Middletown Springs, Vermont
The Middletown Springs Historical Society collects, preserves and exhibits community history at its museum in the historic Adams House on the Green in Middletown Springs and at the Mineral Springs Park nearby on Burdock Avenue
The Adams House is located at 10 Park Avenue. The museum is open on Sundays, 2-4 p.m., from Memorial Day through October, and by appointment. The Historical Society presents several public events each year for educational and fundraising purposes. It also offers seasonal and ongoing exhibits. The Mineral Springs Park, located at 11 Burdock Avenue, is open to the public during daylight hours year-round.
2024 Maple Raffle Fundraiser Kicks Off
Ticket sales for the 2024 Middletown Springs Historical Society’s Maple Festival Raffle kick off on February 7. Raffle tickets are $25 each or five tickets for $100. Visit the Maple Raffle Page to download ticket sheets and view an illustrated list of the 37 items on offer this year. Participants are asked to target one item per ticket and may purchase and submit as many tickets as they choose. Tickets and payment must be returned to MSHS by U.S. mail, postmarked by March 13.
This year’s prize lineup includes 37 items, each valued at $100 or more. The Grand Prize item is the winner’s choice of a gift certificate for 100 gallons of heating oil from Johnson Energy or the cash equivalent, around $400. Other raffle items include gift cards from local and regional stores and restaurants, home and garden décor, specialty services, and even a unique rental venue for your party or event. In addition, Middletown Springs residents offer their expertise in massage, natural history, computer consulting, and connecting with horses.
The raffle drawings will be held on Sunday, March 17 as part of the 2024 Maple Festival at the Historical Society’s Adam’s House headquarters on the village green. Festival hours are 1-4pm. Winners will be drawn beginning at 3pm. It is not necessary to be present to win. The historical society will notify winners.
All proceeds from the raffle support MSHS educational and historic preservation projects including the Mineral Springs Park, the MSHS Museum, and the historic Adams House.
With a long list of items, each individually raffled, the odds of winning this year are great! For a list of raffle items, instructions and tickets, visit the 2024 Maple Festival Raffle Page.
2024 Maple Festival Returns on Sunday, March 17
Maple lore and demonstrations, sweet treats from local kitchens, and a Maple Raffle featuring 37 items each valued at $100 or more highlight the Annual Maple Festival of the Middletown Springs Historical Society on Sunday, March 17 from 1-4 pm.
This free, family-friendly event features an outdoor demonstration of the early technique of making maple syrup in a cast iron kettle hung over an open fire. Local sugarmaker Ryan Mahar and historians David Wright and Jon Mathewson will give a presentation on maple sugaring history and current practices using examples from the Historical Society collection. Videos about Vermont maple sugaring will be shown continuously.
Homemade soup and chili and delicious maple desserts created by Historical Society members, as well as Vermont maple products and new 2024 syrup, will be available for sale. Old-fashioned sugar on snow, pancakes and maple syrup, and maple cotton candy are always favorites.
Maple Raffle tickets can be downloaded from the website and sent in by U.S. mail and will also be available at the event. Participants target one item per ticket and may purchase and submit as many tickets as they choose, increasing their chances of getting what they want. Raffle tickets are $25 each or five tickets for $100. Separate raffle drawings for each raffle item will begin at 3:00 p.m. Winners will be notified, and they must arrange for pick up or pay shipping costs.
Museum exhibits on Middletown Springs history, including Childhood in Middletown Springs, 1850-1920, are on view during the festival. Admission is free and the building is accessible. For more information about the Maple Festival call David Wright at 802-235-2376 or Pat Hemenway at 802-235-2421.
Fancy Goods Exhibit on View at Vermont History Museum in Montpelier
There is still time to view Middletown Springs Historical Society’s exhibit, Fancy Goods: Hats and Fashion Accessories:1850-1950, at the Vermont History Museum in Montpelier. MSHS members receive free admission to the museum, compliments of the Vermont Historical Society, through February 24 when the exhibit closes.
Fancy Goods was first exhibited at the Middletown Springs Historical Society Museum in 2022. “The exhibit looks entirely different in the Local History Gallery at the Vermont History Museum,” says exhibit curator and MSHS Collections Manager Mary Lou Willits. “The wall space and exhibit furniture in the large gallery provided opportunities for grouping the fashion items in new ways with added interpretation.” She explains that the exhibit is arranged by fashion themes rather than strictly chronological order: panel titles for groups of objects include Summer Whites, Stylish Black, Feathers, and Beading. Some of the arrangements fell naturally into certain decades– the 1880s, 1900s and 1920s.
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Peek Inside Our Collections
Around 1900, men wore three piece suits topped with a round bowler hat or a Homburg hat that had a crease across the crown. The waistcoat, or vest, was often single-breasted with five or six buttons and very short points at the front. Men wore their hair short, and long beards gave way to groomed facial hair with a possible mustache.