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The Village Broadside

The Blog of Historic Deerfield

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Tombstone of Mary E. Taft

The Last Illness of Mary Everett Taft

In the March 25, 1899 issue of the Greenfield Gazette & Courier, the following notice appeared:
“The public are very much saddened by the death of Mrs. Mary E. Taft, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Edward Everett. Mrs. Taft has been seriously ill at her father’s house for three weeks and everything that medical science could do has been done for her…

Digging in the Dirt: Arad Munn’s Second Job

The death of a loved one can be sudden and shocking, or the inevitable result of a long decline. Either way, those that remain find themselves tasked with the immediate details of death, such as preparing the body for burial, procuring a coffin, arranging a viewing and/or funeral, finding a burial site, and digging a grave.

The Fear of Cholera in 19th Century Deerfield

As the COVID-19 pandemic rages across the world, it is important to remember that this is not the first pandemic the world has faced. Often the 1918 influenza is mentioned as the last great world-wide pandemic. While this is true, an earlier pandemic of cholera from the 19th century as documented by Epaphras Hoyt (1765-1850) of Deerfield, shows that our reactions to the disease are very similar to Hoyt’s.

Benedict Arnold Arrives in Deerfield (Again)

Benedict Arnold, the infamous traitor of the Revolutionary War, came to Deerfield twice. The first time Arnold made an entrance, not as a traitor, but as an ambitious Connecticut patriot on his way to war. The second time Arnold arrived quietly, with his reputation preceding him.