Objects sought for exhibit

The following are objects sought for the Camps of Kent Exhibit, which will be shown in the Seven Hearths Museum in the summer of 2015. Please bring items to the office at Tallman House during regular office hours or email info@kenthistoricalsociety.org.

  • Black velvet riding helmet
  • Life jacket
  • Volleyball
  • Dated bathing suits (vintage)
  • Tetherball
  • Soccer ball
  • Canoe paddle
  • Backpack (vintage)
  • Suitcases
  • Army duffle bag
  • Mess kit
  • Archery bow/target
  • Badminton racket and shuttle cocks
  • Old flashlights
  • Trumpet/bugle
  • Jacks and ball
  • Fishing pole
  • Sling shot
  • Canteen
  • Water skiis
  • Compass
  • Croquet
  • Jump rope
  • Cot and a mattress

Show & Share

Show & Share

Anyone fascinated with old photographs will be interested in a new program being offered by the Kent Historical Society – a “Show & Share” presentation Sunday, April 12 at 2 p.m. in Kent Town Hall.

People with photographs from the 19th or 20th century of Kent people are asked to bring them to this session, which KHS hopes will be the first of several “Show & Share” gatherings focusing on the town’s past. In this first session the Society invites long-time Kent residents to help identify people in photographs. Photos from the Kent Historical Society archives that need IDs will also be shared. KHS Curator Marge Smith will serve as moderator of this event.

The program was inspired by Kent native Stanley Jennings, who is on a quest to discover many of his own relatives from decades past and has learned how to use photographs to assist in his search, along with genealogical records. He hopes to inspire others to engage in a stimulating discussion and sharing of the town’s history through these photographs.

One photograph that he uncovered was sent to one of his relatives in Pensacola, FL.  Her 95-year-old grandmother was able to identify women in the photograph from the Soule/Page, Wing, and Ward branches of the Jennings family  – all surnames familiar to long-time Kent families.

Plans for the Show & Share session include both the passing around of prints in small groups and the projection of images to share with all those present.  The Historical Society will also scan copies of the photographs, with owner’s permission, for incorporation into the group’s archives. Anyone bringing photos is asked to make a reservation at reservations@kenthistoricalsociety.org.

Admission is free, but donations are welcome. For more information, see kenthistoricalsociety.org or call 860-927-4587. The Kent Historical Society’s mission is to collect, preserve, interpret and present the rich history of Kent as well as to provide educational and research material to enrich the public understanding of Kent’s artistic and cultural heritage.

Whittle A Walking Stick

Whittle a Walking Stick with Noted Educator and Woodworker Joe Brien

One of life’s great satisfactions for any child (or adult, for that matter), is tramping along a path with a well-balanced walking stick, using it to lean on, or swat weeds, or push aside sticker bushes. The feeling is even more gratifying for walkers who whittled the stick with their own hands.

During the Region 1 schools’ Spring Break on Saturday, April 11, 2015, educator Joe Brien of the Lost Art Workshops will lead a whittling session at the Kent Historical Society’s Art Barn, located on the flagship Seven Hearths Museum property at 4 Studio Hill Road in Kent, Connecticut. Participants will learn how to choose the right sapling and transform it into a rugged hiking staff that can help propel the walker up steep hills and across rushing streams. It is designed for children aged 8 and above, accompanied by an adult family member.

All tools, materials and workstations provided. No pixels are involved–it’s far more real than a video game. Building a meaningful object with a family member is a warm reminder of a day spent together. This will be tremendous fun while learning important, practical, useful skills.

Perhaps the singer Leon Redbone captured it best in his droll song, “My Walking Stick”:
Without my walking stick, I’d go insane…
I can’t look my best, I feel undressed, without my cane.
Must have my walking stick ’cause it may rain
When it pours can’t be outdoors without my cane….”

The program is free, and pre-registration is necessary — be sure to sign up early. Online registration is at www.hysb.org/fyi-sign-up.html.

The program is underwritten and co-sponsored by Housatonic Youth Services Bureau. The Art Barn at Seven Hearths is the site of several art and enrichment programs during the summer.

The Kent Historical Society’s mission is to collect, preserve, interpret and present the rich history of Kent as well as to provide educational and research material to enrich the public understanding of Kent’s artistic and cultural heritage. For more information, contact: Brian Thomas, Executive Director, 860-927-4587, info@kenthistoricalsociety.org

Saving Our Heirloom Seeds

Saving our Heirloom Seeds

Seeds are getting ready to sprout, and the Kent Historical Society wants everyone to be ready for spring planting.  In another of its continuing “Sunday Series” presentations, the Kent Historical Society, in collaboration with the Kent Garden Club, hosted Ken Greene, founder of the Hudson Valley Seed Library, who presented the hows and whys of preserving and growing heirloom seeds.  The lecture was held on Sunday, March 22, 2015 at the Kent Town Hall.

Like all great libraries, the Hudson Valley Seed Library is filled with stories that have become essential elements of regional culture. But this library is dedicated to the most important part of our horticultural heritage: seeds. Unlike heirloom antiques, seeds are alive and always changing. Their ever-evolving nature has led to the diversity of flowers, vegetables and herbs still with us today. Ken Greene is founder of the Hudson Valley Seed Library, a project he germinated in a small town library that has now blossomed into a company and farm devoted to producing organic seed for home gardeners and farmers and fostering a regional seed-saving community.

Greene is a tireless advocate for seed diversity, security, and sovereignty and the cultural stories that celebrate our farms and gardens. His engaging presentation explored new ways of keeping our seed heritage alive, from restoration to preservation, and growing the heirlooms of tomorrow. He is on the board of directors for Organic Seed Alliance and has given presentations at the NOFA-NY conference, Seed Savers Exchange, Young Farmers Conference, Culinary Institute of America, Organic Seed Conference, National Heirloom Expo, Cornell and many other organizations.

Hudson Valley Seed Library also celebrates seeds through art, and annually commissions original art for a select number of unique seed packs in its catalog. For the 2015 collection, over 400 artists applied for only 16 available commissions.  Greene displayed some of the contemporary art commissioned by the Seed Library along with photos of the Seed Library Farm, in addition to speaking about easy, beautiful and tasty heirloom varieties for gardeners to grow at home.

Hudson Valley Seed Library memberships and a wide variety of vegetable and flower seeds from the 2015 collection were available for purchase following the program.  A portion of the proceeds benefit the Kent Historical Society.

A $1,500 grant to the Kent Historical Society awarded by Connecticut Humanities is supporting this year’s Sunday Series events. Connecticut Humanities, a nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, supports cultural and historic organizations that tell the state’s stories, build community and enrich lives.

The program was free and open to the public. 

The Kent Historical Society’s mission is to collect, preserve, interpret and present the rich history of Kent as well as to provide educational and research material to enrich the public understanding of Kent’s artistic and cultural heritage.

“If every seed is a story, then every garden is a work of art bringing those stories to life.”


George Laurence Nelson Scholarship


In honor of noted American artist George Laurence Nelson, one of the founders of the Kent Art Association, the Kent Historical Society is offering a very special scholarship of $1,000 to any graduating high school senior intending to further their education in studio art or art history.

The George Laurence Nelson Art Scholarship will be awarded to a graduating senior or college student, who is a graduate of Kent Center School or whose family resides in one of the towns of Region 1 (Canaan, Cornwall, Falls Village, Kent, Salisbury and Sharon). The application must be received by the Society by May 1, 2015.

Applications have been supplied to the guidance offices of most high schools in the immediate area.  Please click GLN Scholarship 2015 for the application.

The Kent Historical Society is located at Seven Hearths, which was the home of George Laurence Nelson and has a permanent display of his original art works. This home, at 4 Studio Hill Road, is a reminder that Kent has a rich and diversified historical past. In supporting young artistic talent we hope to keep this tradition ongoing.

For further information or to request an application for the George Laurence Nelson scholarship contact: e-mail: scholarship@kenthistoricalsociety.org

Tel: 860-927-4587
Kent Historical Society, PO Box 651, Kent, CT, 06757
Please reference: Art Scholarship