What’s in a name?

There’s a spot in Kingston just west of Exit 9 on Route 3, elevation about 68 feet, which has been long known as Thomas’ Hill.

Area around Thomas' Hill from Kingston GIS, 2016

Area around Thomas’ Hill from Kingston GIS, 2016

[This screen shot is from the Town’s GIS, which is just amazing. Give it a try!]

In her 1933 description of Kingston place names, Emily Fuller Drew tells us that

Colonel Thomas’ Hill is located from the Great Bridge up the slope, going south of the River. This hill was named for the Thomas family whose home was located on the hill.

That’s this house.

John Thomas House, Thomas Hill, 156 Main Street, circa 1900

John Thomas House, Thomas Hill, 156 Main Street, circa 1900

Here’s a view south, up the hill towards the Thomas House, taken from a spot just before the Great Bridge over the Jones River.

Main Street, looking south up Thomas' Hill, circa 1900

Main Street, looking south up Thomas’ Hill, circa 1900

And here are a couple of views looking the opposite way down the hill.

Kingston Village from Col. Thomas' Hill in 1838, reproduced 1975

Kingston Village from Col. Thomas’ Hill in 1838, reproduced 1975

[This wood cut is from this book, originally published in 1839.]

 

Main Street, looking north down Thomas' Hill, 1876

Main Street, looking north down Thomas’ Hill, 1876

And here’s one of indeterminate direction, but with a nice shady feel to it.

Strolling on Thomas' Hill, 1890

Strolling on Thomas’ Hill, 1890

 

These images all bear the description “Thomas’ Hill,” because that’s what’s it’s been called for quite some time.  Now, though, there’s a need to update our shared geographical vocabulary. There’s a whole group of Kingstonians with a completely different point of reference, for whom this area doesn’t relate at all to an 18th century Kingston family or their stately home atop the hill.

Let the historical record now reflect the vernacular alternative: “HoJo Hill.”

 

Kingston-Plymouth Howard Johnson's. Photograph courtesy of Dan Holbrook 2003, via highwayhost.org

Kingston-Plymouth Howard Johnson’s. Photograph courtesy of Dan Holbrook 2003, via highwayhost.org

Here’s more.

 

Source: Jones River Village Historical Society Lantern Slides IC4; LHR Image Collection IC7; Mitchell Toabe Papers MC18; and highwayhost.org.

For more, visit the Kingston Public Library, and the Local History Room, and the full blog at piqueoftheweek.wordpress.com.

 

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New exhibit: Tura’s Pharmacy

Tura's Pharmacy, November 1979

Tura’s Pharmacy, November 1979

From the 1870s until last October, Kingston had a drugstore on Summer Street. Tura’s Pharmacy has a long history, and it’s on display in the Local History Room’s exhibit case this month. Stop by the Library and check it out.

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Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas and Good Morning, 1911

Merry Christmas and Good Morning, 1911

From the fabulous Finney postcards comes this touching glimpse of two mischievous vandals and their squirrel sidekick pranking Santa while he naps.

For more Christmas goodness from the Local History Room , see here and here.

 

Source: Joseph Cushman Finney Papers MC11

For more, visit the Kingston Public Library, and the Local History Room, and the full blog at piqueoftheweek.wordpress.com.

 

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New exhibit: Laddie: A Christmas Story

Just for the holidays! Stop by the Library and see Laddie.

Laddie convinces Santa, 1928

This is Elspeth Hardy’s first grade class at the Faunce School (then called Center Primary) in 1915.

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In 1928, she would help another group of students write a book, as she explains in the preface.

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Welcome Home from the War to End All Wars

For more on Kingston’s Welcome Home parade, see this post.

Marcher with Red Cross flag in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marcher with Red Cross flag in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Riders and marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Riders and marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Spectators at the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Spectators at the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Riders in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Riders in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers and cars in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Marchers and cars in the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Spectators at the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

Spectators at the Welcome Home parade, October 18, 1919.

 

Source: Emily Fuller Drew Collection MC16. Negatives scanned with LSTA funds through the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners and digitized at the Boston Public Library in conjunction with the Digital Commonwealth)

For more, visit the Kingston Public Library, and the Local History Room, and the full blog at piqueoftheweek.wordpress.com

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Happy Halloween from 1952

Milkmaid and robot Halloween costumes at Kingston Elementary School, 1952

Milkmaid and robot Halloween costumes at Kingston Elementary School, 1952

Halloween costumes at Kingston Elementary School, 1952

Halloween costumes at Kingston Elementary School, 1952

 Halloween assembly at Kingston Elementary School, 1952

Halloween assembly at Kingston Elementary School, 1952

 

 

Source: School Photographs IC5

For more, visit the Kingston Public Library, and the Local History Room, and the full blog at piqueoftheweek.wordpress.com

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A lovely little launch

George Shiverick aboard

George Shiverick aboard “Alice,” his personal launch named for his wife, date unknown

Yes, the Local History Room is full of old stuff, but sometimes we get new old stuff, new to us anyway.  One of our recent accessions is a small trove of photographs, most not well identified, of boats built by George W. Shiverick in his shop on the Jones River. This unique collection was donated by Shiverick’s grand-daughter.

This particular snapshot stands out because it’s labeled in the hand of former Frederic C. Adams Librarian Ethel J. Shiverick (George’s daughter-in-law, in case you didn’t know) as follows:

Geo. W. Shiverick aboard “Alice,” personal boat, named for wife. EJS

We have so few paper fragments of this legendary boat-builder’s life and work, that a photo of him in his very own boat is just special.

Source: George W. Shiverick Collection AC8

For more, visit the Kingston Public Library, and the Local History Room, and the full blog at piqueoftheweek.wordpress.com

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New exhibit: Carved in Stone

Kingston has grave stones that predate the town.  Photos of some of them are in the display case this month.

Charles Little July 25, 1724

Charles Little July 25, 1724

Sarah B. Loring July 12, 1851

Sarah B. Loring July 12, 1851

Henry Davis May 10, 1802

Henry Davis May 10, 1802

Peleg Wadsworth Feb. 24, 1790

Peleg Wadsworth Feb. 24, 1790

William Drew May 10,1795

William Drew May 10,1795

Sarah Sever Aug. 25, 1756

Sarah Sever Aug. 25, 1756

Lydia Drew Dec. 27, 1800

Lydia Drew Dec. 27, 1800

Priscilla Wiswall June 3, 1724

Priscilla Wiswall June 3, 1724

 

 

Source: Jones River Village Historical Society Lantern Slides IC4

For more, visit the Kingston Public Library, and the Local History Room, and the full blog at piqueoftheweek.wordpress.com

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New exhibit: It’s National Library Card Sign-up Month

Do you have a library card?

Kingston Library Association card, 1872

Kingston Library Association card, 1872

If not, please stop by the Library and get one, and take a look at this month’s Local History exhibit featuring some older library registers and cards.

Source: Frederic C. Adams Library and  Kingston Public Library Collection MC22

For more, visit the Kingston Public Library, and the Local History Room, and the full blog at piqueoftheweek.wordpress.com

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Working on the boat

Boat yard near the railroad bridge, circa 1915

Boat yard near the railroad bridge, circa 1915

Are they getting ready for a late summer cruise, or putting her away for the season?

Source: Mary Hathaway Collection MC21

For more, visit the Kingston Public Library, and the Local History Room, and the full blog at piqueoftheweek.wordpress.com

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