"I had heard about this film through various channels off and on through the years. It had gotten to the point where it was almost apocryphal in my mind.... Nobody knew where it was, nobody had ever seen it, but I was aware it existed. It was like the holy grail." said Wayne Petersen, director of the Massachusetts Important Bird Areas program for Mass. Audubon on the archival footage of the extinct heath hen discovered, restored and premiering at the Mass Audubon Birders Meeting this month. [more inside]
In 1602, he became the first Englishman to sail directly to New England across the ill-charted waters of the North Atlantic (Google books; alt: Archive.org). He is credited with setting up a fort on Cuttyhunk Island, and naming both Martha's Vineyard and Cape Cod in that voyage. A few months later, he then returned to England, where he planned the first English settlement to take hold in the new world. He returned in 1607, but only survived 13 weeks in Jamestown (Gb). Who was this founding father of the first English colony take hold in North America? Bartholomew Gosnold. [more inside]
One more thing to ease our collective guilt: Organic Golf. "Opened eight years ago, the club is thought to be the only completely organic golf course in the United States, its 18 holes groomed without the use of a single synthetic pesticide, fertilizer, herbicide or other artificial chemical treatment."
A "singular creature, whose secluded life and remarkable eccentricities have long made her an object of peculiar interest” is described in the 1876 A guide to Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket. This woman, Nancy Luce (c 1814 to 1890), published books of poems and information about her chickens. Her first book was Poor Little Hearts and her second was A complete edition of the works of Nancy Luce ... containing God's words--Sickness--Poor little hearts--Milk--No comfort--Prayers--Our Savior's golden rule--Hen's names, etc. Here’s part of Poor Little Hearts and here’s Lines composed by Nancy Luce about poor little Ada Queetie and poor little Beauty Linna, both deceased ... . A sad poem – “I hope I never shall have a hen, to set so much by again ... “ is quoted in this account of a visit to her grave. She put up a gravestone (NYT, 1873) to one of her hens, Tweedle Dedel Bebbee Pinky. [more inside]