The 141st Annual Meeting of the New London County Historical Society was held Sunday 18 September. Five new members were elected to the Board of Directors, Deborah McCann Connors of New London, Barbara Lipsche of New London, Brian Cooper of North Stonington, Karyn Garside of New London and Jeffrey Nelson of Groton. In addition, two stepping off the board were honored for their service; Marilyn Davis, of Waterford, served on the board for more than two full terms; and Denis O’Brien, of Mystic, served as treasurer for the historical society for two years.
Officers elected were: president, Deborah Donovan, New London; vice president, Nancy Steenburg, Mystic; treasurer, Frederick E. Burdick, Stonington; and secretary, Joseph Selinger, Stonington.
Deborah McCann is a pastoral assistant at St. Mary Star of the Sea Church and a freelance writer. Barbara Lipsche conducts business liaison and website management for New London Main Street. Brian Cooper is a president of Deschenes and Cooper Architectural Millwork, and Early New England Restorations in Pawcatuck. Karyn Garside is a Branch Manager for Dime Bank in New London. Jeff Nelson is the Director of Community Development for Hospice of Southeastern Connecticut, in Norwich.
A reception in the garden of the Shaw Mansion preceded the business meeting. The featured speaker, Lynne Bassett, an expert on 19th century textiles, shared her research on the work of women on the home front during the Civil War. She was able to compare the work of the New London Ladies’ Aid Society, making bandages, mattresses, quilts, shirts and uniforms to be sent to the front lines and hospitals, with the work of similar societies in other Connecticut towns.
Founded in 1870, the New London County Historical Society is one of the oldest historical organizations in the country. The Shaw Mansion, located near the intersection of Bank and Tilley Streets has been the home of the society since 1907 and is open for tours and research year-round.