Old newsletters reveal early work of the Historical Society that almost did not survive

Scroll down to see links for each issue

Here are the very first eight newsletters (1974-1977) of the Historical Society of Riverton.  Then-president Marilyn Colozzi probably wrote most or all of the single-page issues (Secretary Mary Jane Wittmeyer signed #8)

Incidentally, the names listed for the members of the Board of Directors are exclusively female.

So, thanks for the history, ladies!

RYC float, July 4, 1976 PHOTO CREDIT: Bill McDermott

In existence since June 1970, the young band of history enthusiasts struggled earnestly those first years to offer activities and programs, sponsor trips and tours to places of interest, recruit more members, and engage public interest in Riverton history.

The subject of Gaslight News #6, dated October 28, 1976, tells of a meeting that almost led to the undoing of the fledgling association.

A special meeting of the board was held October 5th to discuss the continuation of the Historical Society. After much discussion pro and con it was recommended, by those present, that the Historical Society should be dissolved. A motion was made to that effect. On October 20th the board met again. It was decided at this time to continue holding our programs, as planned, for this coming year.

Whew! We almost didn’t make it.

So here we are in 2019, approaching the Fiftieth Anniversary of our founding (June 2020), and we still strive to engage a community to understand and preserve local history.

Currently, only about 68 of 997 Riverton households support the Society with their membership. “Likes” on social media do little to materially advance our mission to “…create an awareness of our heritage, to discover, restore, and preserve local objects and landmarks, and to continue to expand our knowledge of the history of the area.”

What does move the Society’s agenda forward?

Gifts of time and money, and contributions of images, documents, artifacts, and other such evidence of our past by countless persons have made this online archive possible. Please join this group of ardent lovers of local history or donate at any time so that we may continue this worthy undertaking.

Gaslight News:
001 GN Dec 1974 
002 GN Feb 1975  
003 GN Apr 1975       
004 GN Fall 1975
005 GN Mar 1976         
006 GN Oct 1976
007 GN Nov 1976         
008 GN Oct 1977

Click here to see all back issues of the Gaslight News.

Published by

John McCormick

Teacher at Riverton School 1974-2019, author, amateur historian, Historical Society of Riverton Board Member 2007-2023, newsletter editor 2007-2023, website editor 2011-2023

Leave a Reply