click through for an article from preservationnation.org back in december 08. This is the store as it looked after the first fire.
As I mentioned here a couple times since July in my first post, I worked in Putney Vermont for the summer teaching photography at a progressive school, called The Putney School. Needless to say I have always loved Vermont, my family has a number of good friends in the state and I have just always loved their policies and who they are as a people. So it was so wonderful to work in Putney, which is a very small town on the New Hampshire border, near Brattleboro in the south. It was a dream come true.
That’s why I want to bring your attention to this little bit that happened on the first of November.
Background first, Putney has had a general store in the same spot for over 200 years and it was the oldest continually operating store in the entire state. The 3rd floor of the historic building in downtown Putney burned back in May of 2008 due to an electrical short. The Putney historical society bought the property and secured state and federal grants for the huge rebuilding of this historical landmark. This past Sunday, another fire broke out, this one has been deemed arson unfortunately. The society had almost completed all fund-raising and they were preparing to open in the spring of 2010 with new local owners.
That dream is no more. The store burned to the ground completely, the historic building was lost as were a good chunk of grant money already invested. The historical society is cautious but wants a new plan and wants to rebuild, believing Putney needs its general store. I am not going to force anybody(like I could on a blog :P), but I feel their plight is worthy and any help you can give would be so very much appreciated by everybody involved. The people that live in Vermont are so very wonderful and caring, the people of Putney especially so. They do not deserve this disaster and I have chipped in with a membership to help. If you are interested in helping please see the following message from the President of the association. Membership, donations, or if you are on Facebook, joining the group, are very much appreciated. If you are unable to do any of the above that’s fine, tell a friend, tell family. Vermont is a community that many in America wish they had, I know I do. Lets join with the folks in Putney and help them move forward!
Thanks, I appreciate it.
We voted as a board today to cautiously pursue the feasibility of rebuilding the store. We very much want to do this! Please consider joining our organization.
$15 gives you membership through 2010. Send a check to: Treasurer, Putney Historical Society Town Hall, Box 233 Putney, VT 05346
If you would like to include an additional, tax-deductible donation for the store, great! You can also make online donations at putneygeneralstore.org
Putney Historical Society
AP news article on the fire
Keene Sentinel story
(disclaimer: I in no way speak officially for this organisation, I am not even a member yet, although that is in progress, I just truly care about this town and its people.)