colonial writer
colonial writer with laptop

The Milford Historic community

This site celebrates Milford History while attempting to stay relevant to 2015. You are reading this on the internet from a device that has an indirect historic tie to Milford. Not too long ago news would have been printed in the newspaper, in an earlier era it would have been spread by someone riding on horseback from town to town or by the Town Cryer on the central town green. Milford has a beautiful green surrounded by historic landmarks.

laced pants
laced pants
We found joy in discovering for ourselves several of the stories presented here that weren't well-known even within Milford's greater historic community. History is not limited to a time when women's dresses were longer than the men's pants. The modern zipper is less than 100 years old. Colonial era pants had buttons in the front with the size adjusted using laces in the back instead of a belt and buckle which were decorative items on hats and shoes. The early Puritans wore black but dyes using clay and every part of plants such as the leaves, berries, nuts, flowers, bark and roots created a variety of colors from yellows and blues to deep maroon for colonial clothing. Although a common plant color, green faded easily requiring combinations such as yellow followed by blue to create it. Plant based dyes may not match from batch to batch often involving several dunkings to achieve the desired color.

This site tries to gather the little known Milford tales into one place. Rare photos including President Kennedy in front of a White House fireplace believed to be of Milford marble and a poster for a 1916 movie shot in Milford were located. Pictures of a poster for a hundred year old movie that no longer exists and the first computer with an advertisement that made in Milford also are on this site.

I’m open to alternative perspectives besides the official version of events written by the winners or modern retellings meant to sell books or an agenda. Although we attempted to use multiple sources when researching these stories, this site is a starting point for visitors to explore the topics on their own. Any first or second-hand stories will be welcome. In an attempt to separate facts from opinions we have highlighted them with a slightly different look. Contact info will be added to allow feedback such as on alternative methods to draw attention to conflicts of interest when this site moves to a more permanent address that would provide control over spam.

dated sidewalk
crafted sidewalk
click to see detail
We aim to encourage saving the charm of simpler times when when people took the time to craft quality work before the remaining Milford artifacts fall into disrepair. In the past people took pride in the details of quality craftsmanship instead of Good Enough For Now. Fine details are custom carvings or building a stair railing that hundreds of years later feels as solid as a fully grown tree. A recent example from the last century is people were proud enough of the artistry and attention to put into their work even for something as mundane as adding decorative stones when laying a sidewalk, to sign it with a brass plaque (and to advertise their services) or simply list the year of installation.

We are not against progress, Milford can boast of numerous technological advances. Besides forging new ground, bravery and self-sacrifice was exhibited time after time of working towards the greater good. The less nobel course of action sometimes is a reliance upon political or personal connections. Rather than just be in awe of the doers or what our ancestors did 238 years ago, we hope the pioneers and innovators of Milford serve as inspiration for people of today to create tomorrow's history that years from now will be written about. Not just on this site but elsewhere in life we encourage visitors to have the curiosity to ask questions in order to find out more about any topic. We had many questions in researching the timelines to these stories. The first question everyone should ask is if we know enough to understand the answer an expert gives us. That statement is intended to serve as self-correction rather than something to take offense at. If not we realized our job was to make the effort to at the very least comprehend a basic level to not waste their time. Sometimes our own beliefs or personal bias should be questioned to be able to make an informed decision.

Any family, neighborhood, state, nation or group whether they are political or not is bound to have differences but it all comes back as we are all one big family. It is not always possible for one group/organization to be able to represent everyone and keep them all happy. We seek to serve what is common among the supporters and those interested in the Milford Historic community in general than most of the discourse heard today online. We are independent of any historic organization and made a great effort to start a dialog between factions that were at odds with each other at the time. We love to share what we have discovered ourselves about Milford including interviewing those that contributed to recent history.

Research Methodology

All writers have a viewpoint or lack of awareness on a topic based upon their experiences or lack of familiarity that may influence how they frame a story. An early stage of my varied background was volunteering at an Ivy league college's radio station where I held 2 board positions including learning how things work as the Chief Engineer to fix them and as the Training Director responsible for teaching students to fact check news stories before airing them. 2 decades at a nationally known entertainment business put the author in contact with thousands of professionals and note the differences between how the successful ones acted. As a professional photographer and stage Lighting Director having to repair equipment influenced the visual design. A length of time os a marketing company sales associate showed the long-term benefits of valuing appealing to the customer or audience over pleasing the people in charge of an organization. Drawing from the similarity that modern websites are arranged using absolute and relative positioning, we put stories in perspective relative to their era rather than an absolute judgement by today's standards. To lessen this author's own bias, multiple sources are utilized for a fuller picture of each story.

We fact-checked as best as we possible older anecdotes or any relatively recent memorable Milford stories with those closely tied to them. Subjects are presented along with anecdotes from as close to the original sources as possible. This provides historical context so they are better judged by their times instead of being filtered by today's viewpoints. Recent events will wait until enough time has passed after they are no longer in the news depending on how big a story it was when it was still current providing a fairer historical perspective. Links to websites such as Snopes are provided to assist readers in understanding an idea, provide collaborating evidence or more information. We do not link to non-authoritive websites to avoid giving them credibility. We hope that others consider this approach while evaluating written material.

The original site this is based upon had other features such as a search box which will be recreated when this site moves to a unique address. We are aware that a few paragraphs are repeated due to some subjects being of interest to more than one story. Some events are relevant both to a group of people and the locations where they happened. We plan to eventually reduce duplication as this site is expanded and further organized.

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design and photographs by Daniel Ortoleva
editorial content is marked as opinions