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Patriot and Publisher

Mr. Ebenezer Watson – The original printer of The Connecticut Courant (later The Hartford Courant), under the ownership of Thomas Green. Green later made him a partner, and Watson then bought out Green’s share and took sole ownership. He would publish stories on the Boston Tea Party, Lexington and Concord, Bunker Hill, and the Declaration of Independence.  His wife, Hannah would take over upon his death. A more detailed and very interesting article about this is found at The Hartford Courant site here..

He is also listed (according to the sign at the Ancient Burial Ground in Hartford) as a member of “Capt. Loomis Co. & Maj. Backus Reg. 1776.”

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Castles and Churches

Castles and churches seem to be a couple of the favorite places my wife and I visit when traveling. It seems like no matter where we are, we find one or the other to visit. We are especially impressed with the ones in Europe as they are so steeped in history and date so much farther back than architecture here in the U.S. Of course, I also love the photographic opportunities they present.

I’m often guilty of taking the “I was there” picture – the same photo so many others have taken but that seem obligatory when you are there. However, aside from being an establishing shot, I found another use for them.  My wife was saying that we should get some new coasters, and my first thought was “I bet I could make some!”. I’ve been playing around with textures this past year and this seemed like an opportunity to do something more than just play around. Take some “I was there shots” of some neat architecture, add some texture and other edits (mostly in On1 and PS) and voilà! So below I present the four images I used to make the coasters – and the end product from Shutterfly turned out very close to the original look with a very nice matte finish.

Finding the unexpected

My wife and I visited the Connecticut Historical Society  in Hartford for the first time recently. Went went to see the “That’s Wierd” exhibit, which features a number of their unique and unusual pieces.  However, I was most surprised to find the item pictured below.  It is one of the five U.S. Treasury Guard flags that decorated Abraham Lincoln’s box at Ford’s Theatre the night he was assassinated. According to the accompanying sign, the Historical Society had left it forgotten in a box until 1998!

Kylemore Abbey

Located in the Connemara region of Ireland is Kylemore Abbey, which boasts a rich history.  It was originally built as a family home by pathologist and eye surgeon Mitchell Henry for his wife Margaret Vaughan Henry. Started in 1867, it was completed around 1870. Unfortunately, Margaret took ill on trip to Egypt in 1874 and died.  In 1878, Mitchell started work on a miniature gothic cathedral in her memory.

It was sold by Mitchell to the Duke and Duchess of Manchester in 1903. The Duke was apparently one to party and gamble, and he was living on the wealth of his American wife. When her father died, they could no longer afford the home and sold it in 1914.

In 1920, it was taken over by an order of Benedictine nuns, who had fled their home in Ypres as a result of World War I. The nuns ran an international boarding school and a day school for local girls. In 2010, the boarding school was closed.  It is still an abbey.

The Cairns on Town Neck Beach

While searching for photo opportunities around the boardwalk to Town Neck Beach in Sandwich, MA we came upon the cairn-filled beach.  My wife convinced me to get some photos here instead and I’m glad I did.  Apparently, they are the work of a local resident. They are quite impressive when you get up close and see the complexity of the work.

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