Princess Julia Grant Cantacuzène Speransky was a charter member of and museum collections donor to Windsor Historical Society. She was also a descendant of Windsor founder Matthew Grant.
When we receive donations for our museum and archives collections, one of the first tasks we undertake is to determine the importance of the objects and figure out if and how they fit into the history of our town. While that is simple enough to say, the process can be painstaking, alternating between fulfilling and frustrating, but always fascinating.
In 1711, Connecticut outlawed walking “in the night season” to discourage people from being out at night drunk and making a commotion. The following 1770 document from our collection reflects this law in action. It's a detailed and vivid formal complaint about some late-night shenanigans, unappreciated by the victim of those shenanigans.
Elaine joined us in 1990 as a library assistant and later as the volunteer librarian, in charge of cataloging and ordering books, keeping the library in order, and coaching the many patrons who visit it.
Windsor Historical Society operates two historic house museums, including the 1767 Dr. Hezekiah Chaffee House. In its time it was the largest home on the Palisado Green. In 1992, the town leased the Chaffee House to Windsor Historical Society to operate as a museum. How would we furnish it?
For students of Windsor’s early history, there are few figures more important than Matthew Grant. It is thanks in large part to his careful record keeping during his years as town clerk that we are able to piece together much of our information about Windsor’s beginnings.
The Death Trap was a narrow stretch of the lower part of Palisado Avenue that runs underneath the railroad overpass. Today this is a straight road, but in the treacherous travel era of the early 20th century, it was a 90-degree hairpin turn at the bottom of a hill.
I am writing to announce an important leadership transition at the Windsor Historical Society (WHS). Christine Ermenc, our amazing executive director who has built WHS into the award-winning community asset that it is today, will be retiring March 1, 2020.
Near the northern edge of the Windsor Historic District, on the east side of Palisado Avenue, stands a marker proudly proclaiming the entrance to Bissell Ferry Road. Tucked in between two nearby homes, the unpaved road would be easily overlooked if not for this sign. This modest reminder is all that is left to commemorate a vital spot in Windsor’s long history.
It is always a pleasure for a historian or genealogist to find documents that add color and dimension to the individuals and communities being studied and that fill in the gaps between the official records. The Filley Records are such a document.