Friday, November 6, 2020

MAYNARD MASSACHUSETTS (the new history book)

Front cover of the book shows the iconic 
clock tower, built in 1892 by Lorenzo
Maynard. Top photo is of the 50 year
parade, 1921. Also shows clock tower
 MAYNARD MASSACHUSETTS: A BRIEF HISTORY is the title of the newest history book about Maynard. As we approach the 150th anniversary of the creation of the town in 1871, this book does not replace the fifty-year history book by W.H. Gutteridge, nor the centennial history “History of Maynard, Massachusetts, 1871–1971.” Rather, it sets the table with chapters summarizing the history of the first one hundred years and then plunges into in-depth content about what has happened in the following fifty years, plus a crystal ball peek at what might happen in the next fifty. Together, the 50,000 words of text and 90 images provide a frame of reference for the people of Maynard to understand where we are now and how we got here.

Maynard is different from neighboring towns in several ways—it is smaller in area, and its founding as a named town came one to two centuries later compared to Concord, Sudbury, Stow and Acton. From the beginning, it was part of the Industrial Revolution, whereas its neighbors were colonial-era farm towns. The very creation of Maynard came about because its population growth took place at the border between Sudbury and Stow and, thus, quite far from the churches and schools and businesses at the centers of those towns.

The book is divided into ten chapters: 1) Becoming Maynard, 2) Meet the Maynard Family, 3)  1871-1921: First Fifty Years, 4) A River and a Railroad, 5) 1921-1971: Second Fifty Years, 6) Downtown, 7) Maynard Booms and Busts, 8) Digital Equipment Corporation, 9) 1971-2021: Third Fifty Years, and 10) 2021- Future: Next Fifty Years. Each chapter is divided into subsections on topics as diverse as the great land eviction of World War II, to the history of Maynard’s eight co-operative societies.

The book is a production of the Sesquicentennial Steering Committee, a group established in September 2017 to plan for and manage celebrations of the 150th anniversary of the creation of Maynard, April 19, 1871. As of November 2020, committee members are: Molly Bergin, Lisa Dahill, Charles Caragianes, Paula Copley, Ellen Duggan, Dave Griffin, Donald James, David Mark, Lindsay McConchie and Jen Picorelli. In 2020, the Committee oversaw production of T-shirts and sweatshirts, mugs, anniversary flags and face masks (!) to sell as souvenirs. This book joins those efforts as means of raising money to pay for the celebration events planned for 2021. While the COVID pandemic put some of the scheduled events on hold, the hope is that as the calendar gets deep in 2021 events such as a parade, concert, etc. can be held.

The book is a perfect gift to self or gift to family members and friends who have moved away, yet may relish this description of the place they once knew as home. Available at 6 Bridges Gallery, at its temporary location at 63 Nason Street (corner of Nason and Summer).

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