Club Presents Annual Awards

The Boonville Historical Club presented its annual Fourth Grade History Awards to students in the Adirondack elementary schools during the year-end awards assemblies. The club presents these awards to a girl in each fourth grade section who shows an exceptional interest in local history. This year each recipient received a certificate and a Native American one-dollar coin. (See for more information about the coin.)  



Those receiving the awards at Boonville Elementary were Raigen McGahey, a student in Ms. Tina Weiler’s class; Madeline Maher, in Mr. Richard Chrisman’s class, Sadie Buckingham, from Ms. Jackie Layton’s class, and Hannah Hutchinson from Ms. Christina Kornatowski’s class.  

At Forestport Elementary, the award went to Elizabeth Seelman, whose teacher was Ms. Erin Burns.  

The West Leyden award recipient was Ashley Britton, a student of Ms. Christina Jokajtys.  

Adirondack Central High School graduating seniors Amanda Marsh and Dalton Hyde tied for the club’s annual cash award, which they received during commencement exercises Saturday, June 26. Since 1979, the club has given this award at graduation to the senior receiving the highest mark in a grade 12 Social Studies elective, taught by the Social Studies Department. Both Amanda and Dalton had a 99 average. (Sorry we have no photos of the students!)  

Adirondack Central High School, Boonville, New York


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 The Boonville Historical Club is continuing to collect magazines, toiletries, and snack items for its adopted 10th Mountain Division soldiers, currently stationed in Afghanistan. Several club members met Tuesday morning, June 8, to pack three cartons for shipment to the soldiers.    

 If anyone would like to donate items for the platoon, please see our earlier post here, about what we’re collecting,  or call Joyce Charboneau at 942-4835, for more information.   

 The club would especially like new or gently read copies of People magazine and other popular men’s and women’s magazines, on topics such as sports, outdoors, fitness, movies, etc.
 Not shown in the photo  are Elaine Tompkins, Joan Ferguson, and Judy Routson, who also showed up to help with the sorting, packaging, and paperwork.
We’re hoping to meet again soon to package up more goodies for our guys and gals in Afghanistan. We’ll keep you posted!   

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Barb Traxel is New Club President

The Boonville Historical Club held its end-of-season dinner meeting and election of officers on Monday evening, June 7, at Steak & Brew Restaurant, Turin, with 22 members attending.

Several members were recognized for perfect attendance and membership milestones. Those with perfect attendance during the 2009-2010 season were: Jeanne Cerro, Joyce Charboneau, and Judy Routson. Others recognized were Vivian Brucker, with two years perfect attendance; Glenyce Trainor, three years; Barb Traxel; four years; and Patty Bellinger, 11 years. Patty and Joanne Sattler were recognized for 15 years of membership, while Melanie Fitzgerald was honored for her 25-year membership.

Congratulations to Barb Traxel, who will serve as president for the next two years; also to our new vice-president, Joan Ferguson. Vivian Brucker remains as treasurer, while  Melanie Fitzgerald replaces Barb as recording secretary. Elaine Tompkins and Joanne Sattler will continue as corresponding secretary and  historian, respectively.

After several years without a recipient, the club’s Outstanding Citizen Award , commonly referred to as The Woman of the Year Award, went to former club president Daphne Larrabee (see previous post).

The club has adjourned for the summer and will reconvene regular meetings in October. Women who live in the Adirondack School District are welcome to join the club, and can contact Vivian Brucker at 942-4251 for more information.  

In photo, front row, left to right:  Judy Routson, Joan Ferguson, Patty Bellinger, Melanie Fitzgerald, Vivian Brucker, Joyce Charboneau, Laura Sawyer; in back, Geraldine Crumb, Joanne Sattler, Elaine Tompkins, Carol Kulpa, Jeanne Cerro, Daphne Larrabee, Nancy Trainor, Linda Marcy, Evelyn Wagoner, Ruth Hughes, Barbara Traxel, Glenyce Trainor, Marilyn Fowler, and Shirley Linck.

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Daphne Larrabee – “Woman of the Year”


Daphne Larrabee

Congratulations to Daphne Larrabee!

She’s the Boonville Historical Club’s most recent Woman of the Year. The announcement was made at the annual end-of-the-season dinner meeting, Monday evening, June 7, at Steak & Brew Restaurant, Turin.

 A retired teacher and busy community volunteer, Daphne is the sixth woman to receive the coveted title, officially labeled, The Outstanding Citizen Award.  Members have taken to calling it the Woman of the Year Award since shortly after it was initiated in 2002. We don’t choose a winner every year – only if the committee finds someone who fulfills the criteria. 

 A Historical Club member since 1989, Daphne served as president from 2006-2008. She also volunteers at Matthew’s Place (local thrift shop and food bank), is on the board of directors for the Boonville Black River Canal Museum, and assists in many capacities at the Boonville United Methodist Church. She has been a long-time member of the church administrative council, is in charge of the volunteer clean-up crew, and is active in the United Methodist Women‘s group. Her duties with the Black River Canal Museum include the difficult task of recruiting, scheduling, and training volunteer guides.

While club president, Daphne presented a donation to Black River Canal Museum Director Dale Ferris.

 Daphne is a very busy woman, indeed!

 A Rochester native, Daphne taught third grade, kindergarten, and remedial reading in the Adirondack School District for approximately 23 years, before her retirement a few years ago. She met her late husband, Bob, while student teaching there. She and Bob, who passed away in 2002, were married in 1962 and had three children.

When her children were growing up, Daphne operated a small nursery school from her home. She was also involved in scouting with her children, and later Brownies with her only granddaughter. A former board director of the Dodge-Pratt-Northam Art and Community Center in Boonville, Daphne also at one time served as its secretary.

Under her tenure as Historical Club president, members completed a beautiful quilted wall hanging, now on display at the Canal Museum. Another major project was the installation of a bench near Erwin Library in memory of deceased member Jo Vella.

As chairperson of the club’s fundraising committee in 2006, Daphne spearheaded a campaign to raise money for the repair and restoration of the Gettysburg monument to the 97th Regiment. The fundraising was so successful that a marker was also dedicated in Boonville’s Erwin Park.


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Remember WWII Vets This Memorial Day

Memorial Day is a day to remember those who died in our nation’s service. It was first observed on May 30, 1868, when flowers were placed on graves of Civil War soldiers; hence the original designation “Decoration Day.” Within 20 years, the holiday was renamed Memorial Day. Instead of a day to honor those who died during the War Between the States, it became a day to recognize all Americans who died fighting in any war.       

Diana Trainor, owner/operator of Apple Blossom Floral Shoppe, Boonville, demonstrated how to make Memorial Day wreaths at the Boonville Historical Club's May 3 meeting.

 A Congressional declaration in 1971 moved the traditional observance from May 30 to the last Monday of the month, a move that has diminished the true meaning of Memorial Day. Many people, especially veterans, would like the original date restored. They feel that when Congress created a three-day weekend, it distracted citizens from the spirit and meaning of the intended observance.        

This month (May 2010) marks the 65th anniversary of Allied victory in Europe during World War II. V-E Day was celebrated on May 8, 1945, when a treaty was ratified after Germany’s unconditional surrender. Fifty years later, during the war’s end  anniversary observance, William Detweiler, National Commander of the American Legion at the time, wrote,        

On this Memorial Day, it’s fitting that we Americans pay special tribute to the men and women who gave their lives while serving in America’s armed forces during that war…”        

 It’s an appeal that 15 years later is especially appropriate, as veterans from that era – those of the Greatest Generation, as Tom Brokaw called them – are rapidly passing away.          

Boonville's Monument to its many WWII veterans and all those of the Greatest Generation. A project of the local Charles J. Love, DSC, American Legion Post #406, it was dedicated on Memorial Day 2004.

     Fourteen men from Boonville made the supreme sacrifice in WWII. They were:       

  • Robert Brach
  • Grant Galarneau
  •  Harland Hennessey
  • Joseph Hamlin
  • Francis Lahah
  • Douglas Lambert
  • Walter Leaf
  •  Donald Miller
  •  Norwood Oper
  •  Clifford Phillips
  •  Stanley Sargent
  • Victor Strobel
  • William Wardale
  • Edwin Wisnieski

Many others from the area were among the 16 million men and women who served in the United States  armed forces  during the war.  Americans need to remember the sacrifices of  these and all the men and women who served.     

 And this Memorial Day is a perfect time to do just that. As you enjoy the day with family and friends, remember these words of  Commander Detweiler, written in 1995:         

 “I hope that Americans across this nation will pause to pay tribute not only to those who died in service, but to their friends and relatives – their personal heroes – who served in World War II…They are the men and women who saved America and the free world from absolute, certain destruction.”        

Boonville's 2009 Memorial Day Parade

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NNY FWC Spring Meeting and Luncheon

Boonville Historical Club members, front row, Geraldine Crumb, Melanie Fitzgerald, President Joyce Charboneau; back row, Laura "Peg" Sawyer, Daphne Larrabee, Secretary Barbara Traxel

Several club members enjoyed a luncheon buffet at Gentry’s Clam Cove, just outside Governeur, following the Northern New York Federation of Women’s Clubs’ annual spring meeting on Saturday, May 1. The Historical Club has been a long-time member of this regional organization, and as such, we encourage local students to enter the federation’s art and poetry contests.

At this meeting, several students from Adirondack Central School District were winners:

Damen MacDougall was awarded the $30 second prize in the art contest, and Kaitlyn Traxel won $20 as third place art contest winner. Both are ACS High School students. Eighth grader Alyssa LaQuay tied for second place in the poetry contest. Other ACS students who participated were Sage Chase, Amber Case, Summer Wysocki, Brenna Galligan, Nicole Latvis, April Perry, and Jessica Hurley.

NNY Federation of Women's Club president, Shirley Hoover, left, presided at the annual spring meeting and luncheon. Her granddaughter, Elizabeth Hoover, next to Shirley, provided violin music during lunch.


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10th Mtn. Div. Adopted Platoon Update

SSG Jason Roberts

Shortly after our adopted platoon arrived at Camp Mike Spann in Afghanistan on Saturday night, March 27, our Point of Contact (POC),  2LT Kapua Ampong,  discovered she was being detached from the unit. She was sent to Bagram Air Force Base to serve as LNO (liaison officer). We’ll miss her, but SSG Jason Roberts has now replaced her as our POC, and he’s doing a great job of keeping us posted. On May 8, Jason sent an email  update as follows:

 Hello again, sorry it’s taken so long to reply.  It seems every time I actually have a chance to sit down and try to get on to reply either something comes up or the internet is down.  I talked to the guys (and girls) and the biggest thing right now is “entertainment” things mainly movies, video games, computer games, board games (risk, chess, etc), and a few asked for books.  I believe I told you we have electricity so a lot of the guys have had their t.v.’s, laptops, and game systems mailed out here.  The USO has been sending a steady supply of hygiene stuff so we are pretty good on those things and I am working on getting some pictures to mail to you guys It takes a long time to get them to attach to an email and the last time I tried to email you I ran out of time trying to attach the pictures… but i am working on it.  They are trying to improve some of the base and just recently moved the MWR/Library to a larger building… it has 2 pool tables, a ping pong table, a few couches to watch movies, and a small/med size selection of books… most of the movies/books are older and outdated.  The last unit had a problem with soldiers “signing” them out and not returning them so our selection of either is severely hindered.  The girls also would like some hair care products and accessories… hair pins, clips, the thin scrunchies to hold their hair up and some good brushes so they can keep their hair clean and health and they keep losing their pins/clips and scrunchies getting worn out… also I think it was a Bio-silk or Nexxus conditioner cause their hair is getting damaged from the sun and dust etc. Also “feminine” products and razors so they can shave and do their girl things.  Thank you for your time and support of our platoon,
Jason Roberts

 Although we’re still waiting for confirmation of the shipping address, Historical Club members will soon begin preparing packages to send to our adopted 10th Mountain Division soldiers,  including some of the things mentioned in Jason’s most recent email.    

Thanks to our adopted troops in Afghanistan and to all our American military personnel, wherever they're serving!

  If anyone would like to donate items (see earlier posts  for a complete  list) or help with postage costs we’d be delighted to hear from you. Please contact us at or leave a comment here on this weblog (don’t worry if it doesn’t show up immediately – it goes through a spam check first)!


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