This Week in Concord History

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March 13, 1975: Attorney General Warren Rudman vows to fight for tougher obscenity laws so he can successfully prosecute movie house owners for showing what he describes as hard-core pornography. His comments come after the acquittal of a Bethlehem theater owner who had shown Deep Throat and The Devil in Miss Jones.

March 13, 1993: People hunker down for what television has hyped as the "storm of the century." Concord gets 17 inches of snow. Most roads will be clear by morning.

March 14, 2002: The prosecution in the murder trial of Dwayne Thompson, who is accused of killing roommate Robert Provencher, details how Thompson fled to California and requested a new Social Security card, a California non-driver's identification card and a birth certificate, all under Thompson's twin brother's name.

March 14, 2003: At the annual town meeting, Canterbury residents decide to spend $2.6 million to redesign the town center and build a complex to house the fire, police and highway departments. The vote means that the town's small police department will finally get a holding cell, the fire department will have enough space for its trucks, and the library won't have to throw out one old book for each new one it acquires. The proposal, which required a two-thirds majority, passes 289-137 - a margin of four votes.

March 15, 1878: After two trials, Joseph Lapage is executed for the ghastly murder of Josie Langmaid. Miss Langmaid, a student at Pembroke Academy, was dragged into the woods, raped and decapitated the morning of Oct. 14, 1875. A prison historian remarks: "The evidence against him at the best was scant, but his guilt was black as night." In his last hours, Lapage reportedly says: "Me kill girl."

March 15, 2000: A 22-year-old single mother of twins from Franklin is one of the contestants on the new CBS television series "Survivor," the Monitor reports. When the show airs this summer, Jenna Lewis will become a household name and a celebrity throughout her home state.

March 16, 1933: Judson Hale is born. He will grow up to be editor of Yankee Magazine and the Old Farmer's Almanac.

March 16, 1983: The Monitor reports on the results of local straw polls on a statewide bottle-return bill. Loudon, Canterbury, Hopkinton and Deering vote in favor. Pittsfield tables the issue. Northwood says no.

March 17, 1681: The Governor's Council proclaims this a day of public fasting and prayer for John Cutt, New Hampshire's first colonial governor, who has fallen ill. Cutt soon dies, but New Hampshire will observe Fast Day for more than three centuries.

March 17, 1999: A report on how state agencies are preparing for possible computer problems on Jan. 1, 2000, finds so many deficiencies a key legislator suggests the governor appoint a Y2K czar. Ultimately, the New Year will come and go without disruption.

March 17, 2001: Many Bow residents wake up to a surprise, learning that the school bond they defeated the night before isn't dead just yet. Hundreds of voters went home after a proposal to build a $5.9 million elementary school had failed. Much later in the meeting, however, the issue was reopened when a motion to reconsider was approved by the remaining voters. Ultimately, the initial vote will stand.

March 18, 2002: At least a dozen top state officials earn retirement benefits meant for police officers and firefighters with hazardous jobs, even those administrators rarely - and in some cases, never - get called into the line of fire, the Monitor reports.

Lawmakers recently extended the benefits to additional administrative positions within the Department of Safety. But legislators, saying they have to draw the line somewhere, denied the benefits to workers with potentially dangerous jobs at the state hospital and state prisons. (next page »)


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