I’m wondering how many of my regular readers saw the photo of the Windsor Historical Society building in Monday’s post and thought: “I bet he’s coming back to those doors on Thursday.” What can I say, I’m nothing if not predictable.
The stone bridge’s birthday party will ultimately lead to three blog posts. There was the story of the bridge on Monday. At some point, there will be a story about the Historical Society itself. But, the Historical Society sits in a little enclave of Windsor history, and of course, that means doors. Why are doors important? I hear you ask.
Every Thursday, our friend Norm Frampton, oh wait, Norm is still on vacation. Our friend Manja hosts a get-together for door-lovers and their photos, paintings, and stories about the doors they love. If you want to participate, you can go to Norm’s place, which will direct you to Manja’s place. Now, here’s the deal: Look at Manja’s doors (that’s easy because she always shares the most beautiful doors). Then look for the blue frog. Careful, that little tadpole has traveled from Montreal to Indianapolis to Hartford and now to Italy! He may be a little jet-lagged. Touch him gently with your mouse and I’m sure he will let you into the world of doors. Add your doors, or just look around.
The area of Windsor where the Windsor Historical Society is located should be familiar to my regular readers. The Historical Society is directly across the street from the The First Church, which I featured two years ago. It’s set in with a group of historic houses and at least one newer building, many of these buildings were once part of The Chaffee School. If your familiar with preparatory schools, you might have heard of the Loomis Chaffee School. It’s an interesting school, formed from tragedy.
You can read the entire history here, but the thumbnail version is that the Loomis and Chaffee families were both early settlers in Windsor. James Loomis and Abigail Sherwood Chaffee, married in 1805 and had five children. Those five families suffered, as none of their collective children survived beyond the age of 21. They pledged their financial resources in July of 1874 to their mutual care, with any remaining funds being set aside to form a school for “all persons of the age of twelve years and upwards to twenty.” Forty years later in 1914, the school opened its doors to 39 boys and 13 girls.
The Loomis school was built a bit southeast of the center of town on the original Loomis homestead. At some point, (details are unclear) the Chaffee school opened, across the Farmington River, near where the Historical Society sits and was used for the education of girls. In the 1970s, the schools merged and expanded in what is now the Loomis Chaffee School.
The doors in the gallery were captured as I wandered around the grounds, in between finishing my dinner at Bart’s and the celebration of the bridge’s birthday. Some of the houses are historical sites, some are in private hands, and it wasn’t clear which was which. I tried to be discreet, knowing that you would all understand, and that I could come back and tour the historic sites for another Thursday’s post.
Enjoy the doors in the gallery. You can click on any one to start a slide show. Again, please visit Manja’s site and thank her for hosting this week. Joey and I and Manja were proud to help Norm enjoy his vacation. It looks like we didn’t set the place on fire, so I hope he comes back rested and ready for another edition of Thursday Doors.