Haddam Historical Society
Thankful Arnold House Museum
July 2, 2020
News and Updates
Haddam Historical Society
receives CARES grant from
CT Humanities

The Haddam Historical Society is both thrilled and relieved to have received the CARES relief grant of $5000 from Connecticut Humanities. The grant will help the organization continue to share local history with the community through an online presence and help the museum open on a limited basis for visitors and researchers, while adhering to social distancing and reopening rules. The funds will also assist staff in working on cataloging collections items to documented museum standards. The funding is vital to keeping the organization going through 2020 as we have had to postpone or cancel all our public events and fundraisers.

Connecticut Humanities (CTH) recently awarded a total of $415,000 in operating support grants to fifty-six (56) organizations from across the state through its CARES Act Humanities Relief Grants.

The CT Humanities CARES Act Humanities Relief Grant program is made possible with funding provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to preserve jobs and help support organizations negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Thank you
Notice of Building/Demolition Permit Application
Today’s copy of Haddam Killingworth News had the legal notice for the demolition of 140 Dublin Hill Road. The building is listed on Haddam’s Historic Buildings Inventory and is characterized as “the most detailed and well-preserved representative of workers’ housing in the area” by the Connecticut Historic Resource Survey and Portrait of a River Town.

While some think that only high-style or really old buildings should be preserved, I disagree. The stories and homes of the factory workers’ and immigrants are just as important to our town’s heritage as are the 18 th century colonial or brick mansion on the hill. These tangible links to the working -class families of town represent those who labored in the local mills and factories and put Higganum on the map in the 19 th and 20 th centuries. They represent how families came from foreign shores with little in their pockets and were able to toil and save to achieve the American dream of owning a home in which to raise a family. These are stories of diligence, termination and industriousness.

The house at 140 Dublin remains relatively untouched, and although a modest cottage, it does exhibit some “Gothic Revival “architectural details that give the building character and is a humbler version of the more ornate managers or factory owners dwellings.

140 Dublin Hill was built by Leverett Spencer in 1875. He worked as an iron molder in one of the local firms, possible Reed and Gladwin or Cutaway Harrow. In 1906, Thomas Quinn, the son of Irish immigrants bought it and raised his family here. He worked as a blacksmith for D. & H. Scovil Company making hoes.

The Berchulski Family owned it from 1927 to 2018. Louis Berchulski and his wife Catherine were immigrants from eastern Europe (Poland/Austria) and raised a family of 10 children here. Louis worked at both Cutaway Harrow and Scovil Hoe. His son, George, lived here until 2018. Paula Berchulski Annino recalls her grandmother, Catherine, was always in the kitchen where the smells of fresh perogies and banana bread were lovingly present. The house was always a gathering place for the large Berchulski Family, many of whom still live in town today.

Below are some photos from the collection of Paula Berchulski Annino showing the property and the Berchulski Family. 
Berchulski Family
Baseball an important part of family.
L to R: Uncle Lou Lesi, Connie, Eddie, Babe, Stan, and John Berchulski.
Connie Berchulski Birthday
Eddie, John, Eva and Catherine Berchulski. Stanley and Connie on stoop.
Mrs. Czepiel, Aunt Josie, Catherine Berchulski and Mary Kathleen.
Eva, Catherine, Connie and Stan (on bike) Berchulski
Johnny Berchulski and Lou Lesi
New bike!
As per the town ordinance, a Delay of Demolition objection may be filed to work on an alternative to demolition. The town’s Planning & Zoning Commission will also need to approve the demolition of the building. The hearing is scheduled for September 9, 2020. 
Documenting Covid-19 Pandemic in Haddam 2020

The Haddam Historical Society would like collect and preserve the experiences, images and stories of Haddam, Higganum and Haddam Neck residents during the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic and shut-down. The pandemic is a significant historic event in the world’s history and we want to hear and document how it has impacted and affected you and your family.

We believe it is important to preserve these experiences for future generations to understand the impact Covid-19 had our day to day lives. Everyday life changed significantly-schools closed, jobs lost, quarantines, illnesses, and many disruptions. Share your experience for generations to come!
Stories, images surveys and submitted material will be stored in the Haddam Historical Society archives as recollections which chronicle this world changing event.

Examples of recollections the Society is looking for:
Writing (anecdotes, observations, stories, journals, poetry), Photos, Artwork, Videos

Or answer the online Survey Questions 
Annual Appeal
HHS logo
Annual Appeal and New Member Challenge-
More important this year than EVER!
Last week our annual appeal was mailed to every household in Haddam, Higganum and Haddam Neck. This campaign is very important to the future success of the Haddam Historical Society particularly this year since we have had to cancel or postponed all of our fundraising events and programs including the Connecticut Spring Antiques Show. Although the museum has been closed to the public since March, staff has been extremely busy cataloging collections, researching and sharing local history through social media, our web site and blog.

This year we have a NEW MEMBER challenge. An anonymous donor has pledged to match any NEW members contributions up to $2500, so we encourage you to ASK your neighbors and friends to support the Haddam Historical Society and Thankful Arnold House Museum and send in a contribution so we can take advantage of this tremendous gift.

In our Annual Appealing mailing we inadvertently left Susann and David Costa off the Jo Brann Memorial Donations. We apologize for the error and thank you for your support. 
Connecticut's Historic Gardens Day
Thank you to Deb Rutter, Cindy Sullivan and all the garden gnomes for their hard work to make our gardens look WONDERFUL! We had over 20 visitors on Sunday and practiced social distancing while wearing masks. All-in-all, it worked out fine.
Garden crew includes Charlene Breen, Judy Munster Marijean Conrad , Adriana Cerrato, Sue Augustyniak, Donna Morasutti, Rogene Gillmor, and Melissa Gibson (donated plants). WE APPRECIATE YOUR TIME AND TALENT!

The garden is at its peak right now and we encourage everyone to stop by for a free visit from dawn to dusk. Garden brochures are readily available in a weather-proof box and it is the perfect way to spent an hour or so among the flowers, herbs and bees. 
Watering the Garden
Thank you to all who have volunteered to water gardens:
Margo Novak
Marijean Conrad
Sarah Neal
Mary Alice and Ron Matulevich
Pat Hartman

Still have a few weeks left-
August 10-16
August 17-23
August 24-30
August 31 -September 6
Support our Business Members