Guided tours this weekend close out 150th celebration

By TAYLOR MURCHISON-GALLAGHER

STAFF WRITER

This weekend, Plainville residents will conclude their celebration of the 150th anniversary of the town’s incorporation, with a guided tour of historical sites, held from 10a.m., to 4p.m., on Saturday, Oct. 5.

Ben Gediman, chair of the 150th committee, said the main goal of the tour is to give people information on each location since Plainville’s incorporation in 1869. Plainville Historic Center member Nancy Eberhardt said another goal is to help residents understand the significance of historical sites and their lasting impact on Plainville.

The tour takes about an hour and will stop at 20 locations, including the old railroad station, the Charles H. Norton House, Cooke’s Tavern (which is now known as J. Timothy’s), the Plainville Historic Campground, the Congregational Church, the Bristol Basin, and several others.

Plainville town historian Ruth Hummel described the town as “the crossroads of Connecticut,” while documenting the long history of travel means through the town. After separating from Farmington, Plainville’s “lack of good roads and efficient transportation” held development at bay until 1828 when the Farmington canal connected the “Great Plains” as far south as New Haven, and north into Massachusetts and eventually, Vermont.

Tours will begin and end at the Plainville Municipal Center parking lot at 1 Central Sq., where plenty of parking will be available. There will be two shuttle buses—a trolley that was donated by Dattco and a handicap-equipped by provided by the Plainville Senior Center. The trolley will depart at 10 a.m. for the first tour, and the shuttle will depart at 10:30 a.m. for the second tour. The final tour will depart from the municipal center at 3 p.m.

Upon arriving at the municipal center, attendees will be able to pick up a map and a brochure containing information on each location. Each tour will be led by a narrator, able to give further information than what has been included in the brochure.

Commemorative 150th anniversary t-shirts will be available for purchase on tour day. Shirts are now on sale for $12 each, or, two shirts for $20.

Residents and visitors are then encouraged to visit the Plainville Historical Society, 29 Pierce St., which will be open from 10a.m., to 3p.m.

To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Taylor Murchison-Gallagher, email her at TMurchison@PlainvilleObserver.com.