Sunday, October 7, 2012

Revolving Door

Lots and lots of visitors to the Lighthouse since the last post.

We held two more open house dates in August and September which saw a preponderance of adults visit and one more kid discovered in the refrigerator.  We had had our first in July and perhaps the word got out that the thing to see on the tour was the amazing collection of salad dressings we keep on the door.

My sister Christine joined the effort during the September date.  She pitched in with the usual stalwarts, Peter and Barbara Whitfield, my sister Lee, and Jules.  More and more we noticed groups of adults going from site to site and gratefully, there was less of me talking and more people asking questions.  These are long days and the Whitfields are amazing in their endurance.  We are so very lucky to have them join us.

With the shirts and books and signs and props put away we gathered around the table in the yard for a dinner Christine and Lee put together.  My brothers in law joined us and we looked up to find my cousin Lynne trucking up the driveway.  Some very nice hours in the Indian Summer light.  The only thing that went wrong that day was the Patriots score.


Thanks to John and Christine for the shot from the Tower.

We noted the anniversary of the utility room being renovated with a visit from a library group organized by the one time caretaker here Betty Foster.  She suffered through more broken pipes than anyone and survived the Blizzard of 78 here so she had a greater appreciation than most for how much improved that room is now. We made it a point of emphasis with each open house to ask people where they were from and to thank them if they lived in town for the support Town Meeting has offered projects here at the Lighthouse.  It is a beautiful thing now and the discoveries of a year ago have become valued additions to the tours.

Records kept by Simeon Bates show that the first order for oil for the newly lit Scituate Light was placed in October 1811.  We are now in year 201 at this location and because of the work done by Shawn Harris getting Smith Boilers to donate a new one here I have not had to order any yet.  The new system seems to burn infinitely better and for that I am thrilled.  Shawn probably has his doubts about it now as he is my source and I have seen a great deal less of his trucks now that the new system is in place.


Another group in town for a visit came from France with former Foreign Language department head Patricia Jaquart.  Julie and Haley enjoyed that visit and Hales got a chance to take her burgeoning mastery of French out for a spin. Better her than me I think.  No one was a worse foreign language student than I was.  This was a second group as Madame had a set of travelers here in August as well.  Selectmen John Dannehy joined in on that tour and I was able to show him some of the work done in the past three plus years.  I was very grateful for his time and I think he was grateful as well.

Two weeks ago we had a remarkable visit from the great grandson of the last Jetty Light Keeper, John Francis Cushman.  Chris Hall and his wife visited from New Orleans and donated some material I did not know existed.  While I was aware of a set of logs dealing with supplies and inventory in which Keepers Prouty and Cushman detailed the weather and the big storms, it turns out that there were another set of logs in which Frank Cushman went into even more detail.  Chris Hall has donated these log books to the Society and the Society is likely to seek funding for their preservation in the manner that the others are currently undergoing.  It was an amazing donation and it has me begging the question, could there be others out there kept by John Ensign Otis Prouty?




Just last Monday Julie had a wonderful visit with a family from California.  The Schotts, Tom, Shirley and their granddaughter Jessi had contacted the Society back in August while planning a trip east to visit their son in western Massachusetts.  Jessi had read a book about the Army of Two and her grandmother wanted the opportunity to take her to the horses mouth.  Julie loved having them here and Jessi was the brightest seven year ever here.  It remains a thrill that this place can connect us to so many wonderful people whom we would never otherwise meet.  We have begun to keep a log of our own that our guests are signing as they visit.

That morning began in a unique fashion as there was a portrait being done far out on the rocks on the ocean side just as the sun was coming up.  A young man negotiated the slippery path out and the photographer managed his way out too with flashes popping and reflectors reflecting.  Our cat made his way out there too.
I am sure it was a remarkable photograph but it surprised me no end to hear anyone at that hour and then to have the artificial lightning bouncing around outside while I was shaving.

Yesterday we had guests from Sweden here as one time Scituate High School Class of 1977 exchange student George Fieber and his wife Lotta joined the Evans clan of Scituate once again at the Lighthouse.  I remembered George from our high school years and he and his wife were delights to have with us.  Cross another country off the map in our attempt to cover them all.

Several members of the Scituate Historical Society, including your blogging Keeper, have contracted to write a book on the famous and infamous of Scituate.  We will be soliciting photographs by letter to the families of those nominated.  We know that our judgement will be called into question when the final result arrives next summer but we loved the idea of yet another Scituate history book and a chance to focus on the diverse accomplishments and diverse personalities of this amazing small town.  If you have a unique photograph of a political, business, or non profit leader please consider contacting me at scituatelight@comcast.net.  All photographs will be returned once scanned and any donations will be noted in the text of the book.


These two swans made an appearance on the beach just the other day and Julie caught them with the telephoto lens.  As I noted there are tons of portraits being done here and I wanted to caption this one this way.  "Which one of us was the ugly duck?"


2 comments:

  1. Hi the picture of the swans is beautiful! we ahd a great time,I can not think of a more relaxing and beautiful spot than your front yard! amazing!glad you like the survellience photo John and Haley took from the tower!

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  2. Great program Thursday on the Scituate Lighthouse.
    Joan Powers

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