This week in Concord history

Dec. 8, 1979: Concord City Manager Jim Smith rescinds the fire department’s ban on live Christmas trees in public buildings.

Dec. 8, 2001: Former Franklin city manager James Pitts will start work in January as Bow’s second town manager, the Monitor reports. “I’ve always admired the way the town had a lot of pride in itself,” Pitts said. In Bow, he continued, there’s “a strong focus on a community spirit. I am delighted to get a chance to be part of that.”

Dec. 8, 1732: A royal grant establishes the township that will one day be Boscawen, although the name will not be bestowed for 28 years. In 1760, Royal Gov. Benning Wentworth will name the town for a British admiral, Sir Edward Boscawen.

Dec. 8, 1880: The holiday season opens in Hopkinton with a lecture on the second floor of town hall by the Rev. S. C. Keeler. His topic: temperance.

Dec. 9, 1979: Concord School Superintendent Calvin Cleveland says a group of Gideons will not be allowed to distribute Bibles in the schools, saying it would open the “floodgate” to all religions.

Dec. 9, 2001: Franconia’s Bode Miller wins his first World Cup victory, a giant slalom. He’s the first American man to do so since 1983.

Dec. 9, 2000: David Souter of Weare is one of four U.S. Supreme Court justices to dissent from a decision to halt the presidential recount in Florida. Lawyers for the campaigns will return to the court in two days to argue whether and how that recount should resume or whether the election should be declared over.

Dec. 10, 1883: Nervous customers make a run on the China Savings Bank of Suncook. “The bank had heretofore borne a reputation of soundness, but of late there has been some acknowledged mistakes in the management of the institution,” the Weekly Union of Manchester reports. The presence of state bank commissioners makes depositors nervous, and by 10 a.m. 200 are waiting in line, demanding their savings in full. “Their deposits range from small sums up to $2,000. The total deposits of the bank aggregate nearly $200,000,” the Union reports.

Dec. 10, 1968: Hannah Hardaway is born. She will pitch a perfect game in softball for Moultonborough Academy but gain even more acclaim for her freestyle skiing. She will overcome a serious knee injury to win the national championship in moguls and dual moguls. Her first World Cup victory will come in January 2001.

Dec. 10, 1993: Barry Stem’s 967 acres on Concord’s Broken Ground, proposed over the years as a site for a golf course, a luxury housing project, a hotel and conference center and an office park, are sold at a foreclosure auction for $286,501.

Dec. 10, 1991: At St. Paul’s School in Concord, Gov. Bill Clinton of Arkansas tells students that if he were the Democratic nominee for president, he would not stand still for attacks on his character. “Nobody’s going to question my patriotism, my devotion to this country or my values without paying a price if I can extract it,” he says.

Dec. 11, 1979: In Washington, the House votes to allow states to decide for themselves whether to spend Medicaid money on abortions. New Hampshire’s congressmen split their votes: Democrat Norm D’Amours votes yes; Republican Jim Cleveland votes no.

Dec. 11, 2000: An early-morning fire at the Royal Garden Apartments in Concord leaves 37 people homeless. The community will respond with offers of clothing, shelter, even Christmas gifts for the kids.

Dec. 11, 1907: New Hampshire artist Benjamin Champney dies of influenza at 90. A friend writes to one of Champney’s old students: “Mr. C. painted right up to the day he was taken with the grip – had painted several hours that day – and he did some of his best things too.”

Dec. 12, 2000: About 100 Concord residents voice concerns about a retail development proposed for the city’s South End. For two hours, the crowd fires off questions about traffic, the demolition of old buildings and the impact on the neighborhood’s quality of life. In coming months, the proposal will be revised and then rejected by the city planning board.

Dec. 13, 2001: Less than five days after being introduced as Notre Dame’s football coach, George O’Leary resigns amid revelations that he falsified information about his academic credentials and playing career. He admits that he lied about playing football for three years for the University of New Hampshire, which he listed on his resume.

Dec. 13, 1774: Paul Revere gallops into Portsmouth to urge dissidents there to guard their arms and gunpowder because of Parliament’s recently passed ban on the export of munitions to the American colonies. His warning leads to a false rumor that British troops are marching north to guard the arsenal in Fort William and Mary in Portsmouth Harbor.

Dec. 13, 1776: Washington, New Hampshire, becomes the first town named after the general.

Dec. 13, 1863: Major Edward E. Sturtevant of Concord, a member of the Fifth New Hampshire Infantry and the state’s first Civil War volunteer, is killed leading his regiment in a suicidal assault during the Battle of Fredericksburg. His body is not found. His men assume it is one of many stripped and buried on the field.

Dec. 14, 2002: Nearly 30 years after Patricia Immen worked as a bookmobile clerk for the Concord Public Library, she’s appointed as the library’s new director, the Monitor reports.

Dec. 14, 1999: For the first time in more than a decade, the Concord teachers union authorizes its leadership to call for a strike vote if a settlement on a new three-year contract is not reached within the week.

Dec. 14, 1774: A crowd of 400, led by Thomas Pickering, a sea captain, and John Langdon, a merchant, gathers in downtown Portsmouth in response to British strong-arm tactics, including a ban on the importation of guns and powder. The crowd ignores the royal governor’s efforts to disperse it and marches on Fort William and Mary, where the garrison of six British soldiers wisely surrenders. The crowd hauls down the British colors and carries off 100 barrels of gun powder, some of which will be used in the Battle of Bunker Hill.

Author: Insider Staff

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