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  • Monadnock Center Blog

    Briggs’ Patent Portable Piano Stools

    Briggs’ Patent Portable Piano Stools

    Michelle Stahl ~ September 28, 2014

    The products of Peterborough’s industrial past form an important part of the Monadnock Center’s collection. This screw- style piano stool was produced by the Brigg’s Piano Stool Company between 1870 and 1891.  Joshua Briggs (b. 1825) began his career as a carpenter and soon produced piano stools as odd jobs for folks in town.  In the late 19th century most middle class America households owned a piano or an organ and Briggs saw the opportunity to manufacture his piano stools on a large scale.  He opened a shop in North Peterborough near the Wilder Thermometer and Barometer Factory. By 1885, Brigg’s business had grown and occupied a three-story factory building in West Peterborough. His company, Briggs’ Patent Piano Stools, had received awards from the Massachusetts read more→

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    Letter from Antietam Creek

    Michelle Stahl ~ September 25, 2014

    The Monadnock Center has a large archive of military materials including letters and diaries of Peterborough Civil War soldiers.  The following letter was written by John Addison Cummings (1838-1887), a young Army captain.  He mailed this letter from Antietam Creek on September 28, 1862 “Dear Mother: We are lying in camp here on the bank of the Potomac.  The rebels are opposite and occasional dashes at them are made by our troops.  There has got to be one more great slaughter somewhere this fall, it may be near here but probably the theatre of operations will be changed soon and our army will move into Virginia again by way of Washington.  We seem to have severe battles and both sides claim a victory but no decisive results come from it.  I am sick and tired of it sometimes; read more→

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    The District #8 Schoolhouse

    Michelle Stahl ~ September 2, 2014

    The Monadnock Center for History & Culture preserves four historic buildings at its downtown Peterborough campus including the District #8 Schoolhouse. This brick one-room schoolhouse was donated to the Center in the 1990’s.  The school was built in 1824, one of several brick schoolhouses erected that year.  Peterborough was unusual because the town chose to build brick structures rather than the less expensive wood-frame schoolhouses typical of that time. The schoolhouse was located on Middle Hancock Road.  It was disassembled and moved brick-by-brick to the museum property and is now the centerpiece of Monadnock Center’s education programs for young people.  Every year, children visit the schoolhouse and get a taste of school in the 19th century.  The children take part read more→

    Col. Ebenezer Hinsdale’s Garrison Company

    Gearing up for the 275th Anniversary Celebration

    Michelle Stahl ~ August 18, 2014

    After more than two years of planning, the celebration of Peterborough’s 275th anniversary is just around the corner! The big celebration will happen on October 11 but there are also concerts, programs and other activities happening from October 10 through October 18 throughout town. A schedule is available on the anniversary website at Peterborough275.org. Check back often, as the schedule is being fine-tuned with more additions to come! The Monadnock Center is proud to be “Anniversary Central” throughout the fall months with our settlement exhibit, Along the River: 18th Century Settlement in the Contoocook Valley that will be on view through November 29. We have an exciting line up of programs related to the settlement theme with three scholar talks, a series of Hearth Cooking read more→


    Uncovering the rarely told secrets of Wilton history

    Monadnock Ledger Transcript ~ August 12, 2014

    Wilton, like most New Hampshire hill towns, has a past that encapsulates many different eras of change and growth. Old Home Days is a great time to remember how fortunate we are that a great deal of our history — in the land itself, as well as in wood and brick and stone — has survived. Much, though, is now lost to us and lives only in memory or a few old photographs. We see our town every day, but are we aware of the gems that lie hidden all throughout it? Some of our history that did survive into this century is not always apparent or visible to the casual viewer. The Historical Society and the Heritage Commission are preparing a brochure and map that will be a driving/walking tour of the many points of interest in town. Here, as a kind of a sneak preview, are just a few samples of read more→

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