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The Way We Were

July 14, 1989

In Newtown, the rains were heavy, the wind was stiff, and the lightning was striking. But compared with towns such as Waterbury, Bantam, and Carmel, N.Y., which were damaged by tornadoes, Newtown had little to complain about, in connection with the storms that hit the area on the early evening of July 10.

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The school board has begun last step deliberations on a no-smoking policy for the Newtown school system. The board accepted, for first reading, a policy to prohibit smoking by students in school buildings starting at the start of school this year and effective January 2, 1990, no smoking at all in the school buildings.

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Doug Rogers, president of the Newtown Forest Association, asked the Board of Education to support his group’s move toward getting an ordinance that would prohibit the discharge of firearms near school property. Mr Rogers said he has received complaints of shooting on Forest Association property and was especially concerned about complaints of use of firearms near schools. Currently there is no ordinance or restriction regarding discharge of weapons in or near school property. The Forest Association owns about 60 acres of property near the Head O’ Meadow School grounds.

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After nearly a week, the laborious process of selecting a jury for the second trial of Newtown resident Richard Crafts continues in Stamford Superior Court House. As of Thursday, July 13, twenty people had been interviewed for the jury, but only two had been selected for the 12 member panel. Mr Crafts, a former airline pilot, is on trial for the November 1986 slaying of his wife, Helle.

 

July 17, 1964

One of the two new educational foundations for Newtown is well under way at the site of the elementary school on Cold Spring Road. Contracts for the building were signed April 14 at a cost of $614,550. The second foundation, the addition to the Sandy Hook Elementary School, has now reached a point where the inside wall is up, with the brick still to be put on the outside.

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Another of Main Street’s elm trees is being taken down this week by a crew of the State Highway Department workmen. This stately elm which has stood for so many years on the lawn at the home of Mr and Mrs Milton Hull is one more victim of Dutch Elm disease. Several other elms along Main Street are also dying and must be removed, including the large elm in front of the Edmond Town Hall. The departure of these long-time residents is a source of much regret to the entire town.

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Teen-age vandalism was put on the record last Saturday by the Newtown Police Department with the apprehension of six youths, students in Newtown, in connection with the paint smeared on the front wall of the Newtown High School on the evening of June 24. Five of the Newtown students, in addition to one juvenile who has been referred to juvenile court, were arrested on the charge of “willful injury to a public building.”

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The centennial celebration of St John’s Episcopal Church will begin with an antiques exhibit on Saturday morning, August 8, and run throughout the day ending with a chicken barbeque and old fashion square dancing. Bob Paris, well known square dance caller for the Rocking Roosters, will be the caller for the dance to climax the gala centennial celebration.

 

July 14, 1939

September of this year will mark the opening of a small private school in Newtown for children in first and second grades. Residents of Newtown and surrounding towns who have long recognized the need for specialized work with a small group of children in the early grades, may now avail themselves of the advantage of just such a school. Miss Faith Bissell, who will conduct the school, is exceptionally well-equipped for this project. Her first two years of college were spent at Brown University, where her grandfather was a leading member of the faculty for many years. Miss Bissell completed her Bachelor of Arts at the University of North Carolina.

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In response to many inquiries about when Wilton Lackaye of Sandy Hook was going to hold his auction sales, Mr Lackaye informs us that he is not going to hold any auctions at his place this summer, but will dispose of consignments at private sale. He believes that in this way, buyers will have more time to examine the items for sale and as the expenses entailed in an auction will be eliminated, the cost of the goods will reflect this saving.

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More than two hundred parishioners and friends of the Congregational, Trinity and St John’s churches attended the annual Sunday School picnic held at Sandy Beach, Lake Quassapaug, Middlebury, on Tuesday, July 11, when swimming and games were enjoyed, with a picnic lunch at noon.

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A meeting of the Newtown Foresters Association was held at the Newtown Savings Bank last Thursday evening, with Arthur T. Nettleton, president, presiding. It was voted to incorporate the association under the name of the Newtown Forest Association, the purpose of the organization being “to procure, own and hold land in fee simple or lessee estate in the town of Newtown for forestry development, so that the many benefits and uses of forest land and forest and forest parks may exist in said town of Newtown. It is the plan of the association to further develop its tract of woodland in Taunton district, making it more usable for the citizens of the town.

 

July 17, 1914

Charles G. Peck, the popular borough warden, appeared at the store of Morris & Shepard, Wednesday evening, and said he wanted a musk melon. Mr Peck insisted he was an expert in picking out ripe melons. So he selected the largest in the box and repaired to the rooms of the Hillside club to enjoy a feast. When he cut it open, it was found to be as green as green could be. So stepping out on the tin roof in front, he threw it to the sidewalk, just missing the head of a pedestrian. Mr Hawley suddenly appeared around the corner of the store with a hose and the borough warden got a wetting down he wasn’t looking for.

 

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Hammocks, window screens, screen doors, fly netting, fly paper and Kretol dip for spraying cattle. At Corbett & Crowe. At the market of J.H. Blackman on Saturday will be found the usual veal, beef and lamb products, new potatoes, cucumbers, cabbage, tomatoes, peaches, cantaloupes, bananas, onions.

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