100 Years Ago in Suffield

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Selected from the pages of the Windsor Locks Journal and lightly annotated by Wendy Taylor of Kent Memorial Library.

October 3

The annual town meeting will be held next Monday… The town will also vote by ballot as to whether any person shall be licensed to sell spirituous or intoxicating liquors in this town during the coming year.

The first entertainment of the Suffield Festival was held in the Congregational church last evening and in spite of the inclement weather, the seating capacity of the church was taxed. The entertainment was “Puss in Boots” with a cast of about 100 Suffield children. The production was well staged and prettily costumed…The next entertainment in the course will be a lecture on “Prison Reform” by Col. Norris G. Osborn of New Haven.

Since Town Treasurer S. R. Spencer has doubled the defenses about his lawn at the trolley terminus [corner of Main and Kent], speeding automobiles have either been stopped or have gone over the fences in such small pieces as to do but little damage.

October 10

The first meeting of the Mapleton literary club was held…The subject discussed was “The woman of the new era.”

October 17

The librarian’s report shows the total circulation of the year… 17,050… This was below last year owing to the closing of the library during the influenza epidemic last winter.

The first meeting of the season of the woman’s reading club was held Wednesday… The subject of the meeting was “Poland, her land and people.”

October 24

Three of the hotelkeepers of the town have applied to the county commissioners for licenses to sell spirituous and intoxicating liquors in this town. This is owing to the change from the dry to wet column, by the vote of the annual town meeting. The applicants are the Suffield House, Smith Hotel and Cannon’s Hotel.

Some of the growers took down a little of their stalk tobacco this week, and report an excellent crop. In some sections, it is said that there is a little pole-burn and in others a little canker.

October 31

The general committee for the Welcome Home [veterans] celebration… met… to perfect arrangements. It is estimated that there will be about 450 at the dinner… and about 300 at the supper and theatre party. It is urged and expected that the people of the town will turn out to the band concert in the morning and give the soldiers and sailors a welcome that they will not forget. The buildings in the center of the town will be decorated and residents of any part of the town that own a flag are requested to put it out on that day.

The Grand Army and Spanish War Veterans have also been invited to participate in the celebration…

A large stock barn, two tobacco barns and their contents, owned by Ted Barron on North Grand Street, were destroyed by fire, causing a loss of $12,000.

The fire started in the hay barn. All the stock was saved, but seven acres of tobacco, fifty tons of hay and most of the farming tools were lost. The Suffield chemical truck was called and with their help, the house was saved.

Mrs. Barron, who was confined to her bed, was removed from the house to the home of Joseph Adams.

The buildings were insured but the tobacco and hay were a total loss. Insurance adjusters were at Mr. Barron’s place Tuesday and allowed claims for about $5,000 insurance.

Owing to the loss of his barns and feed, Mr. Barron will be unable to keep his stock during the winter and will sell them at auction. 

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