Hand-Made Furniture–Hank Gilpin

The Beauty of Handmade Furniture Comes to North Gate!


November 9th, 2:00 p.m.
North Gate Toll House
1873 Old Louisquisset Pike (Rt 246)
Lincoln, RI  02865

Free and open to the public.

Hank44For over 40 years, Hank Gilpin has designed and made beautiful furniture using domestic hardwoods.  Come enjoy images of some of his finest hand-crafted pieces.  He also is a landscape artist, and will show examples of this work, also.

Hank Gilpin graduated from Boston University with a degree in photojournalism, but, a chance elective at Rhode Island School of Design led to his chosen profession of woodworking. He works exclusively in solid wood to hand-tool his masterpieces.

45Gilpin’s work was featured in New American Furniture at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, in 1989, the show that established studio furniture nationally.

Come for an afternoon of beautiful, and useful artwork by one of the Blackstone Valley’s master artists.

 Hank Gilpin’s website



Live at North Gate: Ken Lyon Returns

Live at North Gate Concert Series

Ken Lyon and Pacific Coast Highway

DSC_0014COctober 25, 2014  7:00 p.m.  Ken Lyon returns for a night of Blues and Jazz to benefit BVHS!

Tickets: Members $15, Nonmembers: $20, Children 12 and under: $10.

Contact Jason (401-862-4202 or email jjhdio70@gmail.com to reserve tickets.

North Gate, 1873 Old Louisquissett Pike, Lincoln, RI 02865. Read more


Battle in the Graveyard: 1934 Textile Strike

Presentation by Glenn Laxton, Sunday, October 5, 2014 at 2:00 p.m.

North Gate Toll House.  

tombstoneIt was September, 1934.  Low wages and terrible working conditions brought worker unrest to the forefront.  In Saylesville, the streets were jampacked as thousands of textile employees left their jobs and clustered at Moshassuck cemetery.  To quell the unrest, the National Guard was called, resulting in a free-for-all of rioting and gunshots. Read more…


Great Road Open House Day

Great Road logoThe Lincoln Legacy Loop: Explore Ten Historic Sites for FREE on Saturday, September 27, 11:00 a.m. -5:00 p.m.

Lincoln, R.I – September 2014 – On Saturday, September 27, ten sites along Lincoln’s historic Great Road will host special tours and displays with a focus on travel and transportation; ALL SITES ARE OPEN FREE to the public between 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  Take tours, explore the area, and discover how local residents and visitors traveled about from the seventeenth century to today.  Organizations participating in the event include: Blackstone Valley Historical Society; Historic New England’s 1693 Arnold House; 1835 Captain Wilbur Kelly House, the Town of Lincoln’s 1694 Valentine Whitman Jr. House, 1810 Hearthside House, 1812 Moffett Mill, Chase Farm Park and the new site of the Pullen’s Corner Schoolhouse (1867 and 1850), 1870 Hannaway Blacksmith Shop; 1703 Saylesville Meeting House; and the 1740 Israel Arnold House which is privately owned and currently for sale by the owners, but will be open to the public on this special day.

Visitors are invited to board any one of three shuttle buses which will depart on three different loops of the sites and start at the Town of Lincoln’s Gateway Park parking lot, the Chase Farm Park parking lot, and the Blackstone Valley Historical Society.  Step-on guides will be featured on the buses to provide an overall history of Great Road along the way.    On-site or street parking available at each site with the exception of Moffett Mill and the Israel Arnold House.  There is no parking at the Moffett Mill and very limited access at the Israel Arnold House, so the best way to access these sites is to step on the shuttle which departs from Gateway Park parking lot.  * Some of the sites offer limited parking.  Some of the sites are also participants in the Smithsonian’s Museum Day.  Visit www.smithsonianmag.com/museumday  for more information.for more information.  Read more

Thank you to sponsors Twin River Casino, Conway Tours, the Blackstone Valley Tourism Council, Don and Pat Hysko, the Great Road Historic Sites Collaborative, and the Town of Lincoln.

Special Exhibit at North Gate for Great Road Open House Day

Slice of Life (Past): Photographs of the Blackstone Valley, on loan from the R.I. State Archives.


Two children photographed at “14 Miles to Providence”, Peleg Arnold ‘s 1774 milestone on Old Great Road, Union Village, North Smithfield in the 1920s.





S. S. Kresge Co. Department Store, March 9, 1941, 116/130 Main Street, Woonsocket, RI.



Sharing a few links to other historical societies’ calendars

A few nearby historical societies have been sharing their event lists with us, so we’re going to post them here. Some interesting things are going on!

Historic New England’s calendar is here

Click here for the Johnston Historical Society’s Fall Calendar of Events.  On September 28,, they’ll be having a lecture and a tour of the Verde Vineyards in Johnston.

The North Attleborough Historical Society’s Calendar is here.

The Woonsocket Historical Society has a new website!


Ancestors of the Blackstone Valley Series

The Blackstone Valley Tourism Council, Slater Mill Historic Site and the Museum of Work and Culture present  Ancestors of the Blackstone Valley, three free public speaking and oral history presentations about the people and cultural groups who shaped Rhode Island’s historic Blackstone Valley over the last 400 years.


220px-Draper_Factory_HopedaleWednesday, June 25 at 6:30 p.m.It’s Family Business – Draper Mills, Textiles and the Peculiarity of Family Business  at Slater Mill, 67 Roosevelt Avenue in Pawtucket.  Draper Mills, once the largest maker of power looms for the textile industry in the United States, operated in Hopedale, Mass. for more than 130 years. The program will discuss textile industry expansion and how family dynamics shaped the industrial and post-industrial business models. Photo: Draper Mills in 2009, Hopedale, MA.

Friday, July 25, at 6:00  p.m., the series moves to the water, aboard the Blackstone Valley Explorer riverboat, from the Central Falls Landing, 45 Madeira Ave.  See the BVHS on the Go Event–BVHS members will be joining the interpretive cruise on the Blackstone.

220px-Museum_of_Work_and_Culture_WoonsocketThursday, Aug. 14, 4-7 p.m. at the Museum of Work & Culture, Market Square, Woonsocket. Your Family History is a collection event. The museum is compiling an archive of our local work history for an interactive exhibit. This event will allow people to share their photographs or documents, which will be recorded and cataloged (and immediately returned) so that individuals’ heritage can become part of the museum. There will be a location where interviews with people who worked in the local mills will be recorded and preserved as part of history. Appointments will be taken. Photo: The Museum of Work and Culture.

For more information on the series, contact Dianne Mailloux 401-724-2200 or email keep.bv.beautiful@gmail.com .

Valley Breeze article  Photos courtesy of Wikipedia.


Come and Play Games of Old at the Smith Appleby House

Come & Play Games of Old at the Smith-Appleby House on Sunday, August 17

1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is $5 for adults and children are free.

SmithApplebyGamesEnjoy a colonial fun-filled family day of yard games and watermelon at the Smith-Appleby House in Smithfield, RI, on Sunday, August 17, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Show your skill and challenge others at tug-o-war, sack race, hoops, graces, 9 pin bowling, and “how far can you spit that seed?” Then tour the historical Smith-Appleby House to see and hear what daily life was really like in Colonial Rhode Island during the American Revolution. Tours are led by educators and history enthusiasts in Colonial dress.

The House dates to 1696 and was built by Elisha Smith, the grandson of John Smith “The Miller,” a member of Roger Williams’ original party of six men who left the Massachusetts Bay Colony to start the colony of Providence, Rhode Island, in 1636. Expanded from its original construction as a one-room stone-ender cottage, the delicately restored 12-room historic farmhouse features beautiful cabinet work, varied architectural designs, original stencils, and furnished rooms showcasing an intriguing collection of antiques.

This very special event is part of our Rhody Ramble Open House series. For more information, visit http://smithapplebyhouse.org/calendar.