Pelham - Windham News April 8, 2011 - 5
Searles School and Chapel: A Brief History
by Robyn Hatch Windham’s Searles School and Chapel was donated to the town of Windham in 1907 by millionaire-philanthropist Edward J. Searles (1840–1920). This man is the same Searles who built and owned Searles Castle further down the road, as well as many other buildings in the area. This cute little building was intended to replace an earlier one-room schoolhouse, which was entirely surrounded by Searles property. Searles told the town that if he deeded the existed building, he would provide a new school. This offer was accepted by Windham and the result was the two-room Gothic Revival structure designed by English architect Henry Vaughn (1845–1917). Vaughn also designed the chapels at the Groton School and St. Paul’s School in Concord.
Searles School served the educational needs of the community from 1907 to 1993. The Windham Historic Commission has been working on a restoration program that will return this beautiful building to its original appearance. Any donations will help to complete this project. Take the time to check out this beautiful building. Look at the original stained-glass windows, the metal lights, and the creaky stairs that led up to original bell ropes in the attic. A look over the balcony will give a great glimpse of the altar, and the second room opens up to a quiet, but beautiful area that shares many secrets of weddings, meetings, and days gone by. This is well worth the time to explore.
Free Outdoor Courses
Get inspired for outdoor adventures this year at a series of free
evening talks taking place from April 8 through May 4 at the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, 11 Hazen Drive, Concord. No pre-registration is required. • Discover Geocaching – Tuesday, April 12, at 7 p.m. Geocaching.com
is the World’s number one location-based recreation Website, with more than 1.1 million geocaches worldwide. Outdoor enthusiasts use this site to participate in a high-tech treasure hunting game, equipped with GPS devices or smartphones. The basic idea is to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, and then share your experience online. Presenter Larry Vannata enjoys geocaching with his wife and two young boys.
• Fishing Electronics – Wednesday, April 20, at 7 p.m. An in- depth look at the latest in fish-finding technology. Today’s electronics are easy to use and have a multitude of useful features to take advantage of. Come see the fish you’ve been missing!
• Turkey Hunting Basics – Wednesday, April 27, at 7 p.m. Are you ready to outsmart your bird this year? Learn how not to make the common mistakes of many first-time turkey hunters. Presenter John Asseng is a registered New Hampshire hunting guide who has specialized in turkey hunts since 1997.
Photos clockwise, from top; Searles School and Chapel; a new sign; ceilings at the chapel; looking at the church altar; and bell pulls in the attic
• Improving Wildlife Habitat in Your Own Back Yard – Wednesday, May 4, at 7 p.m. Want to see more wildlife in your backyard? Landowners big and small will benefit from hearing from a panel of experts on how to improve your property for wildlife. This session will cover basic wildlife needs and what you as the landowner can do to benefit certain types of wildlife. Participants will also get ideas for how to develop a long- term management plan for their property using resources from local agencies and non-profit organizations. Presenters will include: Bambi Miller, District manager for the Strafford County Conservation District; Charlie Williams, University of New Hampshire plant scientist and extension specialist (retired); Chuck Miner, NH Fish and Game’s Landowner Relations Program Manager; and Marilyn Wyzga, NH Fish and Game’s Project HOME Coordinator.
Info courtesy of NHFG Charlie Chalk can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Vacancies for Alternate Planning Board Members
submitted by Elizabeth Wood, Community Planner, Windham The town of Windham is currently seeking candidates to fill
two vacancies for Alternate Planning Board Members. The role of an Alternate Planning Board Member is to take part in decision- making and policy setting for development and land use issues. Alternate members participate in discussions at meetings and vote on proposals in the case that regular members are absent or abstain from voting. Alternate Planning Board Members are expected to attend regularly scheduled Planning Board meetings, workshops, and trainings. You must be a permanent resident of Windham to be considered. Alternate Planning Board Members are appointed by the Planning Board. Meetings are generally held in the evenings on the first and third Wednesdays of each month. The appointment is for a three- year term and begins in May. If anyone is interested, submit a letter of interest to: Community
Development Department, c/o Community Planner, P.O. Box 120, Windham, NH 03087, by April 27. If you have any questions, feel free to contact Elizabeth Wood, Community Planner, at 432-3806 or
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