Weirs Boulevard cemetery holds grave of Revolutionary War veteran: Winthrop Langley

LACONIA — Veterans organizations are constantly searching for the grave sites of fellow veterans of previous wars in order to place markers and American flags on those graves.
Yesterday in Meredith, members of the Griggs-Wyatt Post #33 American Legion marked Veterans Day by placing markers and flags at five grave sites, three of them soldiers who served in the Revolutionary War and two who served in the war of 1812.
The search for veterans' grave sites has been going on for many years as is evidenced by an account of one which was located in 1935 and whose story is recounted on the Laconia Ancestry Too website, which is maintained by the Laconia Historical and Museum Society.
This following is from the Laconia Citizen for Saturday, June 29, 1935:
"Care for Grave of Winthrop Langley:
"Laconia Post, 1670, V.F.W., has just completed the installing of a fence around the cemetery at Langley Cove where the bodies of Winthrop Langley, veteran of the Revolutionary war and his family are buried.
"Winthrop Langley was born in 1750 and died in 1834 and was buried on the shores of the lake where he settled after serving in Capt. Butler's company, Great Island 1775; and West Point, 1780.
"The Veterans of Foreign Wars take a great interest in remembering the graves of departed comrades of all wars and feel it is a disgrace to see a cemetery all covered with brush and stones where our soldier
dead are buried.
"Laconia post a short time ago cleaned up in the Laconia district alone, six of these private cemeteries.
"The committee in charge besides the commander Guy Colby included W.D. Kempton, Winfield Pearson, Bill Reister and Custer Sanborn."
The cemetery and the enclosure which was installed in 1935 are still visible from Weirs Boulevard as is an American flag which was installed at then grave in recent years which bears an insignia marker from the Sons of the American Revolution.
A history of the Winthrop Langley family which included on the website and written by a researcher of the cemetery's history says that Langley Cove was named for the Langley family and that Winthrop Langley settled in what was then Gilford on Long Bay (now known as Paugus Bay) after moving to the area from Newmarket in 1775.
Langley married Achsah Quimby, daughter of John Quimby of Gilford in 1813. According to the researcher a Mr. Libbey, who was an old neighbor, remembered attending her funeral when a small boy. The researcher wrote ''She was buried beside the highway on a small elevation, where we found twelve graves, under some pretty pine trees with field stones for head and foot of graves (the cuttings nearly work off by the elements), which is the last resting place of the Langley family, just across from Quimby Island, in Langley Cove that formerly was main land, but the water has worn a passage and made it an island.''
What was then known as Quimby Island is now known as Christmas Island where a resort and a nearby restaurant were developed by Phil Roux of Gilford in the 1950s.
For more on the Langley family visit

A Sons of the American Revolution marker and an American flag mark the grave of Winthrop Langley, who fought in the American Revolution. The grave is located in a cemetery across from Langley Cove on Weirs Boulevard which also is the burial site of members of Langley's family. (Roger Amsden/for The Laconia Daily Sun)

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City Council to sound public on proposal to sell lot Lakeport Landing calls home

LACONIA — The City Council this week concluded that it could not simply renew the lease of a strip of land along Union Avenue to Lakeport Landing Marina and instead chose to offer a proposal to subdivide the parcel — sell one portion and retain the other — for public comment at its next regularly scheduled on November 24.

The property, 0.81 acre, lies between the roadway and railway and runs from Elm Street northward to halfway between Harrison Street and Walnut Street. The property was leased to Lakeport Landing in 1985 for 10 years with two 10-year renewal periods, which have been exercised. In 1987 Lakeport Landing constructed a 35,284 square-foot building on the lot. The property has an assessed value of $389,600 of which the building represents $263,200.

The lease expires on November 1, 2015 and the tenant has no right to extend it further. At the termination of the lease all buildings and improvements on the lot become the property of the city.

On the recommendation of Councilor Henry Lipman (Ward 2) the council agreed to sound the public on a plan to subdivide the property, offering the northern parcel, where the building stands, for sale to the highest bidder and retaining ownership of the remaining land, which is adjacent to the lot housing the old Lakeport Fire Station, though separated by seldom-used railroad tracks.

When the council last addressed the issue two weeks ago, Erica Blizzard, who owns the marina, said that the loss of the property would have, "a significant impact on our business." She explained that the building houses the firm's offices and showrooms. Although the marina owns three other building in the immediate vicinity, on lower Paugus Bay, she said that each is built to specific purpose and cannot be converted to accommodate sales and administration."We could not offer boat sales at that location," Blizzard said, explaining that its sales operation would have to be moved to another location and because it would be difficult to find waterfront property, "we would undoubtedly lose sales."
On Monday,kSteve Whalley, the owner of HK Powersports further north on Union Avenue, described Lakeport Landing as "a good business and good employer" and cautioned the council against taking steps that would have an adverse impact on the firm.
The portion of the property the council proposes to sell abuts Irwin Marine, which has repeatedly expressed interest in acquiring it.

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Laconia marks 11th Hour of 11th Day of 11th Month

LACONIA — Beneath a bright sun and blue sky more than a hundred men, women and children gathered at Veteran's Square yesterday to pay tribute to the sons and daughters of the city who have worn the uniform and born the arms of the armed forces of the United States in the annual celebration of Veterans Day.

The voices of the chorus of Laconia High School filled the air with a medley of the hymns of each of the services — the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard — to open the ceremonies.

Remarking that the day is one to remember friends and loved ones "either in person or via an heirloom photograph", Mayor Ed Engler said he chose to recall his late father, then drew a snapshot of Donald George Engler in his Army uniform from his coat pocket. He noted that his father was a toddler when Armistice Day was first celebrated in 1919 to mark the first anniversary end of "the war to end all wars . . . until less than 25 years later, it wasn't."

Engler said that by 1942 his father was in uniform and arrived in France as the Battle of the Bulge was waning. He survived the fighting in France and Germany as the war drew to a close. "He was not a hero, in any specular sense of the word," Engler said. "He was just another kid from a small American town who answered the call to serve his country when it came. He did his job. Just like almost all of the 40 million men and women who have worn a United States of America uniform, dating back to 1775."

"The price of freedom," Engler said, "we know has been high. And it remains high. And I say , thank you dad. And to our veterans everywhere, thank you all."

Valerie Johnston, president of the VFW Auxiliary, reminder her listeners that the average age of those in uniform is just 19 "half-man, half-boy." He is an average students, she went on, who played sports, listened to rock 'n roll, swing, jazz, hip-hop and 105 millimeter howitzers. He may forget to brush his teeth, she confessed, but never to clean his rifle. He can save your life or take it — "that's his job," she declared. And he has wept weep in public or in private, unashamed, she closed.

Earl Beale. commander of Wilkins-Smith American Legion Post 1, spoke of the sacrifices made by veterans and their families — frequent moves and separations, risks and anxieties. "Warriors need advocates," he said, in what he said "is not a political statement," explained why the American Legion and VFW fought to expose and overcome the shameful shortcomings of the Veterans Administration. "Veterans need each other," Beale declared, "and our country needs its veterans."

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City bans possession & sale of synthetic pot

LACONIA — With one dissenting vote, the City Council on Monday night adopted an ordinance proposed by the Police Department that prohibits the possession and sale of synthetic cannabinoids, commonly known as "spice," K2" and a number of other names, within the limits of the city.

Modeled on those adopted by Franklin, Tilton and Belmont, the ordinance would make it illegal to sell, barter, give display, possess or transport any material or mixture containing synthetic cannabinoids. The specific chemical designations of the illicit compounds are set forth in the ordinance. Those found in violation of the would be liable to a fine of $500 for each and all illicit material would be seized and destroyed by the Police Department.

"Spice" can be any one of dozens of chemical compounds fashioned to mimic the effects of marijuana. However, toxicologists claim that comparing the effects of spice to marijuana is like comparing an air rifle to an assault rifle.

Although marketed as incense, spice is smoked and ingested, sometimes with dire effects. In August, Governor Maggie Hassan declared a state of emergency after 41 people in Manchester suffered "serious medical reactions," half of them requiring treatment in hospitals, from using spice. Likewise, that same month three people in Concord using spice were hospitalized within 24 hours.

Only Councilor David Bownes (Ward 2), an attorney, dissented. He noted that the police conducted an investigation, but found no stores offering spice for sale in the city. He also questioned what he called "the factual basis" for supposing spice posed a threat to the city. "It's difficult to conclude that what we're prohibiting is dangerous," he said, "Don't pass ordinances just because other cities are doing it."

NOTES: City Manager reported that the city issued 176 building permits between April 1 and October 31, compared to 162 during the same period a year ago, with an aggregate value of $21.5-million, compared to $13.8-million in 2013 and $8.8-million in 2012. . . . . . The City Council unanimously agreed to sell a patch of land 12 feet wide and 16 feet deep on Winnisquam Avenue alongside Martel's Bait & Sport Shop to Ralph and Jacqueline Langevin for $20,000. The city purchased the land in 1950 to provide access to two sanitary sewer siphons. The Langevins have granted the city an easement to access the sewer pipes that run under the Winnipesaukee River.

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