Photographs by Frank

5 May 2022

Weathersfield Center (again) and Baltimore, Vermont

Filed under: Landscapes,Misc.,Spring — Frank @ 11:17 PM

Back at the end of March, I visited Weathersfield Center, VT for the first time and discovered the wonderful meeting house there. After this excursion, I looked at a map of the general area and noticed the nearby town of Baltimore. Joan was born in Baltimore, Maryland and our daughter, Katrina, has lived there for the last fifteen or so years. Thus, I decided that when I next visited this part of Vermont I would go see Baltimore. Today was the day!

This morning, I taught an introduction to photography tutorial for the Vermont Center for Photography in Brattleboro. After I was done teaching, I pointed my truck north. The weather was pleasantly warm and the skies were partly cloudy.

I stopped first in Weathersfield Center. My first visit there was on a cold, damp day and I used my camera obscura exclusively that day. Today, the light was much more conducive to photography. I made photographs with both the camera obscura and my ‘regular’ camera. I left the images from the latter as color since I like the contrast between the warm orange bricks, the cool azure sky and the green spring grass. I also noticed (and photographed) the nearby town pound* with an interesting iron gate. I had completely missed the pound on my first visit.

After photographing the meetinghouse, I attempted to head towards Baltimore. Notice I said “attempted”… I had either one of those “you can’t get there from here” (use a thick New England accent when you read that!) moments or my map was broken.

Eventually, I got out my phone, fired up its GPS application and, without further drama, found the westernmost end of Baltimore Rd (on VT10 just to the west of the junction with VT106 in North Springfield). Baltimore Road, which is not paved, makes a six mile loop through town. The other end intersects VT106 just north of the junction with VT10. The two ends of Baltimore Road are less than a mile apart!

Roughly half way along this loop one comes to the Baltimore Town Hall (see the last photo below). The (rather nondescript) town hall is the only public building in Baltimore. There is nary church, etc.

Upon arriving home, I learned a bit more about Baltimore by Googling, of course, as any modern guy would do! It turns out that the current population of the town is roughly 230 people, about what it was two hundred years ago (i.e. in the early 1800s) and quite a bit higher than the low of about fifty in the early 1900s**.

The town has a total of 7.2 miles of roads, all of which are unpaved. Just out of the frame on the right of my photo of town hall sits a road grader; my guess is this is only significant asset the town owns other than the town hall.

The town hall was built in 1894 as a one room school house and was used as such until 1988!

In summary, Baltimore is a bit out of the way and on the quiet side, but I am glad that I made the trip. Maybe, I will go back some day and drive the other twenty percent of the the town roads that I missed this time thorough!

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Meeting House (Weathersfield Center, VT)
Meeting House (Weathersfield Center, VT)
Meeting House and Memorial (Weathersfield Center, VT)
Meeting House and Memorial (Weathersfield Center, VT)
Meeting House (Weathersfield Center, VT) (with the camera obscura)
Meeting House (Weathersfield Center, VT) (with the camera obscura)
Town Pound Gate (Weathersfield Center, VT)
Town Pound Gate (Weathersfield Center, VT)
Town Hall (Baltimore, VT)
Town Hall (Baltimore, VT)

* Town pounds are small, generally stone wall enclosed areas where wayward livestock were penned up until their owners could ransom them. Loose livestock were a serious matter when most folks depended on their gardens and fields for the bulk of their sustenance and the ‘fuel’ for their horses and oxen. Stray livestock could quickly decimate a garden and thus were rapidly escorted to the town pound before (hopefully) they could do much damage. The owner of the strays would then have to pay a fine in order to retrieve their animals from the pound.

** This pattern is typical for many small towns in New Hampshire and Vermont. Populations peaked in the first half of the nineteenth century when sheep farming was at its peak and declined thereafter as farmers moved to more fertile territory as the mid-west (then “the west”) was ‘settled’. Populations generally reached their lows in the first quarter of the twentieth century and slowly rebounded thereafter. The current population of many small northern New England towns is roughly the same as it was two centuries ago.

30 April 2022

Nasami Farm

Filed under: Landscapes,Spring — Frank @ 11:32 PM

Joan was in need of some plants for the yard. So, today we made a trip to Nasami Farm, the Native Plant Trust’s nursery in the Connecticut River valley village of Whately, Massachusetts.

While Joan selected plants, I wandered the grounds looking for photographs.

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River Valley Skies
River Valley Skies
Paper Birch
Paper Birch
Untitled
Untitled
Catkin Pair
Catkin Pair
New Birch Leaves
New Birch Leaves

27 April 2022

Harrisville Details

Yesterday morning I picked up my last load of compost for the season. This final load was destined for Joan’s cousin Suzy who lives near our abode. Since I had no fixed schedule, I meandered vaguely in the direction of home. Of course, I had my camera with me.

As I drove, I noticed the nice texture (at least in some directions) in the clouds and went in search of a foreground for the interesting clouds. I ended up at Halfmoon Pond in Hancock, near the Harrisville border (see the first photo, below). The textured clouds did not last long. The overcast built steadily and it began to drizzle.

Knowing that Joan had to make a trip to Harrisville Designs, and with the lunchtime approaching, I called Joan and arranged to meet her at the General Store for lunch. After lunch Joan headed to the yarn pushers for what she needed and I wandered about the village to make photographs.

Harrisville, NH is a quaint, well preserved old mill town. It is among my favorite places to make photos. Since the weather was not suitable for grand landscapes (think low, thick overcast and intermittent drizzle), I concentrated on the details.

It was almost 5PM before I got the compost delivered.

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Halfmoon Pond (Hancock, NH)
Halfmoon Pond (Hancock, NH)
Barn (Dublin, NH)
Barn (Dublin, NH)
Shagbark
Shagbark
Nubanusit Brook
Nubanusit Brook
Trilium
Trilium
Chalkboard Wisdom
Chalkboard Wisdom
Church Detail #1
Church Detail #1
Church Detail #2
Church Detail #2
Millwork Remnant
Millwork Remnant
Cupola with Bell
Cupola with Bell
Mill Buildings
Mill Buildings
Room With A View?
Room With A View?
Brickwork
Brickwork
Daffodils
Daffodils
Headstone Trio
Headstone Trio
Steeple
Steeple
Veteran Marker
Veteran Marker
Be Happy
Be Happy
Harrisville Reflection
Harrisville Reflection

9 April 2022

Five More From Thursday (“Cloud Day”)

Filed under: Early Spring,Landscapes,Monadnock Region — Frank @ 9:00 PM

Here are a few more photographs from my “cloud day” excursion.

The first (“Hedgehog Mountain and Clouds”, is a three frame panorama.

The remaining four don’t feature the clouds quite as prominently (or at all) as the photos I posted yesterday.

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Hide-and-Seek Dodge
Hide-and-Seek Dodge
Dodge Ram
Dodge Ram
Barn (Bear Hill Road)
Barn (Bear Hill Road)
Barn (Quaker Street)
Barn (Quaker Street)

8 April 2022

Clouds

Filed under: Early Spring,Landscapes,Monadnock Region — Frank @ 10:45 AM

Yesterday morning, I headed to the grocery store. (We were out of the makings of salad for lunch.) However, I got waylaid by the interesting asperitas clouds. We had a rather late lunch.

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Beaver Dam and Clouds
Beaver Dam and Clouds
Moose Brook and Clouds
Moose Brook and Clouds
Pasture Fence and Clouds
Pasture Fence and Clouds
Contoocook River and Clouds
Contoocook River and Clouds
Sugar House and Clouds
Sugar House and Clouds
Hay Field and Clouds #1
Hay Field and Clouds #1
Hay Field and Clouds #2
Hay Field and Clouds #2

2 April 2022

A Short Detour

Filed under: Early Spring,Landscapes,Monadnock Region — Frank @ 6:00 AM

Yesterday morning I ran errands in Peterborough.

The day was overcast but fairly warm. There was wonderful texture in the clouds.

I could not resist and took a short detour on the way home. Stopping in spots where I knew I could get good views of the sky, I used the camera obscura to make a few photographs.

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Covered Bridge (Forest Road, Hancock/Greenfield, NH)
Covered Bridge (Forest Road, Hancock/Greenfield, NH)
Contoocook River (from the boat ramp off Forest Rd.)
Contoocook River (from the boat ramp off Forest Rd.)
Boles
Boles
Crotched Mountain/Powdermill Pond
Crotched Mountain/Powdermill Pond
Apple Trees / Crotched Mountain
Apple Trees / Crotched Mountain
Farmhouse Pump and Woodpile
Farmhouse Pump and Woodpile
Milk Room/Barn
Milk Room/Barn
Birches
Birches

27 March 2022

Weathersfield Center, Vermont

Filed under: Landscapes — Frank @ 11:01 PM

This afternoon, I went to the “Open Portfolio” event* at the Vermont Center for Photography.

As is often my habit when headed to Brattleboro, I meandered in that direction rather than taking the direct route.

Today, my meander took me through, among other places, Weathersfield Center, Vermont; a place that I had not visited before. The sum total of Weathersfield Center (other than a few houses) is an unusual (in that it is made of brick) and stately meeting house with a marble** (of course…this is Vermont after all!) Civil War memorial out front.

It was a cold and dreary day with intermittent snow showers as I drove…Perfect conditions for making photographs with my camera obscura.

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Meeting House (Weathersfield Center, VT)
Meeting House (Weathersfield Center, VT)
Civil War Memorial (Weathersfield Center, VT)
Civil War Memorial (Weathersfield Center, VT)

* At these bimonthly events, folks gather to share photographs and garner feedback about them.

** Geology note… the Connecticut River (the border between Vermont and New Hampshire) valley is the boundary of two tectonic plates. The Vermont side was in geologically recent times a seabed and thus Vermont is know for its marble, a metamorphic rock formed from the sedimentary rock, sandstone. On the New Hampshire side, the rocks are much older and New Hampshire is known for its granite, an igneous rock.

23 March 2022

Cabin Fever / Temple, NH

Filed under: Landscapes,March — Frank @ 9:30 PM

March… cabin fever season. One can get grumpy.

In order to stave off cabin fever/grumpiness I headed out to make some photographs.

I ended up in the small town of Temple, NH (about 20 miles SSE of Antrim) and made a few photographs in and around the town common with my camera obscura.

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Temple Town Common #1
Temple Town Common #1
Temple Town Common #2
Temple Town Common #2
Temple Town Common #3
Temple Town Common #3
Temple Town Common #4
Temple Town Common #4
Cemetery Gate (Temple, NH)
Cemetery Gate (Temple, NH)
Town Hall (Temple, NH)
Town Hall (Temple, NH)

20 March 2022

A Tale of Two Days (in March)

Filed under: Early Spring,Landscapes,Monadnock Region,Winter — Frank @ 3:00 PM

March is an ‘interesting’ month here in New Hampshire… is it the last hurrah of winter or the onset of spring? The answer to that question depends on the day.

Since my last post (about two weeks ago) the ground has been completely covered again with snow (two or three inches) on two separate occasions. The snow is mostly gone again. Only pockets of the winter’s accumulation remain in the coolest, shadiest spots. The standing water (beaver ponds, forest pools and the lake) is still mostly frozen but there are bits of open water beginning to show.

Last Thursday was a late winter day; the temperature was in the low forties and it was overcast; there were brief periods of light rain. Mid-afternoon brought an interesting “ground” fog. I put “ground” in quotes because the heaviest fog was actually over the still mostly frozen lake. There were thick rivers of fog about 20 feet high in multiple spots.

Friday was the complete opposite of Thursday; an early spring day. The temperature was in the low sixties and it was partly sunny. I took advantage of the nice weather and went for a walk up Hattie Brown Road. I made it as far as the old farmstead before deciding that it was time to head home for lunch.

There is not much left of the Hattie Brown farm… just a cellar hole and much metallic debris scattered about.

The pockets of snow that remain this time of year are littered with the winter’s detritus… beech leaves, hemlock cones and various small sticks and twigs.

Beech leaves are how we will know that spring has truly arrived. Last year’s leaves are still tenaciously hanging on to branches in the under story. They will drop only as this year’s leaves begin to bud out. Then, we can declare that spring is here to stay.

The first four photos below were made on Thursday; the remainder are from my walk on Friday.

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Fog On Gregg Lake #1
Fog On Gregg Lake #1
Fog on Gregg Lake #2
Fog on Gregg Lake #2
Foggy Tree
Foggy Tree
Bob Houses in March
Bob Houses in March
Forest Pool
Forest Pool
Hattie Brown Road Artifact #1
Hattie Brown Road Artifact #1
Hattie Brown Road Artifact #2
Hattie Brown Road Artifact #2
Hattie Brown Road Artifact #3
Hattie Brown Road Artifact #3
The Winter's Detritus
The Winter's Detritus
Vernal Pool
Vernal Pool
Late Winter, Gregg Lake
Late Winter, Gregg Lake

7 March 2022

Last Embrace of Winter (Maybe?… Hopefully?…)

Filed under: Early Spring,Landscapes,Monadnock Region — Frank @ 4:00 PM

On Saturday afternoon, I took a walk up the unmaintained section of our road. Given the weather forecast, I figured that it might be the last time this season for wintry photos.

The forecast from Saturday turned out to be pretty accurate. The high yesterday (Sunday) was almost sixty degrees and barely dropped into the 40s overnight. There was a lot of bare ground showing this morning. Today’s rain (which started about noon) is making quick work of the remaining snow.

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Last Embrace of Winter #1
Last Embrace of Winter #1
Last Embrace of Winter #2
Last Embrace of Winter #2
Last Embrace of Winter #3
Last Embrace of Winter #3
Last Embrace of Winter #4
Last Embrace of Winter #4
Last Embrace of Winter #5
Last Embrace of Winter #5
Last Embrace of Winter #6
Last Embrace of Winter #6
Last Embrace of Winter #7
Last Embrace of Winter #7
Last Embrace of Winter #8
Last Embrace of Winter #8
Last Embrace of Winter #9
Last Embrace of Winter #9
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