Friday, May 6, 2016

Pathways, Roads, and Bridges

A town’s roads not only knit the community together and connect it to the outside world, they also reveal its deep layers of history. The evolution of Connecticut Valley’s pathways and roads, with a focus on Colrain itself, will be the topic of the Colrain Historical Society’s next program on Thursday, May 12. Speaker Eric Goldstein will use maps to show which early pathways became the highways that we travel today, and which ones have disappeared altogether.

The event, which continues a season-long look at transportation in Colrain, will be held in the Stacy Barn behind the Pitt House at 8 Main Road in Colrain. The program begins at 7:30 p.m., following a business meeting at 7:00. It’s free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served. For more information call Belden at 624-3453.
Thursday, May 12, 2016
7:00 pm Business meeting
7:30 pm Program:  "Pathways, Roads, and Bridges"
Where: Stacy Barn behind the Pitt House at 8 Main Road in Colrain
Map image source: "The Mohawk Trail Showing Old Roads and Other Points of Interest" by David L. Costello, copyright 1975. The book is in the Reference Collection of Colrain's Griswold Memorial Library and may be viewed during regular library hours.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Historical Notes 2016

The Spring 2016 edition of Historical Notes, the periodic newsletter of the Colrain Historical Society, was mailed in April. Click here for a PDF version (2.54 MB.)

In Memory


We mourn the passing in February of Basil Hoffman, 80, former Colrain Historical Society president and a member of the Board of Directors until 2015. As President Basil played a major role in the Arthur A. Smith Covered Bridge Project in 1979. He is remembered in Colrain for his sunny disposition and for his performance on the guitar with the popular dance band, the Hofftones, which included his wife and fellow CHS member, Barbara.

Basil T. Hoffman (1935 - 2016)

SHELBURNE FALLS - Basil T. Hoffman, 80, of 1 Highland Village, Shelburne Falls, passed away in the early morning hours of Friday, February 26.
Basil was born to William and Ethel (Benson) Hoffman in Mt. Kisco, New York on March 15th, 1935. He moved to Colrain in 1942 where he lived with his mother and stepfather, Edwin Joy. On November 30, 1957 he married Barbara A. Mayberry. They lived and raised their children in the old school house on Adamsville Road in Colrain. In 2007 they moved to Highland Village.
Basil worked for 25 years at Lamson & Goodnow Manufacturing until his retirement in 1975. In the early 1960s he formed the popular dance band ""The Hofftones"" playing countless weddings and parties for over 25 years. In addition he performed with numerous other musicians throughout his lengthy musical career. Basil was active in Colrain town government serving as assessor for 13 years. He was a life member and former president of the Colrain Historical Society and served on the board of directors until 2015. He played a major role in the Arthur A. Smith Covered Bridge restoration project.
Basil had a passion for photography. He thought every occasion was worthy of a picture. Together he and Barbara enjoyed watching the Red Sox, trips to Hampton Beach, and attending live music events. His greatest love of all was spending time with his family.
Basil is sorely missed by his wife, Barbara; his daughter, Sharon Hoffman and her friend, Dave Montmeny; his son and daughter-in-law, Steven and Bonnie Hoffman and their son Stephen; his son Scott Hoffman and his partner, Kate Kearns. He also leaves a half-sister, Evelyn Kaczmark.
The family will receive friends at Smith-Kelleher Funeral Home in Shelburne Falls on Wednesday, March 2nd from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Private services will be held at West Branch Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to Franklin County TRIAD, 160 Elm Street, Greenfield, MA 01301, OR to The Shelburne Senior Center, 7 Main Street, Shelburne Falls, MA 01370.

Home for the Holidays Auction


for the return of the bi-annual holiday dinner and Home for the Holidays Auction, which we will co-sponsor as a benefit for CHS and the Griswold Memorial Library on Saturday, December 3, 2016 at the Colrain Community Church.

We’re looking for donated items for the auction and for the silent auction: Grandma’s antique rocker, the Bennington crock in your attic, a flat of sticky buns, a delivered cord of dry wood, and of course that Rembrandt you don’t know what to do with.

If you’ve got something. or an idea, call Ellen Weeks at 624-5137 or email her at or call Joan McQuade at 624-8818.

The raven statue pictured above was donated to the 2013 HFTH Auction by JH Sherburne's Serious Whimzy Gallery.

2015 Donors

CHS wishes to thank those whose generosity in 2015 and since has helped to fund the work we do.

  • Marybeth Chichester
  • Diane O’Connell
  • Nancy Dole
  • Lorraine and Hale Johnson
  • Allan and Kendra Daniel
  • Sally and Alfred Alcorn
  • Marion Stafford
  • Robert and Betsy Sand
  • Prentice Crosier
  • Belden Merims
  • Toni Manning
  • Rebecca Tippens
  • Phil and JoAnne Sherburne
  • Deb Wheeler
  • Cynthia Herbert
  • Sue Samoriski
  • Bill Dornbush/Janna Standish
  • Liz Sonnenberg/Erica Wheeler
  • David Nims
  • Anne Yeomans
To become a donor send contributions to Colrain Historical Society, 8 Main Road, P.O. Box 45, Colrain, MA, 01340.