Saturday, February 6, 2010

Suggestions from Friends and Readers

I appreciate the kind words of support and genuine interest so many have conveyed concerning recent articles about our history. Having compiled a substantial list of topics, I have been pleasantly surprised by the frequent suggestions that have added to it. For example, Richard McKinney and Paula Free, the former working at the many factories in town such as Artistic Wire and Bevin Bros., and the latter, hanging after school at Barton’s Soda Shop, will provide some future stories.

The picture of Barton Drug, operated by Hubert Hodge for many years, became Barton's Soda Shop. Today this is the location of Devine Jewelers
Jim and Jill Swindal and Don Martin corrected facts on the age or ownership of their homes (much appreciated) and then there is Barbara Doherty. Barbara thought her house at 95 Young Street should have been on a list of homes built prior to 1799. My previous research taken from several studies of old EH homes had not revealed this. She had sent me a delightful email about her house and some history of her family in Town. Her grandparents had a cottage at the corner of Ola Avenue and Cornwell Terrace since the 1920s. Her parents, Michael and Beatrice Kripas were married at the Kayrock Inn in the early 1940s. Some of her stories and topics I plan to use in the future. But the heart of the matter was her house. I began to do a title search attempting to quantify the date it was constructed. To my surprise, my great-great-great grandfather, Hiram Markham had once owned this house. The builder however appears to be Clement Bates, and yes, around 1750.

Home of Barbara Doherty at 95 Young Street

A Middletown taxpayer/landholder, Bates received one of the proprietor grants in the distribution of the 3-mile Division creating Chatham. So, I thank all of you and greatly appreciate your kind words and assistance and will continue to fulfill this creative urge by ferreting out additional information about our community.


  1. I live on the corner of Ola and Cornwell but the house that the Kripas' owned I believe was across the street from me, and burned in fire back in the late 90's. There is now a modular home there.

  2. I believe you are correct. it was the house that burned.