Return to "Our Town" index
"Our Town" By James W. Tucker
Thursday, May 14, 1959
A letter from our daughter, Miss Phyllis, relates a humorous morsel of gossip, currently making the rounds in Washington. It seems that Claire Booth Luce, after her encounter with the renegade Senator Wayne Morse, while visiting the State Department, delivered this bon mot, "Time wounds all heels!" Whether La Luce had reference to a magazine or to a calendar interval we have no idea, but in either case she's 100 per cent right!
The other night we were privileged to attend a house warming. It was a gala affair in honor of one of Hampton's well known women, Mrs. Ruth Palmer, whose new home is beautifully located on the east side of Deacon Tuck's Mill Pond, off High Street.
An old Roman, Cicero by name who lived before Christ, said, "My precept to all who build is, that the owner shall be an ornament to the house and not the house to the owner." Everyone of Mrs. Palmer's friends, and they are legion, can attest to the fact that she is indeed an ornament to her attractive new home.
Hannah Colt's Cake
An outstanding feature of last Friday night's house warming was a cake, made and decorated especially for the affair by Mrs. Hannah Colt. It was an artistic confection, both as to design and color and it tasted even better than it looked if such a thing be possible.
The Money Tree
Another feature of the party was a unique "money tree," presented to Mrs. Palmer in behalf of the 32 assembled friends by Mrs. Wiear Rowell. Delicious refreshments were served before the guests took their departure from this friendly new home.
"Every house where love abides and friendship is a guest, is surely home and home, sweet home; for there the heart can rest." Van Dyke must have had in mind, when he wrote the foregoing lines, a home such as Mrs. Palmer has built for retirement -- a home not more than half a mile from the site of the restaurant which she made famous all over New England with fried clams that have never been excelled.
An expert archaeologist visited Norseman's Rock the other day and reported his findings to us. With the guidance of Mrs. Harry Parr, Frank Glynn, president of the Archaeological Society of Connecticut, found and inspected the ancient stone which has aroused so much scientific speculation throughout the nation. He writes under date of May 5:
"I wish I could be enthusiastic about Norseman's Rock. The stone is very soft. A fingernail will scratch it. I could find no trace of individual chisel or punch marks. My hunch, after a very brief inspection, is that the old farmers who thought these were plow scratches were very likely right. However it is an interesting location vis-a-vis the sea.
Missing Silver Cross
"I should think it might be highly possible that someone might have been buried at the foot of this rock. Perhaps the most useful research possible would be to see if some interested person could relocate the silver cross and fragments of iron said to have been found in an old excavation at the site. If these things could be relocated, it is possible that with the great growth in knowledge of the precise dating of objects, a more interesting dating could be suggested.
Likes Tide Mill Site
"The land at the site of your old town Tide Mill intrigues me. This is an excellent location. Even though it has surely seen much use in the last three centuries, I would be interested in making small test pits at certain spots if the present owner were agreeable."
Town Should Acquire Old Mill
We have an idea that the needed permission may be secured for Mr. Glynn. In addition, we learn through Guy Amburg of Woodland road, about another interesting location we shall ask Mr. Glynn to inspect. Do you know of any sites for archaeological investigation? We shall not forget to show the Connecticut archaeologist the Deacon Tuck Grist Mill on High street. Here is a historic site which the town should acquire without delay.
The Music Festival
Our town has enjoyed some unusually attractive events recently and is in line to enjoy many more in the immediate future. For instance,s the parade of school bands last Saturday was without a doubt the finest spectacle of its kind ever seen in Hampton where school music festivals are not unknown. Smartly uniformed in colorful regalia, with high-stepping twirlers, drum majors and color guards, fifteen or more bands that marched as well as they played, gave our town a parade treat that lasted nearly an hour. It was a cross-section of New Hampshire youth on display that would gladden the heart of any viewer. Those who were responsible for auditions and the parade are deserving of our sincere thanks and appreciation. Youngsters who make music will not make trouble.
For lovers of the theatre, the Hampton Players will present at the Junior High School on Friday and Saturday evenings, May 22 and 23 
, a three-act suspense drama, "The Night of January 16th." Audience participation gives an added fillip of interest to this unusual play which has to do with a trial by jury. Let's all desert our television sets and give the local players' group sound support in their up-coming presentation, the profit from which will -- for a change -- be used by the Players themselves in giving Hampton some very excellent theatre.
And speaking of the theatre, the Hampton Playhouse on Winnacunnet road will open the 1959 season on the evening of July 4 with "Tunnel of Love." Following the opening performance, John Vari and Alfred Christie will entertain first night patrons with their annual champagne party on the lawn just outside their unique barn theatre.
Other productions to be seen during the summer will include: Separate Tables, Reluctant Debutante, Mouse Trap and Ladies' Night in a Turkish Bath. Returning for the new season are, Jerry di Silva, David Doyle, Mary Doyle, Maggie Owens and Joe O'Brien. New faces will include, Nancy Watts and Lucy Landau. Complete details concerning the 1959 season will be released ;shortly.
Jerome J. Powers
"Jerry" Powers is dead. The oldest vaudevillian in the nation died at his home in Providence, R. I. early this winter. Knowledge of his passing was brought to Hampton a few days ago by a representative of the Providence Journal. For many years Jerry ran the Helena on Ocean boulevard and no greater booster for our beach ever lived. After he retired to his home on Plenty street in Providence, he continued to make a summer pilgrimage each year to visit with his "boys" in the Fire Station and to chat with his old friends. He was here last in 1955, quite feeble under the weight of 83 years.
With his brothers, he formed an act about 1885 which played the first vaudeville circuit in America. It consisted of one theatre in each of three cities, Boston, New York and Chicago. The Keith Theatre in Boston was the first house in the nation given over to variety. It opened in 1883 and the Powers Brothers were booked there in 1887. Later, as a tenor soloist, Jerry toured the country with such well known minstrel shows as Primrose & West and Lew Dockstader.
Jerry Powers was a showman until the day he died. He loved people, and with story, jest and song, it was his ambition to make folks happy. He was sincere, honest and possessed of a true sense of citizenship responsibility. We are proud to have been able to count this wonderful old vaudevillian among our friends. God rest his soul. He must have been very tired.
Return to "Our Town" index