Local Film Archivist and Television Producer/Director Paul R. Beck is our November speaker!

Local Film Archivist and Television Producer/Director Paul R. Beck will present “The Art and Science of converting Home Movie Films to high quality Video Presentations.”

Paul Beck serves as the President of Foxboro Cable Access as well as serving as the archivist and curator of many professional and home movies of various New England Railroads, specifically, The New Haven Railroad Historical and Technical Association.

Beck will share his experiences and “Scientific” techniques perfected over the years for the conservation and re-editing of personal home movies as well and restoring damaged professional films, for video and DVD distribution.

He will also briefly demonstrate the special projection and editing equipment needed for these activities. A short demonstration reel of “Before & After” the careful restoration damaged or mis-colored film will be shown.

For the “Artistic” portion of the presentation, Beck will screen “To The End Of The Line,” a 35 minute 8mm color film shot in 1946 in the Naugatuck regions of Connecticut, which has been carefully re-created with a narrative and music/sound effects to augment the well-done film storyline of what was originally intended as a silent home movie.

Other short examples of the creative re-working of silent film will be shown.

A Question and Answer period will follow the presentation.

Please join us on November 28th at 7pm in the Boyden Library Community Room!


Old Mills & Water Power…Tom Kelleher joins us this month!

The Foxborough Historical Society is pleased to welcome Tom Kelleher as our October speaker!

Mr. Kelleher, who will present Old Mills and Water Power, is currently Historian and Curator of Mechanical Arts at Old Sturbridge Village in Sturbridge, Masachusetts, where he has worn many hats both literally and figuratively for over 30 years. He is currently president of the International
Association for Living History, Farm and Agricultural Museums, and has taught and demonstrated at museums and historical societies around the country. Tom holds a
Master’s in history from the University of Connecticut and writes often for a variety of magazines and journals, including Early American Life.

Please join us Tuesday, October 24th at 7:30 in the Boyden Library Community Room.








Shrouded In Obscurity…

Please join us for our last meeting of the year!

After spending 29 years with the Boston Police Department working his way up the ranks from sergeant to lieutenant detective and eventually superintendent, John F. Gallagher is excited to join us to talk about his true crime books. His most recent book titled “A Monument to Her Grief: The Sturtevant Murders of Halifax, Massachusetts,” is a tragic incident that has become local lore, the book recounts the brutal triple murder of three elderly people at their rural farmhouse in 1874. Gallagher used his many years of investigative experience to research the holdings of the Halifax Historical Society and Museum, contemporaneous news accounts, court and prison records, archival manuscripts, case law and other documentary evidence to offer the first in-depth look at the murders that forever changed this small town just twenty miles from Foxborough.

The goal of his books is not only to contribute to the preservation of local history, albeit dark, but also to honor the memory of the victims of these long forgotten murders.

Join us Tuesday, May 23, 2017, 7:30 pm in the Community Room of the Boyden Library in Foxborough, to hear John recount about all three murders. All are welcome!

The Impossible Dream Team:

The inside story of how the 1967 team built the foundation of Red Sox Nation.


The 1967 Boston Red Sox were 100-1 underdogs to win the American League Pennant. And yet the Impossible Dream team defied all odds and clinched the AL Pennant on the last day of the 1967 season. Not only did they confound the experts but they had a knack of coming from behind and achieving victory at games-end. In addition to the “Impossible Dream team,” they were known as “The cardiac kids.” Herb Crehan has interviewed 21 members of this team plus manager Dick Williams and coach Bobby Doer. As a long-time feature-writer for the Red Sox he has had unprecedented access to these iconic players. He loves to tell the inside story of how the 1967 Red Sox built the foundation of Red Sox Nation!

Herb Crehan, a recognized authority on Boston baseball history and the publisher of www.bostonbaseballhistory.com, is in his 22nd season as a contributing writer for the Boston Red Sox. Crehan speaks extensively on Boston baseball history, including appearances at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY, WBZ radio, NPR’s “All Things Considered,” Forbes.com, and numerous Society of Baseball Research (SABR) meetings.

Join us Tuesday, April 25th at 7:30 pm in the Community Room of the Boyden Library in Foxborough, to hear Herb relive some of his great Red Sox baseball stories. All are welcome!

The “Artifactual Scholar” joins the FHS this Tuesday!

In the early days in our country, people traveled on horseback. Roads built between major settlements as Boston and New York became known as Post Roads. The Boston Post Road was one of the first major highways in the United States. There were many taverns where travelers could stop for the evening to eat, drink and rest overnight. As better roads were constructed, two and four wheeled chaises and stagecoaches appeared. Some of the finest stagecoaches were built in Concord, New Hampshire.

On Tuesday, March 28, 2017 at 7:30 P.M. in the Community Meeting Room of the Boyden Library, the Foxborough Historical Society welcomes Paolo Di Gregorio. Paolo is an historian, archaeologist, and popular lecturer with a passion for telling stories
of our past. Mr. Di Gregorio has presented lectures throughout Eastern Massachusetts on a number of topics in American, Western, and World History. So come and spend some
time with us to learn about the early roads of New England. The Foxborough Historical Society meetings are free and open to the public. Join us!

Real Men Don’t Rehearse…with Justin Locke of the Boston Pops!


The Foxborough Historical Society is pleased to announce Justin Locke as our November speaker. Justin spent 18 seasons playing bass in the Boston Pops before becoming an author, playwright and speaker. In his presentations, Justin shares an honest first-hand look at the inner workings of major orchestras, and the remarkable people who play in and conduct them.

Justin is the author of several programs for family audiences that have been done all over the world, in such notable venues as the Theatro Municipal of Rio de Jeneiro and Berlin Konzerthaus. He has been an author @ google; he has co-hosted the Jordan Rich show on CBS Radio and he has been featured on Chronicle HD. His books include “Real men Don’t Rehearse” and “Principles of Applied Stupidity”.

He will have some of his books available after the lecture.

Be prepared for some laugh-out-loud behind-the-scenes tales of musical disasters, as well as some intriguing insight into the often magical world of people who make music for a living, Join us, Tuesday, November 22, 2016, 7:30 p.m. at the Boyden Library Community Room, 10 Bird Street. Historical Society meetings are free and open to the public.

There are no meetings scheduled for the Foxborough Historical Society in December, January and February of 2017. Our next meeting will be on Tuesday, March 28, 2017.




Gary Hylander presents Hail to the Chief: Bay State Presidents at our October Meeting!


The Foxborough Historical Society is pleased to announce Dr. Gary Hylander will be our speaker at our October meeting. In the spirit of election season, Dr. Hylander will be presenting Hail to the Chief: Bay State Presidents.

Please join us as we discuss the personalities, politics and elections of four Massachusetts born presidents: John Adams, John Quincy Adams, John F. Kennedy and George H. Bush. As part of our conversation, we will evaluate the legacy of each president and their ranking among presidential historians.

Gary L. Hylander, PhD, is presently an adjunct professor of history and education at Framingham State University and a program supervisor of student teachers at Boston University.

The meeting will be held on Tuesday, October 25th at 7:30pm in the Community Room at the Boyden Library and is open to the public.

For more information please visit our website at foxboroughhistoricalsociety.org. Visit us on Facebook at facebook.com/foxborohistory or follow us on twitter.com/foxborohistory.

The Realities of New England Hurricanes kicks off the 2016 – 2017 season!


The Foxborough Historical Society is pleased to announced Foxborough’s own Glenn Field will speak at our September meeting to kick off our 2016 – 2017 season!

The Realities of New England Hurricanes

New England hurricanes are very different from the kind of hurricanes that you’ve read about or that strike Florida or the Caribbean. You will learn why the structure is different and thus, how our safety and preparedness rules are different in some ways. People of my generation remember Hurricane Gloria in 1985 and Hurricane Bob in 1991…and we think those were ‘real’ hurricanes. However, this sense of reality is warped, since it has now been 62 years since the last major hurricane (Carol) that struck New England. This presentation will take you back to the days of the 1938 Hurricane, Connie, Diane, Carol, etc. and show what a true hurricane really can do!

Glenn Field has been the Warning Coordination Meteorologist (WCM) for the National Weather Service (NWS) Forecast Office in Taunton, MA since October, 1993. As WCM, he is responsible for ensuring that customers of weather forecasts and warnings are able to receive the products and that they understand what they mean. He gives many presentations to police, fire,
emergency managers, and school groups and always listens to suggestions for improvement of services. Also, he is responsible for coordinating and implementing new procedures at the NWS, for the quality assurance of products, and is in charge of the SKYWARN volunteer weather observers program. Also, Glenn works with towns to enable them to become “StormReady,” another National Weather Service community preparedness program.

Prior to coming to Taunton, Glenn was a Lead Forecaster at the NWS in Raleigh, NC; a Forecaster at the NWS in Milwaukee, WI; and a Satellite Meteorologist at the National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service’s Synoptic Analysis Branch in Washington, D.C. Glenn holds a M.S. Degree in Meteorology from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, where he also received his B.S. in both Meteorology and Economics (the 2 sciences that one can’t predict, he jokes.)

Glenn will present The Realities of New England Hurricanes on Tuesday, September 27th at 7:30 pm in the Community Room at the Boyden Library. Our meetings are free and all are welcome!

For more information, please visit www.foxboroughhistoricalsociety.org or email [email protected]

Braids and Bonnets: The straw hat era in Foxborough with Jack Authelet!

This hand-drawn lithograph, a story in itself, shows the many hat styles sold wholesale by the Union Straw Works which were then ornamented by local manufactures for retail sales. (Foxborough Historical Commission photo)

This hand-drawn lithograph, a story in itself, shows the many hat styles sold wholesale by the Union Straw Works which were then ornamented by local manufactures for retail sales. (Foxborough Historical Commission photo)

“Braids and Bonnets: The straw hat era in Foxborough”
At its final meeting of the season on Tuesday evening, May 24, the Foxborough Historical Society will examine the town’s straw hat industry – which put Foxborough on the map.
The straw hat industry in America started with a young girl admiring an imported bonnet in a store window.  She could not afford to purchase it, so she made one of her own, later documented to be the first straw hat made in America.
She had friends in Foxborough and shared her skills.  The rest is history.  Foxborough was soon on its way to becoming the “Straw Hat Capital of the World.”
Town Historian Jack Authelet will share the story of the straw shops in Foxborough, the “cottage industry” of women braiding straw at home, and the enormous factories that one day would rise as many women came to town, some from abroad, others from nearby states, for the “pretty work” offered by the factories.
It brought Foxborough its most robust economy since incorporation, gave rise to many civic improvements, and employment to thousands.  “It was the American Dream for many,” notes our town historian, “but it was so much more than just making hats.  It was the emergence of women as a social, political and economic force within the community.”

The local industry had a humble beginning of straw hats fashioned by the hands of children.  It ended 200 years later in the hands of yet another young lady who finally had to close the last shop operated by three generations of her family making hats in Foxborough.

The fascinating and abundantly illustrated story of the local straw hat industry will be shared at the Foxborough Historical Society on Tuesday, May 24, at 7:30 pm, in the first floor meeting room of the Boyden Library at the corner of Bird and Baker Streets in Foxboro center.

This presentation marks the final official appearance at the historical society of Foxborough Town Historian Jack Authelet.  Former editor of the Foxboro Reporter and published historian, Authelet has made important contributions to the history of Foxborough through his abundant original research.  He has spoken at the historical society twice each season.

There is parking under the library, around Foxboro common and on nearby streets.  Do not park in the Aubuchon lot.
Events of the Foxborough Historical Society are free and all are welcome.  Those interested in joining should ask for an application form at the meeting.  The annual fee is $8 for individuals, $10 for families.  For further information, call Patrick Lyons at 508-543-3728, or email [email protected].


With many small straw shops operating in town, owners decided to join in forming one large operation, the Union Straw Works, and soon they were dominating the industry. The factory was on Wall Street, site of the present Post Office. (Foxborough Historical Commission photo)

With many small straw shops operating in town, owners decided to join in forming one large operation, the Union Straw Works, and soon they were dominating the industry. The factory was on Wall Street, site of the present Post Office. (Foxborough Historical Commission photo)