Wednesday, July 21, 2021

The Fire Department in Sandwich, Massachusetts - Weathervane Wednesday

 This weathervane was photographed in Sandwich, Massachusetts.

This two dimensional fire engine weathervane can be seen above Station 1 of the Sandwich Fire Department, at 115 Route 6A Sandwich, Massachusetts on Cape Cod.  There is a similar weathervane above Station 2 located at 466 Route 6A in East Sandwich.  This weathervane has a beautiful patina from age, and seems to be made of several metals that have changed to different colors over time. 

The Sandwich Fire Department website:   

Click here to see over 425 other Weathervane Wednesday blog posts:   


To Cite/Link to this post:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "The Fire Department in Sandwich, Massachusetts - Weathervane Wednesday", Nutfield Genealogy, posted July 21, 2021, ( accessed [access date]). 

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

The Goddess Estia - Weathervane Wednesday

 This weathervane was photographed in Falmouth, Massachusetts.

This weathervane depicts "Estia" or "Hestia", the Greek goddess of the home and hearth.  She was the eldest daughter of the Titans Rhea and Cronus.  The Romans called her "Vesta".  

The Estia restaurant in Falmouth is well known for its Greek cuisine.  Food is cooked over open hearth coal ovens.  There is a second Estia restaurant at the Mashpee Commons nearby.  

We were in Falmouth recently and just as the sun was setting we drove down Main Street.  The setting sun glinted off this weathervane and lit up Estia's copper robes and her gilded flame.  It was beautiful! 

Click here to see over 425 other Weathervane Wednesday blog posts!   

The Estia Restaurant website:   


To Cite/Link to this post:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "The Goddess Estia -  Weathervane Wednesday", Nutfield Genealogy, posted July 14, 2021, ( accessed [access date]). 

Tuesday, July 6, 2021

Hannah Chipman Huckins, died 1696, Barnstable, Massachusetts - Tombstone Tuesday

 This tombstone was photographed at the Lothrop Hill Cemetery, Barnstable, Massachusetts

AGE 1696

Hannah Chipman Huckins, my 8th great grandmother, is buried next to her mother, my 9th great grandmother, Hope Howland Chipman.  Hannah was born 14 January 1659 in Plymouth, Massachusetts.  Her grandparents were John Howland and Elizabeth Tilley, the Mayflower passengers.  Hannah married Thomas Huckins on 1 May 1680 in Barnstable, Massachusetts.  She had nine children with Thomas, and then she died young on 4 November 1696.  I descend from their daughter Hope Huckins (1689 - 1730) who married Benjamin Hamblin.  

Hannah's husband, Thomas Huckins has no known tombstone.  He remarried to Sarah Pope, the widow of Samuel Hinckley.  Thomas died before 15 October 1714. 

A previous blog post about my HUCKINS lineage:

A previous blog post with Hope Howland Chipman's tombstone:


To Cite/Link to this post:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Hannah Chipman Huckins, died 1696, Barnstable, Massachusetts - Tombstone Tuesday", Nutfield Genealogy, posted July 6, 2021, ( accessed [access date]). 

Saturday, July 3, 2021

Shirley Marion (Eaton) Wilkinson 1928 - 2021

Auntie Shirley Wilkinson, surrounded by her grandchildren
On her 90th birthday in 2018

Obituary from The Cricket, Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts, July 1, 2021  

"Shirley Marion Eaton Wilkinson, age 93, died June 30.  She was born in Wakefield, MA, the daughter of Emory Nelson Eaton and Marion Wilson (Bullock) Eaton.  Shirley resided in Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts, most of her life.  She was predeceased by her loving husband of 56 years, Robert Munroe Wilkinson.

Surviving Shirley are her son, Stephen Wilkinson, and his wife, Emma, of The Villages, Florida; her daughter, Susan Wilkinson Parker, and her husband, Jeffrey, of Manchester-by-the-Sea; her sister Mary Louise O’Brien; and her sister-in-law Phyllis Wilkinson.  Shirley leaves cherished grandchildren Amy Lyn Wilkinson and her fiancĂ© Christopher Merlino; Robert Gonzales Wilkinson and his fiancĂ©e Anna Lisa Vust; Christopher Schulte Parker and his wife Nicole Anne; and Brian Eaton Parker and his wife Rosaly; greatgrandchildren Ava and Anthony, children of Amy; Caleb and Benjamin, children of Christopher and Nicole; and William, Alejandro and Caroline, children of Brian and Rosaly; and special nieces, nephews, and cousins.

Shirley and the family are deeply grateful to Mary Hardwick as well as the care providers at The Linden and Ledgewood Rehab.

During high school, Shirley worked at Pioneer Village in Salem and was a soda jerk at Allen’s Drugstore in Manchester.  She graduated first in her class from Story High School in 1945 and entered the Beverly Hospital School of Nursing, graduating with her nursing diploma in 1948.  Shirley was a member of the WWII U.S. Army Cadet Nurse Corps.  She worked at Beverly and other hospitals, Oakwood Nursing and Retirement Home and was also a private duty nurse.  Shirley loved her career as a registered nurse.

Reading, music, gardening, knitting, traveling, playing bridge, Scrabble, walking, crossword puzzles, and volunteering were favorite pastimes.  She also loved genealogy and was delighted to be a granddaughter of Benjamin Bullock, Manchester’s old-time baker.

Shirley was an active member of the First Parish Church Congregational where she sang in the choir for 40 years, and served in a variety of roles, including deaconess and trustee.  She enjoyed The Manchester Woman’s Club, Manchester Historical Museum, the Council on Aging, the Lions Club, Golden Agers, Seaside Knitters and Beverly Hospital Nursing Alumni Association.   

Robert and Shirley loved hosting family vacations to Cape Cod, New Hampshire, the Caribbean and other places, providing the family with eternal wonderful memories. 

Shirley treasured her many friends and her beloved hometown.  She will be remembered for her smile, positive attitude during health challenges and pleasure in helping others.

A celebration of life will be held Saturday, August 14, 2021, at 10:30 a.m. at First Parish Church Congregational, followed by a reception at the chapel.  To those who wish, memorial contributions may be made to the music ministry of First Parish Church Congregational, PO Box 187, Manchester, MA. 01944."

For the truly curious:

A 2015 blog post about Aunt Shirley Wilkinson's service as a Cadet Nurse in the 1940s:

A 2020 blog post about Aunt Shirley Wilkinson's recognition as a Cadet Nurse by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts: 

Friday, July 2, 2021

Two Weddings in Holden, Massachusetts


We were married at the First Congregational Church in Holden, Massachusetts on this day, July 2nd, many years ago.  For a long, long time I thought that we were the first family members to be married this far west in central Massachusetts.  Then I found some interesting family history!

On 27 February 1787, my 5th great grandparents, Stephen Cree and Hannah Smith, were married in Holden, too.  Hannah was born in Worcester on 22 May 1763, the daughter of Joseph Smith.  Stephen Cree was born in Topsfield, Massachusetts on 30 October 1760.  There is no evidence that they lived in Holden, and all five of their children were born in Topsfield, where Stephen and Hannah both died and were buried.  In 1797 Holden was a new town in central Massachusetts, broken off from North Worcester in 1741.

In 1968 my family moved to Holden from Beverly, Massachusetts. We joined the First Congregational Church. My parents were very active members and joined many committees at this church. My mother still volunteers in the thrift shop.  I had my confirmation and wedding here, my nephew was baptized at this church, and my father had his funeral there.

I'm still wondering what brought my 5th great grandfather 70 miles from Topsfield to Holden to find his bride in 1787.  I'm glad he did, or I wouldn't be telling you this tale!  Vincent traveled 1,600 miles from Puerto Rico to Holden to marry me.  You can see us standing in the rain, in the photo above, taken nearly 40 years go, in Holden.  

For the truly curious:

First Congregational Church, Holden, Massachusetts:  

A blog post written on our 35th anniversary, about our wedding day:    


To Cite/Link to this post: Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Two Weddings in Holden, Massachusetts", Nutfield Genealogy, posted July 2, 2021, ( accessed [access date]). 

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Hope Howland Chipman, died 1683, Barnstable, Massachusetts - Tombstone Tuesday

 This tombstone was photographed at the Lothrop Hill Cemetery, Barnstable, Massachusetts


The back and sides of this tombstone were encased in lead,
which was an old fashioned way of preserving the slate stone from the weather

Hope Howland Chipman is my 9th great grandmother, born 30 August 1629 in Plymouth, Massachusetts, the daughter of Mayflower passengers John Howland and Elizabeth Tilley.  She married John Chipman on 13 September 1646 in Plymouth, and they removed to Barnstable on Cape Cod.  They had twelve children, and I descend from her fifth daughter, Hannah (1659 - 1696) who married Thomas Huckins.  Hannah Huckins, my 8th great grandmother, is buried next to her mother - I'll post her tombstone in a future blog post.  

You can see my HOWLAND lineage at this link: 

Last week I featured Hope's husband's tombstone.  Elder John Chipman is buried in Sandwich:

This tombstone and the Lothrop Hill Cemetery were recently featured in the Summer 2021 issue of The Mayflower Quarterly magazine by the General Society of Mayflower Descendants.  


To Cite/Link to this post:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Hope Howland Chipman, died 1683, Barnstable, Massachusetts - Tombstone Tuesday", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 29, 2021, ( accessed [access date]). 

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Elder John Chipman, died 1709 Sandwich, Massachusetts - Tombstone Tuesday

This tombstone was photographed at the Old Town Cemetery in Sandwich, Massachusetts.  


The tiny tombstone to the right is Elder John Chipman, and the larger stone to the left is his second wife,  Ruth Sargent, who died in 1711.  I descend from his first wife, Hope Howland Chipman, daughter of Mayflower passengers John Howland and Elizabeth Tilley, who died on 8 January 1684 in Barnstable, Massachusetts.  

John Chipman was born about 1620 in Bryant's Puddle, Dorset, England, and died 8 January 1709 in Sandwich, Massachusetts.  He married Hope Howland on 13 September 1646 in Plymouth, Massachusetts.  He became a member of the church in Barnstable on 30 June 1653, and his wife was a member on 7 August 1650.  He removed to Sandwich after his second marriage, where he died and was buried. 

John Chipman and Hope Howland had twelve children.  I descend from their fifth child, Hannah Chipman (1659 - 1696), who married Thomas Huckins and lived in Barnstable.  

Please see my blog post on my Chipman lineage here:   


To Cite/Link to this post:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Elder John Chipman, died 1709 Sandwich, Massachusetts - Tombstone Tuesday", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 22, 2021, ( accessed [access date]). 

Sunday, June 20, 2021

The Fathers Day Tree 2021

 Back in 1988 we started our Fathers Day Tree tradition with a newly planted little oak tree in Londonderry on Vincent's first Fathers Day.  We have continued this tradition even after we moved to Manchester, with a newly planted group of birch trees.  Last year our daughter continued this tradition at their new home in Massachusetts.  Here is a sampling of some of the Fathers Day Tree photographs from over the years...

1988 Londonderry

1991 Londonderry

1993 Londonderry

1998 Londonderry

2001 Londonderry

2004 Londonderry

2006 Londonderry

2011 Londonderry

2013 Londonderry

2015 Manchester
(The Grand Father Tree was a clump of birches)

2017 Manchester

2019 Manchester

2020 Manchester

2021 Manchester

And just for fun...
We went back to Londonderry to see how big our original oak had grown in 2020

And here is the second generation Fathers Day Tree (a dogwood) on the day it was planted in 2020 Massachusetts!


To Cite/Link to this post:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "The Fathers Day Tree 2021", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 20, 2021, ( accessed [access date]). 

Friday, June 18, 2021

The Dog Chapel, Saint Johnsbury, Vermont

The author and artist Stephen Huneck’s Dog Chapel has been a New England landmark since it was constructed in 2000 in Saint Johnsbury, Vermont.  It is located on Dog Mountain, on Huneck’s studio and farm. It was designed to resemble an 1820s New England church,  with stained glass windows and art work featuring dogs. The public was invited to post photos of their dearly departed dogs on the wall known as the Remembrance Wall.  Today every wall of the chapel is covered with photos and stories about dogs from their loving family members.

The farm at Dog Mountain is open to the public, and even when the chapel and gallery are closed.   Recently the Dog Chapel restored the Dog Angel and reinstalled it on top of the steeple.  You can read all about the installation project at the blog: 

My friend Melissa McNulty visited Dog Mountain and Dog Chapel last week, and took these amazing photos. I thought it was beautiful and I wanted to write a blog post for Weathervane Wednesday!  However, the Dog Angel is not a true weathervane, but more of a sculpture and final on top of the steeple. So, Dog Chapel gets a blog post anyways. I hope to visit here sometime soon.


For the truly curious:

Dog Mountain website:   

Dog Chapel web page:   


To Cite/Link to this post:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo and Melissa McNulty, "The Dog Chapel, Saint Johnsbury, Vermont", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 18, 2021 ( accessed [access date]). 

Thursday, June 17, 2021

What’s Open for Genealogy Research in New England

Some great news!  We’ve all been mostly cooped up inside using the internet, writing away for documents, and waiting for some archives, libraries and repositories to open.  Here is the latest information.  Caveat:  Please contact these locations for the latest information about their hours and availability during the pandemic.  Things sometimes change overnight and local conditions and regulations may not be reflected in this blog post! 

New Hampshire State Library, Concord, NH

The American Ancestors Research Center (The New England Historic Genealogical Society at 99 – 101 Newbury Street, Boston, Massachusetts) will reopen on June 22nd by appointment.  Schedule your visit at this link:   For the Wyner Family Jewish Heritage Center (inside NEHGS) visits and appointments, see this link:

For the American Canadian Genealogical Society, 1 Sundial Avenue, Suite 317N, Manchester, New Hampshire, is now open for business on Wednesdays only from 9am to 6pm.  No appointment is necessary, but masks and social distancing are required.   

And there is more!

American Antiquarian Society, 185 Salisbury Street, Worcester, Massachusetts  Is working on a plan to reopen the reading room soon.

Boston Public Library There are 24 branches of the Boston Public Library.  The Central Library at 700 Boylston Street in Copley Square, and neighborhood branches are now open for limited services, and more services are returning soon.  and

Connecticut Historical Society, one Elizabeth Street, Hartford, Connecticut 860-236-5621  The Edgar F. Waterman Research Center will reopen on September 8th.  The exhibit galleries are open.

Connecticut Society of Genealogists Library 175 Maple Street, East Hartford, Connecticut  (860) 569-0002   Open to the public Tuesdays through Fridays 11am to 3pm.  Masks are optional.  News!  The CSG Library is now a certified Family History Library Affiliate, too.

Connecticut State Library 231 Capitol Avenue, Hartford, Connecticut  (860) 757-6500  Open to the public Monday through Friday 9:30am – 4pm by appointment only.  Call for an appointment.

Maine Historical Society 489 Congress Street, Portland, Maine  (207) 774-1822   Open Wednesdays through Saturdays.  The Brown Research Library is open by appointment only.  Masks are optional for fully vaccinated guests. Members free, non members $10 a day. See this webpage for more information: 

Massachusetts State Archives  20 Morrissey Blvd, Boston, Massachusetts (617) 727-2816 or fax (617) 288-8429 Open to the public for research Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 4:30pm.  Call ahead to see if what you are researching might be available online.  Masks are required. Free parking. The nearest MBTA station is one mile away (JFK/UMass red line) and the shuttle bus is not running at this time.

Massachusetts Historical Society 1154 Boylston Street, Boston, Massachusetts (617) 536-1608     The MHS library is currently closed until further notice.  The reference team is available to assist you remotely.  Please see this page for more information:  The MHS has been holding several online events every month, and their card catalog is online.

Massachusetts Registry of Vital Records (records from 1926 to the present – births, deaths, divorces, and marrriages) at  150 Mount Vernon Street, Boston, Massachusetts  (617) 740-2600  There are limited in-person services at the Registry of Vital Records.  The Public Research Room is closed. Please use the forms for mail-in requests and web requests.  The Public Service Counter will have limited in-person services Monday to Friday from 9am to 4:45pm.  See the website for more information.   UPDATE 14 July 2021:    

Mayflower Society Library 4 Winslow Street (behind the Mayflower Society House), Plymouth, Massachusetts (508) 746-3188, ext. 11 or email the librarian  or and please include “Library Appointment Request” in the subject line. See this website for more information  The GSMD library reopens in July 2021 by appointment only for members.   

National Archives at Boston (NARA), 380 Trapelo Road, Waltham, Massachusetts   The research room is closed currently.  You may experience a very long delay to your requests and Freedom of Information Act requests or appeals. There are many online research tools available.   

New Hampshire Historical Society Library 30 Park Street, Concord, New Hampshire  (603) 228-6688  and also  Open by appointment only Thursday, Friday and Saturday 9:30 to 12:30pm, or for 1:30 to 4:30pm.  Masks required.  Email or call 603-228-6688 to make a reservation.  The society also offers research services for a fee.

New Hampshire County Registry of Deeds   The registries of deeds are open to the public.  Face masks are encouraged, or required and available upon request.  Each county registry has different safety requirements, and limits on the number or individuals allowed access to the records, please check the website. 

New Hampshire State Library, 20 Park Street, Concord, NH,  The library opened to the public on 7 May 2021.  Masks are strongly encouraged and available at the entrance.  Open Monday to Friday 8am to 4:30pm.  You can schedule an appointment for a time with a reference librarian by calling 603-271-2144. 

New Hampshire Vital Records and Archives 9 Ratification Way (Formerly 71 South Fruit Street), Concord, New Hampshire, 603-271-3242.   

During the COVID-19 pandemic the Archives and Vital Records are closed to walk in traffic.  The public is encouraged to use the website.  You may call 603-271-2236 with urgent business or email  For more information see the website  

Phillips Library of the Peabody Essex Museum, 306 Newburyport Turnpike, Rowley, Massachusetts.  Open Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 9am – noon or 1 – 4pm.  Appointments must be made 24 hours in advance. Masks are required.  Only three researchers are allowed in the reading room each day, and appointments are required by contacting   See this blog post for more information:

Rhode Island Historical Society 10 Benevolent Street, Providence, Rhode Island  (401) 331-8575 The Robinson Research Center currently closed to the public.  Contact the staff at  for research assistance.    

Rhode Island State Archives 33 Broad Street, Providence, Rhode Island  (401) 222-2353 and email  Appointments must be made for a two hour slot weekdays at 10am or 2pm.  Requests for appointments must be made three days ahead of the requested date. 

Rhode Island State Library 82 Smith Street, Room 208, Providence, Rhode Island  (401) 222-2473  The state house reopened to the public on 1 June 2021 with limited hours 9am to 3pm.  The public may visit, and the reference staff will answer requests by phone and email from 8:30am to 4:30pm.  There is a catalog available at the website.

Rhode Island Vital Records, 3 Capitol Hill, Providence, Rhode Island 401-222-5960 or the website   Walk in service for vital records is closed until further notice.  See the website for ordering records online. 

UNH Dimond Library, 18 Library Way, Durham, New Hampshire.  See this web page for information on building access and online assistance

Vermont Historical Society Leahy Library,  60 Washington Street, Suite 1, Barre, Vermont  (802) 479-8509.  Open by appointment only.  See this page for COVID-19 safety procedures:

Vermont Vital Records and Archives 1078 Route 2, Montpelier, Vermont (802) 863-3208 or email  or   The vital records office is currently closed to walk-in services, but curbside services may be arranged in advance. The reference room is available by appointment for researching records in the state archives 


Cite/Link to:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "What’s Open For Genealogy Research in New England?", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 17, 2021, ( accessed [access date]).  

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Molly Reid Memorial, Londonderry, New Hampshire






1735 - 1823






             MOLLY REID."




This monument to Molly Reid is located on High Range Road in Londonderry, New Hampshire, on private property (but visible by the roadside) between Parmenter Road and MacIntosh Road.  She was the wife of General George Reid, who lived in Londonderry (now the part that is Derry) and who fought the American Revolution in Lexington, Concord, Bunker Hill, Trenton, Saratoga, Monmouth,  and with George Washington in Yorktown.  

George Reid was a farmer, who married Mary Woodburn in 1765.  They had five children, Mary Boyd Reid Dinsmoor (d. 1834), James Reid (1767 - 1827), John Reid (1771 - 1834), George Reid (1774 - 1848), and Elizabeth Reid McGregor (1776 - 1847).  The Reid family is buried at Forest Hill Cemetery, and follow the link below to see a blog post with photographs of the Reid family plot.  

Mary Woodburn was the daughter of John Woodburn, an Irish immigrant, and Mary Boyd of Londonderry.  Their farm and homestead was located near the memorial on High Range Road. Their home was a garrison, which was never needed because Londonderry was never attacked by the French or the native people of the area.  Mary (Molly) was born 7 April 1734/5 and died on her birthday in 1823, aged 88 years.   John Woodburn is also buried at Forest Hill in Derry. 

For the truly curious:

The Molly Reid Chapter DAR website:    

A 2012 blog post with the gravestone of General George Reid and Mary Reid, buried at Forest Hill Cemetery in Derry, New Hampshire:    


To Cite/Link to this post:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Molly Reid Memorial, Londonderry, New Hampshire", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 15, 2021, ( accessed [access date]). 

Monday, June 14, 2021

Flag Day 2021


Happy Flag Day!
This flag is located in front of the Hancock, New Hampshire Town Hall


To Cite/Link to this post: Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Flag Day 2021", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 14, 2021, ( accessed [access date]). 

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Derry History Mural, extended!


Two years ago I posted about the first phase of the Derry History Mural, which was started in honor of the 200th anniversary of Nutfield, New Hampshire.  You can read that first post HERE.  Recently, we revisited the mural to photograph the new section, which was painted last year during the pandemic on the wall of the Cask and Vine perpendicular to Broadway.  

This new mural added some of the pets (dogs, cats, even a goat) of Derry residents along the bottom of the first panel, and some more recent Derry history.  There is a moon with Alan Shepard's space capsule, a view of Broadway and some of the historic buildings and businesses, and landmarks such as Pinkerton Academy, Beaver Lake, Hood farm, and the horse fountain that was removed to MacGregor Park in 2019.  The mural can be seen as pedestrians and bikes travel along the rail trail that crosses Broadway.  

For the truly curious:

My 2020 blog post on the first phase of the Derry History Mural:   

Derry News, "History Continues in next phase of Derry Mural Project", August 26, 2020  


To Cite/Link to this blog post:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Derry History Mural, extended!", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 8, 2020, ( accessed [access date]).