Detail of pewter whale oil lamp

Lighting Madison

Thomas Edison is rightfully saluted as a creative genius who brought electric lights and other modern wonders to the world. But a look through the Madison Historical Society’s examples of early lighting devices (beyond candles) is proof that ingenuity was plentiful, long before Edison invented the incandescent light bulb. The

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Revisiting Old Times

The Madison Historical Society and the Charlotte L. Evarts Memorial Archives have hundreds of photographs and postcards that illustrate how much — and sometimes how little — town life has changed since the early 1900s. In these vintage images, clothing styles seem peculiar, the cars are all “antique,” and a

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John H. Pratt schooner under construction at a Madison wharf in 1890 by W. C. Crossly.

Madison’s Iron Men

There was a time before our time, It will not come again When the best ships still were wooden ships But the men were iron men. From Stonington to Kennebunk The Yankee hammers plied To build the clippers of the wave That were New England's pride. —Rosemary and Stephen Vincent

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Old-Time Madison

Madison has a special connection to how the world tells time. Charles F. Dowd, born in Madison in 1825 and a descendant of the original 1639 Guilford settlers, graduated from Yale in 1853. He moved to New York State, and, in 1870, addressing his long-held desire to simplify train schedules,

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Doctor in the House

Mila Rindge There is a small room at the Madison Historical Society’s Allis-Bushnell House full of medical documents, instruments and paraphernalia dedicated to Dr. Mila E. Rindge. Who was she? Mila Elisabeth Rindge (1915-2002) earned her BA degree from Connecticut College for Women, and her M.D. degree from Duke University

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Lincoln Telegram

At the Madison Historical Society’s Allis-Bushnell House, we keep a strange old document we call the Lincoln Telegram. Addressed to Madison native Cornelius Scranton Bushnell, the hand-written message arrived while he was living in New Haven in 1863. Cornelius, a railroad magnate by that time, had promoted and financed the

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