November 17, 2017

Essex Historical Society Expands Popular “Walking Weekend” Program, Offers Four Tours This Weekend

EHS’s Brien Reidell leads a walking tour up Main Street, Essex.  Courtesy of Essex Historical Society.

Community Foundation of Middlesex County Funds New Centerbrook Tour 

 

Combining the outdoors and history, Essex Historical Society (EHS) expands its popular outdoor program, “Walking Weekend,” on July 28, 29 and 30.  The event features four different walking tours within the Town of Essex as follows:

Friday, July 28, 2017, 7 p.m.; Saturday, July 29, 2017, 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.; Sunday, July 30, 7 p.m.

Pratt House, 19 West Avenue, Essex (July 28)

Ivoryton Library, 106 Main Street, Ivoryton (July 29)

Essex Elementary School, 108 Main Street, Centerbrook (July 29)

Foot of Main Street, Essex, (July 30)

During the tours, attendees enjoy an easy stroll along the Town’s historic streets learning about the major industries, structures and personalities that shaped the area. Essex Historical Society’s trained, knowledgeable guides will lead an hour+ long tour over fairly level, paved terrain, covering three centuries of history.

For the first time, this year’s Walking Weekend will feature a guided walking tour of Centerbrook Village, led by renowned Essex historian Brenda Milkofsky.  The walk is funded in part through a grant from the Community Foundation of Middlesex County.   New guides are welcome to join us and learn the tour.

An early view of Connecticut Valley Manufacturing, now Centerbrook Architects.  Courtesy of Essex Historical Society.

On July 28  at 7 p.m., the first tour will meet at the Pratt House, 19 West Avenue, Essex, for a trip down West Ave. and Prospect Street to explore the histories behind the structures of “Pound Hill” including several 19th century churches, Hills Academy, the Old Firehouse and more.

On July 29, at 10 a.m., the second tour will meet at Ivoryton Library, 106 Main Street, Ivoryton, for an in-depth look at this historic village, from its beginnings as a company town surrounding the Comstock-Cheney Co., the stories of 19th century immigration, the striking examples of Victorian architecture and its unique cultural attractions that continue to this day.  The tour will be led by historian and author Chris Pagliuco.

On July 29, at 1 p.m., the third tour will meet at Essex Elementary School, 108 Main Street, Centerbrook, for our newest walk featuring Essex’s oldest village.  Learn about Centerbrook’s transition from its early farming days as “Center Saybrook” to its later manufacturing development powered by the Falls River.  This walk will be developed and led by Brenda Milkofsky.


All spiritual, social and business matters in early “Center Saybrook” revolved around the Centerbrook Meeting House.    Courtesy of Essex Historical Society

Interested in being a guide for later walks of Centerbrook?   Contact the EHS offices to learn more, 860-767-0681, or ehs@essexhistory.org.  No experience is necessary and all training is provided.

On July 30, at 7 p.m., the final tour will meet at the Foot of Main Street, Essex, for a trip down Main Street in Essex Village to capture the rich maritime history of 18th century “Potapaug,” its working waterfront and ship-building prominence in the early 19th century as well as its development as a beautiful visitor destination of today.  The tour will be led by EHS’s knowledgeable guides Brien Reidell and Mary Ann Pleva.

Each walk is a separate event and you are welcome to attend all four or select your favorites.

Essex Historical Society is committed to fulfilling its mission of engaging and inspiring the community in the three villages of Centerbrook, Essex and Ivoryton.  Each tour is $5 per person and is open to the general public; free to members of EHS.  Admission helps support the educational and cultural programming of Essex Historical Society.

Essex Historical Society expresses its gratitude to the Community Foundation of Middlesex County for funding the new Centerbrook tour.  For more information, visit www.essexhistory.org or call (860) 767-0681.

 

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