Arlington Historical Society & Jason Russell House

Arlington Historical Society & Jason Russell House The AHS is located at the corner of Mass Ave and Jason Street. For more info: http://www.arlingtonhistorical.org/
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1937 All Star Hockey Team. Who else loves the striped socks and sleeves?
11/13/2019
2012.6.154 - Print, Photographic

1937 All Star Hockey Team. Who else loves the striped socks and sleeves?

Catalog Number 2012.6.154 Object Name Print, Photographic Description 1937 Photo of All Star Hockey Team, Arlington Ma.Person on bottom left front row is Larry Cousins of Brantwood Rd. Date 1937 Year Range from 1937 Year Range to 1937 Title All Star Hockey Team Copyright Rights status not evaluated....

Hard to believe there are more discoveries to be made after all these years. We had an interesting visit from Skinner ar...
11/08/2019

Hard to believe there are more discoveries to be made after all these years. We had an interesting visit from Skinner arms & militaria experts Joel Bohy and Christopher Fox. They have been wanting to come for some time to assess the battle damage from April 19, 1775 and look at items from our collection. The were able to analyze the existing bullet holes and strikes and actually found MORE of them that we were formerly unaware of. Official information will be forthcoming.

As many of you know, we recently undertook three year-long preservation projects to help stabilize the Jason Russell Hou...
11/05/2019
1982.28.44 - Album, Photograph

As many of you know, we recently undertook three year-long preservation projects to help stabilize the Jason Russell House. These projects were funded by the Commonwealth through the office of Historic Preservation "Massachusetts Preservation Projects Fund" and through Town of Arlington Community Preservation Act.

What a delight to find this album of photographs from a similar restoration in 1970 as part of another project -- digitization of our collection. It's interesting to see the work being done, and the fun that the workers are having.

But one bit of curiosity is who is the woman shown in the first photographs. Does anyone recognize her? We had considered Esther Gannett Henderson or Mrs. Capes but neither seems to be the case.

https://arlingtonhistorical.pastperfectonline.com//photo/CAEC8BBA-C755-49C1-8171-814045452966

Catalog Number 1982.28.44 Object Name Album, Photograph Description Photo album with green cover (20 shots) of Jason Russell House exterior, Jan. 28-Mar. 28, 1970Size 7-1/2" x 10" Date 01/28-3/28/1970 Year Range from 1970 Year Range to 1970 Copyright Rights status not evaluated. (CC BY-NC-ND) Non-co...

Join us on Saturday for "A Revolution in the News"a special program by author and historianJoseph M. AndelmanSaturday, N...
10/30/2019

Join us on Saturday for "A Revolution in the News"
a special program by author and historian
Joseph M. Andelman
Saturday, November 2
3:00 p.m.
Smith Museum at Jason Russell House
Admission free - $5 suggested donation

During the American Revolution, printed material, including newspapers, pamphlets, almanacs, and broadsides, played a crucial role as a forum for public debate. In Revolutionary Networks, Joseph M. Adelman argues that printers—artisans who mingled with the elite but labored in a manual trade—used their commercial and political connections to directly shape Revolutionary political ideology and mass mobilization. Going into the printing offices of colonial America to explore how these documents were produced, Adelman shows how printers balanced their own political beliefs and interests alongside the commercial interests of their businesses, the customs of the printing trade, and the prevailing mood of their communities.

Joseph M. Adelman is an Associate Professor in the History Department at Framingham State University. A historian of media, communication, and politics in the Atlantic world, Revolutionary Networks is his first book, published in 2019 by the Johns Hopkins University Press.

Reminder: The Jason Russell House will close for the season tomorrow afternoon, so you still have a chance to visit! We ...
10/30/2019

Reminder: The Jason Russell House will close for the season tomorrow afternoon, so you still have a chance to visit! We will be open from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
For information, visit our website arlingtonhistorical.org

Image from a photographic album of 20 photos of the Jason Russell House in the 1970s donated by Irene Capes.

We just completed a new upload to our online collection/archive. New items are added every few weeks as our staff and vo...
10/03/2019
2006.2.81 - Diary

We just completed a new upload to our online collection/archive. New items are added every few weeks as our staff and volunteers continue to digitize. If you searched for something specific many months ago, you might find what you need today.

We're also pleased to announce that transcriptions (when available) are now available as linked files. One recent example is the 1900 diary of Society founder George Y. Wellington. This diary was purchased on our behalf due to a crowdsourced fundraising effort over 10 years ago, and we so pleased to offer the content back to the public as our thanks. Follow the link and click on the link for "Transcription" to read George's musings from 1900! He was such a storyteller!

https://arlingtonhistorical.pastperfectonline.com/archive/04E617E0-DC77-4E2E-B17B-693493729026

Catalog Number 2006.2.81 Object Name Diary Date 1900 Year Range from 1900 Scope & Content George Y. Wellington was the founder and second President of the Arlington Historical Society. He was born at the Dr. Timothy Wellington House (today's number 86 Pleasant Street), his many decades of public ser...

09/25/2019

Please join us on October 4 for our annual cocktail reception.

09/14/2019
09/14/2019

Nancy McCarthy and her historic washing demonstration

09/14/2019

Corn husk dolls

09/14/2019

Nancy Bell Spinning History with some kids.

09/14/2019
Join us for Arlington Town Day. This is what is happening right now -- free tours of the Jason Russell House, Menotomy M...
09/14/2019

Join us for Arlington Town Day. This is what is happening right now -- free tours of the Jason Russell House, Menotomy Minutemen with various kid and adult friendly activities, Nancy Bell's Spinning History, and much more.

It's back to school time in Arlington. Perhaps students this year will participate in this time honored tradition of put...
08/29/2019
2017.1.16 - Magazine

It's back to school time in Arlington. Perhaps students this year will participate in this time honored tradition of putting together an informal "magazine" with their friends. In this case Misses Cutter, Dickson and Fessenden at the High Street School accumulated their materials for "The School Amulet" in 1843. This issue is the only of the supposed semi-annual publication "dedicated to mental and moral improvement, the fine arts, polite literature and general inteligence (sic)."

The poems and stories in this magazine need to be transcribed. If you're looking for an at home volunteer opportunity and would like to give it a try, please message us and we'll send you the original scans.

Catalog Number 2017.1.16 Object Name Magazine Date 11/21/1843 Year Range from 1843 Year Range to 1843 Scope & Content Homemade magazine handwritten pages bound by blue ribbon, "The School Amulet" West Cambridge, November 21st 1843"Dedicated to mental and moral improvement, the fine arts, polite lite...

Did you take a summer vacation to any of these locations?Alton Bay, New Hampshire Apache Trail, ArizonaAusable Chasm, Ne...
08/13/2019
2008.14.49 - Album, Photograph

Did you take a summer vacation to any of these locations?
Alton Bay, New Hampshire
Apache Trail, Arizona
Ausable Chasm, New York
Burlington, Vermont
California
Dixville Notch, New Hampshire
Falmouth, MA
Grand Canyon
Isles of Shoals, New Hampshire and Maine
Jaffrey, New Hampshire
Laconia, New Hampshire
Miami, Florida
Mississippi
Moosehead Lake, Maine
Mount Kineo, Maine
Mount Washington
Orrs Island, Maine
Palm Beach, Florida
Pasadena, California
Pass-A-Grille Beach, Florida
Pinkham Notch, New Hampshire
Plymouth, Vermont
Rye Beach, New Hampshire
Spofford Lake, New Hampshire
Squam Ridge, New Hampshire
St. Petersburg, Florida
Wentworth(?) Maine
Woodstock, New Hampshire

Check out these vacation photos from the Bird Family from 1921-1932. They're probably doing a lot of the things your family did this summer. Do you recognize any of the locations from the photos?

This album also contains many interesting items of summer clothing, places around Arlington, pets, cars, etc.

Catalog Number 2008.14.49 Object Name Album, Photograph Description A photo album, leather covered, spine tied with stringon the front cover "P" of "Photographs" is decorated with mother of pearlFirst page labeled "Alton Bay. N.H. May 30, 1931Photos are mostly labeled with date and location. Several...

Swimming on the beach at Mashpee, c. 1915
08/01/2019
2012.7.46 - Print, Photographic

Swimming on the beach at Mashpee, c. 1915

Catalog Number 2012.7.46 Object Name Print, Photographic Description Four children and one adult swim in a body of water. One of the children, a boy, in laying in the water starring at the camera while the other children play in the background.Described in letter from Barbara Winn 2012.7.95 "Five an...

07/30/2019

Humorous anecdote from the Arlington Advocate this week in 1921 (to us by way of Richard Duffy on the Arlington List):

"Bathing [swimming] is becoming very popular at the Heights Reservoir, but many forget that there is a law that requires proper covering for the body of the bather. So far as those bathing on the Arlington sides of the reservoir are concerned, they comply, but those bathing on the upper (Lexington) end are the ones who ignore this regulation and have caused complaint to be made."

Susan Sewell Chase - from her 1963 obituary in the Arlington Advocate - "Aviation Pioneer.""One of the first women aviat...
07/26/2019

Susan Sewell Chase - from her 1963 obituary in the Arlington Advocate - "Aviation Pioneer."
"One of the first women aviators in Massachusetts . . . the widow of Frederick M. Chase, for many years a Buick dealer in Arlington learned to fly shortly after World War I, receiving her first lessons from a Royal Flying Corps ace Lt. J.A. Mitchell, who had downed seven German planes during the war."
"Mrs. Chase flew her plane out of Bedford, and one time from the ice in Charles River Basin, but confessed that she didn't care for 'loop-the-loops' or any of the very dangerous stunts in the air."
She was 92 when she died.
Sad to say that we have only a few photos of her and none of her with her plane.
https://arlingtonhistorical.pastperfectonline.com/photo/14B60BFE-D72D-4832-8DEF-544900994880

Throwback Thursday - the James O. Holt Grocery store in 1948.
07/25/2019
1951.8.1 - Print, Photographic

Throwback Thursday - the James O. Holt Grocery store in 1948.

Catalog Number 1951.8.1 Object Name Print, Photographic Description 2 pictures in one black framePhotos of James O. Holt stores Pleasant Street Market, up 1899 to 1935James O. Holt Grocery, up 1894 to 1948Savings Bank to leftFrom Duffy "James O. Holt stands in front of the Pleasant Street market dur...

Thanks to two generous volunteers and some "job not as described" work of our Administrative Assistant, we were able to ...
07/23/2019

Thanks to two generous volunteers and some "job not as described" work of our Administrative Assistant, we were able to complete one changing table. The second is in need of assembly. If you're handy with such things, enjoy tasks that give a good sense of completion, and are looking for a one-time volunteer opportunity for a non-profit, please consider messaging us to help. We need one or two people to help put together this changing table in our bathroom.

Let's try this again, since Facebook edited the picture out of the post.
Volunteer(s) needed -
We recently acquired two changing tables for our restrooms and need a volunteer or two to assemble them. They are a dresser type of table (for storage) so not for the faint of heart, will probably take a few hours to complete. So if anyone is handy enough with this type of thing and looking for a one time opportunity to give back to a non-profit, message us.

Full instructions can be sent to you as an attachment if you would like to decide based on more than this picture.

Happy Fourth of July! The Jason Russell House and Smith Museum will be closed in observance of the holiday. We hope you ...
07/03/2019
2012.7.518 - Drawing

Happy Fourth of July! The Jason Russell House and Smith Museum will be closed in observance of the holiday. We hope you have a wonderful celebration, much like the one shown in this charming children's drawing from the mid 19th century.
We're not completely sure this scene is a celebration of American Independence, but it sure looks like it, doesn't it?

Catalog Number 2012.7.518 Object Name Drawing Description Drawing of two people by a tree and an American flag by a building. Labeled "Susie A. Winn" on the back. People Winn, Susanna Adams Subjects FlagsChildrenDrawings Collection Prentiss-Winn Estate Source Adams, Susanna Updated 2019-07-03

06/21/2019

Today's post comes from Richard Duffy, who is transcribing the early 20th century diaries of Nina WInn and posts daily to the "Arlington List" list-serv:
I received a few off-list messages commenting on how entertaining (one writer said "charming") it was to read the "flashback" about Nina's Aunt Georgianna embarking on her first ride in a motor car, after claiming she'd never do it.
Because there happens to be a 1920 diary of Nina's aunt Susanna Adams Winn (the latest year available for her). I thought that it would be fun to look up what Susanna, as a fellow passenger, had to say about "Sister's" (Georgianna's) first journey in an automobile. And I intend this bonus historical installment as an hommage to Aunt Georgianna, because up to now in 1921 it seems that she is "leaving the canvas."

>From the diary of Susanna Adams Winn
Saturday, June 19, 1920

"Auto ride to Winchendon."
A pleasant day at last after all the stormy times. We were so rejoiced on account of our trip. Was very busy all the morning. Lots of telephone calls congratulating me on this change of weather. We did not know just when Russell [Toutt] would come; had packed our bags and got ready by 10:30. He came about noon & I had not had lunch. Had to wait until 2:30 for Laurel [Toutt] to come from Plainville, and started out about 1/4 of 3. Sister was not at all scared on her first ride, the auto (a Hudson) was easy, the country beautiful & weather was perfect. We went through Concord, Littleton, Ayer, Fitchburg & Ashburnham. Got here at 1/4 of 6. [*] All seemed glad to see us. Laurel is around for good. After a nice supper Sister went right to bed, none the worse apparently for her trip.

[*] The automobile trip that took 3-1/4 hours in 1921 (in good driving conditions) from 57 Summer St. in Arlington to the center of Winchendon would take little more than one hour today in average traffic.

Interesting photograph from the 1880s-90s. Not sure why this young boy with such a puffy shirt would be holding a whip! ...
06/19/2019
2012.6.973 - Card, Cabinet

Interesting photograph from the 1880s-90s. Not sure why this young boy with such a puffy shirt would be holding a whip! Make sure to click through and look at the lettering on the back of the card, it's pretty remarkable.

Catalog Number 2012.6.973 Object Name Card, Cabinet Description Unlabeled photo of a young boy in a fancy blouse and jacket, holding a whip.Taken at Litchfield Caption Young boy holding a whip Date 1885 - 1895 Year Range from 1885 Year Range to 1895 Photographer Litchfield Studios Subjects ChildrenC...

In the years before the invention of photography, the only way to capture a likeness of someone was to have a painting d...
06/12/2019
1924.2.5 - Painting

In the years before the invention of photography, the only way to capture a likeness of someone was to have a painting done of them. "Miniatures" such as this one were a little more affordable, but this was still an expensive venture. This example is likely gauche painted on ivory, and a series of a single family -- the children of George C. Russell and Sophronia Fessenden Russell. This one is a bit of a mystery as it is identified as "Caroline Russell" and shows a young woman. According to our records, the daughter named Caroline died at age 2 in 1848. It could be one of the other daughters and was misidentified, perhaps there was another daughter given the same name (very common), or perhaps the artist took a little bit of license in depicting a lost child as she might have looked as a young woman.

What do you think?

Catalog Number 1924.2.5 Object Name Painting Description Portrait - Caroline Russell - Painted on ivory - daugher of George C. and Sophronia RussellMiniature People Russell, Caroline* Russell, George C. Fessenden, Sophronia Collection Arlington Historical Society Collection Source Russell, George Up...

We're making some ongoing improvements to the Smith Museum facilities and have had to make some interesting decisions --...
06/11/2019

We're making some ongoing improvements to the Smith Museum facilities and have had to make some interesting decisions -- one being our outside lighting that was so broken and in need of replacement. When the workers got up to take a look they found that a bird had built a nest INSIDE one of the broken fixtures. An early call to Arlington Animal Control led to this unusual adjustment. The light on the left is the new, working light. On the right is just the fixture, the old one, screwed into the clapboard just a few feet over. Mama bird is still making visits to her nest despite the slight disruption and we're hopeful they'll hatch soon so we can take down that broken light!
As it is it currently looks like a nice comparison shot of the new light and the old light.
Thanks to Arlington, Massachusetts Animal Control

Address

7 Jason St
Arlington, MA
02476

Opening Hours

Tuesday 10:00 - 17:00
Wednesday 10:00 - 17:00
Thursday 10:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(781) 648-4300

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