Updated on Thursday, March 15.)

Photo courtesy Jenn Carter.

West Lebanon resident Jenn Carter has made a pretty neat discovery in her kitchen ceiling — letters that are more than 90 years old! — and now she’s trying to return them to their rightful owners.

Here is what she posted on the Upper Valley VT/NH Facebook page (w/ light editing by me):

Hi, Upper Valley … So here is an odd one and probably a long shot.


I am remodeling my kitchen in West Lebanon. During demolition, many very old letters were found in the ceiling. They are from Miss Laura S. Johnson, of West Lebanon, to Harold B. White, of Brattleboro, Vt. The letters I have gone through are postmarked for various dates in 1925 & 1926.


I think I found the right Laura through the 1910 & 1920 Census. It appears that she passed in 1998 and is buried at the West Lebanon Cemetery. I was hoping she might still have family in the Upper Valley as I would love to return these letters to them. Please message me if this may be someone you knew.

Jenn later called them “super sweet love letters.” Awwww. <3 :’)

You can contact Jenn at her original post, OR comment below or email me at mcassidy@vnews.com and I will pass along the message.

* * *

UPDATE #1 (TUESDAY): A woman has come forward as the couple’s granddaughter!

That seriously took less than 30 minutes. The Upper Valley is small and the internet is fast.


* * *

UPDATE #2 (THURSDAY): Jenn Carter reunited the letters today with two of Laura Johnson’s and Harold White’s granddaughters, Theresa White, of White River Junction, and Shannon Kivler, of Charlestown.

They are waiting to open all of the letters until they can be read by the couple’s last living daughter!!!! So exciting. We are thrilled for everyone involved. Look for a photo in Friday’s Valley News.

* * *

UPDATE #3 (FRIDAY): Photos and an editorial!

Valley News chief photographer Jennifer Hauck was there for the handoff, and the VN editorial board also weighed in on the magic of these letters. Photos here & editorial here.

About that rematch: Windsor wins over Thetford, 51-34

Windsor sophomore sensation Olivia Rockwood cuts a piece of the net with the rest of her teammates after they defeated Thetford 51-34 to win the Division III state championship in Barre, Vt., on March 10, 2018. (Valley News – Geoff Hansen) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com

I was there and I have to say my jaw was on the floor following the play that Valley News correspondent Adam Boffey described in the opening of his story:

When Olivia Rockwood sank a deep turnaround floater off the glass at the first-half buzzer in Saturday’s VPA Division III girls basketball championship game at Barre Auditorium, it pushed Windsor’s lead to a commanding 18 points at intermission.


The one-handed heave, which looked like something from a game of H-O-R-S-E, was also a microcosm of the evening for the Yellowjackets — everything seemed to go their way in a 51-34 victory over defending state champion Thetford.


Rockwood dominated the rematch of last year’s final, finishing with 29 points including three 3-pointeers.


The Yellowjacket standout offered her take on the shot of the game, which developed from a loose ball she picked up just inside the arc.


“I didn’t really shoot it,” Rockwood said. “I kind of just picked it up and threw it, I guess. It looked on, but I thought it would go hard off the backboard, but I guess it was just right.”

Congrats, Windsor! Read more here.

RELATED: It’s a rematch: Thetford, Windsor advance to a championship rendezvous on Saturday (w/ video)

Well, it’s snowing again

In case you missed it, we’re currently in the midst of another nor’easter. Try to contain your enthusiasm.

It’s also New Hampshire Town Meeting Day. More on that to come!

Slowly but surely, the snow is falling in Lebanon.

It’s a rematch: Thetford, Windsor advance to a championship rendezvous on Saturday

Windsor’s Olivia Rockwood, left, and Angelina Bigwood, right, fight to bring down a rebound against Peoples’ Melaira Fogg during their VAP Division III semifinal at the Barre Auditorium in Barre, Vt., Thursday, March 8, 2018. (Valley News – James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.


Emi Vaughan, of Thetford Academy, right, competes for a dropped rebound with Lizzie Brown, of Hazen, as Brooke Horniak, of Thetford, middle, provides backup during the Vermont Principals Association Division III semifinal at the Barre Auditorium in Barre, Vt., Thursday, March 8, 2018. Thetford won 51 – 40. (Valley News – James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.


On Thursday night, Windsor beat Peoples Academy and Thetford beat Hazen … which means the two Upper Valley teams will face off in the championship once again in Barre on Saturday!

The Windsor vs. Thetford championship of 2017 was quite the last-minute nail-biter, with Thetford coming out on top, 53-52, after trailing by 15 points with fewer than six minutes to play.

Full disclosure: My husband grew up in Thetford and had been working at Thetford Academy for a few years at the time, so the come-from-behind victory was pretty thrilling to witness (see video). But overall, I’m always just looking for an exciting game between two good teams, and this one promises to deliver.

It’s all going down at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday at Barre Auditorium.


Spring forward this weekend, y’all

Just, like, watch where you’re going while you’re at it.

For serious: Daylight saving time begins at 2 a.m. on this Sunday, March 11. Remember to set your clocks forward one hour before going to bed Saturday.

Credit: TNS 2018.

New VN series asks: Whatcha reading? Recommend folks for us to interview!

First up in the new series about what Upper Valley residents are reading is Laura Braunstein.

Braunstein, the digital humanities librarian at Dartmouth College’s Baker-Berry Library, previously appeared in these digital pages for inspiring the lonely duck update and getting a crossword published in the Sunday New York Times (via VPR).

Click the picture below to read today’s piece about what she’s reading.

Laura Braunstein, of Lebanon, is the Digital Humanities Librarian at Dartmouth College and a fan of graphic novels and speculative fiction, for its “what-if” approach and engagement with politics, diversity and inclusion. “One of the things I like about a lot of the writers, especially writers of color and women is that they’re imagining a future with different social relationships,” said Braunstein at Baker Library in Hanover, N.H., Monday, March 5, 2018. (Valley News – James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

And, importantly, please consider recommending Upper Valley bookworms for Valley News staff writer David Corriveau to interview!

To recommend folks, from any walk of life and line of work, for an interview about what they’re reading, contact him at dcorriveau@vnews.com or 603-727-3304.


Town Meeting oldies but goodies

(Hover over the pics below to get the left/right arrows and flip through!)

#tbt: Town Meeting through the decades in the #UpperValley. ▪️ See more #vnewsuv #throwbacks at the #valleynewsthrowback hashtag. 1️⃣ Voters follow along at Town Meeting in #SharonVT on March 7, 1961. 2️⃣ A film crew for the CBS-TV program “On the Road with Charles Kuralt” documents the proceedings at Town Meeting in #StraffordVT on March 2, 1976. 3️⃣ Voters negotiate the snow and slush at Town Meeting in #CornishNH in March 1980. 4️⃣ #LebanonNH school board member Myric Wood checks the numbers during a debate on adding funds to the proposed budget at the annual school district meeting on March 12, 1994. 5️⃣ #EnfieldNH residents Bill and Nancy Martin listen to discussion at Town Meeting on March 13, 2004. 6️⃣ Neighbors Pat Mushlin, left, and Dan Jerman sit among the lighting equipment in the balcony of Damon Hall as they listen to state Rep. Steve Adams and state Sen. Matt Dunne at the #HartlandVT Town Meeting on March 7, 2006. “I’ve sat here at other events,” Mushlin said. “I kind of like it.” 📷 Valley News photographs 1-3 by Larry McDonald; 4 by Geoff Hansen @geoff_hansen; 5 by Jennifer Hauck @hauck45; 6 by James M. Patterson @james.m.patterson. 📷 #upval #throwbackthursday #townmeeting #townmeetingday #tmdvt #tmdnh #802 #603 #1961 #1976 #1980 #1994 #2004 #2006 #history #historyinpictures #blackandwhite #bw #selectboard #schoolboard #news #local #localnews #democracy #directdemocracy #smalltown#newengland #neighbors #vt #nh

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Grantham gnome pix?

From Richard Kaszeta on Facebook:

I’m wondering if anyone here has a picture: in South Grantham, right by the Grantham/Croydon line, there’s a really beat up chainsaw art gnome that was badly damaged by some pranksters several years ago.


Anyone have pictures of that gnome from before it was damaged?

He would like to get the gnome replaced and rebuilt! If you have any old pics, please reply to Richard or send it to me at mcassidy@vnews.com and I’ll pass it along!

Be careful out there; difficult driving conditions

In fact, authorities are asking people to stay off the roads if at all possible.

Route 4 (N.H.) is closed in Lebanon (just west of Eastman Hill) at this hour due to a serious crash, and Route 4 (Vt.) is closed in Woodstock (just west of Woodstock Village) due to a tree covering the road.

Update: One person died in the Lebanon crash.

I-91 southbound was also closed in Wilder overnight due to a crash, but had been reopened by this morning.