Half-Shire Historical Society News – April 17, 2015

PULASKI, NY – The winter and spring have seen quiet a great deal of activity at the society headquarters in Richland as we have continued work on the new research room on the main floor.

We expect to be ready to move things in there by April 24.

Painting should begin by April 20 and when we meet on April 25 I am hopeful this long project will be at a point of completion.

Thanks to Dan Hebblethwaite and volunteer Dave Cox for their work!

The middle utility room that once housed the boiler in the old school has been framed out inside for sheetrock and insulation.

A new set of stairs will be installed and a landing that will stretch across the north wall to accommodate a storage shelf.

Beneath the deck we will store our folding chairs.

Loft storage in both rooms is going to be a “boon” to house our bankers boxes of artifacts and papers.

While we had the dust stirred up on the first floor this winter, we completed the planned work in the north quarter of the main hall, upgrading electrical and mounting our big screen TV that will be better utilized for meetings.

Hardline computer cord was installed, and our sconce lighting around the room was expanded.

This portion of the project may not be sanded and finished by the 25th, but is expected to be done shortly afterward.

This work was funded by a grant from the Greater Pulaski Community Fund and covered the north wall and a portion of our new copier.

On April 25, we will meet an hour early to go over the agenda and then serve lunch.

The local DAR will be joining us for lunch, as well as members of the family of the late Julia Hutchens who will be buried that day.

At 1:15 many of us from Half-Shire will leave in a group to attend the burial services for our dear friend Roberta Edick Cleveland in Vermillion Cemetery, New Haven.

The 25th is shaping up to be a very busy day!

On May 1, we will be hosting a breakfast at 9 a.m. for Entergy retirees.

Entergy Corporation has been a consistently solid supporter of Half-Shire through the employee volunteerism grants.

Last year, Margaret Sullivan, Mark Wallace, Rob Jones, Rick Telian, Celia Potter and Shawn Doyle applied for and received monies from Entergy for their hours spent on projects.

Sullivan, Potter and Doyle will be hosting the retirees’ breakfast on this date, as well as a subsequent luncheon at 1:30 for Leadership Oswego County students who will be stopping in for lunch on the first leg of their eastern Oswego County bus tour.

Doyle will resume the tour with the group after lunch, visiting Orwell, Redfield, Boylston and Sandy Creek.

Leadership Oswego County is a program that has been around nearly 20 years and provides basic leadership training for aspiring volunteers and community leaders.

The program has been a great success since its inception.

Sullivan, Kevin Stewart and Doyle are working with Mount Adnah Cemetery Association in Fulton as they prepare a new self-guided tour.

Stewart and Venita Ackley are working on Parish Pleasant Lawn Cemetery records.

Ackley transcribed the entire burial records of more than 4,000 people this winter and Stewart is assisting her in formatting this for “find a grave” and for our records.

On April 13, we received delivery of our new $2,500 digital scanner.

The scanner is a large unit which will accommodate 11 x 17 size documents, maps and photos.

This is particularly valuable to us as we are in the midst of several projects that involve copying records of this size.

We wanted to ensure the best archival process and search ability through digital means and scanning these 200-year-old items we decided was the best way to do this.

Stewart is going to be doing a great deal of this work as we wade through cemetery ledgers from Parish and Pulaski, church records from Camden and Pulaski.

Our membership and friends will be very pleased we are sure with the results.

On April 12, those of us in the building had a treat as we cleaned and worked away as Trustee Florence Gardner came up and played piano for an hour in a half on the second floor.

As the sun shone through the windows and the snow melted before us, the melodious sound of George Widrig’s old piano enlivened the building and volunteers as we worked away.

Much progress in sorting the work of the winter was accomplished.

One of our student workers completed 440 scans of World War II era photos loaned to us by Harold Hubbard, while three of us worked on the Pulaski Alumni Newsletter for a few days.

Half-Shire can be reached at [email protected] or on Facebook at Half Shire.

Our new web site www.halfshire.org is coming along at a pace, our map section is the most up to date and comprehensive source for historic maps around.

Thanks to Roger Pape for all his work on this.

New maps will be added in the next few weeks.