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August 12, 1981     Journal Opinion
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August 12, 1981
 

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Page 4-The Journal Opinion-August 12, 1981 i in i mml n lllmlll I n inlmll m NORTHEAST PUBLISHING COMPANY, Inc. Publisher of Journal | Opinion WeekJy Mwepeper peblbbed Ja Ibldfovd, VermoM. lhdmamqwi4qm rlnloo Vermont Nd New Nempmkke $9.00 Mr yoer; $6.00 fr six meolb8; out of 8tote . $1|.00 pelt Vee oral 57.00 for six melfllm; Senior cJtizn dleceu! $2.{D0. Secend close pemtep peid at Ilmdferd, Venmmt 05033. PeblidJed by Nwtkoest Peldtskiq Cempony, inc., P.O. Sex 378, Ilmdfod. Robert F. Huminski President & Publisher te! s s Bradford /   Woodsville 02-222-5281 %, / 603-747-2016 An Independent Newspaper ll lJ Editorial Jet jockeys, tourists and cows North Country local and state representatives are raising serious concerns with the Air Force over jet bomber training flights that frequently zoom close to the ground. The message of such officials as Executive Councilor Ray Burton and state Rep. Ezra B, Mann is that roaring jet planes don't mix well with tourists, cows and the peaceful countryside of New Hampshire's White Mountains. Mann, of Woodsville, said his constituents have raised concerns about the effect of the low.level A-10 flights in frightening cows and disrupting milking operations. A number of tourism business operators believe it also frightens off tourists who come to the White Mountains for rest and relaxation and to get away from such a/moyances as jet planes. State  met recently in Concord with Air Force Representatives, who want to establish a new "Yankee II Military Operations Area" in which the training jets can buzz* within 100 feet of the ground at speeds up to 500 miles per hour. Somehow, the Air Force argues, this would be better than the present situation because it would bar other aircraft from the area while the training flights are taking place. The North Country representatives aren't buying that argument and no agreement was reached at the meeting. No one disputes that the Air Force has an important mission to train pilots to defend the nation in the event of war, but Burton, for one, thinks there are other, more suitable places where such training can be con- ducted. No less important than the Air Force mission is the safety, well- being and economy of the North Country, which is highly dependent on summer tourist dollars in the White Mountains and other areas, and on dairy farming. To reach a satisfactory outcome, the Air Force will have to convince area citizens and their represen- tauvw ttt can, U up to, promise to keep low-flying jet planes away from tourist areas, population centers and, presumably, peace- loving cows. And the military brass will have to give assurance against what some state officials say is the habit of some jet jockets of buzzing down out of the wild blue yonder just for the fun of it, without regard to their true training mission. Letters to the Editor For they. know what they do To the Editor: Just a note to the one who slashed all four of my tries on my car July 4th in our own dooryard. No, I haven't forgotten to "pray for you". If you want to tell me anytime, what was going on in your mind, "to make you feel like doing such a thing '. As my many, many friends can tell you, I'm ready to listen. You might wonder why my was my husband and (God car was out of the garage" love our neighbors) many (very convenient for you). The friends, who had to change all reason is, I'mhavinga garage four tires. How would you sale for the Waits River have felt if my husband had a Methodist Church. heart attack doing the work Now my car is in the garage you kindly made. locked up. So if you get the Still praying -- "Forgive urge again, I would suggest them for they know what they you rap on the door for the do. key. Oh, yes, if you were trying to Berdie Perry get a point across to me... it W. Topsham Vermont Secretary of State The Australian ballot Vermont was one of the first states in the nation to adopt the Australian ballot system for state and local elections. That was in 1892, almost 90 years ago, and our experience with the system since that time has been almost universally felicitous. That is not to say there have been no problems along the way. From the very first elections using Australian ballots, there have been confusions over how many ballots to print, how the ballots should be arranged, and how security could be maintained, to name only a few of the concerns of election officials. The most recent controversy arising from the use of Australian ballots has come from the threshold question of how a municipality may adopt the system for annual or special elections. With the possible exception of how to determine the residency of voters, there is no area of our state election law that is more misun- derstood or maladministered. The original 1892 law simply ruled out the use of Australian ballots for any town with a population of fewer than 4,000 people. This effectively excluded most of Vermont's towns, since there were no more than half a dozen towns in Vermont at that time with more than 4,{}00 people. Two years later the general assembly decided to restrict the use of Australian ballots even further. In 1894 the law was amended to prevent any town with more than 4,000 and fewer than 8,000 people from using the system unless the town, at an annual or special meeting called for the purpose of deciding whether to use the system, voted to have it apply, and then only for the election of officers. This is where the problems that face Vermont municipalities today began. From 1894 onward, there was wide con- fusion about whether a town, once voting , t6 adopt tlmaystem, fve eteettng r needed to vote again next year to ad?p t system, or whether, once it was in plaiid, the system could continue year to year without a new vote. In 1912 the law changed again, making the system available to any town with fewer than 8,000 people, as long as it voted first to adopt the system, but again only for the election of officers. It wasn't until 1935 that the system could be used for "other specified business," such as the question of the budget, or high- way repairs, or the building of new schools. The decision on whether to adopt the system has always represented a collison of two very important philosophical principles of democracy. On the other hand, the system allows any registered voter an opportunity to par- ticipate in the most important decisions of local government, whether his or her employer allows time to attend the traditional town meeting or not. On the other hand, by adopting the system, legal voters of a town give up the experience of give and take and personal exchanges of opinion and argument that have made town meetings so vital a part of the unique system of local control Vermont has treasured for more than two hundred years. The decision to adopt the system must then be made very carefully by any Vermont town. As the law now reads, that decision must be made first in an open session, where all the issues can be raised before a voter enters the voting booth to cast a ballot. The 1978 omnibus election law reform allowed any town to adopt the Australian ballot system, for any issue, whether it involves electing officers or the system for subsequent elections of public questions. That decision must be made on an issue by issue basis, with a public meeting called for the purpose of making the system apply to specific issues, for each election. Once a town accepts the principle of electing its officers by Australian ballot, however, it need not re-vote that decision each year. The system stays in place until a town votes otherwise. There is no confusion on one point--the law isn't as clear as it should be, and it begs for legislative reform. The fact remains that many Vermont towns simply have not understood the two-step process of adopting Australian balloting, and have, without legal authority, held Australian ballot elections without the authority of a preliminary vote to adopt the system. An old Vermont Supreme Court opinion said it best, when it explained that the "affairs of our municipalities are rarely administered by legal technicians." Perhaps it's time the Legislature took a hard look at our election laws, with an eye toward making the law crystal clear, even for those of us who are non-lawyers. il iiiill Underhills give program on roots PIERMONT--An Underhill Roots Program was held for Piermont Historical Society July 24. It traced the family's early history in England from 1450-1630 and early history in America from 1630-1796, narrated by Hugh Underhill. Introduction of Evelyn Merrill, another Underhill descendant, to tell of her ancestors, was made by Helen Underhill. Mention of music as a big part of Underhill life was made and two songs presented: "Oh God Beneath Thy Guiding Hand," and "The Quilting Party." ' Singers were Joann and Janet Winn, Agnes Perkins, Cynthia Underhill, Faith Norton. Miriam Underhill Norton was the accompanist. Calvin Underhill im- personated Nathaniel, first to settle in Piermont, and Jef- frey Underhill impersonated the first Stephen in town-born 1806. Early years in Piermont from 1796 - 1836, were outlined by Laurence Underhill. Children of Horace Pearson Underhill were represented by REGIsTRATION LEBANON--Registration will be held for Lebanon College at the college Mondays through Fridays from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Registration may also be made Aug. 14-15 and Aug. 28- 29 at Currier & Co. in Lebanon, at Dartmouth Bookstore in Hanover Aug. 7-8, Aug. 21-22, and Sept 4-5. and at Norman Williams Library in Wood- stock Aug. 14 from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Aug. 15 from 10 a.m- 12p.m. from Agnes Perkins and Miriam Norton. Many pictures and memories were enjoyed by the audience before and after the presentation. Capt. John Underhill was a colorful figure in the early years in America. He was primarily a soldier but later held several public offices. He came first to Long Island but came intoNew England for a time in New Hampshire. His monument stands on Long Island at Mantinecock not far from his home which he named Kenisworth. FAMILY QUILTS--Display is made by John Underhili (left) and Ernest Underhill. V i six fifth-generation- The song "Memories" was descendants of 4-1orace in sung by Cynthia Underhill. costume: Medora Maud Faith Norton introduced a Underhill (Baker) byCynthia paper written by Mary Underhill; Leon Henry by Underhill Koloseithe, read by Stephen Underhill; Ernest Miriam Underhill Norton. Stephen by Daniel Norton; "May The Good Lord Bless Louena Adelaide Underhill And Keep You," led by the Childs by Faith Norton; Sarah singers completed the Ann Underhill by Lois Norton; program. and Rosette May by Beth The daughter and four sons Underhill. of Stephen Underhill and all Mrs. Glen Perkins (Agnes but three grandchildren were Hodsden) introduced this present. group. All the participants were Charles Thompson of Underhill descendants except "MEMORIES"--Singers Colchester, Vt., great grand- Mrs. Stephen Underhill are Cynthia Underhill, son of Medora, spoke for her (Helen), researcher and Miriam Underhili Norton family, coordinator with special help and Faith Norton. Agnes Perkins spoke for the family of Leon Henry, her own grandmother. Louena Adelaide and Sarah Ann. Janet and Joann Winn gave their family history from Rosette. Laurence Underhill spoke of his grandfathe r , Ernest Stephen and father, Stephen Leon. Miriam Underhill Norton of Nashua gave information BOOK SALE FAIRLEE--A Book Sale will be held from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Aug. 15 at Anne's Book Barn about the Henry Underlflll on Rte. 5 between Fairlee and family and a letter from Janet Bradford for the benefit of the Underhill Dagenhart, his Fairlee Library. daughter. Wednesday, Aug. 19 BRADFORD: Bi0go, American glon Hall, 7:30 p.m. WELLS RIVER:Senior citizens hmcheon, United Church of Christ vestry, serving at noon. Reservations: 757-2206. W. TOPSHAM: TriVillage Thrift Shop, Tues.-Thurs., 1-4 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-neon. HANOVER: Crafts Fair, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Hopkins Center Plaza. Benefit of Upper Valley Development & Training Center. Friday, Aug. 31 BRADFORD: Senior citizens luncheon, Oxbow Vocational Center, serving at 11:45 a.m., reservations requested (802) 222-4782. Wednesday, Aug. 12 BRADFORD: Bingo, American Legion Hall, 7: 30 p.m. NORWICH: A Community Health Services, Inc., town nurse will check weight, hypertension and diabetes from 9 a.m.-I p.m. at Tracy Hall. THETFORD: A Community Health Services, Inc. town nurse will check weight, hypertension and diabetes from 7-9 p.m. at Thetford Hill Church. WELLS RIVER: Senior citizens' luncheon, United Church of Christ vestry, serving at noon. Reservations: 757-2206. N. THETFORD: Bazaar, 2-5 p.m. and Buffet supper at 5:30 p.m. at the N. Thetford Federated Church. Sponsored by the Ladies' Aid Society. Friday, Aug. 14 BRADFORD: Senior citizens' luncheon, Oxbow Vocational Center, serving at 11:45 a.m. Reservations requested: (802) 222-4782. FAIRLEE: Lobster and Clam supper on the common (inside if rain) at 5 p.m. Benefit of the Federated Church. THETFORD HILL: Concert of traditional music with "Wintergreen," Thetford Hill Grange, 8 p.m. Donations requested of $2.50 for adults, $1.25 for children and seniors. Saturday, Aug. 15 THETFORD CENTER: Annual Thetford Historical Society meeting with guest speaker William Godfrey, auctioneer, 8 p.m., at the Community Center (old schoolhouse). W. TOPSHAM: Tri-Village Fire Department First Annual Auction for benefit of department at Martel's Farm on Rte. 25 one-half mile south of W. Topsham Village, 10 a.m. ORFORD: Kiddie Carnival bellind the Congregational Church, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Pet show at 10:30 a.m, relay races at 1 p.m. (Rain date: Aug. 22) STRAFFORD: Lobster Bake from 5-7 p.m. on the Common. Reservations: 763-7000. Sponsored by the Stratford Firemen's Auxiliary. Stratford; Street Dance, 8-12 p.m. with Tom Walker. Beverages allowed. Sponsored by the Stratford Firemen. FAIRLEE: Book Sale from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at Anne's Book Barn, Rte. 5 between Bradford and Fairlee. Benefit of the Fairlee Public Library. W. TOPSHAM: Community Church Supper, 5, 6, 7 p.m. settings at the W. Topsham Community Church. Sunday, Aug. 16 ORFORDVILLE: Roast Beef Supper, 12:30-1:30 p.m. set- tings, Orfordville Town Hall. Benefit of the Orfordville Church. BRADFORD: Concert benefitting North Country Chorus trip-to-England fund, 8 p.m. at the Congregational Church. FAIRLEE: St. Martin's Chapel, I:ake Mercy Rd. East, Rev. William Atkinson, summer Eucharist, 9:30 a.m Tuesday, Aug, 18 BARRE & MONTPELIER: Community College of Vermont fall registration, Aug. 18-21, 9:00 a.m.-5 p.m. BRADFORD: Senior citizens' luncheon, Oxbow Vocational Center, serving at 11:45 a.m. Reservations requested: (802) 222-4782. FAIRLEE: Women of St. Martin's meeting, St. Martin's Chapel, 10 a.m. Bicentennial and Centu00. Farms in Hutehins-Woods-Blandin- Glover homes and farm, 1781 In 1781, Jeremiah Hut- chins and his family came up to Bath from Haverhill, Mass., making the long trip in two double sleighs and two ox sleds. They settled in Upper Bath, building first a log cabin. In 1799 they completed their large frame house, which they operated as a stagecoach tavern and which is still standing (but not in the family). Jeremiah also built a store north, of his house, besides the present barns across the road. Through the years, Jeremiah and his sons Samuel and James built other houses nearby for members of the family, which have been occupied by varmus descendants down through the Goodall, Carleton, Woods, Blandin and Glover families. Also, one of the houses has returned to the family through ownership by Gen. Robert C. Richardson, Jr., retired from the United States Air Force. The two Glover houses have remained in the family, but the greater part of" the farmland went with the Col. Woods house, which was in the family until about ten years ago, when it was sold to Harold Geneen. (Note: More later under the subjects of taverns, lawyers, and early houses.) Child farm, 1786-1980 The Child place was the oldest family farm in West Bath, being first settled by John Child in 1786. Besides the big house, there is.a smaller house across the road which was built first, both houses being occupied by different generations of the Child family until 1955, when the big house was sold out of the family to Carroll C. Nihan. It is now the home of the Chrostowski family. The farm passed down through the Child family from John to his son Dwight, grandson John, great- grandson Dwight, then to Parker and Elizabeth. Elizabeth, widow of Raymond Hoyt, occupied the small house as a summer home until she sold it in 1980. Minot farm, 1799 The George Minot farm in West Bath has been owned.by the Minot family since lots No. 14 and 15 were deeded to Jonas Minot in 1799, and has len occupied by the family since his son Samuel moved here in 1802. They lived in a s.mall house on the same side of the road as the barn until they completed the present house in 1807. Succeeding generations on the farm have been William, Jonas, and now George and his son Alden. George Minot says that the date 1802 on the barn in- dicates the date the family came there, not the date the barn was built. Years ago there were two barns, end-to- end, but later they were both raised and were joined into one building. For many years this farm, like most others, was a sub- sistence farm, greatly self- sufficient, and what they couldn't eat, they sold. The first cash crop on this and many of the farms in this area was a coarse variety of potatoes used for making starch. In the mid-1800's there used to be a starch factory near where Frank Millette's house is now. Farming was very diversified in those days. They raised their own pigs for pork and ham, also had their own beef. Each year the oldest team of oxen would be but- chered or sold for beef, and a new team started. Every farm raised a little wheat for its own flour, to be ground at the local gristmill. However, the Minors could raise corn a lot better than wheat, so they sold corn to buy wheat. They used to pay the minister with rye. The cows gave most of their milk in the summer, while fresh and on pasture. For many years the Minots were famous for their butter, for which they eventually had a gasoline-powered separator and churn. After the railroad came, the Minots found a good market for their butter in Woodsville, as the railroad men did not have their own cows, but they did have the money for buying butter. The Minots also sold cream to the creamery at the fork of the West Bath Road and the Pettyboro Road. They shipped their first whole milk in May, 1919. An old Minor family diary tells about annual market trips to Boston in the early days before the railroad. They called this trip "going below," and they would take farm produce such as butter, land speculation, t better, and the farm the debts paid off make a good the old diaries dressed pork and dry beans, contentment, as In the Boston area they would became secure buy manufactured items such fort as cotton cloth, spices, salt, needles and thread. According to the diary, in 1839 Samuel The first Minot and his brother George made the trip together, each Samuel driving a rig (a horse with son Henry some kind of market sleigh), bought his own Some of the neighboring Child which family went along in the same until 1976. caravan, for mutual help The along the way, in case they got farm stuck or broken down. The registered deeds, caravan left Bath on February many years 20; went as far as Kimball's in held in trust Coventry (Benton) the first estate. His night; next night to the end of had married a the turnpike (probably outside S. Lang. They Plymouth); then Franklin; her home pla then Bow; etc. They spent later he left seven days on the trip down, infant daughter did their trading in Danvers, moved to a Mass. for one day, then When Emma returned home in seven days years old her (although the Childs stopped she remained in Nashua and did their grandparents trading there), farm. According They had oxen for farm of Henry H. work such as plowing, 1865 harrowing, and heavy to his wife and hauling, but used horses for daughter, traveling, such as for "going sold during the below." They were medium- either. sized horses; it wasn't until Emma later that heavy work horses Reed in 1874 were brought in from the the farm West. David The Minots and other Clarence and farmers also sold a lot of farm was sold to produce at the local stores, exchanging it for other sup- plies. They settled up with the Near storekeeper once a year, and covered bridge usually by that time HE and owned THEM money. Chamberlin Mr. Minot says that in the was first early days his great- George grandfather almost "went buildings having i under," over-extending on (please turn to| Our 0000.Rlver The long tidal river by GEOFF DATES The left shore appeared to be better for were on the right. The heavy flow made it to fight our way across, and once half the that task, the rest were stranded without the buoy them. They walked downstream to find a while the three of us with the food and portage. No one had anticipated that the over a mile long, nor that it would be so ding. We were again on logged-over land. The debris and thick undergrowth made chore -- with a canoe, the The most logical way to complete the portage stages. At roughly the halfway mark, trying to cross over found us and led us to a the end of the big whitewater. The three-hour portage left us far behind there was more lining to do. Fortanately, rapids was over and we soon reached the Lake. Mercifully, the wet weather had Sun and blue sky was a most welcome weather however, there always seems to be time it was the wind. Four miles fighting a sapped our last energy and put us further In Pittsburg, the group increased in size fro first night we were all together, 31, dipped to 28 degrees F and a heavy we broke camp. The newcomers find out if it had been a "typical" The whole purpose of the Source to the Se heighten public awareness of the tremendous importance of, the Connecticut places, it is a forgotten or abused resource. In 1959, Dr. Joseph Davidson, then Watershed Council, and his wife Madeleine, first "Source to the Sea" trip by canoe, boat, and automobile. [t was a 7-day highlight the pollution problem in the river, time was very severe. Serving many amounted to an open sewer, the river had point where it smelled, and from going near the water. The Davidsons met with sportsman's groups to encourage conservation of the valley's natural resourceS. to their efforts, the Connecticut River has recovery, but it seems that the river's image is has not made a parallel recovery. We saw the first boat, besides ourselves, north of Lancaster; the first canoe, not Bradford area. The traffic increased to further south, but it is apparent that the river valuable recreational resource. Times the 1950s. In fact, have occurred in the last five years. director of a water quality testing lab accompanied our group as far as Lyme, portable lab he made spot checks at site The data he collected indicates that, in quality has improved. After all, atlantic ning to the river. "Source to the Sea" people against" letting up our guard." At the end of the ninth day Hanover, the home Office. Up to that point, and agriculture had been Lyme respectively. With the population as we traveled south, the organized became more numerous. In and we often slept in beds, not on the Sleeping in beds on a canoe tri t me. In my fmal column on Source to the ocean and I'll make some closing our river. Page 4-The Journal Opinion-August 12, 1981 i in i mml n lllmlll I n inlmll m NORTHEAST PUBLISHING COMPANY, Inc. Publisher of Journal | Opinion WeekJy Mwepeper peblbbed Ja Ibldfovd, VermoM. lhdmamqwi4qm rlnloo Vermont Nd New Nempmkke $9.00 Mr yoer; $6.00 fr six meolb8; out of 8tote . $1|.00 pelt Vee oral 57.00 for six melfllm; Senior cJtizn dleceu! $2.{D0. Secend close pemtep peid at Ilmdferd, Venmmt 05033. PeblidJed by Nwtkoest Peldtskiq Cempony, inc., P.O. Sex 378, Ilmdfod. Robert F. Huminski President & Publisher te! s s Bradford /   Woodsville 02-222-5281 %, / 603-747-2016 An Independent Newspaper ll lJ Editorial Jet jockeys, tourists and cows North Country local and state representatives are raising serious concerns with the Air Force over jet bomber training flights that frequently zoom close to the ground. The message of such officials as Executive Councilor Ray Burton and state Rep. Ezra B, Mann is that roaring jet planes don't mix well with tourists, cows and the peaceful countryside of New Hampshire's White Mountains. Mann, of Woodsville, said his constituents have raised concerns about the effect of the low.level A-10 flights in frightening cows and disrupting milking operations. A number of tourism business operators believe it also frightens off tourists who come to the White Mountains for rest and relaxation and to get away from such a/moyances as jet planes. State  met recently in Concord with Air Force Representatives, who want to establish a new "Yankee II Military Operations Area" in which the training jets can buzz* within 100 feet of the ground at speeds up to 500 miles per hour. Somehow, the Air Force argues, this would be better than the present situation because it would bar other aircraft from the area while the training flights are taking place. The North Country representatives aren't buying that argument and no agreement was reached at the meeting. No one disputes that the Air Force has an important mission to train pilots to defend the nation in the event of war, but Burton, for one, thinks there are other, more suitable places where such training can be con- ducted. No less important than the Air Force mission is the safety, well- being and economy of the North Country, which is highly dependent on summer tourist dollars in the White Mountains and other areas, and on dairy farming. To reach a satisfactory outcome, the Air Force will have to convince area citizens and their represen- tauvw ttt can, U up to, promise to keep low-flying jet planes away from tourist areas, population centers and, presumably, peace- loving cows. And the military brass will have to give assurance against what some state officials say is the habit of some jet jockets of buzzing down out of the wild blue yonder just for the fun of it, without regard to their true training mission. Letters to the Editor For they. know what they do To the Editor: Just a note to the one who slashed all four of my tries on my car July 4th in our own dooryard. No, I haven't forgotten to "pray for you". If you want to tell me anytime, what was going on in your mind, "to make you feel like doing such a thing '. As my many, many friends can tell you, I'm ready to listen. You might wonder why my was my husband and (God car was out of the garage" love our neighbors) many (very convenient for you). The friends, who had to change all reason is, I'mhavinga garage four tires. How would you sale for the Waits River have felt if my husband had a Methodist Church. heart attack doing the work Now my car is in the garage you kindly made. locked up. So if you get the Still praying -- "Forgive urge again, I would suggest them for they know what they you rap on the door for the do. key. Oh, yes, if you were trying to Berdie Perry get a point across to me... it W. Topsham Vermont Secretary of State The Australian ballot Vermont was one of the first states in the nation to adopt the Australian ballot system for state and local elections. That was in 1892, almost 90 years ago, and our experience with the system since that time has been almost universally felicitous. That is not to say there have been no problems along the way. From the very first elections using Australian ballots, there have been confusions over how many ballots to print, how the ballots should be arranged, and how security could be maintained, to name only a few of the concerns of election officials. The most recent controversy arising from the use of Australian ballots has come from the threshold question of how a municipality may adopt the system for annual or special elections. With the possible exception of how to determine the residency of voters, there is no area of our state election law that is more misun- derstood or maladministered. The original 1892 law simply ruled out the use of Australian ballots for any town with a population of fewer than 4,000 people. This effectively excluded most of Vermont's towns, since there were no more than half a dozen towns in Vermont at that time with more than 4,{}00 people. Two years later the general assembly decided to restrict the use of Australian ballots even further. In 1894 the law was amended to prevent any town with more than 4,000 and fewer than 8,000 people from using the system unless the town, at an annual or special meeting called for the purpose of deciding whether to use the system, voted to have it apply, and then only for the election of officers. This is where the problems that face Vermont municipalities today began. From 1894 onward, there was wide con- fusion about whether a town, once voting , t6 adopt tlmaystem, fve eteettng r needed to vote again next year to ad?p t system, or whether, once it was in plaiid, the system could continue year to year without a new vote. In 1912 the law changed again, making the system available to any town with fewer than 8,000 people, as long as it voted first to adopt the system, but again only for the election of officers. It wasn't until 1935 that the system could be used for "other specified business," such as the question of the budget, or high- way repairs, or the building of new schools. The decision on whether to adopt the system has always represented a collison of two very important philosophical principles of democracy. On the other hand, the system allows any registered voter an opportunity to par- ticipate in the most important decisions of local government, whether his or her employer allows time to attend the traditional town meeting or not. On the other hand, by adopting the system, legal voters of a town give up the experience of give and take and personal exchanges of opinion and argument that have made town meetings so vital a part of the unique system of local control Vermont has treasured for more than two hundred years. The decision to adopt the system must then be made very carefully by any Vermont town. As the law now reads, that decision must be made first in an open session, where all the issues can be raised before a voter enters the voting booth to cast a ballot. The 1978 omnibus election law reform allowed any town to adopt the Australian ballot system, for any issue, whether it involves electing officers or the system for subsequent elections of public questions. That decision must be made on an issue by issue basis, with a public meeting called for the purpose of making the system apply to specific issues, for each election. Once a town accepts the principle of electing its officers by Australian ballot, however, it need not re-vote that decision each year. The system stays in place until a town votes otherwise. There is no confusion on one point--the law isn't as clear as it should be, and it begs for legislative reform. The fact remains that many Vermont towns simply have not understood the two-step process of adopting Australian balloting, and have, without legal authority, held Australian ballot elections without the authority of a preliminary vote to adopt the system. An old Vermont Supreme Court opinion said it best, when it explained that the "affairs of our municipalities are rarely administered by legal technicians." Perhaps it's time the Legislature took a hard look at our election laws, with an eye toward making the law crystal clear, even for those of us who are non-lawyers. il iiiill Underhills give program on roots PIERMONT--An Underhill Roots Program was held for Piermont Historical Society July 24. It traced the family's early history in England from 1450-1630 and early history in America from 1630-1796, narrated by Hugh Underhill. Introduction of Evelyn Merrill, another Underhill descendant, to tell of her ancestors, was made by Helen Underhill. Mention of music as a big part of Underhill life was made and two songs presented: "Oh God Beneath Thy Guiding Hand," and "The Quilting Party." ' Singers were Joann and Janet Winn, Agnes Perkins, Cynthia Underhill, Faith Norton. Miriam Underhill Norton was the accompanist. Calvin Underhill im- personated Nathaniel, first to settle in Piermont, and Jef- frey Underhill impersonated the first Stephen in town-born 1806. Early years in Piermont from 1796 - 1836, were outlined by Laurence Underhill. Children of Horace Pearson Underhill were represented by REGIsTRATION LEBANON--Registration will be held for Lebanon College at the college Mondays through Fridays from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Registration may also be made Aug. 14-15 and Aug. 28- 29 at Currier & Co. in Lebanon, at Dartmouth Bookstore in Hanover Aug. 7-8, Aug. 21-22, and Sept 4-5. and at Norman Williams Library in Wood- stock Aug. 14 from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Aug. 15 from 10 a.m- 12p.m. from Agnes Perkins and Miriam Norton. Many pictures and memories were enjoyed by the audience before and after the presentation. Capt. John Underhill was a colorful figure in the early years in America. He was primarily a soldier but later held several public offices. He came first to Long Island but came intoNew England for a time in New Hampshire. His monument stands on Long Island at Mantinecock not far from his home which he named Kenisworth. FAMILY QUILTS--Display is made by John Underhili (left) and Ernest Underhill. V i six fifth-generation- The song "Memories" was descendants of 4-1orace in sung by Cynthia Underhill. costume: Medora Maud Faith Norton introduced a Underhill (Baker) byCynthia paper written by Mary Underhill; Leon Henry by Underhill Koloseithe, read by Stephen Underhill; Ernest Miriam Underhill Norton. Stephen by Daniel Norton; "May The Good Lord Bless Louena Adelaide Underhill And Keep You," led by the Childs by Faith Norton; Sarah singers completed the Ann Underhill by Lois Norton; program. and Rosette May by Beth The daughter and four sons Underhill. of Stephen Underhill and all Mrs. Glen Perkins (Agnes but three grandchildren were Hodsden) introduced this present. group. All the participants were Charles Thompson of Underhill descendants except "MEMORIES"--Singers Colchester, Vt., great grand- Mrs. Stephen Underhill are Cynthia Underhill, son of Medora, spoke for her (Helen), researcher and Miriam Underhili Norton family, coordinator with special help and Faith Norton. Agnes Perkins spoke for the family of Leon Henry, her own grandmother. Louena Adelaide and Sarah Ann. Janet and Joann Winn gave their family history from Rosette. Laurence Underhill spoke of his grandfathe r , Ernest Stephen and father, Stephen Leon. Miriam Underhill Norton of Nashua gave information BOOK SALE FAIRLEE--A Book Sale will be held from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Aug. 15 at Anne's Book Barn about the Henry Underlflll on Rte. 5 between Fairlee and family and a letter from Janet Bradford for the benefit of the Underhill Dagenhart, his Fairlee Library. daughter. Wednesday, Aug. 19 BRADFORD: Bi0go, American glon Hall, 7:30 p.m. WELLS RIVER:Senior citizens hmcheon, United Church of Christ vestry, serving at noon. Reservations: 757-2206. W. TOPSHAM: TriVillage Thrift Shop, Tues.-Thurs., 1-4 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-neon. HANOVER: Crafts Fair, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Hopkins Center Plaza. Benefit of Upper Valley Development & Training Center. Friday, Aug. 31 BRADFORD: Senior citizens luncheon, Oxbow Vocational Center, serving at 11:45 a.m., reservations requested (802) 222-4782. Wednesday, Aug. 12 BRADFORD: Bingo, American Legion Hall, 7: 30 p.m. NORWICH: A Community Health Services, Inc., town nurse will check weight, hypertension and diabetes from 9 a.m.-I p.m. at Tracy Hall. THETFORD: A Community Health Services, Inc. town nurse will check weight, hypertension and diabetes from 7-9 p.m. at Thetford Hill Church. WELLS RIVER: Senior citizens' luncheon, United Church of Christ vestry, serving at noon. Reservations: 757-2206. N. THETFORD: Bazaar, 2-5 p.m. and Buffet supper at 5:30 p.m. at the N. Thetford Federated Church. Sponsored by the Ladies' Aid Society. Friday, Aug. 14 BRADFORD: Senior citizens' luncheon, Oxbow Vocational Center, serving at 11:45 a.m. Reservations requested: (802) 222-4782. FAIRLEE: Lobster and Clam supper on the common (inside if rain) at 5 p.m. Benefit of the Federated Church. THETFORD HILL: Concert of traditional music with "Wintergreen," Thetford Hill Grange, 8 p.m. Donations requested of $2.50 for adults, $1.25 for children and seniors. Saturday, Aug. 15 THETFORD CENTER: Annual Thetford Historical Society meeting with guest speaker William Godfrey, auctioneer, 8 p.m., at the Community Center (old schoolhouse). W. TOPSHAM: Tri-Village Fire Department First Annual Auction for benefit of department at Martel's Farm on Rte. 25 one-half mile south of W. Topsham Village, 10 a.m. ORFORD: Kiddie Carnival bellind the Congregational Church, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Pet show at 10:30 a.m, relay races at 1 p.m. (Rain date: Aug. 22) STRAFFORD: Lobster Bake from 5-7 p.m. on the Common. Reservations: 763-7000. Sponsored by the Stratford Firemen's Auxiliary. Stratford; Street Dance, 8-12 p.m. with Tom Walker. Beverages allowed. Sponsored by the Stratford Firemen. FAIRLEE: Book Sale from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at Anne's Book Barn, Rte. 5 between Bradford and Fairlee. Benefit of the Fairlee Public Library. W. TOPSHAM: Community Church Supper, 5, 6, 7 p.m. settings at the W. Topsham Community Church. Sunday, Aug. 16 ORFORDVILLE: Roast Beef Supper, 12:30-1:30 p.m. set- tings, Orfordville Town Hall. Benefit of the Orfordville Church. BRADFORD: Concert benefitting North Country Chorus trip-to-England fund, 8 p.m. at the Congregational Church. FAIRLEE: St. Martin's Chapel, I:ake Mercy Rd. East, Rev. William Atkinson, summer Eucharist, 9:30 a.m Tuesday, Aug, 18 BARRE & MONTPELIER: Community College of Vermont fall registration, Aug. 18-21, 9:00 a.m.-5 p.m. BRADFORD: Senior citizens' luncheon, Oxbow Vocational Center, serving at 11:45 a.m. Reservations requested: (802) 222-4782. FAIRLEE: Women of St. Martin's meeting, St. Martin's Chapel, 10 a.m. Bicentennial and Centu00. Farms in Hutehins-Woods-Blandin- Glover homes and farm, 1781 In 1781, Jeremiah Hut- chins and his family came up to Bath from Haverhill, Mass., making the long trip in two double sleighs and two ox sleds. They settled in Upper Bath, building first a log cabin. In 1799 they completed their large frame house, which they operated as a stagecoach tavern and which is still standing (but not in the family). Jeremiah also built a store north, of his house, besides the present barns across the road. Through the years, Jeremiah and his sons Samuel and James built other houses nearby for members of the family, which have been occupied by varmus descendants down through the Goodall, Carleton, Woods, Blandin and Glover families. Also, one of the houses has returned to the family through ownership by Gen. Robert C. Richardson, Jr., retired from the United States Air Force. The two Glover houses have remained in the family, but the greater part of" the farmland went with the Col. Woods house, which was in the family until about ten years ago, when it was sold to Harold Geneen. (Note: More later under the subjects of taverns, lawyers, and early houses.) Child farm, 1786-1980 The Child place was the oldest family farm in West Bath, being first settled by John Child in 1786. Besides the big house, there is.a smaller house across the road which was built first, both houses being occupied by different generations of the Child family until 1955, when the big house was sold out of the family to Carroll C. Nihan. It is now the home of the Chrostowski family. The farm passed down through the Child family from John to his son Dwight, grandson John, great- grandson Dwight, then to Parker and Elizabeth. Elizabeth, widow of Raymond Hoyt, occupied the small house as a summer home until she sold it in 1980. Minot farm, 1799 The George Minot farm in West Bath has been owned.by the Minot family since lots No. 14 and 15 were deeded to Jonas Minot in 1799, and has len occupied by the family since his son Samuel moved here in 1802. They lived in a s.mall house on the same side of the road as the barn until they completed the present house in 1807. Succeeding generations on the farm have been William, Jonas, and now George and his son Alden. George Minot says that the date 1802 on the barn in- dicates the date the family came there, not the date the barn was built. Years ago there were two barns, end-to- end, but later they were both raised and were joined into one building. For many years this farm, like most others, was a sub- sistence farm, greatly self- sufficient, and what they couldn't eat, they sold. The first cash crop on this and many of the farms in this area was a coarse variety of potatoes used for making starch. In the mid-1800's there used to be a starch factory near where Frank Millette's house is now. Farming was very diversified in those days. They raised their own pigs for pork and ham, also had their own beef. Each year the oldest team of oxen would be but- chered or sold for beef, and a new team started. Every farm raised a little wheat for its own flour, to be ground at the local gristmill. However, the Minors could raise corn a lot better than wheat, so they sold corn to buy wheat. They used to pay the minister with rye. The cows gave most of their milk in the summer, while fresh and on pasture. For many years the Minots were famous for their butter, for which they eventually had a gasoline-powered separator and churn. After the railroad came, the Minots found a good market for their butter in Woodsville, as the railroad men did not have their own cows, but they did have the money for buying butter. The Minots also sold cream to the creamery at the fork of the West Bath Road and the Pettyboro Road. They shipped their first whole milk in May, 1919. An old Minor family diary tells about annual market trips to Boston in the early days before the railroad. They called this trip "going below," and they would take farm produce such as butter, land speculation, t better, and the farm the debts paid off make a good the old diaries dressed pork and dry beans, contentment, as In the Boston area they would became secure buy manufactured items such fort as cotton cloth, spices, salt, needles and thread. According to the diary, in 1839 Samuel The first Minot and his brother George made the trip together, each Samuel driving a rig (a horse with son Henry some kind of market sleigh), bought his own Some of the neighboring Child which family went along in the same until 1976. caravan, for mutual help The along the way, in case they got farm stuck or broken down. The registered deeds, caravan left Bath on February many years 20; went as far as Kimball's in held in trust Coventry (Benton) the first estate. His night; next night to the end of had married a the turnpike (probably outside S. Lang. They Plymouth); then Franklin; her home pla then Bow; etc. They spent later he left seven days on the trip down, infant daughter did their trading in Danvers, moved to a Mass. for one day, then When Emma returned home in seven days years old her (although the Childs stopped she remained in Nashua and did their grandparents trading there), farm. According They had oxen for farm of Henry H. work such as plowing, 1865 harrowing, and heavy to his wife and hauling, but used horses for daughter, traveling, such as for "going sold during the below." They were medium- either. sized horses; it wasn't until Emma later that heavy work horses Reed in 1874 were brought in from the the farm West. David The Minots and other Clarence and farmers also sold a lot of farm was sold to produce at the local stores, exchanging it for other sup- plies. They settled up with the Near storekeeper once a year, and covered bridge usually by that time HE and owned THEM money. Chamberlin Mr. Minot says that in the was first early days his great- George grandfather almost "went buildings having i under," over-extending on (please turn to| Our 0000.Rlver The long tidal river by GEOFF DATES The left shore appeared to be better for were on the right. The heavy flow made it to fight our way across, and once half the that task, the rest were stranded without the buoy them. They walked downstream to find a while the three of us with the food and portage. No one had anticipated that the over a mile long, nor that it would be so ding. We were again on logged-over land. The debris and thick undergrowth made chore -- with a canoe, the The most logical way to complete the portage stages. At roughly the halfway mark, trying to cross over found us and led us to a the end of the big whitewater. The three-hour portage left us far behind there was more lining to do. Fortanately, rapids was over and we soon reached the Lake. Mercifully, the wet weather had Sun and blue sky was a most welcome weather however, there always seems to be time it was the wind. Four miles fighting a sapped our last energy and put us further In Pittsburg, the group increased in size fro first night we were all together, 31, dipped to 28 degrees F and a heavy we broke camp. The newcomers find out if it had been a "typical" The whole purpose of the Source to the Se heighten public awareness of the tremendous importance of, the Connecticut places, it is a forgotten or abused resource. In 1959, Dr. Joseph Davidson, then Watershed Council, and his wife Madeleine, first "Source to the Sea" trip by canoe, boat, and automobile. [t was a 7-day highlight the pollution problem in the river, time was very severe. Serving many amounted to an open sewer, the river had point where it smelled, and from going near the water. The Davidsons met with sportsman's groups to encourage conservation of the valley's natural resourceS. to their efforts, the Connecticut River has recovery, but it seems that the river's image is has not made a parallel recovery. We saw the first boat, besides ourselves, north of Lancaster; the first canoe, not Bradford area. The traffic increased to further south, but it is apparent that the river valuable recreational resource. Times the 1950s. In fact, have occurred in the last five years. director of a water quality testing lab accompanied our group as far as Lyme, portable lab he made spot checks at site The data he collected indicates that, in quality has improved. After all, atlantic ning to the river. "Source to the Sea" people against" letting up our guard." At the end of the ninth day Hanover, the home Office. Up to that point, and agriculture had been Lyme respectively. With the population as we traveled south, the organized became more numerous. In and we often slept in beds, not on the Sleeping in beds on a canoe tri t me. In my fmal column on Source to the ocean and I'll make some closing our river.