Chesterfield NH Historical Society
Chesterfield NH Historical Society

Spring 2019

Number 47                                                                                                       May 2019



The largest stumbling block to opening a museum is meeting building codes and ADA requirements (while preserving to the maximum extent the historic character of the building).  Working toward meeting these requirements is what the Stone House Committee is doing!  Meeting by meeting, we are moving forward, and, the first step, a Historic Structure Report (HSR), has been completed.


During the winter the committee assisted Weller and Michal Architects Inc. of Harrisville, NH to complete the HSR.  Historic Preservation Consultant Paula Sagerman from Brattleboro has also been part of the team.  The report will provide a road map to guide CHS in identifying and assessing the building’s preservation needs and priorities.  The report was made possible by a grant from NH Land and Community Heritage Investment Program (LCHIP).


CHS greatly appreciates LCHIP’s investment in the 1831 Stone House Tavern Museum.  Last April the building was purchased with the goal of preserving its historical integrity, unique features and eventually transforming it into a vibrant showplace of nineteenth century Chesterfield and surrounding areas.  This grant is allowing CHS to move forward in revitalizing this iconic structure.  The report should be completed by the end of April and construction will begin as soon as funds are raised through grants and personal donations. 


Committee members Pam Walton and Val Starbuck have attended an LCHIP WORKSHOP ON April 29.  CHS hopes to submit a second LCHIP grant at the end of June for renovations involving the chimneys, roof, management of a wet basement, as well as changes necessary to meet ADA and fire code requirements.  We are also happy to report that local contractor Bob Furlone has joined the committee.  His advice and expertise has been, and will continue to be, essential to the movement of this project.


Program is also being addressed.  With a grant from NH Charitable Foundation, laptop computers, a projector, screen and speakers have been purchased to facilitate programming.  This equipment will also be used to provide an in-depth “tour” and history of the upper floors down to the first floor for visitors unable to climb stairs.


Step by Step the Chesterfield Historical Society is making progress! 


A special note:  We thank all of you who have volunteered helping with the physical needs of the building.  A SPECIAL THANK YOU Ryan Hoag of Pat Rawson Construction who recently hauled away a huge load of debris from the Stone House grounds.  Anyone wishing to volunteer to clean up the yard and/or clean inside the Stone House this spring, please call Pam Walton at 363-8319 or email her at:





We receive many requests for genealogy information which we do our best to answer.  Recent descendants sought information on a David Gale who died in Chesterfield in 1801 and for the Latham-Brett family. 


The Pierce Family genealogy is a fascinating work in progress.  The relationships with President Franklin Pierce and with Barbara Pierce Bush, though not close, are interesting.





Does anyone have information about the Steamboat Enterprise’ demise?  We have been asked where in the lake its remains might rest.  In the Spofford Lake book written by Martha Robb Potter she had information that it caught fire and sank as it made a last trip around the lake, its passengers rescued.  We have information from Grace Prentiss that it was beached by a south shore cottage for many years and she didn’t know what finally became of it.  Perhaps a good guess might be that it was scuttled?  Can anyone help us solve this mystery?




Earl Proulx, who wrote a column for each issue of Yankee Magazine answering questions asked by readers, worked with Otto W. Schlichting at Paine Construction.  Earl very often got his information from Otto “Benny” for his articles.





The Bob Mills family has given us a painting of our Chesterfield Town Hall that had hung in Bob’s home.  The artist is Hazel Wood of 8 Wallingford Dr., Melville, NY  11746.  Would anyone have any information for us about her?  The painting has been cleaned and reframed and looks great.


We are pleased to have a painting of the old store and center of West Chesterfield as it used to be.  The painting is by Marilyn C. Rawson and is a gift from Lyle and Sandy Hoag (the painting is by his mother).



The Hoags also donated a scrapbook with a collection of newspaper articles of town interest.


Jane Anderson has gifted us with items from some of her ancestors.  She donated a spool bed, a wedding quilt and some clothing items which belonged to the Brown family, Jane’s grandparents, who lived in Chesterfield.  They will be used in the Stone House Tavern’s bedroom.




Our cemetery book needs to be updated.  This project will need a few volunteers to assist us with data.  If you are willing to assist us with this project, please call Neil Jenness at 363-8018.




We have some interesting programs scheduled for this summer.  Please mark your calendars to be sure you can attend.  Both programs will be held at:


ASBURY CHURCH – Route 63 in the center of Chesterfield (the white church next to the library) at 7:00 P.M.

Refreshments will be served at both programs



Tuesday, June 11 – Annette Spaulding will present:




Annette returns with some interesting discoveries that she has made in Spofford Lake, none of which she has shared in other presentations.  There will be underwater footage, slides and stories that will amaze you.                                   




Tuesday, July 16-Alan Rumrill (of Cheshire County Historical

Society) will present:



Chesterfield Historical Society Newsletter Spring 2019
CHS Newsletter Spring 2019.pdf
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