Dear Friends and Fellow Members:
Perhaps some of you have traveled to Ireland, I never have – but if Ireland is known as the Emerald Isle, and the green there is famous, then I think we have its rival in the fields around the Smith-Appleby House. In the days preceding the May Breakfast, the green was almost luminous. Maybe that is a bi-product of a long, cold, snowy winter!
On the property we have seen bluebirds, a hawk, blue herons, robins and eastern orioles, an abundance of feathered color! The cherry tree was gorgeous; violets in the grass, and the many hundreds of bulbs have made the whole property sparkle. Pete and June Giammarco planted daffodils along the nature walk beyond the wooden bridge and that was an absolute delight this year, enough to make me forget the winter. This newsletter includes a poem by fellow member James Maloney, entitled “Spring at Last.”
Highlighting the appearance of the property is our new cedar shake roof, funded by the Champlin Foundation, work performed by Above Board Contracting. You can see it gleaming from highway 295. Also contributing to the appearance of the property, the newly scraped and painted caretakers house, with several windows glazed, work performed by member Frank Pfeiffer, who cannot always remain anonymous! The kitchen fence is complete, with a canon ball gate closure – framing and protecting the garden. Don Burns and a crew managed to fix the wooden stairs by the barn so they are now safe, and no longer list to one side and I understand one of the wooden bridges has been shored up as well.
Our web site has been updated to include many more photographs, and if you enjoy Jim Ignasher’s stories as much as I do, you will now find them on our web site as well. So many hands involved in promoting and enriching our presence, and maintaining and improving the property, and so, many thanks to all.
Our 41st Annual May Breakfast was sold out, and well received, again thanks to the faithful members who give of their time and talent to make it a memorable event for our guests.
On May 23, we hosted a field trip for the Anna McCabe School, with Deb Cote, June Giammarco and Kathy Nolett managing the 44 third grade children. The day included some very strenuous field games, and the children declared it the best field trip – EVER. If you have some free time, let Deb know, as we can use some extra hands with the school programs.
We have mentioned in the past, our interest in building a historically accurate outdoor beehive oven on the property. This is part of our continuing mission to preserve and present important Smithfield artifacts and history. Our beehive oven will copy a typical New England clay and stone oven made with wood, rocks with clay, sand and straw. The design will be period correct, constructed as a traditional summer oven would have been built 300 years ago. If you would like to support the creation of this oven by a donation, send a check (specify “oven”), payable to the Historical Society of Smithfield, to the address in our letterhead. Your donation is tax deductible.
On June 29, we have a Rhody Ramble open house with a Fourth of July craft in the barn, stop by to say hello.
Completely zooming ahead to some of the late season programs, on October 19 we are hosting the second antique show on the property. The Historical Society will have a table at this event, so if you have the typical bane & blessing items: Glassware, ornaments, bits & bobs, gadgets, functional lamps etc. etc. bring them along, or drop them off before October 19, and we will sell the donated items to raise funds. I have three boxes already! Less clutter at your house means less dusting!
On November 15, our Colonial Dinner, is themed “A Colonial Dinner in New England.” This year we will only be hosting the Colonial Dinner one evening, to reduce the general stress and work load of doing two 4-course meals for 50 people back to back.
On December 7, our Christmas Open House will, as ever require a bunch of cookies, so if you can bake a few dozen (or so!) for us, we would be grateful! Lastly, December 13 is our members Christmas party, I promise to be clearer if we need to postpone the dinner, I know last year some one (George) ended up with a lot of salad to eat!
Regarding membership dues, watch for that telltale red dot on your envelope, to see if you are current!
Spring at Last – By James Maloney
I have heard a robin sing
On this lovely early morn
Announcing once again
That another spring is born.
Seeking his old nesting place
A bird house on my tree
Two doves came fluttering down
To complete my feathered family.
I bought a muffin at Dunkin Doughnuts
Ate the crown and saved the rest
Threw it in my yard
A squirrel got there before the rest.
My heart rejoices at the sounds
That my feathered friends doth bring
Spring has come at last
For I heard a robin sing.