Dukes County Historical Society Has Big Plans for Addition in Edgartown
Paula Delbonis
The Dukes County Historical Society has solved the space problem it has been struggling with for most of its 66 years with the purchase of the John Vinson House on School street.
 
Saturday the society will open the property to the public as part of the Christmas in Edgartown celebration with a smattering of exhibits showing the Vineyard’s long and interesting history, as well as the history of the historical society.
 
Read More

Famous Whaleboat is Presented to the Historical Society
Vineyard Gazette
The whaleboat in which Vineyarders out-pulled all others who met them here and elsewhere, has been presented to the Dukes County Historical Society by Captain Isaac Norton of Vineyard Haven, commander of the craft, George Smith of Oak Bluffs, the only surviving member of the crew, and Captain Norton’s nephews, Benjamin, Frank, Orrin and James Norton. The historic craft has been stored in the barn of Cyrus Norton, brother of Captain Isaac, for more than thirty years. It was last used in an historical pageant at Lake Tashmoo.
Read More

Acquires Autograph Letter of John Hancock
Vineyard Gazette
An autograph letter from John Hancock to James Athearn, a prominent citizen of Tisbury in the period just preceding the American Revolution, has been acquired by the Dukes County Historical Society. Not only does the letter bear Hancock’s signature in the same clear style as that which adorns the Declaration of Independence, but it gives a picture of a business transaction in that early era.
 
Read More

Customs Records Saved by Society
Vineyard Gazette
A quantity of customs house records, all that can be found of the invaluable files of the former Edgartown customs house, have been acquired by the Dukes County Historical Society, Marshall Shepard, the society’s president, announced at the quarterly meeting held at the West Tisbury library Wednesday afternoon. The documents, which Mr. Shepard described as a pile three or four feet high, are a remnant of eighteen large packing cases in which the papers of the customs house were packed and shipped to Boston when the office was discontinued in 1912.
Read More

Vineyarders Built “Old Ironsides”
Vineyard Gazette
“Old Ironsides,” the frigate Constitution, and the most famous of an ship to fly the American flag, was built by a Vineyard man. Furthermore, the head foreman under the builder was also from this Island. These facts are established by historical and genealogical research, recently carried on by the Dukes County Historical Society and by other interested persons, notably F. G. Hillman of New Bedford. Much connecting evidence has been supplied by William J. Rotch and Mrs.
Read More

Dr. Banks’ Third Volume
Vineyard Gazette
The third volume of the History of Martha’s Vineyard by Dr. Charles Edward Banks gives lovers of the Island access to a store of valuable information and reminds them again how fortunate the Island is in its historian. Volume Three, long anticipated and at last auspiciously published under the seal of the Dukes County Historical Society, is devoted to family genealogies.
Read More

Collection Is Enriched
Vineyard Gazette
To the already exceedingly valuable and interesting collection stored in the rooms of the Historical Society there have been added further treasures which are interestingly described below:
 
Read More

Island Library Trustees Meet
Vineyard Gazette
Representatives of the Vineyard Libraries met at the Oak Bluffs Library on April 21st for the purpose of forming a collection of Vineyard literature for use by the County’s Public Libraries. The Committee organized as follows: President, Mr. Marshall Shepard; Editor, Dr. Charles E. Banks; Treasurer, Mr. Walter Ripley; Secretary, Mrs. Johnson Whiting.
 
Read More

Wills Property to Historical Society
Vineyard Gazette
Bequest to the Dukes County Historical Society by Miss Ethelinda Mayhew of the historic Squire Cooke house which was her home in Edgartown, became known this week with the filing of Miss Mayhew’s will at the registry of probate. Miss Mayhew’s interest in the house was subject to the will of her brother, the late Horace Mayhew, and there are two other heirs in addition to the historical society, Mrs. Gertrude Kimrod of South Tacoma, Washington, and another niece of Miss Mayhew whose whereabouts are not known.
 
Read More

Dukes County Historical Society
Vineyard Gazette
The first meeting of the Dukes County Historical Society, for purpose of organization, was held at the Public Library, Oak Bluffs, on Monday afternoon, Oct. 23rd, Mr. Marshall Shepard presiding. The meeting adopted by-laws and elected the following officers for the ensuing year: President, Marshal Shepard; 1st Vice President, William J. Rotch; 2nd Vice President, Ulysses E. Mayhew; Secretary and Treasurer, Francis A. Foster.
 
Read More

Pages