This Week in Concord History

March 19, 1967: The calendar says spring is about to start, but few believe it. The low temperature in Concord falls to 16 below zero, tying the record for the coldest March day in the 20th century. This follows a reading of 13 below the day before and 10 below the day before that.

March 19, 2000: On its way to the NCAA championship game, fifth-seeded Florida cruises past fourth-seeded Illinois in the second round of the men’s basketball tournament. Concord’s Matt Bonner, a freshman, sums up his first weekend of March Madness this way: “Before the game I was nervous . . . oh wow, I can’t even explain how nervous I was. But once you go up and down the court a few times you forget about it.”

March 19, 2002: In Concord after less than three hours of deliberation, jurors decide that Dwayne Thompson murdered his longtime roommate Robert Provencher, the man known by Main Street regulars as “Cigar Bob” for his ever-present smokes of choice.

March 20, 2002: An apartment fire on Maplewood Lane in Penacook leaves dozens of residents homeless. Nobody is hurt.

March 21, 1820: An editorial in Concord’s New Hampshire Patriot says the Missouri Compromise, while disappointing on the whole, “succeeded in rescuing from slavery a vast tract of country, which would otherwise have been expos’d to this dreadful curse.”

March 21, 1996: Concord City Manger Julia Griffin says she will resign. She will take a job as Hanover’s town manager.

March 21, 2003: As the war accelerates in Iraq, residents throughout New Hampshire react. “I have really mixed feelings about it,” says Debbie Heckman, as she gets her hair cut at Headlines in Concord. “I support the soldiers and sailors 100 percent, but I just wish it hadn’t come to this.”

March 22, 1851: Former New Hampshire governor and U.S. senator Isaac Hill dies at the age of 63. Hill was once editor of Concord’s New Hampshire Patriot and served in President Andrew Jackson’s “Kitchen Cabinet.”

March 23, 1825: The Rev. Nathaniel Bouton is ordained as minister of the First Congregational Society of Concord. From 1730 until now, the town of Concord, voting as a parish at town meeting, appropriated money to pay the pastor and support the church. The new society will sustain itself without taxpayer support.

March 23, 1867: Forty-two years after becoming Concord’s Congregationalist minister, the Rev. Nathaniel Bouton resigns. During his tenure, Bouton became a trustee of Dartmouth College and, in 1856, published a history of Concord. Seven months before leaving the pulpit, he was named state historian.

March 23, 1986: Congressman Bob Smith visits the state prison in Concord to tell veterans jailed there of his efforts to find Americans missing in Southeast Asia. Smith says the inmates seem to identify with American servicemen missing in action and held as prisoners of war.

March 23, 2001: Concord was New Hampshire’s fastest-growing city in the 1990s, the U.S. Census Bureau announces. The official 2000 population is listed as 40,687.

March 24, 1983: Gov. John Sununu refuses to add $170,000 to the state budget to cover the city’s cost of providing fire protection to state properties despite a promise two months earlier to work to get the money in the budget after Concord legislators came up with the figures. “It is really too late,” says William Herman, the governor’s aide.

March 24, 2004: The Concord School Board unanimously approves a $55.1 million budget that includes the elimination of a Rundlett Middle School wellness teacher.

March 25, 1996: In a Concord motel room, Robert Blair kills his girlfriend and her handicapped child with a hammer.

March 25, 1998: Concord officials propose a change in the city’s policy toward low-income housing. If the council approves, Concord will no longer actively support the construction of low-income housing, but will support only the rehabilitation of existing buildings for low-income housing.

March 25, 2000: Concord High defenseman Joe Garofalo has been named Division I hockey player of the year, the Monitor reports. It is the second year in a row he has won the award, which he shares this year with Bishop Guertin goalie Dave MacDonald.

March 25, 2002: The Concord School Board unanimously approves a $50.8 million budget for the 2002-03 school year. The budget represents a 1 percent decrease from last year but does not include pay raises for faculty and staff.

Author: Insider Staff

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