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November 13, 1992
Newtown police reported a rash of break-ins into motor vehicles throughout the town this week with car stereos the apparent target. Cars in driveways of six homes on Castle Hill Road and West Street were entered sometime between Wednesday night and Thursday morning. At one house, thieves smashed windows of one car and entered another that was unlocked, stealing one stereo and damaging another. At another house they entered two unlocked vehicles, damaging a stereo in one and taking a small amount of cash from a wallet left in another. Two cars on West Street also were targeted, with a Pioneer stereo stolen from one unlocked vehicle and a nine-inch television set and a radar detector removed from another unlocked vehicle. The driver’s side window of a car parked at the middle school was smashed during the early evening of November 6 while the owner was inside playing basketball. Police said vandals searched through other items in the car but nothing was taken.
Doris Bushaw believes that a change of venue is beneficial for educators. So, when she was an elementary school teacher, she made it a point to teach different grades at different facilities within the district. By the time she accepted the prinicpal’s position at Hawley School 15 years ago, she had taught in all five elementary grades, had been a guidance counselor, and served as an administrative assistant. Now she is making another change. Mrs Bushaw, who will be leaving Hawley School this month, hopes to become an adjunct professor at an area college, bringing the expertise she has gained over the last 43 years to the next generation of educators. Those teachers will have a lot more latitude than she did when she began her career. “It used to be that there was a schedule on the door. It was there to remind the teacher not to fall behind. When I first came here, it was the thing to do to check lesson plans every week.”
Recently the Cyrenius H. Booth Library purchased a $395 business reference set on jobs in the northeast. Within a week the volume on Connecticut was stolen. More than a thousand books are known to have been stolen from the library during the past five years, and the problem is getting worse, according to Director Janet Woycik. For years many of the books that disappeared were taken by students who used them for school reports and occasionally returned them. Today, however, all library materials seem to be at risk. “Every year, six or seven volumes turn up missing from our sets of encyclopedias,” Mrs Woycik said. “These sets are $500 each. We try to buy replacement volumes, but they are expensive, and we can’t always get the same edition. We lose six or seven books on tape each year, at least six magazines a week are stolen, like Consumer Reports, which comes out each April.” The staff has talked about the possibility of installing an electronic system which would set off an alarm if someone attempted to remove material from the building without checking out. “We like to think of ourselves as a small town that doesn’t have these kinds of problems, but times have changed,” said reference librarian Beryl Harrison. “I’ll frequently notice a gap among books and wonder what is missing.”
The Republican Town Committee is seeking candidates to fill a number of vacancies on town boards and commissions including: Police Commission, Public Building and Site Commission, Zoning Board of Appeals. Anyone interested in filling vacancies should call chairmen of the candidates, Sandy Motyka, or Wendy Beres.
November 24, 1967
The old one-room Middle Gate School will soon be on the move to its new location on the grounds of the new Middle Gate School. It was decided at a meeting of the officers of the Newtown Historical Society last Thursday to complete the project which was started several months ago, doing so before winter sets in. The old school building has been given to the society by Harry Gould, who has also agreed to help with the moving, clearing a path to the main road from the school’s present precarious position on the east side of Tollgate Hill where it is almost hidden from view by underbrush. When on its new location, the old school will be close in distance to today’s modern school, but far different in appearance. Time may not permit work on the inside of the building until spring, but at least the structure will be preserved and restored to its typical one-room appearance.
A special town meeting on Tuesday, November 28, will enable taxpayers to vote on the Board of Finance recommendation that $66,000 be appropriated to purchase the Edward Camp property on Taunton Lake. The meeting is at 8 pm in the Edmond Town Hall gymnasium. The property is currently owned by Mrs Edna Giffin and Kenneth Mason, heirs to the estate. The tract is 12.2 acres with a house and outbuildings. It has 1,490 feet of frontage on Taunton Lake and approximately 1,000 feet frontage on Taunton Lake Road. The land consists of several large fields which slope gently to the lake, and form a peninsula bounded on two sides by the lake, one side by Taunton Lake Road, and one side by a historic cemetery. The house was built about 1845. It has nine rooms with one bath.
The Board of Selectmen met Tuesday evening, November 21 in the lower meeting room of the Edmond Town Hall. First Selectman Francis J. Hiney called the meeting to order at 8 pm. A short agenda was covered, and the meeting adjourned at 8:20. First item was a bill for $387 to cover expenses of the referendum on regional planning. It was agreed that the Board if Finance be asked to provide money from the contingency fund, since this was an expense which could not be budgeted ahead of time. An optional plan has been suggested for town employees under Connecticut Medical Services, CMS. For an increased fee to be paid by the employee, the plan provides additional services.
Singers, Patrons — Both Needed. We heard Dorothy Kirsten when she sang with the Bridgeport Symphony Orchestra on Saturday evening at the Klein Memorial in Bridgeport. The occasion took us back to the days of the Newtown Orchestral Society, Grace Moore and Miss Kirsten’s debut at the Edmond Town Hall. She was then a protégé of Miss Moore and started a singing career which has provided pleasure to music lovers ever since. It was a source of real regret to many townspeople when Newtown Orchestral Society found it necessary to cease giving concerts and to go out of existence. However, the town now possesses a Choral Society of mixed voices which is in its fourth year and will give its usual Christmas Concert on Sunday afternoon, December 3, at Edmond Town Hall. It is hoped that the concert will attract a large audience, for the program will well deserve it.
November 20, 1942
The first in a series of Turkey Shoots was held on Sunday afternoon on the grounds of the Pines Inn, Botsford, with about 75 attendees. The affair was sponsored by the newly formed Newtown Fish and Game Club, and was in charge of the Entertainment Committee, assisted by John Sedor. The “shoot” was held from a specially built platform off the private dining room of the Inn. Four turkeys averaging 13 lbs. were the prizes.
The Farm Bureau, particularly the Fairfield and Litchfield counties in The Bee’s territory, has been busy with annual membership drives, conducting them as much as possible by mail and other gas and tire saving methods. It is encouraging that both drives have been progressing nicely, Fairfield County hoping to reach 1,000 before the end of the year and Litchfield County striving for an increase to 1,350, in order to meet the extra demands made upon it by war conditions. S. McLean Buckingham, who heads the membership campaign in Litchfield County, in pointing out that the organization was started in 1914 under similar circumstances, states that it is in an infinitely better condition today to serve county agriculture than in 1914.
Word has been received that Staff Sergeant William P. Wallen has been awarded the citation of The Purple Heart by the US War Department. Sergeant Wallen, who is with the 8 Service Group in New Guinea, was on duty one evening when the Japs pulled a surprise attack. At the time the lights were on at the base and Sergeant Wallen had the presence of mind to run to the control tower and extinguish them. By that time bombs had fallen, and some shrapnel hit Sergeant Wallen. “Bill” writes that the leg is healing nicely now. While sorry to hear of his injury, his many friends extend congratulations for his fine service and the award which he so well earned.
Miss Betty Wilson, Mrs John Stratton and daughter Caryl, were weekend guests of their grandfather George B. Beers. Mrs Stratton’s husband, who enlisted in the Army Air Force in May, left for training as an aviation cadet October 27. He is at the A.A.F. Classification Center, Nashville, Tenn., awaiting appointment to an Army Field. Mrs Stratton will visit her grandfather for a while.
November 16, 1917
A special town meeting has been warned for Thursday, November 22, at 2 pm for the purpose of hearing a report from the committee appointed March 10, 1917, to investigate the cost of a cement lock-up, and to appropriate money to build the same. The meeting will also consider the availability of buying voting machines. There is no question of the immediate need of a new lock-up. Justice McCarthey says the present quarters are not a fit place to put a human being. And, it is quite time appropriate action was taken.
That sterling and popular citizen, Herman H. Peck, was the victim of a painful auto accident Thursday morning about 10 o’clock when the auto of Martin Feyer of Trumbull road, bumped into Mr Peck’s wagon as he sat in it in front of the Country Club property. Mr Peck was thrown out and the horse headed for home. John A. Carlson and Mr Feyer assisted Mr Peck. A witness, Mr Conger, told Feyer bluntly that he had no business to turn in as he did. A hurry was sent for physician Dr W.H. Kiernan. Mr Peck evidently struck on his head, but his injuries are not serious, and it is believed he will be all right in a few days.
“If one of our soldier boys, tired and mud-caked, and perhaps bleeding, could knock on your door tonight how wonderfully you would minister to him! You would take him into heart and hearth. You would do this in your homes — now you have a chance to help the YMCA do it for you in the camps and right on the firing line. The YMCA is taking your help to our soldiers. As America’s go more and more onto the firing line it becomes truer and truer of every American home that some worn and weary soldier boy is knocking at its door as truly as if his arm reached across the sea and his fist actually pounded there.”
The home of W.J. McLaughlin was entered by thieves Sunday evening, who carried away bacon from the ice box and helped themselves to a tempting luncheon. Nothing else was found missing and it is believed the thieves were frightened away before completing their work. An overcoat was taken from the barn, and a box of sand was taken form the rear and emptied. Two suspicious characters were seen hanging about the street Sunday night after dark.
Judge W. C. Johnson was so unfortunate to as to lose a valuable work horse Tuesday night.
Please consider sharing your old photographs of people and places from Newtown or Sandy Hook with readers. Images can be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org, or brought to the office at 5 Church Hill Road to be scanned. When submitting photographs, please identify as many people as possible, the location, and the approximate date.