Foster’s Daily Democrat: “Albacore Park and Woodman Museum to collaborate,” February 17, 2019

The full article can be read here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “Voices from the Museum Tours Start this Weekend,” October 19, 2018

The full article can be read here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “‘Thompson’s 2nd Alarm focuses on group meals,” September 18, 2018

The full article can be read here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “‘Antique car collectors gather at Woodman Museum,” September 10, 2018

The full article can be read here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “‘Woodman Museum hosts fundraiser with ‘Beer, BBQ and Ballads’,” August 19, 2018

The full article can be read here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “‘Life in Liminal Spaces’ to open at Hindle Gallery,” July 31, 2018

The full article can be read here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “Woodman Museum has new leader,” July 19, 2018

The full article can be read here.

Land and Community Heritage Investment Program (LCHIP) Announces 2017 Recipients, July 19, 2018

The newsletter can be read here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “A community remembers,” May 28, 2018

The full article can be read here.

Carriage Towne News: “Exciting Events on Tap for NH Heritage Museum Trail’s Seacoast Region,” May 24, 2018

The full article can be read here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “Memorial Day events in your area,” May 22, 2018

The full article can be read here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “Woodman holds Night at the Museum fundraiser,” October 16, 2017


By Ron Cole

Posted Oct 16, 2017 at 3:15 AM

This past weekend hundreds of people traveled to Dover’s Pine Hill Cemetery to join in what has become a fixture in the Dover community, Voices from the Cemetery.

Families and individuals, both local and residents of the tri-state area spent about 90 minutes in groups of 10 or more. Led by guides, they traversed the cemetery meeting at individual graves with volunteers who were representing spirits buried there.

The volunteers, many of whom have participated in the several of the previous four “voices” events, come from all walks of life. This year, public servants, students, retirees, computer specialists, a mailman and a journalist were among the occupations. All were attired in garb relative to the era and image of the cemetery residents.

The featured spirits were from several centuries and held a variety of positions in the community, from the granddaughter of a woman kidnapped by the Native Americans in the 18th century, to a well-known citizen tavern owner in the 19th century, to a woman who wrote a review of the Dred Scott decision, civic war soldiers and a world-famous opera singer.

Each group was led along the 20 grave path, stopping to be regaled by stories of fear, happiness, shock and revelation.

Bob and Carole Berry, longtime Dover, residents had spent their first visit to a “voices” event and came away awed. “The stories were interesting and showed how steeped Dover is in the history of this country,” said Carole, “the Woodman Museum and its trustees should be commended for a wonderful event – kudos!”

Bob found one of the presentations especially informational, humorous and current. He said “Tony McManus was portraying Dover Leather Belt Company founder Isaac B. Williams whose tannery produced the epithet ‘Portsmouth by the Sea, Dover by the Smell.’”

“I particularly liked Tony’s comment (of) ‘that was the first reported case of fake news,’” Bob said.

Dave Dupont, chairman of the Woodman Trustees, was pleased with the acceptance of the 2017 version.

“The numbers look great,” said Dupont, “we appreciate all the help given by the city of Dover for traffic control. We could not do it without all our wonderful volunteers who do such great things for the museum. “As today’s (Saturday) people were completing the tour they were calling or posting on social medial to their friends how exciting the event was and to get on down here, and they did!”

Sunday’s final day run opened with a mist over the large burial ground, making the proceedings even more eerie as many more attended the festivities. According to Beth Fischer, interim director, of the museum, “all the monies from this very successful fundraiser go directly to the museum, its outreach programs and maintenance of the facility’s thousands of exhibits.”

The event was deemed an overwhelming success as almost 600 people attended.

“A record for this event,” said Dupont.

(Full disclosure: Ron Cole portrayed Hosea Sawyer, 1783-1858, a landing merchant, as part of Night at the Museum — Voices from the Cemetery.)

The full article can be read here.

The Cocheco Times: “Dover’s Deadliest Mill Fire Subject of New Book ‘Factory on Fire,'” October 5, 2017

Read this issue here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “Woodman car show shines,” September 25, 2017


By Judi Currie

Posted Sep 25, 2017 at 3:15 AM

DOVER — The unseasonably warm weather was perfect for strolling the grounds of the Woodman Museum for the 21st annual Antique and Classic Auto and Motorcycle Show.

Kathleen Rosenau stands proudly in front of a one-owner 1955 Bel Air Sport Coupe her parents bought when she was just 12 years old. She said they bought it new and to this day it’s all original.

Rosenau said the day her parents brought it home it was very exciting; her father and her brother went to pick up the car and she wasn’t expecting the Bel-Air.

They have a lot of happy family memories and the original dealer invoice that shows what the extras cost that were added on to the car; the sticker price was just under $2,500 and the radio was $69.

A 1977 Pacer DL was getting a lot of attention because of its very jazzy interior; the fabric seats had a geometric pattern reminiscent of the southwestern native designs.

Peter Waugh, of Center Ossipee, said that he is only the third owner and he’s had the car for about eight years.

“My college car was just like this except it was a different color,” Waugh said. “We call this one the pregnant cranberry.”

The GMC Pacers were facetiously called pregnant Pintos because of their similarity to the Ford Pinto but wider profile.

Ted Valpey, of Bayview Farm in Durham, can always be counted on to bring something interesting to the Woodman show and this year his choice was a 1923 Model H 2-ton delivery truck built by the Abbot Downing coach company in Concord.

The truck bears the logo of the “Stratton & Company Flour and Corn Millers” and has a flat bed with short sides.

“People don’t know that Abbot Downing made trucks,” Valpey said. “There’s so much focus on their legendary coaches.”

According to Valpey, he learned of the truck’s existence in 1978, but the owner wouldn’t show it to him. After the owner died the family contacted him as they knew he was interested.

He said it took him 30 years but he finally got to buy it about eight years ago.

Gerard Remy, of Dover, has a 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air and some of the extras he put on include a locking gas cap hidden in a tail light.

Remy said he takes his Chevy mostly to the car shows and sometimes out to dinner but only if he can park it where he can see it. He also occasionally Caravans down to Massachusetts with other car enthusiasts.

Glenn Coppelman, of Kingston, has a 1965 Ford Mustang he bought in June, but didn’t need to restore it.

He said it was made in California owned in Phoenix, Arizona, until this June when he brought it here to New England.

“It’s got lots of options and is well-equipped,” Coppelman said. “I had an almost identical one when I was a teenager so I’m reliving my youth.”

He said this Mustang is in much better shape, rides better and runs better.

Jack Burridge, of Eliot, Maine, has a 1930 Mack Pumper fire truck that he bought in 2000. He said it took him seven years to restore it or about 4,000 hours of labor. His 11-year-old Dalmatian named Bella goes everywhere the fire truck goes.

Burridge said he is now restoring “Dover Engine 2,” 1941 Diamond T that once belonged to the city of Dover. He’s hoping to be done in the next two years.

Burridge said he is an Eliot, Maine, volunteer firefighter and has more than 50 years in service.

Paul Hurteau, of Epping, has a 1950 radical custom Ford that he got in Daytona Beach 11 years ago when he traded it for a 1957 Ford Thunderbird.

The doors are called suicide doors because the hinges have been swapped so that they open facing out toward the front of the vehicle.

“I love the suicide doors,” Hurteau said. “I can’t believe the guy traded it.”

According to Hurteau, the bumpers are Plymouth, the tail lights are Cadillac and the grill is from a 1954 Chevy with extra teeth.

Clifford Cleary of South Berwick, Maine, has 1946 Ford convertible Super Deluxe that he bought when he was 15 years old working in a local chicken hatchery.

“I bought it for $15, fixed it up and drove it freshman year at South Berwick High School,” Cleary said. “It came with a bale of hay and some parts to the motor in the back seat.”

When he goes on vacation it pulls the camper.

The Woodman will hold its fifth annual re-enactment event, “More Voices from the Cemetery” on Oct. 14-15 and then vehicles of another kind will be at the Woodman on Veterans Day, Sunday, Nov. 12, when re-enactors of all wars, from the Revolutionary War to modern conflicts, will be on hand.

The schedule is online at

Read the full article here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “Beer and music at the museum,” August 21, 2017


Beer and music at the museum

By Karen Dandurant /

Posted Aug 21, 2017 at 3:15 AM

DOVER – Staff members at Woodman Museum and 7th Settlement joined forces for a beer and music celebration Sunday.

The event, held on the grounds of the museum, was a fundraiser for the museum. For a $5 admission, patrons could enjoy food, beer and some pretty good music.

The food on hand was supplied by one of 7th Settlement’s chef, Daniel Hoyt, serving from the company’s traveling catering food truck. He was serving ribs, meatballs, street corn and brownies for dessert.

Elizabeth Fischer, acting director for the museum, said the music, food and fun all came from local sources, something the museum staff considers a key element of events.

“This is our third year doing this,” said Fischer. “We are working to form more community partners. This event was the brainchild of our operations manager, Mike Day, and one of our trustees, Mark Speidel.”

Speidel said they began this event as part of the celebration of the museum’s 100th anniversary.

“I think it’s a fun way to connect to the museum,” said Speidel. “We are looking to attract more young people, to get them to know us.”

Speidel said the partnership with 7th Settlement is a good one, since Dover is the seventh settlement in the colonies. He said they are trading off, with events at both locations each year.

Kate Sanders of 7th Settlement said the name is a play on Dover’s place in history. And since it was settled in 1623, one of the first beers made by 7th Settlement is the 1623 Almighty Brown Ale, which was available Sunday.

“It is one of our flagship beers,” said Sanders.

Two local groups provided the entertainment, Rev. Todd Seeley and The Bog Standard.

“Todd is a local man from Dover,” said Day. “He spent some time living in Zambia and even got to perform for their president. He was quite popular there and had a minor role in a soap opera.”

The Bog Standard played Irish and American folk tunes.

“They do some great Irish rebel songs,” said Day. “The band is also closely associated with Woodland Farms Brewery, new in Kittery.”

Sponsors for the evening were Edward Jones, Coldwell Banker, Hogan Flooring and Earcraft Music.

Read the full article here.

Edge: “Woodman restoring collection items,” August 17, 2017


Gossip: Sarah Shanahan, TEDx and the Opera House

Woodman restoring collection items

The Woodman Museum is dusting off a few things – literally. They’re also restuffing a few others, and with the help of the broader community gussying a whole bunch.

“So right now we’re working on the (large) animal room restoration with a grant from the Dorr Foundation,” Operations Manager Mike Day says. “We’ll be comparing and contrasting with old taxidermy specimens and practices with new taxidermy specimens and practices.”

First up the mountain lion. The museum has one from 1853, found in Lee, N.H. It will be compared to a lion “from right now,” he explains.

“Right along the same line, everything is being cleaned and redisplayed and relabeled, and the exhibit will also include signage about the concept, and pros and cons, of trophy hunting.”

There was a trend years back for museums to do away with its taxidermy collections. Its educational form had lost favor. Woodman was among those that held on to it. There are two reason for that, and the current preservation efforts, Day says.

First, the museum itself is an outstanding example of an institution from another era.

“On a broad scale – the concept of the Woodmen is from a time period when travel, regional and worldwide, was more limited, and institutions such as ourselves were the only place for many people to see the natural and cultural history of the world,” Day says.

Another reason is Belville Smith, the museum director in the early 1900s, who was a taxidermist, “and so a good portion of our preserved animals are from his work.”

The Woodman will continue to sweeping through its four buildings, slowly preserving its collection.

This fall or early winter, it will launch its Adopt an Artifact Program (a tentative, working title).

“We’re not just doing the taxidermy, but the museum’s whole collection,” Day says. “What we’re doing is accessing items for importance and what they need for preservation going forward; whether or not they need restoration by a professional conservator of some manner.”

Some artifacts are identified for priority care. “Most notable” is the Edo period Japanese armor, brought to Dover in 1840 by Capt. Washington Hardy. The other “of great importance” is the Civil War collection, he says.

“It’s quite extensive. Initially, it will be the framed pieces, documents, lithographs, photographs, etc., from the Civil War period.”

This means acid-free matting, backing and ultraviolet glass to help preserve the documents.

The fundraiser will be launched with a marketing campaign, and reach out largely through social media and the Woodman’s usual avenues. People can donate to a general fund, or to a specific item. As they’re completed others will be added. “It will take some time.”

Meanwhile, it’s business as usual. On Sunday, Aug. 20, the museum will hold the fundraiser Beer and Music On the Grounds, a third-year partnership with 7th Settlement Brewery. Musical acts are The Bog Standard and singer-songwriter Todd Seely. For more information at

Jeanné McCartin has her eyes and ears out for Seacoast gossip. E-mail

Read the full article here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “Wadleigh residents enjoy summer ‘road trip’,” August 14, 2017


Dover’s Wadleigh residents enjoy summer ‘road trip’

By Ron Cole

Posted Aug 14, 2017 at 3:22 PM Updated Aug 14, 2017 at 5:37 PM

DOVER — Residents of Wadleigh House, an assisted living facility on Summer Street in Dover, received a special treat on Monday — a road trip across the street.

At noon more than 50 people were gathering under tents on the grounds of the Woodman Museum, directly across the street from the 19th century colonial, which is home to 16 residents.

The event was a “celebration of summer,” said Ron Pfeiffer, assistant director of the facility. “We give the residents a variety of activities,” said Pfeiffer, “and the reaction of those in attendance tells us that this is a favorite.”

As the residents filed in and took their seats, the staff at Wadleigh was completing work on a meal that they had begun preparing since early in the morning. Pulled Pork, ribs, chicken, potato salad and more, all prepared by the Wadleigh staff, were served first to the residents and subsequently to the more than 40 visiting friends and relatives.

Fran Benway has resided at the Summer Street facility for six months and enjoys it immensely.

“This place is place is great,” said Benway. “They do everything l like.”

There were several family members at her table, including her grandson Brennan Young, a recent University of New Hampshire graduate on his way to teach in Thailand.

“I come here often to visit,” said Young. “This is a nice community; they do a really good job of making everyone comfortable and happy.”

More Video:

Portsmouth thwarted in 1-0 loss to Souhegan in girls soccer opener

Norman McLean is former headmaster at Center Strafford’s Austin Cate Academy and a founding member of the Strafford County YMCA. He has resided at Wadleigh for four years.

“I can’t say enough about it,” he said. “I love it here.”

McLean’s sister Vera Ritcey, of Portsmouth, referred to Wadleigh as “very home like; it is wonderful.”

Several residents and visitors danced along to tunes by DJ Richard Twombly. Tunes like “Someone to Watch Over Me,” and “The Memories You Gave to Me.”

Ken Toland is jack of trades at the Wadleigh House and was pleased with the event. “Look at them all, both residents and visitors,” he said. “They’re loving it.”

Pam Abbot of Stratham enjoyed the event. “I am moving here the end of August,” she said watching the festivities. “I really like the community atmosphere; this is just what I expected.”

“The Wadleigh House and its residents are wonderful neighbors, we are glad to see them so happy,” said Elizabeth Fischer, acting executive director of the Woodman Museum.

Read the full article here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “Treasure Chests: Woodman’s collection broad and fascinating,” July 30, 2017


By Jeanné McCartin

Posted Jul 30, 2017 at 3:15 AM Updated Aug 2, 2017 at 1:58 PM

Editor’s Note: Treasure Chests is a series of articles about small local Seacoast museums and the interesting items and exhibits they’ve preserved. This is the first of two articles on the Woodman Institute Museum in Dover.

The Woodman Institute Museum of Dover is moderately sized by local standards, small by most. But by any standard, its collection is broad, curious and fascinating; so much so the museum series will give it a Part I, and Part II, and still only detail in broad strokes.

The Woodman’s buildings make it a standout: The Woodman House (1818), John Parker Hale House (1813), Keefe House (1825), and the Damm Garrison House, a rare, Colonial era house, and one of a few remaining garrisons.

Part I addresses the Woodman, where the museum got its start; Part II the additional buildings.

The Woodman is not a house museum, but an institution that houses a broad collection of items.

Annie Woodman donated her residence and an endowment to establish the museum in 1915, a time when museums served their communities with a somewhat different sensibility.

The first room of the Woodman Museum is not unlike others – a collection of community-related artifacts, with Dover attachments, and an item of national significance.

There’s a collection addressing the History of Leisure: a component on Buffalo Bill Cody (his ”Buffalo Bill’s Wild West″ visited six times), the Cushing Circus, which had its off-season home in Dover, and other pastimes.

In the second room filled with artifacts, there’s a portrait of Colonial Daniel Hall, President Abraham Lincoln’s personal aide. Beneath it is a saddle, the last used by Lincoln to address the troops, 20 days before his assassination. This is one of the Woodman’s most treasured articles, Operations Director Mike Day tells the group he guides through the space.

The next room is a major shift, an impressive selection of indigenous peoples’ items. The space holds glassed cases that run along the walls and down its center filled with scores of stone tools, arrowheads, baskets, attire, beadwork and more.

“We are very proud of this collection … which includes South and North American (indigenous peoples),” Day says. “This collection is on the short list to be redisplayed appropriately. The fault is (numerous tribes) are mixed in and the labeling is outdated.”

Next up is another museum prize, a towering Polar Bear that stands in the hall. “He’s our mascot,” Day says.

It also serves as a demarcation. Here the museum takes on the decided feel of an institution of another time, which in fact it is.

During the 19th and early 20th century, taxidermy was a key part of many collections. This museum, with its large display of taxidermy and natural history, is an example, and valuable for that. It’s something out of an Indian Jones film right down to the faded handwritten tags attached to some.

It’s important to keep in mind the purpose and practices of the eras these collections were amassed; the context historically significant. It’s a time before Discover Channel and PBS brought wildlife into everyone’s living room, and an evolved respect for other living things.

Beyond the bear is the mammal section – hedgehogs, kangaroo, armadillo and grey wolf to name a few. There’s Ham the Hatter, a bear sporting a top hat that once held business cards outside a Central Ave., Dover shop; a statement to changing times.

Next up, the marine life section with more floor-to-ceiling cases. First thing through the door, visitors encounter a large “Man-eating Clam” that dominates the case. Further down the long, packed rows are numerous starfish, a puffer and monk fish, spider crab, turtles, sharks and other sea creatures.

The room just beyond is currently off limits while being reorganized, but features a full-sized buffalo, moose and additional taxidermy examples.

To the building’s rear is a room entirely filled with more than 1000 rocks and minerals.

Creatures continue to dominate the second floor. Here there are rows of butterflies, beetles and other bugs.

Further down are scores of birds, small and large, and rows of eggs and nests on display.

The sense of being in a museum of another time is greatest here where birds are staged in dioramas suggestive of habitats, perched on trees and logs arranged before skillfully painted backdrops.

There’s a case with a mongoose and cobra frozen in battle, a sunning iguana and snake. The museum also has collections of creatures – somewhat disturbingly – preserved in jars.

A smaller room features additional birds, including an albino peacock, and yet another contains a collection of dolls and toys, largely from the 20th century.

The third floor houses another museum gem, an extensive military collection Revolutionary War through Vietnam, with an extensive Civil War collection, and a single 1400s chainmail vest (uncovered in France by a Dover soldier as he dug trenches during World War I). A WWII pith helmet bearing the soldier’s diary, complete with maps, is another standout.

The Woodman Museum is a must-see; a true treasure, filled with relics, artifacts and curiosities.

At a glance

Woodman Institute Museum

When: Wednesdays through Sundays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., April through mid-December

Where: 182 Central Ave., Dover

Admission: Adults, $13; seniors, 65-plus, $10; active military, $9; students 13 to college-aged, $9; children 4 to 12, $7; family (2 adults and up to 3 children), $35; children 3 and under, free; families of deployed military, free; members free.

More info: Visit or call (603) 742-1038.

Retrieved from

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “Dover museum-goers ‘touch’ the ocean,” July 20, 2017

DOVER — The Woodman Museum brought the Atlantic Ocean to Dover on Thursday during “Discover the Ocean Day.”

Although the Great Bay and its Wildlife refuge is some four miles away, this day the Woodman’s campus teemed with aquatic information as the UNH Marine Docents brought hands-on to the venerable museum.

Visitors from as far away as France arrived to touch, learn and experience starfish, horseshoe crabs, lobsters, squid and other marine mammals as the more than 30 expert docents, including Ed Rowan, gave interesting and educational descriptions of things like the big and little claws on a lobster while holding up a rapidly moving crustacean.

Several summer camps were on the scene, from the 3- to 6-year-old students from Dover’s My School, to a large contingent of older campers from Camp Rolly in Rollinsford. Camp Director Andy Gray enjoyed the opportunity given to his charges. “This is so much better than seeing this on TV,” said Gray. “These professionals make it real and give the kids a chance to interact.”

Eleven-year-old camper Mercedez Sanchez enjoyed her hands-on experience “dissecting the squids”, while friend Ilyana Boudle echoed her delight at examining the innards of the animal and also learning about the vibrations put out by whales as they find their food.

Relative to whales, many had the opportunity to put their hand in the “blubber glove” which demonstrates how they stay warm in cold waters.

Docent Dane Drasher manned the gundalow mock-up tent and gloried not only in describing the 17th and 18th century conveyance, but also empowered the youngsters “to be able to do anything they put their minds to,” referring to the construction of the miniature famous area watercraft.

At several junctures a live feed with world famous oceanographer/marine biologist/explorer Dr. Robert Ballard and several members of the crew of the research ship the Nautilus took place; it gave local viewers an obviously exciting opportunity to live chat with those on the ship, which at this time is off Baja, Calif.

Visitors Heather Whittier, Adrianna and Janelle George were thrilled by the opportunity to ask questions of the scientists.

Heather and Adrianna are middle school students from Milford. “I have enjoyed the entire experience today,” Heather said. Adrianna singled out “handling the horseshoe crabs, starfish and the technical and scientific explanations on math and science given the excellent docents.”

Adrianna’s mother, Janelle, was impressed by the day’s offerings. “I am from Kansas; this is all fascinating.”

Marine Program Co-Ordinator Dari Ward enjoyed the opportunity to share some of the information available about Great Bay. She explained that the general public can access much more information and opportunities, and can take advantage of the “Be a Scientist for a Day on Great Bay program” on the UNH research vessel Gulf Challenger. Information on Gulf Challenger can be found at

By Ron Cole

Posted Jul 20, 2017 at 3:56 PM Updated Jul 20, 2017 at 4:22 PM

Cocheco Times on Woodman Museum’s Port of Dover ExhibitJune 29, 2017

Read the whole issue on their website!

Foster’s Daily Democrat: “Work of Stacy, Jablonski on display at the Woodman Museum,” May 12, 2017


Posted May 9, 2017 at 2:27 PM Updated May 9, 2017 at 2:27 PM

DOVER — The work of Juleen Stacy and Chester Jablonski will be on display at the Thom Hindle Gallery located at the Woodman Museum. The exhibit runs now through May 28th.

Juleen and Chester share a love of the natural world, and that is reflected in the work of both artists. When they appeared together in a recent exhibit, they realized that while their media and styles differed, there was a synergy between them, which will be immediately apparent in the works presented in this exhibit.

Chester is a renowned carver, whose bird-carvings have achieved world-wide acclaim. His attention to detail brings a life-like quality to his paintings and carvings that can be surpassed only by nature.

Juleen has built a career of the arts, and her current work represents a drawing together of a lifetime of skill, focused and and applied to canvas with a touch that compels one to, at once, feel and wonder.

Together, Chester and Juleen will present a shared vision – a vision that reminds us of the deep and wonderful beauty that exists all around us – if only we’re willing to look for it.

An Artists Reception is scheduled for Friday, May 12th, from 5-8 p.m.

The Keefe House /Thom Hindle Gallery located At The Woodman, 15 Summer Street, Dover, NH. 603-749-1038

Read the full article here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat:  “A free day for city residents at the Woodman,” May 8, 2017


Dover Doin’s: A free day for city residents at the Woodman

By Ron Cole

Posted May 7, 2017 at 7:33 PM Updated May 7, 2017 at 7:34 PM

Here’s an opportunity to have some fun, educate yourselves, and fill yourself with pride (how’s that for a trifecta?). All you have to be is a resident of Dover and you get to do this for free.

Dover Day at the Woodman Museum on Saturday ordinarily costs a non-member $13 or more for entrance to the coolest place in town, but for one day only residents of the Garrison City get a chance to visit the oldest garrison in the country and thousands of other awesome things for free.

Last week, while noting the placement of the The Moving Wall at the University of New Hampshire, a thought came back to me.

I served in Vietnam in the very beginning (before the ‘war’ actually started). My fellow soldiers and I were tasked, among other things, with teaching the Vietnamese how to defend their own country. The discussion of how well we/they did that is for another day.

What was brought home to me once again were some of the comments these past few days by those making the incredibly emotional visit to the Wall. One cannot stand there without tears welling up. My tears were, as were for many others, not for just one thing, but the overall impact that the war had on the citizens of our country.

Many harkened back to returning to the U.S. after fighting and losing mates to the conflict, only to be spat upon and treated, well, ‘poorly’ doesn’t describe it but this is a family newspaper.

Recently, one of the classes at the Dover Middle School held an meeting between themselves and five veterans, 4 from the Vietnam Conflict and one from Somali clashes. What struck me was listening to the veterans describe their experience fighting what became a very unpopular war half a world away, for a reason that was never really defined. The students were all close to teens in age and most students have little knowledge about the war.. They were astounded by the clear answers and comments by the veterans and perhaps were given an insight as to why their grandparents who served there were so affected by the war. It was the birth of PTSD as we know it today.

The reason for my long-windedness is simple — I’m asking those of you with a familiarity of what happened to sit down with your young relatives and talk about it so they might understand. I know it’s difficult. I don’t think there is much real teaching going on in our school system about the ‘why’ of the war and the ‘why’ of the strange actions of ‘Uncle Fred’s’ state of mind. It might be difficult for you to explain (I still have problems) but you may be able to plant some awareness in our youth.

Recently I was chatting with an old friend in my hometown of Gloucester, Mass., and of course we got to reminiscing about the ‘old days.’

A couple things came up as we recalled the first elevator in Gloucester that carried people (this will blow kids’ minds that we can go back to that memory). Not growing up in the Garrison City, I must ask readers, what was the first people-carrying elevator in Dover?

While we are at it, I don’t care what age you are now, but what is your all time favorite store in Dover, and why?

One more question — is the Rochester Fair important to you? Why or why not?

See you around the campus.

Reach Ron Cole at

Read the full article here.

Foster’s Daily Democrat article on Woodman Museum’s 101st Season & 7th Settlement Fundraiser, March 30, 2017

Foster’s Daily Democrat reporter Nik Beimler details the goings-on at the Woodman for the first month of its 101st operating season and visits the 7th Settlement Brewery to get the story behind their new Woodman IPA brew.

Read the full article here:

Dover – The 7th Settlement in New Hampshire That Everyone Should Visit At Least Once, Nov. 4, 2016

“NDAMM GARRISON canopy 2015 fullew Hampshire was one of the first areas settled when Europeans came to America. In fact, Dover, the oldest town in New Hampshire, was settled in 1623, making it the seventh-oldest settlement in the United States. Nearly 400 years later, New Hampshire’s oldest town is still a bustling little city that everyone in the state should visit at least once. Here’s what you should do during your day in New Hampshire’s oldest town.” Be sure to catch the rest of this article about Dover, New Hampshire by Kelly Burch posted on the website on November 4, 2016. Read the whole article here.

NH Chronicle Spotlight, May 2016

Be sure to watch this recent episode of WMUR-TV’s  NH Chronicle spotlighting the Woodman Museum and its Centennial Celebration!

One viewer commented:

“I saw the NH Chronicle episode on the museum. WOW! My husband and I will be visiting your museum for your July 23 centennial celebration. CAN’T WAIT! Looking forward to receiving [your newsletter]. My husband and I watch as many episodes of NH Chronicle as we can. It gives us information on places to visit in NH on our weekends off. We enjoy traveling, sightseeing, museums, & history.”  – AML

Union Leader article on Centennial Celebration, May 2, 2016

The Woodman Museum was featured in an article by Kimberley Haas in the Union Leader on Monday, May 2, 2016. The article highlights items from the collection and discusses events centering around this year’s Centennial Celebration.  If you didn’t catch it, read the complete article here.

Thom HIndle and Wes LaFountail.

Photo: Thom Hindle, curator, and Wes LaFountain,  Woodman Museum. Photo by Kimberley Haas

Get a  fresh look at the Woodman Museum in this new video for the NH1 News Network shot during Union Leader correspondent Kimberley Haas’s recent visit.

All Rights Reserved