To The Daily Sun,
We knew her as Aunt Abbie.
Growing up on Dewey Street in the 1940s, the Jewett Homestead was part of our neighborhood and the home was always open and welcoming to children. Perhaps Aunt Abbie's training as an art teacher led to that. We were treated to "tea" and allowed to play (inspect) antique dolls with fragile clothing and porcelain faces and received personal attention as visitors.
Mr. Austin, Abbie's husband , occupied an office off the main entry kitchen where he kept a large desk and a very visible "spitoon" which was well used. He also ran a storage business in the large attached barn. We were allowed to play there. The stalls were being used for storage but there were still buggies and remnants of what had once been a stable. My brothers and I were allowed to climb ladders in the three story barn and even climbed to the cupola at the very top for a marvelous view of the area where we lived.
The house occupied a corner lot partly fronting on Dewey Street where a back lawn led to a magnificent garden tended by Mr. Austin in his straw hat. He always made me think of Mr. McGregor of "Peter Rabbit" fame. The garden would today be the envy of any gardener, filled with as many flowers as produce.
Sadly the property was divided, and an apartment building allowed to occupy the space which was adjacent to the home. Later the barn was removed but thankfully has been restored and kept. I have always imagined what the property must have been like at the turn of the 19th century with land leading down to the Jewett Brook and in another direction to encompass all the land which is now occupied by the Laconia High School.
Is it any wonder that I found your article by Mike Mortensen (Nov. 8) regarding the current restoration of the home so nostalgic? I recognize the room where Josh Youssef is standing. He and his family are to be commended for recognizing the historical significance of this property and I hope the city does as well. With the recent loss of a property we all admired it is a pleasure to read something so positive. I thank Mr. Youssef for his time and investment and I hope to drive by the house for a few more years with renewed enjoyment of its current ownership.
Carolyn Sanborn (nee Clark)
Last Updated on Monday, 10 November 2014 10:21
To The Daily Sun,
I saw Barack Obama on TV saying he wanted to work with Congress, but if they don't go along with his program, he'll take out his pen. He doesn't want to be impeded by "gridlock."
What he calls "gridlock," the founders called checks and balances. We are not a monarchy, Barack. We're a representative republic. If you don't get it, it's time for you to go.
Last Updated on Monday, 10 November 2014 10:16
To The Daily Sun,
Scary times ahead. With the New Hampshire House and Senate in Republican control I fear for our citizens. Rumor has it that Bill O'Brien will be back in the saddle as state House speaker. Remember the disaster he and his then Republican majority perpetrated on the mentally ill in New Hampshire in 2011? That debacle is still reverberating in hospital emergency rooms today. It will take years to undo the damage that Legislature inflicted. Will there be more to come with the new leadership? Heaven help us.
Thank heavens our voters rejected Walt Havenstein, Scott Brown and Marilinda Garcia and their Tea Party extremism. Obviously New Hampshire voters have more common sense than the rest of the country.
So now what will you write about all you Obama haters? Probably not that the economy of the USA has been steadily on the rise since he took office. Home prices, the economy's gross domestic product, the total number of jobs and industrial production have all risen from when he took office. Major stock indices have all increased steadily, The NASDAQ by 200 percent, S&P 500 by 150 percent, the Dow Jones by over 100 percent. And this from Forbes in September 2014: "President Obama has achieved a 6.1 percent unemployment rate in his sixth year, fully one year faster than President Reagan did. At this point in his presidency, President Reagan was still struggling with 7.1 percent unemployment, and he did not reach into the mid-low 6 percent range for another full year. So, despite today's number, the Obama administration has still done considerably better at job creating and reducing unemployment than did the Reagan administration. We forecast unemployment will fall to around 5.4 percent by summer, 2015. A rate President Reagan was unable to achieve during his two terms. A dollar invested when Reagan assumed the presidency would have yielded a staggering 190 percent return. Such returns were unheard of prior to his leadership. However, it is undeniable that President Obama has surpassed the previous president. Investors have gained a remarkable 220 percent over the last 5.5 years. This level of investor growth is unprecedented by any administration, and has proven quite beneficial for everyone."
I suspect that the topics by the Boutins, Ewings, WIles, et. al. will remain the same: Obama hatred, all Democrats are the same and the country is going to Hades in a handbasket. Yes, they will continue to tell us all about the made-up "scandals" as if their party is squeaky clean, continue with the passive aggressive racial bigotry and idiotic conclusions based upon little if any sound research.
So here is a question for all Republicans out there: What is your plan? Just saying "No" to everything and refusing to compromise is not a plan. It's a recipe for another recession. What exactly will you do in D.C. and Concord?
In a way I am glad that the next two years will be under Republican control. The mess they create will make the Democratic comeback in 2016 even bigger including the White House. I just hope and pray they don't cause irreparable damage to this great country or its most vulnerable citizens.
God bless America.
Last Updated on Monday, 10 November 2014 10:07
To The Daily Sun,
I lost the election to my friend Valerie Fraser, despite an amazing vote from New Hampton. Thanks to everyone, and best wishes to Valerie.
Last Updated on Monday, 10 November 2014 10:01
To The Daily Sun,
Many people in the Lakes Region are aware of the growing drug epidemic in our community and are greatly saddened by the loss of life due to this issue. In the past two weeks alone, families and friends have grieved the loss of four loved ones. It can be very easy to become overwhelmed, frustrated, angry and slip into the mode of blaming or claim "that's it... I am moving out of this town!" As chair of the "Stand Up Laconia" substance misuse prevention coalition, I have heard those comments often and, to be honest, have at times felt that same way myself. However, in my heart, I know the Lakes Region is a special place with incredibly decent and caring residents. I also know the drug epidemic is not unique to Laconia, the Lakes Region, or N.H. It is an issue in all communities throughout the United States. The difference here in Laconia is that we have opted to acknowledge it and to try to turn the tide on this issue by not sweeping it under the rug. Will this be easy? No. Will it take perseverance and a vast majority of our community coming together to tackle this issue? Yes!
Having resided here and been involved in this community for 17 plus years, I know it is an incredibly caring and connected community. This has become all the more evident in the past few months as an increased number of individuals are reaching out to the Stand Up Laconia coalition and saying what can we do? How can we help? Community members are already beginning some amazing initiatives! The interest and passion is real and everyday citizens like you and I can, have and will make a difference... but only if we get involved! Our community and Stand Up Laconia coalition is incredibly fortunate to have the involvement and support of the Laconia Police Department, the Laconia School District and organizations such as Lakes Region Partnership for Public Health and The Greater Laconia Ministerial Association. This collaboration of many is to be applauded and one of the reasons I am me proud to say I live in Laconia. However, this is a pervasive issue and will not be easily or quickly solved by any one person or group in isolation. We will need MANY involved and will need patience and stamina. In my humble estimation, the only thing that will hinder us in being successful in decreasing substance abuse issues in our neighborhoods is not feeling empowered and taking the attitude of 'What can one person do"? Although one person or organization cannot make a significant difference, together we can and will succeed in decreasing the drug issue, and most importantly saving lives and the fabric of our community!
Please join us this Thursday evening November 13th at Laconia Middle School and become part of the solution! From 5:30 – 6:15 p.m. The Laconia Middle school JAG (Jobs for American Graduates) students and Stand Up Laconia members will be serving soup to benefit the Empty Bowls program and directly following at 6:15 p.m. we will begin our forum on substance misuse. Stand Up Laconia will be partnering with The Greater Laconia Ministerial Association and the Laconia Middle School JAG (Jobs for American Graduates) to host this forum and The Laconia Police Department, the Laconia school system and Stand Up Laconia will be presenting. There will be opportunity to ask questions, share ideas and get involved in upcoming initiatives. Laconia and the greater Lakes Region it is time, let's Stand Up together, work together, support each other and decrease substance abuse and the havoc and destruction it causes in the lives of those we love and the very fiber of our community.
Last Updated on Monday, 10 November 2014 09:57