This week in Concord history

March 31, 1968: Nineteen days after Sen. Eugene McCarthy captured 42 percent of the Democratic vote in the New Hampshire primary, President Lyndon B Johnson tells a national television audience: “I shall not seek, and I will not accept, the nomination of my party for another term as your president.”


April 1, 2000: Concord’s Matt Bonner gets a taste of Final Four basketball as a freshman, scoring four points and grabbing two rebounds in 14 minutes of play. His team, the University of Florida, defeats North Carolina, 71-59, to advance to the championship game.


April 1, 1817: There is still “good passing on ice on the river with horses,” Benjamin Kimball, a Merrimack River ferryman, writes in his diary.


April 1, 1997: In a bout of April Fools weather on baseball’s Opening Day, Concord gets seven inches of snow. Jaffrey gets 27 inches.


April 1, 1878: Shortly after midnight, April Fools pranksters dig up the body of executed murderer Joseph Lapage. They take it to the State House yard and suspend it from a gibbet-shaped water pipe frame. Special Detective E.B. Craddock and Officer Foster cut it down and bring it to Foster’s stable behind the Phenix Hotel.


April 2, 1994: Speaking in Representatives Hall to the New Hampshire Historical Society’s annual meeting, Donald Hall says of his poem “Kicking the Leaves,” whose subject is his moving to New Hampshire in 1975: “I didn’t know we were going to settle here, but the poem did.”


April 2, 1851: Concord’s town meeting votes to end the tolling of bells at funerals. The practice, the resolution says, “is productive of no good, and may, in case of the illness of the living, result in evil.”


April 2, 1835: A second temperance society is formed in Concord. It calls itself the Concord Total Abstinence Society and will attract mainly middle-aged men. The city’s Temperance Society already has 262 members, including 92 women.


April 3, 2003: Manchester will be home to a minor league baseball team by this time next year, city officials announce. The Boston Red Sox have agreed to allow the New Haven Ravens to move from Connecticut to Manchester, giving baseball fans the chance to attend minor league games in the Queen City for the first time since 1971.


April 3, 1945: Word reaches Concord that Staff Sgt. F. Hamilton Kibbee was killed on Jan. 31 while a prisoner of war in Germany. His wife Mary, who lives on South Street, last heard from him Jan. 7. The Kibbees have two children, ages 4 and 21 months.


April 3, 1917: A law takes effect allowing for the use of prison labor on state roads and in state forests. Progressive Republicans proposed and supported the measure, which will see little or no use in the 15 years it is in effect.


April 3, 1865: Concord’s church bells ring and a cannon fires in response to news of the overwhelming defeat of Gen. Robert E. Lee’s army at Petersburg, Va.


April 3, 1905: Douglas Everett is born. Everett will become a member of the 1932 U.S. Olympic hockey team, win a silver medal and be inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame. The Everett Arena in Concord will be named in his honor.


April 3, 1994: Pitching for the St. Louis Cardinals on Opening Day, Concord’s Bob Tewksbury defeats the Cincinnati Reds. The highlight is Tewksbury’s two-run double over the head of Reds center fielder Roberto Kelly.


April 4, 2003: Two weeks into spring, the greater Concord area wakes up to 6.4 inches of snow and promises of more to come.


April 4, 2002: Former honors student and student council president Robert Tulloch spurns his lawyer’s advice and admits to savagely killing two Dartmouth professors with his best friend.


April 4, 2001: Two .45-caliber bullets are found at Kingswood Regional High School in Wolfeboro as students arrive for the day. A search of the building finds no gun – and no apparent threat to anyone’s safety.


April 4, 1983: Concord City Clerk Marjorie Foote retires after 19 years on the job. “I knew just about everything that was going on with people in this city,” she recalls.


April 4, 1946: Brooklyn Dodger management announces that two African American baseball players, Don Newcombe and Roy Campanella, have been assigned to its Nashua farm team. The city’s population of 34,000 includes fewer than 50 African Americans. Frank Stawacz, sports editor of the Nashua Telegraph, writes: “These two boys will have to be glaring standouts, else they will find an atmosphere much to their dislike even in these parts where color makes little or no difference.”


April 4, 1974: Gov. Mel Thomson signs legislation reinstating the death penalty in New Hampshire. “I feel like John Hancock when he finished putting his signature on the Declaration of Independence,” he says. The new law calls for death by hanging.


April 4, 1924: Alf Jacobson is born. Jacobson will teach at Colby Sawyer College, be elected state Senate president and serve for many years in the House.


April 5, 2002: Charles Gravenhorst, a self-described pastor who hosts a late-night Christian show on Concord Community TV, is arrested on charges related to an alleged sexual assault in Maine.


April 5, 1816: In a rare self-appraisal, U.S. Rep. Daniel Webster of New Hampshire says his “antiquated notions” make it clear to him that he should have lived in “generations that have gone by.” His political career has stalled in the ruins of the Federalist Party. Four months later, Webster will move from Portsmouth to Boston and resume his rise on the national stage.

April 5, 1797: Jonas Chickering of New Ipswich is born. A prominent manufacturer, he will build 14,000 pianos in his day and strive to perfect an instrument that will remain in tune and fit for use regardless of the weather.


April 5, 1881: Fire badly damages the works of the Page Belting Co. The loss is estimated at $24,000.


April 6, 2002: As health insurance premiums rise by double digits, most New Hampshire health insurance companies are growing more profitable – reversing losses in the late 1990s that forced some competitors out of the market, the Monitor reports.


April 6, 2000: The New Hampshire Senate votes, 12-11, to repeal the state’s inheritance tax, but the measure is doomed because it’s linked to a plan to legalize video gambling. The House, which has already ruled out gambling legislation, will eventually agree on the inheritance tax repeal. The governor, however, will veto it.

Author: Insider Staff

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