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Friends of the South End N EI G H B O R H O O D A SS O CI AT I O N N E W S L E T T ER

Friends of the South End Sponsors 13th Fairy House Tour Event On Track to Top $300,000 in Donations to Community

C E L E B R AT I N G P O R T S M O U T H ’ S 4 0 0 T H A N N I V E R S A RY

FOSE Launches House Histories Project BY RUTH MARON

BY CAROLINE PIPER Fairy House Tour Coordinator

community groups and all proceeds are donated back to these groups.

Over the past 12 years, the Friends of the South End has produced the Fairy House Tour as a way to bring together and provide financial support for the nonprofit organizations that make our neighborhood so unique. The event engages a dozen nonprofits, schools and

Since its inception, the Fairy House Tour has grown in scope — ­ more than 250 fairy houses will be on display this year and 6,500-8,000 people attend each year. So too has its financial impact grown, with $280,000 going back

Game of Faeries. Marilyn Stowe, 2016 Fairy House Tour Artist Invitational Winner. Photo by Barry Kane

S U M M E R 2 017

continued on page 6

Exeter Flower Shop's Sleeping Beauty Cottage won honorable mention in last year's Artist Invitational

As a FOSE member, you can be part of this magical event in two critical ways:

Volunteer: Simply put, this event would not be possible without the dozens of volunteers who give a two or four hours (or more!) of their time to work at the ticket booths, greet attendees, hand out building materials or help clean up. Every volunteer receives a complimentary ticket to attend the event. Anyone interested in working alongside their neighbors and helping at FOSE’s largest event can sign up online at www.portsmouthfairyhousetour.com.

Attend and Share: Help us spread the word about this event. Invite your friends and relatives to join you at the event, share our posts on Facebook (www. facebook.com/FairyHouseTour) with your networks, or forward the emails you receive. The more people who attend, the more money FOSE is able to raise for the organizations and schools who work to put this event on. Discounted advance tickets are now on sale online and in select Portsmouth retailers.

Portsmouth is getting ready to celebrate the City’s 400th Anniversary in 2023. The South End Historic District will play a prominent role in the celebration of the settlement — originally called Strawbery Banke, named for the wild strawberries that grew along the banks of the Piscataqua River. As residents of these venerable homes, we often wonder when the house was built…who lived there…and how it has changed over the years. History sometimes proves elusive. There is even controversy about the exact date of the settlement — and many of our houses include the word ‘circa’… approximately on or about a specific date. The upcoming anniversary provides an excellent opportunity to dig into the past and unearth stories of our houses that we can share with the community. The program to gather the histories, originally conceived by FOSE Co-president Esther Kennedy, was launched earlier this year with two informative research sessions at the Portsmouth Public Library and the Portsmouth Athenaeum, detailing the resources available for homeowners’ research. They include registries of deeds, insurance maps, photos, street files and City Directories. Many of these resources are computerized and can be found online. continued on page 4

FOSE newsletter • Summer 2017 1

A Message from Esther Kennedy and Mary Thomas Co-Presidents

Friends of the South End Neighborhood Association OFFICERS CO - P R ESI D EN T S

Esther Kennedy Mary Thomas TREASURER

Martin Hanssmann SECR E TA RY



Alan Gordon

Thanks to very strong member turn out, we have had several successful FOSE events this year to date. The annual meeting in January kicked off a comprehensive plan to strengthen the ties that we all have to our neighborhood and its history by learning more about our homes. The research seminars that were offered both at the Athenaeum and the public library were very well attended. We hope to build on this success by encouraging members to download the home research template which is on our website (friendsofthesouthend.org). One can simply click on the Interest Group bookmark and find the template on the bottom of that section. Once completed, the form may be emailed to Sue Shea at shea.sue@gmail.com or dropped off at her home (19 Howard Street). The long term goals that the board is considering are to put together this information for a self-guided walking tour of the South End neighborhood and also to publish a book of this data for the celebration of Portsmouth’s 400th Anniversary in 2023. The recent National Night Out BBQ at Four Tree Island was a great event, due in part to the beautiful weather and the lure of delicious food! Special thanks go to the tireless efforts of Rick and Sue Shea and Stan and Kathleen Boduch, which made the evening the huge success that it was. Upcoming events for FOSE include the Fairy House Tour in September and the Lobster Bake in October. We are also planning to sponsor a Candidate’s Night open forum ahead of the City Council elections in November, at which FOSE members can familiarize themselves with and ask questions of the candidates who are running for city office. We also hope to schedule a meeting with city parking officials to discuss issues pertinent to residents. Most importantly, Esther and I encourage members to come forward and join the board to participate in shaping the future of FOSE and the South End.

— Mary Thomas


Sue Shea



FOSE on the web:


Facebook page:


South End Exchange: (for FOSE members)


FOSE Presidents:


Newsletter Editor :


Kathleen Boduch FA I RY H O USE TO U R CO O R D I N ATO R

Judy Nerbonne AT L A RGE

Dan Brown Tom Hindle Dave Novis



Jamie Baker, Esq. CO N TAC T


A special thank you to our friends at

M i n u t em a nM a n P r e s s for discounted printing services. 95 Brewery Lane, Portsmouth, NH 603-431-8989 • mmpdigital.com

Newsletter design by Eleanor Bradshaw


FOSE newsletter • Summer 2017

Winter Color and Reflections at Strawbery Banke — Summer Light and Shadows at Strawbery Banke

The Color of Light: Seasons in Portsmouth South End Artist Carol Aronson-Shore Introduces Dramatic Series of Local Landscapes BY RUTH MARON

As New Englanders, we have all watched the colors change with the seasons and with the time of day — from the vivid reds of autumn to the splash of pink in spring…from the radiant light of morning to the deep shadows of dusk. For South End artist Carol Aronson-Shore, these often dramatic and sometimes subtle changes are the theme of her latest series — The Color of Light: Seasons in Portsmouth.

Carol adds that Strawbery Banke has been her muse since moving to the South End almost thirty years ago. “Even though these houses have endured for hundreds of years, the vagaries of nature create a constantly changing situation,” Carol said. “Seasons change…the time of day changes, light changes. In this body of work, I bring together the seemingly opposing concepts of permanence and ephemerality.”

The series consists of 20 squareformat landscapes paired by seasons at Strawbery Banke and around the South End. “Carol Aronson-Shore’s paintings raise classic New England architecture from the merely charming toward the classically beautiful,” writes Christopher Volpe, New Hampshire artist, writer and teacher. “At the center of it all is AronsonShore’s feeling for light, both its drama and its serenity, and always its color.”

The seasonally paired paintings are never mirror images of each other. Each

looks at the landscape through a different lens. The rich orange and amber hues of autumn are paired with cool blue shadows of winter. She contrasts Summer Angles of Light with Winter Angles of Light at Strawbery Banke. “Sometimes I think that these experiences of color are the real subject of my work,” she adds. “The rhythmic play of light and shadow is something that’s very important to my paintings.” Carol notes that artists have traditionally dealt with the seasons in art, music, literature and poetry. “We are very fortunate to live in New England with four distinct seasons, and we are constantly aware of the changes that surround us,” she said. “In Seasons in Portsmouth, I have tried to capture the experience of being in the South End and bringing the past into the present.” Carol is Professor Emeritus of the Arts at The University of New Hampshire. She lives in the South End with her husband Barry Shore, a professor at UNH. Carol invites South Enders to visit her studio at the Button Factory. You can contact her at cshore@unh.edu or visit her website at www.carolaronsonshore.com.

Summer Angles of Light — Winter Angles of Light

FOSE newsletter • Summer 2017 3

House Histories Project from page 1

Another good starting place is Richard Candee’s book Building Portsmouth, which provides a housing development timeline of different neighborhoods. Nancy Grossman’s book Placenames of Portsmouth is a good reference for following your street’s naming history and when it may have changed over time. For example, Whidden Street used to be Lock Street and Marcy Street was once named Water Street.

The Oracle House being moved in 1935 down Court Street from Haymarket Square (corner of Court and Middle) to its current location at the corner of Court and Marcy. The house, owned in 1935 by Governor Charles Dale, was originally built around 1709 by Richard Wibird, a British Royal Navy officer, wealthy merchant, member of The King’s Council and benefactor of Harvard College. Photo courtesy of Placenames of Portsmouth.

National Night Out Celebrated on August 1 BY SUE SHEA

A beautiful bright and breezy evening, great food and wonderful company describes the scene at National Night Out at Four Tree Island on August 1st. South Enders had the opportunity to mingle with neighbors, police officers, firemen, public works employees and other city workers in a relaxed atmosphere. Friends of the South End provided hamburgers, hot dogs and homemade beans, and neighbors brought a plethora of appetizers, salads and desserts. Many chose to end their night with a S’more (toasted marshmallow with chocolate between graham crackers). It was a great time to catch up with old friends, meet new friends, and strengthen neighborhood connections with Portsmouth’s finest.

To help guide your initial research, FOSE will be developing a “Historic Property Data Collection Form” and distributing it this Fall to all members. We would like to get all submissions by early 2018 to determine our next steps; please watch for details in your mail and email! continued on next page

FOSE Historic Property Research Guidelines 1. What is your property address? 2. Was it ever moved from a different location? 3. When was your property built? (Approximate or exact date.) 4. Who was the first owner and/or the most notable owner? 5. What were their occupations? 6. What are some interesting facts about your property? 7. Have there been significant changes made to the property over the years? (additions, modifications, etc.) 8. Pictures — oldest picture you can find of the property (or a significant photo), plus a current one. 9. Are deeds or other records available? * Additional pictures or information that is collected will be given to the Athenaeum.

National Night Out brings South End neighbors together for perfect weather and barbeque at Four Tree Island.


FOSE newsletter • Summer 2017

Look for a FOSE message or on our website for a Data Collection Form, with instructions on how to submit information and photos.

continued from previous page

Other House History Ideas FOSE Board member Sue Shea has met with the Portsmouth Advocates to discuss the possibility of creating individual house plaques with names, dates and other relevant information. All homes in the South End would be eligible for a plaque; details are being discussed. Other ideas under

consideration include publication of a booklet on our House Histories; and South End walking tours in collaboration with the Portsmout Historical Society.

Special Interest Groups Are Up and Running

Compiling the histories of our houses is a big undertaking, and a gratifying one. We welcome your participation and your suggestions as we get ready to celebrate the 400th Anniversary of our City.

Friends of South End is about building community. One way we’ve done this is by creating interest groups where South Enders can meet neighbors who share their interests. Below is a list of South End interest groups and, for most groups, the South End neighbor contact. Links to their Facebook pages can be found on our website. We hope you will join in. For questions, please contact Dave Novis at 534-2056.

Researching Your Historic House BY DAN BROWN

Over the last few months, FOSE has sponsored two educational meetings on techniques and resources available to help those who want to do their own house research for our South End Historical Homes Project which we are organizing for the 400th Anniversary of Portsmouth in 2023. South Enders attended meetings with both the Portsmouth Athenaeum and Portsmouth Public Library. For those who were unable to attend these informative sessions, here is a brief summary of the resources available at those institutions. The Portsmouth Athenaeum at 9 Market Square is celebrating its own 200th year anniversary. There you will find a treasure trove of maps, city directories, Portsmouth Advocate’s report on the South End, and vertical files on individual streets and houses. They also have an extensive photo library. Their files also include genealogies and Registries of Deeds for Rockingham County. It has a dedicated research staff that will guide you through the somewhat difficult journey to the past with the experience to move you along on your project. Their hours are somewhat restrictive, but they are open to the public for research on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM, and on Saturdays 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM. The entrance for the public is the small door next to Ireland on the Square. They also have a great website that allows some internet searches on their books and resources at www.portsmouthathenaeum.org.

South End Arts & Crafts: none South End House History Research Group: Virna Brooks at vbrooks@

ansonlane.com South End Theater, Cooking, Wining & Dining: Susan Manfull at smanfull@

comcast.net South End Musicians: Peter Brooks at

pbrooks@ansonlane.com South End Gardeners: Julia Holup at

jul3306@gmail.com South End Woodcarvers: Ned

Thompson at ept1955@aol.com South End Outdoor Activities: Dan Desrochers at desrochsox@comcast.net South End Walkers: Kyle Lachance at kylemariel@yahoo.com Portsmouth South End General Interest / Get Together: Book Club, Volunteer, Etc.: contact David Novis at

dnovis@dnovis.com Please contact us if you would like to join a group or start one of your own. Visit our website www.fosenh.org for more information.


The Portsmouth Public Library at 175 Parrott Avenue contains many of the same resources as the Athenaeum, as well as some early State Papers of NH dating back to 1606, and Probate Records of the Province of NH from 1635–1749. They have limited photos but have copies of many old NH papers from the early years of the South End. They have an excellent staff of researchers for the general library and the special collections room (on the second floor) where much of this information is stored. They have their own hanging files on people, places, and houses of the South End where one can with some luck find information that has been previously researched by others. Their website is extensive with some of their information searchable remotely by Internet and all searchable in the library on their many internet resources like Ancestry.com, Newpapers.com, and HeritageQuest.com just to name a few. Most of these require a library card which is free to Portsmouth residents. Their website is www.cityofportsmouth. com/library and their hours Monday to Thursday 9–9, Friday 9–5:30, Saturday 9–5:00, and closed on Sundays during the Summer.

South End Board Games: none

FOSE newsletter • Summer 2017 5

Come Sail Away Aboard the Gundalow Piscataqua BY K AT H L EEN B O D U CH W I T H A N DY GO O DA L L

That lovely angled white sail perched on a red boat that glides by us each day seems quiet and serene. But the excitement aboard and around the Gundalow Piscataqua is anything but quiet. Have you been onboard for any of the 28 concerts and sing-a-long sailings? Thursday and Sunday evenings are filled with the music of jaunty sea shanties. Three or four concerts remain after Labor Day. Fairies big and small on stage in Prescott Park

Fairy House Tour from page 1

into our community. This year, FOSE’s contributions, with your help, will top $300,000. The central elements of the Fairy House Tour — the houses in the gardens at each site, the Fairy ballet on the Prescott Park Arts Festival stage, the NH Theatre Project’s performance in the Langdon woods, an Fairy Houses Series Author/ appearance by Fairy Illustrator Tracy Kane. Houses author Tracy Photo by Barry Kane Kane and the Artist Invitational competition — will all be featured at this year’s event along with new fairy house building activities. The construction on Peirce Island presented an opportunity to rethink the hands on component of the event. In lieu of the build-your-own fairy house site on Peirce Island, Tour attendees will have a chance to be part of building a collaborative community fairy house at the Governor John Landgon House, Strawbery Banke Museum and in Prescott Park. Each location will feature a large themed pre-built base and a selection of related natural materials. We are excited to harness the power of creative collaboration and to see these community fairy houses emerge.


FOSE newsletter • Summer 2017

Andy Goodall, Operations Manager, reports that so far 50 school groups have been aboard the Gundalow for a day of discovery and adventure. School year visits by students from grades two to six are combined with visits to Strawbery Banke, learning to be stewards of the environment and the sea. With this school year yet to begin, they hope to beat last year’s total of 99 groups. Summer camps aboard the Piscataqua have been a big hit. Children learn to kayak, row, tie knots, explore tide pools, and to preserve our treasured waters. Perhaps your children and grandchildren aged 5 to 13 will sign up for a week-long day camp next year. Groups are small, with 15-18 children, divided by age. Enrollment begins in January, with advance enrollment for members. 2016 was the second year the Round Island Regatta was sponsored by the Gundalow Company. Area waters were filled with kayaks, row boats, paddle boards, wind boards, sailboats, and even a few wherries, many craftily decorated. The water fun was followed by a picnic on Four Tree Island. “Sailors” and landlubber picnickers had a wonderful time. Tuesday night talks called Speaker Sails were also a big hit, with this year’s speakers focusing on the history and cultural aspects of the Seacoast region. The program will be back next year by popular demand. A new trip was added last year with a sail up the Cocheco River, adding a new

Courtesy of the Gundalow Company. © Ralph Morang

dimension to the Gundalow Company’s repertoire. The dock at Prescott Park will be vacant from September 5-14 this fall, when the Piscataqua visits Newburyport and Amesbury, MA, where a new extension of the river steward program happens on the Merrimack River. A local historian thinks that a gundalow has not sailed that river for over 100 years. If you have been wondering about the fate of the former active Gundalow, the Captain Adams, that boat is now a permanent part of the Children’s Museum in Dover, dry docked in its playground. There are plenty of on-land and onboard volunteer opportunities available year-round. There are currently 150 active volunteers. Gundalow Guardians are needed to check on the boat while it is moored at the dock year round. No special skills are needed, but training is provided. All you need is time and commitment. Office help is always appreciated, and the help of good sailors is welcome on river tours. The Gundalow season generally runs from the second week in May through the end of October, but volunteer participation is always welcome. More information is available at www.gundalow.org or by calling the office at 603-433-9505.

SAVE THE DATE! FOSE Annual Lobster Fest Scheduled for Sunday, October 15 Once again this year, South Enders will gather at Sanders Lobster Company to say farewell to summer! At this traditional lobster bake, everyone receives a net bag containing one steamed lobster, steamed clams, potatoes, kielbasa and a hardboiled egg. Green salad and beverages accompany the feast. For those who don’t love lobster, baked ziti will be available. And then dessert! Gail Sanders will again provide her famous apple crisp à la mode. Who could ask for anything better! Tables are set up both inside and outside, overlooking the Back Channel. Don’t be deterred by the prospect of rain. One year, a heavy cold rain threatened to ruin the event. Undaunted, all tables were set up indoors alongside the lobster tanks. Many claimed that this cozy venue was the best Fest ever. The Lobster Fest takes place from noon to 2 p.m. Volunteers are needed for setup at 11 a.m. and clean-up at 2 p.m. A FOSE Message will be sent via email in September with details on reservations and payment. For those without email or wishing to volunteer, contact Susan Shea at 603-918-7690.



Sanders Lobster Company

Lobster Fest

54 Pray Street, Portsmouth

S U N D AY, O C T O B E R 1 5


Noon to 2 pm Sue Shea at shea.sue@gmail.com


1/2 stick butter

½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

¼ cup EVOO

¼ tsp. red pepper flakes

4 garlic cloves, minced

¼ cup dry white wine

1 large shallot bulb, finely chopped

1 lb. lobster meat, cut into bite-size pieces

½ pint grape tomatoes, each cut into 8 small pieces

Juice of half a large lemon

2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley + more for garnish

½ cup half-n-half or heavy cream 1 lb. pappardelle, cooked al dente and

1 tsp. kosher salt

drained at last minute

Heat butter and olive oil in a skillet with sides over low to medium heat. Add garlic and shallots; sauté just until golden. Add tomatoes, parsley, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and dry white wine. Cook another 4 to 5 minutes. Add lobster meat; stir to combine well. Add lemon juice and half-n-half or heavy cream. Simmer gently, just until lobster meat is heated through. Cook and drain pappardelle; toss with lobster mixture while both are warm. Serve in large bowl; garnish with more parsley. Serves four.

m m



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It’s time to renew your membership! Please use the form below to renew now in order to continue receiving FOSE Newsletters, Alerts and the South End Exchange. One year membership: $15 per household

Five year membership: $75 per household

Please complete this form, make check out to FOSE and mail to: Friends of the South End, PO Box 443, Portsmouth, NH 03802 N A M E : _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

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Not yet a member? You can fill out and mail in this form to join.

FOSE newsletter • Summer 2017 7

Friends of the South End P.O. Box 443 Portsmouth, NH 03802-0443

Carol Aronson-Shore: South End Houses in Fall — in Winter


FOSE newsletter • Summer 2017

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