Welcome to Hidden in Plain Sight. In his wonderful book Outside Lies Magic, Harvard professor John Stilgoe writes,
“Learning to look around sparks curiosity, encourages serendipity. Amazing connections get made that way; questions are raised — and somtimes answered — that would never be otherwise. Any explorer sees things that reward not just a bit of scrutiny but a bit of thought, sometimes a lot of thought over years. Put the things in spatial context or arrange them in time, and they acquire value immediately. Moreover, even the most ordinary of things help make sense of others, even of great historical movement. Noticing dates on cast-iron storm-drain grates and fire hydrants intoduces something of the shift of iron-founding from Worcester and Pittsburgh south to Chattanooga and Birmingham. The storm-drain grate and the fire hydrant are touchable, direct links with largers concepts, portals into the past of industrialization.”
This crystallizes the philosophy of this blog. There are tales of the past all around us. By opening our eyes and asking questions, they may emerge from the shadows of the decades or even centuries. Hidden in Plain Sight hopes to reveal the history of one small town – Litchfield, Connecticut – by exploring its landscape for clues to its past. This is a town with a rich history, some well known, some not. Occasionally, sites beyond the borders of Litchfield will be visited.
Look for a new post every other week or so.
Peter — this is great! Gives me all sorts of ideas of what to do in my area. I actually would like to recommend you to the people at Freedom’s Way National Heritage Area, comprising a couple of dozen towns including Concord and to the west – we are using both the Revolution and Thoreau as common threads there, but want to involve and excite people in all periods of history. I am on the Advisory Board there, and we are trying to figure how to get people out into the landscape and really looking for clues to the past. AND YOU’RE DOING IT! With admiration, Jayne