A summer day not too long ago a group of buyers gathered around the auctioneer at the Lyons farm in East Colebrook, shown above. With each sale, piece by piece, a long-standing family dairy farm was being dispersed. Changing times brought about a decision by the latest Lyons generation to close up the dairy farm. This month Susan visits with the Lyons family, talks about the sale and shares their memories with readers. Our thanks to Peanut, Ron, Rhonda and the entire Lyons family for opening their door–and family photo album–to us. Thanks also to Steve Barba of the Balsams for sharing P. A. Campbell’s recollection of his time as Balsam farm manager in the early 1900s. The Lyons farm was once part of the Balsams.
If there is by some chance a reader or two out there who has never been to the Shelburne Museum on Route 7 in Shelburne, Vermont, we have a little sample this month of what you’ve been missing. Back in the early ’90s we first spotted the Concord Coach bearing the names of the Highland and Alpine Houses in a dark corner of a barn at the museum. We were pleasantly surprised during a recent revisit to the museum to find that the Horseshoe Barn Annex has been completely refurbished and there, in a place of prominence, was the impressive coach which once served these long-gone Bethlehem hotels. Our thanks to Valerie Reich of the Shelburne Museum for supplying us with a wealth of information about the old coach. The museum is open now and it is high on our places we recommend. For hours and more information, check out their website at www.shelburnemuseum.com.
We remember a conversation we had a few years ago with Paul Doherty when his book, Smoke From A Thousand Campfires, came out. Paul was pleased to be able to pay tribute to some of the old-time woodsmen and fish and game professionals he worked with over the years. This month we pay tribute to Paul himself. He was a true giant among men of the north.
We had fun stopping by Logfest 2000 last month. Organizers seem to have latched on to a good idea and plans for next year’s show are already underway. We had a nice chat with Ray Murphy, who calls himself Wild Mountain Man. Among Ray’s claims to fame is having carved the alphabet into a pencil using a chainsaw.
We like to bring back to print stories from the past. Sometimes we have only fleeting access to a story, so we move fast. An example is the 1914 story we have from New England Magazine on White Mountain wild flowers. We photocopied this from an old book on the shelves at the University of Vermont library. When we went back to get more information on the publication last month, it was gone–and no one knew where. We’re glad we copied it when we did.
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Charles J. Jordan