This Week in Concord History

Nov. 26, 1845: Five hundred twenty-five turkeys mysteriously pass through the streets of Concord, one day before Thanksgiving.

Nov. 26, 1898: A giant snowstorm hits New Hampshire. Concord records 18 inches, Manchester two feet. “Along the coast the loss of life was appalling. More than 200 lives were lost and 200 vessels destroyed,” one local history reports.

Nov. 26, 1900: “Uncle Ben” Davis dies. He was one of Concord’s most popular citizens during the 19th century and, according to one eulogist, “the greatest music teacher that New England ever produced.”

Nov. 27, 1817: Between 20 and 30 pet dogs throughout Concord are bitten by a dog with rabies. The rabid dog will be killed the next day.

Nov. 27, 1884: It is Thanksgiving, but the trains are running in Concord and the mail will be delivered as usual, at 7 and 11 a.m. But in general, “the streets wore a Sunday-like still,” the Evening Monitor reports.

Nov. 27, 2000: About 300 people attend a Concord memorial service for longtime basketball coach Frank Monahan. “I personally feel I’ve lost a second father,” says Steve McMahon, a former player, “and I’m sure others that played for him feel much the same way.”

Nov. 28, 2001: Former Concord High basketball star Matt Bonner returns to New Hampshire to play with his University of Florida team against UNH. Bonner scores 15 points in a Florida victory.

Nov. 29, 1866: Fire damages the Penacook mills. Loss estimated at $40,000.

Nov. 29, 1867: Ingalls & Brown’s Quadrille Band plays at a grand ball at Concord’s Eagle Hall. “If you don’t dance,” exhorts the ad in the Patriot, “go to hear the music.”

Nov. 30, 1870: Fire burns out the stone warehouse behind the Eagle Hotel, leaving only the granite walls standing. Today, the warehouse is home to the Museum of New Hampshire History.

Nov. 30, 1983: Mayor David Coeyman is squired through the streets of Concord in a rickshaw pulled by Somersworth Mayor George Bald. Coeyman, a former two-pack-a-day smoker, won a bet that he could quit.

Nov. 30, 1999:Conant School parents say they’ve been discouraged from supporting teachers in their contract negotiations after back-to-school night and an evening holiday concert are canceled. “Parents want to support the teachers,” says parent Ann Lanney, “but there could have been better ways.

Nov. 30, 2000: A Monitor editorial calls on George W. Bush to concede the presidential election. The opinion is read on C-SPAN by morning anchor Brian Lamb, and responses quickly pour in from around the country. One Michigan man writes, “What are you people up there smoking anyway?” Bush would go on to win the election.

Dec. 1, 1848: Edward E. Sturtevant, a Concord printer, writes to his parents in Keene: “The Shakers are having a trial before a Legislative committee, which excites some curiosity among the people of this town. . . . A petition is presented for a law against parents and guardians binding children to them, alleging that they (the children) are taught to disregard all friendship for father & mother & brothers & sisters – to know no God except the Elders of the Shaker Society – and accusing the Shakers of abusing them & killing them, &c.&c. The petitioners have brought forward some 20 who have been Shakers but left them who testify strongly in favor of the petitioners. It is amusing to hear these backsliders swear down the religion of Anna Lee.”

Dec. 1, 1989: In Concord for a speaking engagement, peace activist William Sloan Coffin makes a prediction. Once Americans realize that the fall of the Iron Curtain means military power is no longer the central prerequisite for governing, he says, they will turn to the Democratic Party.

Dec. 1, 1994: The early morning barks of a dog save the lives of six residents in a Merrimack Street apartment house destroyed by fire. The cause: overheated wiring within a bathroom wall.

Dec. 1, 2001: With a weekend of spontaneous and rehearsed music, the Concord Community Music School celebrates a milestone: the grand opening of a $1.5 million addition that more than doubles the space for the school.

Dec. 2, 1991: A fire consumes Souther’s Market on Liberty Street.

Author: Insider Staff

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