1950: Middletown (Conn.) Church to Mark Its Bicentennial

Middletown, Conn., Dec. 31.–While this Connecticut town is preparing to celebrate its tercentenary in the summer of 1950, the Protestant Episcopal Church of the Holy Trinity will mark the end of its second century of continuous existence as one of the community’s foremost churches.

The parish was organized on Easter Monday, April 16, 1750, and the first church building, known as Christ Church, occupied a site on the town green. In 1834 the church was moved to a brownstone structure which is now the Russell Library, the town’s public library, and soon afterwards the name of the parish was changed to the present Holy Trinity. The present gothic building in Main St. dates from 1874.

The main event in the bicentennial celebration will be an anniversary dinner April 17, at which the principal speakers will be Secretary of State Dean G. Acheson and former Senator Raymond E. Baldwin, both former parishioners and choir boys of the church, Secretary Acheson’s father, the late T. Rev. Edward Campion Acheson, was the rector of the parish from 1892 to 1915, before his election as Bishop-Coadjutor and later Bishop of the Diocese of Connecticut. Rev. Lewis W. Pitt, rector of Grace Church in New York City and also a former member of the parish, will conduct the anniversary service in the church on April 16. Another past parishioner is the Rev. Karl Rolland, rector emeritus of New York’s St. George Church.

Other bicentennial plans call for the raising of a special anniversary fund to furnish a memorial chapel and to provide various other improvements for the church.

Rev. Dr. Clyde D. Wilson has been at the head of the parish since 1937.

From the Springfield Union (Springfield, Massachusetts), Sunday, January 1, 1950.

Happy Holidays!

1976: Good Selection

Middletown, Conn. (AP)–“Please, Santa, give me a winner for Christmas,” read the plea found in one of the mailboxes placed around the city for mail to Santa Claus.

It was written on a Connecticut off-track betting sheet.

“I hope he’ll think of us if Santa comes through,” said Bernard O’Rourke, head of the city department that installed the mailboxes.

From the Cincinnati Enquirer (Cincinnati, Ohio), Wednesday, December 8, 1976.

July 4 – Middletown 366

July 4, 1797.

The anniversary of the Independence of the United States of America was this Day celebrated with great pleasure and harmony by a numerous concourse of the inhabitants of Middletown, North Society–and at Table the following Toasts were drank, accompanied by a Discharge of Artillery, (viz.)

1st. The United States of America–may her Independence never be shaken by foreign machination or civil discord.

2d. The illustrious and suffering Patriots who have labored and bled for our freedom and Independence.

3d. The People and government of the United States–may they ever remain inseparable.

4th. Our American Sons of Freedom–may they never want the prudence to avoid giving offence to, nor courage and ability to chastise the insolence of their enemies.

5th. Our American Fair–may they continue to shine as examples of neatness and industry, for which they have been so justly celebrated.

6th. May the American Flag acquire and ever support respectability among all nations.

7th. Our seafaring brothers.

8th. Our absent friends.

9th. Agriculture–may it so be improved here as to make this country the great mart of the world.

10th. Our civil officers of justice–may we ever consider them as the guardians of our peace and domestic happiness.

11th. Our military officers and soldiery–may their courage and skill ever be our national safeguard.

12th. Charity and brotherly love.

13th. The respectable order of clergy.

14th. Our youth–may they be the future supporters of our independence and virtue.

15th. Peace and prosperous commerce with all the world.

16th. The inhabitants of Middletown.

17th. The 4th of July, 1776–may we never forget this birth-day of our Independence nor cease annually to celebrate it.

From the Middlesex Gazette (Middletown, Conn.), Friday, July 7, 1797.



Middletown, Conn., July 4.–(AP)–John S. Roth, tax commissioner, has resigned because he figured his salary was too big.

“I have not the nerve to draw $3,500 for 12 months’ work and only give the city about six months of actual work,” he said. “This job should be a part-time proposition or combined with another job.”

From the Ludington Daily News (Ludington, Michigan), Friday, July 4, 1930.