At the Annual Meeting on September 2, 2000 the following officers were elected:
President - Carl StellerThis meeting was held just before the Dedication of the Carr Schoolhouse. Over one hundred attendees heard remarks by Representative James Tobin, Senator Paul Davis and Seth Bradstreet of the USDA, as well as by Robert Crawford, Richard Whitney and David Pearson. The sign was unveiled, the ribbon cut by Town manager Robert Simpson and attendees toured the school and sampled the refreshments.
Secretary's Report: Public meetings were held monthly. A fund drive newsletter with flyer for presale of Isabel Jacob's book, "Bubbles in the Sun" was sent in October.
Treasurer's Report: The total for the 2000 fund drive was $4,547 from 96 donors including one for $1,000 from the Barker Foundation. Special donations have included those in memory of Prudence Hatch McMann, totaling $2,860, and those in memory of Gwendolyn Russell Lancaster, totaling $185.
Director's Report: A contract was signed with RTD of Madison to replace the roof of the Grist Mill, work to be done in December. On July 12, 2001 a deed was signed donating to us the 1836 Old Town Hall/Abbott Mill Office, that has been owned by Guilford of Maine for some time. This was the culmination of ten months of active negotiations with them. We are assessing and prioritizing the work necessary to utilizing the building as a multi-purpose facility, for gift shop, conference room, library and display rooms.
Museum Committee: The museums closed at the end of September in 2000, with a total attendance of 1631, having raised $1230 in sales and $689 in donations. We opened on June 11, 2001 and will close at the end of September. Maria Mountain returned as intern for the 2001 season. She and Rick installed the new garage exhibit in the grain bin, the former school exhibit area. Signed attendance so far is 1788, from 30 states and countries such as Gambia, Brazil and Australia, with sales at $16,067.56 and donations of $1459. Several hosts have assisted throughout the summer, with Roberta Robinson as a regular.
Millside Window Committee: We have had four colorful and interesting displays, arranged around seasonal themes, fall, winter and spring, and currently Fay-Scott.
Acquisitions Committee: A total of 92 groups of items were donated in 2000, with 70 so far in 2001. Many items came from Jan Rines' house (built by Hiram Carr c. 1870), with others from Ken Brawn's house.
Genealogy and Research Committee: Over 70 queries were responded to in 2000 and 65 so far in 2001. Most were in connection with genealogy information and much important information has been exchanged. The obituary website created through a grant to the Abbott Memorial Library and the society is up and running, with information from 1945 to 1960 input so far. A Cultural Heritage Research Collaborative Grant was applied for and awarded to study the French-Canadian history of Dexter and work has begun on the project.
Publications Committee: The loan from the Abbott Memorial Library Trustees used to pay for part of the printing of the "Our Neighborly Neighbors" book was repaid in full. The printing cost for "Bubbles in the Sun" was met from the donations in memory of Betty Holsapple. Sales of the book have repaid that cost. A calendar was printed for the Bicentennial year and a new one using garage photos is being printed for 2002.
Outreach Committee: Regular press releases have been published as well as special coverage of the Carr School Dedication, the book "Bubbles in the Sun", the donation of the Abbott building and Bicentennial activities. An article was written for the Town Report. An exhibit was displayed at the SPCCC Expo in Guilford in April. Members have attended meetings of the Mid-Maine Association of Historical Societies (which produced a group brochure for use in summer 2001), the MAM conference and several workshops, the Dexter Downtown Planning Committee and the Corinth Historical Society.
Special Bicentennial Activities: We sponsored several events during the year long celebration: the Carr School Dedication, a cemetery tour in October, a Silver Tea and book signing for Isabel Jacobs' book "Bubbles in the Sun", the March musical play "About the Thriving Town of Dexter", co-authored by Carol Feurtado with Richard Whitney as one of the cast and many items from our collection as props and costumes.
Several groups have been formed in town, which were outgrowths of the discussion series we sponsored last July; the Wayside Theater, the North Country Riding Club and the Lake Association. On the final Bicentennial day, August 11, we participated in the parade, exhibited the Bert Call photos at the Unitarian Universalist Church, held an Art Show in the Abbott building, arranged for a postal cancellation, hosted a blacksmith demonstration. We also offered many special items for sale: commemorative tokens (designed by David Pearson), afghans depicting eleven Dexter buildings, two wooden blocks from the Fernwood company depicting the Morrison Building and N.H. Fay High School. A time capsule has been created, which will be buried for retrieval in fifty years.
A special Bicentennial collection will be created for items relating to all the events of the year.
In addition, we signed a lease agreement with the Town of Dexter formalizing our use of the Grist Mill and the Millers House and other arrangements that have been word of mouth. In May we received a participant from SCSEP (Senior Community Service Employment Program) as a trainee for 20 hours weekly.
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