NEW CASTLE SALTINES
Illustrated Bites of Island News
Jim Cerny, reporting and photography
Public occurrences … New Castle bridge … On walking 'round New Castle … Piscataqua ship spotting … Spring is a-coming in … Quick index to back issues
Town Meeting Day is May 11. Vote totals for candidates for office will be posted on May 12.
|CANDIDATES FOR TOWN OFFICES|
(in ballot order — all candidates are unopposed)
|Town Clerk / Tax Collector||Priscilla Hodgkins||207|
|Select Board Member||Lorn Buxton||201|
|Treasurer||William Marshall III||203|
|Budget Committee, 3-year term||David Borden||172|
|Fire Ward, 1-year term||Carl Roediger||184|
|Fire Ward, 3-year term||Reginald Whitehouse||199|
|Trustee of the Trust Funds, 3-year term||Peter Reed, Jr.||197|
|Town Moderator||Wayne Semprini||201|
|Library Trustee||Sandra DeSisto||196|
|Cemetery Trustee||David Merrill||204|
|Supervisor of the Checklist||P. Darcy Horgan||193|
|School Board Member, 3-year term||Heather Driscoll||199|
|School Board Moderator||Wayne Semprini||199|
|School Board Treasurer||Clinton Springer||188|
|School Board Clerk||(no candidate)|
|Article I (Elect Town Officers)|
ballot: see results above
|Article II (Zoning Amendment 1)|
ballot: yes=141, no=57
|Article III (Zoning Amendment 2)|
ballot: yes=151, no=48
|Article IV (Zoning Amendment 3)|
ballot: yes=135, no=73
|Article V (Building Code)|
ballot: yes=134, no=74
|Article VI (Operating Budget of $2,110,719)|
meeting: voice vote – unanimous approval
|Article VII (Vehicle Replacement Fund $100,000)|
meeting: voice vote – approved with 1 nay
|Article VIII (New Public Works Building $198,500)|
meeting: approved by secret ballot, yes=141, no=17
|Article IX (Non-Profit Agencies $13,500)|
meeting: voice vote – unanimous approval
|Article X (Establish Recreation Revolving Fund)|
meeting: voice vote – unanimous approval
|Article XI (Petition to Vote on Definition of Marriage)|
meeting: voice vote – unanimous to postpone indefinitely
|Article XII (Other Reports)|
meeting: Norman Rice reported on status of SafePath
meeting: Margaret Hartford spoke on donor towns
|Article XIII (Other Business)|
meeting: none, adjourned at 8:20 p.m.
- MHT School. The School Expansion Committee, chaired by Dave McGuckin, continues to meet regularly … the meeting schedule is posted in the usual places in the village and the public is welcome to attend. There are now 13 crossing guards and that is working well. Orange cones are left in place on the dividing line during the day to remind people to watch their speed.
- Census. The Census is slow to come to New Castle because they don't want to mail forms to Post Office boxes. According to the Census office in Portsmouth, we are treated as non-responders and enumerators will be coming door to door, to be completed by mid-June at the latest. Enumerators should have a Census name tag and briefcase as identification. The Census form is astonishingly short this time, just 10 questions.
Dave McGuckin. Wickie Rowland. Perrin Chick.
- Seacoast Science Center. We've had two recent reminders of what an amazing resource the Seacoast Science Center is. Wendy Lull, SSC President, gave an excellent talk for the Historical Society on Tofu, their humpback whale exhibit. Then the Thursday Men's Coffee Group met at the SSC, with a special tour from Education Director Perrin Chick, arranged by John Appleton, SSC board member.
- Local author. Wickie Rowland wrote and illustrated a just-published children's book titled Good Morning Strawbery Banke, about a resident cat named JD.
- Pappou's Post. Bill "Pappou" Drew has often helped with e-mailing of announcements for town events. Now he's developed a Web site for these postings, plus other events and commentary.
- Next Christmas!
Wind chime detail.New craft items are in the works at the Church Guild for next December's Christmas fair. You may want to start saving now! Crafts maven Donna Kearns gave me a sneak preview of a new notepad featuring handmade paper and art by a local artist, plus a new wind chime (shells, beads, driftwood) – click on image for a larger view.
When it comes to spending, New Castle is a microcosm of what is happening at the state and federal levels, i.e., in the face of the overall economic meltdown (to use a technical term!) we face costs we can't control (donor towns and Portsmouth sewer rates) yet we are spending on town projects at the highest rate in many years. As I watch the process I think in terms of wants and needs and realize that collectively the town seems unable to distinguish between them. There is a constituency for every project, with no gatekeeper to veto these projects (as a governor or president might). Voting requires attendance at a meeting and in most cases the supporters are much more likely to show up than opponents are. If all these plans and projects go through, then I predict by the end of 2011 we will see our property tax bills at 2.5X what they were in 2009. By the time many residents wake up to this, it will be too late. — Jim
In early April the legislature passed SB 376
naming the bridge between Shapleigh Island (Portsmouth) and Goat Island (New Castle) as the "Joseph Sawtelle Memorial Bridge. While allowing signage, in their inimitable wisdom they said it should not be at State expense!
Up until 1822 there was no bridge connection between Portsmouth and New Castle, with all traffic by ferries or by the Little Harbor Bridge at the southern end of Great Island – which at the time connected to Little Harbor Road in Portsmouth, not into Rye as it does today.
The legislature authorized the New Castle Bridge, with Andrew Bell, Reuben Shapely, Nathan Priest, and Ephraim Amazeen as proprietors. The three spans of the bridge cost $8,000 and opened in January 1822, running from the Portsmouth South End to Shapleigh's Island (849 feet), from Shapleigh Island to Goat Island, previously known as Amazeen Island and Governor's Island (713 feet), and from Goat Island to New Castle (809 feet – now replaced by the causeway).
New Castle Bridge stock certificate for two shares, signed by Reuben Shapley, President of the company.
Tolls were authorized in these amounts: pedestrians, 3 cents; man and horse, 6 cents; carts drawn by one beast, 10 cents, and so forth.
Ralph May was a Portsmouth writer/historian and great-grandson of James Rundlet who built the Rundlet-May historic house
in Portsmouth. In 1952, May self-published a small book of his poetry as a gift to friends and the following is reprinted from that (courtesy of the Portsmouth Herald
where the poem first appeared). Have you taken this walk?
On Walking 'Round New Castle.
We always went down Richards Avenue,
Then through the cemetery with its happy view
Of the back river waters at high tide,
Fitting the old town's thoughts that here abide;
Then along Sagamore Road with lengthened stride,
The ashes of my pipe now cast aside,
Past Little Harbor turn, and down the hill
Beyond Love Lane, to Sagamore Creek, which will
Ever its banks with changing beauty fill.
'Twas on this creek a witch in olden days
Lived, and 'twas called Witch Creek, the dame to praise.
Beyond the bridge a short cut through the wood
Gives glimpse of lower creek in charming mood.
O'er Wentworth Road we then tramp easterly,
By friendly barking dogs, until the sea
Comes at us over the breakwater grey,
Beyond the links and Little Harbor bay.
Perhaps some sail is on the ocean blue,
Or motor boat cuts Little Harbor through.
Another world is here, as past the bridge,
We climb the hill, look southward from the ridge,
See breaking waves on far off Appledore,
And lines of foam 'long Odiorne's Point shore.
Should Isles of Shoals seem lifted toward the sky,
A storm is making, as when gulls fly high,
Or as, when, sitting miles away at home,
Sudden is heard the whistling buoy's moan.
To north, we've seen still waters and fair isles,
And Benning Wentworth's house of ancient style.
O'er crest of Wentworth hill some maple trees
Drip sap in March, eye more than taste to please.
Here we must settle which way we will go;
If time permits and legs do not say "no,"
It's pleasant scrambling down to Wentworth beach,
To walk more sand, to skip a stone, to reach
A bird filled path that takes us to Rose Lane,
'Cross Jaffrey Point unto the sea again.
This time the ocean swells break at our feet;
Peace, beauty, fill their slow insistent beat.
But soon we must be on our rock way,
By outer harbor coast, a mile long bay.
Whalesback and Fort Point Light bound this demesne,
With Gerrish Island 'cross the harbor lane.
Cod Rock we pass, then, rougher shore behind,
We tread New Castle beach, until we find
Those long sands lead to that fair harbor town,
Behind Fort Point, with Walbach Tower round;
The ruined tower that arose one night,
Eighteen fourteen, for fear the British might
Pass Constitution Fort, to Portsmouth's plight.
At what is now Fort Constitution gate,
December, seventeen seventy-four, the date,
The Revolutionary War began,
Though at this time there fell no blood nor man.
Fort Point, with Walbach, long stone fort and light,
Make harbor entrance a lovely sight.
Behind it curves the harbor westwardly,
Between New Castle cove and Kittery,
Capped by its old block house, with rough stone fort,
More picturesque than with war power fraught.
Throughout, Piscataqua's swift, changing tide
Makes lovely harbor, virile, deep and wide.
Towards all that we have at such length described
We now approach with due regional pride,
In New Castle the last fall flowers bloom,
In New Castle one's stay is o'er too soon.
Yet miles ahead forbid us to delay,
And nature cheers anew the further way,
As has been well described in other lines,
That hold their virtue through the changing times.
This river walk from Portsmouth to the sea
Is beautifully told by John Albee.
It would seem vain, even if words were searched,
To say more here unless to quote his verse.
All walkers around New Castle should know
John Albee's charming lines before they go.
And so we come to Strawberry Bank again,
The eight mile circle made in hours twain,
Or thereabouts in minutes and in miles,
Depending on the walkers' varied styles.
Would that one could in fitting minstrel's lay
Do justice to this walk, and on harp play,
Bringing to all who would attend their ears
Fit melody, like music of the spheres!
In sun or storm, spring winter, summer, fall,
This is a walk or walks that ne'er will pall.
One way to think about a poem is to notice what is not
said as well as what is said, especially in a narrative poem such as this. Where is any mention of the Wentworth Golf course, the Wentworth Hotel, or any view of the Portsmouth Shipyard? What about any vehicular traffic passing by during the walk?
No ships were spotted this month. Instead, here is an index to past reports.
name type date(s)
Aeolos salt apr09
Alice Oldendorff bulker dec09
Atlantic Arrow bulker nov09,feb10
Atlantic Superior bulker apr09
Barkald bulker jul09,apr10
Bosphorus Queen salt dec09
Carter Hall navy dec09
Dallas navy sub oct09
Falcon Trader bulker sep09
Great Summit salt may09
Greeneville navy sub jul09
Hassi Messaoud 2 lpg mar08,nov09
Helena navy sub oct09
Ikan Manzanillo salt apr09
Jbu Levant salt may09
Jin Qiang salt apr10
Marcela Lady bulker aug09
New England oil jul09
New Hampshire navy sub nov09
New Laurel bulker jul09
Nor'easter oil jul09
Ocean Leader bulker oct09
Opal Naree salt feb09
Rhourd Enouss lpg apr09
Sea Miror salt nov09
Sichem Ruby bulker nov09
Star Alabama salt jan10
Thomas Jefferson noaa nov09
Torm Mary bulker jul09
Tsuru salt jan10,feb10
Waralee Naree salt feb09
We continue to have the season advance very rapidly, perhaps two weeks ahead of normal, to judge by foliage and flowers.
A pair of narcissus at Maude H. Trefethen school.
Forsythia against red clapboards on Piscataqua Street.
Yellow tulip detail at the Wentworth Hotel.
Apple blossoms at the Wentworth Hotel.
- April, 2010
- March, 2010
- February, 2010
- January, 2010
- December, 2009
- November, 2009
- October, 2009
- September, 2009
- August, 2009
- July, 2009
- June, 2009
- May, 2009
- April, 2009
- March, 2009
- February, 2009
- January, 2009
- December, 2008
- November, 2008
- October, 2008
- September, 2008
Copyright © Rye Reflections 2010. All rights reserved.