Salisbury Association wrap-up
SALISBURY — The Salisbury Association had a busy and productive 2011, according to the association’s officials at the annual meeting Saturday, Jan. 14, at Town Hall.The meeting opened on a somber note as word of the death of Carl Williams spread. Williams was a longtime and prominent member of the association and an active volunteer in many town organizations.President Dave Heck reported that the Academy Building, which is home to the association, is undergoing an upgrade to the second floor. The idea is to increase available workspace and room for meetings — while keeping the details true to “the 1833 era.”On the first floor, the wooden floor will be exposed.Heck reported that a number of policies had been established for the association — including a “reproduction policy.”“I didn’t know we were involved in that,” said Heck. Turns out the policy concerns use of the copier at the Academy Building.Lou Hecht reported on the Salisbury Land Trust’s work last year, which included funding educational programs at Salisbury Central School with Sharon Audubon; maintaining the Railroad Ramble and Tory Hill; and sponsoring a bird-watching walk.George Massey said the trust will be applying with the Nature Conservancy for funds from the 1999 Consent Decree between General Electric, the states of Massachusetts and Connecticut, the city of Pittsfield, Mass., and the federal Environmental Protection Agency. Funds are available for a variety of purposes; Massey said the land trust hopes to negotiate additional areas of conservation along the Housatonic River to supplement existing protected areas.The Tory Hill area on Long Pond Road will be the recipient of habitat improvements — namely, removing honeysuckle.Tom Key reported that the Dark Hollow road and trails “were hit hard by Irene and the snowstorm” in October 2011.“However, thanks to four old men with chainsaws, the trails are open.”He recommended the “summit” trail for its excellent view of the Salmon Kill valley.Ron Jones, speaking for the Salisbury Association Historical Society, announced four new Era of Elegance lectures and six new installments in the Heritage Talk series for 2012.The Historical Association is also working on a Civil War project, with an exhibit, “At Home in Civil War Salisbury,” this summer, and “Salisbury Soldiers at War” for next year. There is a need for help with the research. Jones referred to letters from Civil War soldiers writing their friends back in Salisbury, urging them to get married before the soldiers return. “When we get back you won’t stand a chance!”The oral history project is proceeding, with volunteers transcribing taped interviews and conducting new ones.This year is the 250th anniversary of the Salisbury blast furnace (built in 1762), Jones said. And the search continues for a Salisbury cannon, to bring back home.Lou Bucceri reported that students at Housatonic Valley Regional High School were recruited to help with the oral history project, and that Dave Bayersdorfer had taken over the chair of the Civic Activities committee, which handles popular events such as the Fourth of July celebration at the Grove and the Christmas concert at the Academy Building.Other activities included financing furniture for the new Grove building, other improvements at the Grove, and subsidizing the planting and care of trees in town.Bucceri said an effort is underway to increase activities at Salisbury Central School. “We used to have ‘scary stories’ in the barn at the Holley-Williams house at Halloween,” he said. “We’d like to revive that at SCS.”And Bayersdorfer will speak to the SCS eighth grade on citizenship this spring.The association’s 2012 exhibit and lecture schedule:January through March — Exhibits at the Academy Building: “Judge Warner’s Salisbury” and “250th Anniversary of the Salisbury Blast Furnace.”Jan. 28 — Era of Elegance lecture: “Interior and Exterior Architecture, 1750-1860,” with Geoffrey Rosanno and Chris Brennan.Feb. 18 — Heritage Talk: “Elizabeth Freeman (Mumbet) and the Struggle for Freedom,” with David Levinson.Feb. 25 — Era of Elegance lecture: “Style, Truth and the Portrait in the Age of Elegance,” with Richard Boyle.March 17 — Heritage Talk: “The Irish and Others Come to Salisbury,” with Lou Bucceri.March 24 — Era of Elegance lecture: “Furnishing the Young Republic — Fabrics for Dress and Interiors, 1790-1830,” with Titi Halle.April and May — Exhibit at the Academy Building: “Noble Horizons’ 40th Anniversary Celebration.”April 14 — Heritage Talk: “The History and Mystery of Bagpipes,” with Lee Collins.April 28 — Era of Elegance lecture; “The Americanization of Andrea Palladio,” with Richard Boyle.June through November — Exhibit at the Academy Building; “At Home in Civil War Salisbury.”Sept. 15 — Heritage Talk: “When Baseball was Local,” with David McArthur.Oct. 20 — Heritage Talk: “Three Distinctive, Divisive Visitors to Litchfield: Aaron Burr, William Franklin, John C. Calhoun,” with Tom Key.Nov. 17 — Heritage Talk: “Gettysburg — Stories of the Union High Command,” with David Ward.The Heritage Talk series is cosponsored by the Scoville Memorial Library. All talks and lectures are on Saturdays at 4 p.m. in the Wardell Room of the library.