Small Town Saturday

Yesterday Cherie and I attended a local author meet and greet sponsored by our library and hosted by our local history museum. We signed copies of our books, spent time with some people with whom we share interests, and generally enjoyed a pleasant, friendly, small-town day.

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Chatham has a population of about 1,500 people and it’s hard to meet a stranger there. The history museum is in the old train depot and yesterday was my first visit. I used to be passionate about local history, but that passion has faded in recent years, crowded out by newer passions. But now I’m feeling a desire to dig back in.

So I was pleased to get this.

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I didn’t even know it existed. The only history of our county that I had been aware of was written in 1929 and I’ve already read it twice. I’ve skimmed the new one already and it promises to be a treat.

Local memories and local history are often casualties of industrialism. They aren’t as easily preserved now as they were in a more stationary time. But those memories and histories deserve to be known and kept alive. In the coming year I hope to refresh and enlarge my memories and knowledge of this place and its people.

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