Suffield Trivia

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1. The Montgomery Company which was located on the lower locks of the Windsor Locks canal was once the country’s largest manufacturer of tinsel and metallic thread used in the communications industry, electric razors, computers, pacemakers and other products. The Windsor Locks facility closed in 1989. It began in 1871 when it produced what product?

a. Silk yarn
b. Cotton yarn
c. Flannel

2. What notable author traveled the Windsor Locks canal on February 7, 1842?

a. James Fenimore Cooper
b. Alexandre Dumas
c. Charles Dickens

3. Construction of the Windsor Locks canal began in 1827. By October of that year, 400 men labored under the direction of Canvass White. What was he known for?

a. He built Quincy Market.
b. He oversaw the construction of The Erie Canal.
c. He oversaw the construction of The Chesapeake & Ohio Canal.

4. In the 1850s, because of the large number of manufacturers located along the Connecticut River from Springfield, Vermont to Hartford, Connecticut, the valley was called

a. Precision Valley
b. The Industrial Corridor
c. Dammed Manufacturing

5. The tobacco industry flourished in Suffield in the mid-1800s. Several Suffield families invested their tobacco profits in the burgeoning insurance companies headquartered in Hartford. During the 1890s and the early 1900s, what percent of the stock in the four major Hartford insurance companies was held by these families?

a. 24%
b. 49%
c. 33%

6. Which of the following are true about the Springfield, Mass. Armory?

a. It was the first federal armory.
b. The loss of Harper’s Ferry Armory to Confederate forces in 1861 made Springfield the primary supplier of arms for the Union Army.
c. The Enfield Falls (Rapids) were too shallow for ocean-going vessels to navigate, so the armory was safe from a British naval attack.

7. Bowles Airport was constructed in 1930. It had a modern terminal facility and provided scheduled flights to New York and Boston. Where was it located?

a. Agawam
b. Longmeadow
c. Westfield

8. Adjacent to Bowles Airport was a pari-mutuel racetrack with a grandstand and stables. What famous horse won the Springfield Handicap in October 1935?

a. Man O’ War
b. Seabiscuit
c. Secretariat

9. Asher Benjamin is famous for his architectural pattern books, which were popular in the 1800s, the first of their kind in America. In one of his first projects, he designed a door for the Phelps-Hatheway House. He also designed a Massachusetts academy, still operating, although its design was significantly altered in the late 1800s. What is the academy?

a. Monson Academy
b. Deerfield Academy
c. Wilbraham Academy

10. The architect who designed the Second Baptist Church in Suffield also designed two curious octagon-shaped buildings which still exist at Amherst College. The buildings were built at the behest of Reverend Hitchcock, astronomer, geologist and professor of chemistry and natural history. Who was the architect?

a. Henry Sykes
b. Daniel Burnham
c. Louis Sullivan


1. b. Cotton yarn. The building was placed on the National Register of Historic Places and is now an apartment building.
2. c. Charles Dickens. He was traveling to a speaking engagement in Hartford, after giving a speech in Springfield. It was the first trip of the season for the steamboat. Dickens wrote about the journey.
“It certainly was not called a small steamboat without reason…it must have been of about half a pony power…[Its cabin] looked like the parlour of a Lilliputian public-house… “
3. b. He oversaw the construction of The Erie Canal.
4. a. Precision Valley
5. a. 24%
6. All are true.
7. a. Agawam. The airport was located just north of Shoemaker Lane. The airline service lasted about a year. It was a civil airport until 1982, then demolished in the late 1980s.
8. b. Seabiscuit
9. b. Deerfield Academy
10. a. Henry Sykes

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