Easton Historical Society and Museum Weekly Update

Greetings, fellow history lovers! We had a disappointing weekend with the cancellation of our open house, but some snowfall and slippery conditions proved it to be a wise move. Fortunately, we will be able to present the same program at our open house on March 12th from 1-5 p.m. I'll send another update about that once we get closer to the event. Thank you to our speakers who were willing to make themselves available in March. We expect that the weather will cooperate this time!

For some time now we have had in our collection a few unique pieces: a letter opener / quill pen, a two-ended sewing cushion, and a larger base that once held a large pin cushion. That last item was given to us several years ago by Mr. and Mrs. Earl Nichols, longtime members of the Society and Museum. Each item is made from wood and is unique because they feature an engraving of the Ames Free Library and Oakes Ames Memorial Hall. It appeared that they might be some type of commemorative item, or perhaps a souvenir. Could someone in Easton really have tried to market souvenirs? Who was it, and when were these items being sold? An answer came late last year. We had Julia Carabatsos, a student from Easton, go through a private collection of old Easton newspapers from the 1880's, compiling a list of names and events that were recorded within them. This exercise proved to be very helpful and yielded a few surprises and even solved our mystery. It turns out that a man named David Martin (or perhaps Martyn) had rented some space in the old North Easton Post Office building opposite the Ames Free Library. He sold jewelry, may have run a small photographic studio, and advertised souvenirs of North Easton! These are some of those items. They were imported from Germany where the engraving was done. The paper was the Easton Journal, December 31, 1886. I'll try to get some detailed information from the newspapers, as he is named in several editions between 1886 and 1888. I'll try to have an update for you next week, but for now, here is a photo of the three items in our collection. Best regards to all, Frank

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