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of the

Watertown Historical Commission

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Council Chambers



Historical Commission Members Present:  Russo, Berg, Jones, Roach, Melone, Steele, Loukas


Staff Present:  Hayward, Collins


 Public Present:  See attached Sign-In Form


Russo chaired.  The meeting opened at 7:00p.m.


1.                  January Minutes ? approved.


2.                  February Minutes ? approved.


3.                  Charles Van Coors reported that he was a descendant of the owners of the former Payson Estate and Grass River Farm with deeds in European trusts that indicate his connection to these properties.  He noted that he would be initiating efforts to reclaim ownership.


4.                  Invitation to Comment ? 341 Mount Auburn ? Brigham House


Russo reported that the HC?s comment letter to MHC regarding the antenna proposal for 341 Mount Auburn resulted in changes to the proposed antenna.  Melone felt it was a significant change.  Russo provided a past photo of the property with an antenna and decorative crestallation.  He suggested meeting with Brigham House representatives to discuss an opportunity to replace the crestallation for an allowance to place the antenna at the site.


Jones opined that the crestallation was taken off due to maintenance failure.  He was not totally supportive of the replacement option.


           Steele reported that she searched other communities for information about installed antennas.  She could not find any images.  Russo suggested looking at installed antennas in Watertown.


           It was noted that the proposed antennas panels were installed in the side and back of the towers.  Steele was concerned about the paint color to be compatible with the brick.


           Russo volunteer to draft a response to the Invitation to Comment on the revised plans.


5.                  2009 Preservation Award ? Nominations Due April 1, 2009, Award Ceremony May 7, 2009 (tentative date)


Collins provided draft packets of the 2009 Preservation Award Nomination Applications for review.  Collins reported that the Commander?s Mansion has been reserved for May 7 for the Award Ceremony.  HC members are to notify Collins by Monday if there are any conflicts with that date. 


Melone requested a list of the 2008 Preservation Awards.  Russo requested that members submit nominations.


6.                  Barns and Outbuildings Inventory


Russo provided copies of photographs of outbuildings that have been received from members.  Research will be done to determine the date the outbuildings were built.  Russo encouraged members to continue photographing and researching dates on outbuildings.


Collins will check with the Police Department to see if id cards could be made for the HC members


7.                  Boston Post Cane


Joyce Kelly, Historical Society of Watertown, reported that Boston Post Cane had been purchased and is being donated to the HSW.  There was a discussion on possible cane ceremony and display cosponsored with the HC.


8.                  Discussion on electronic communications


Collins informed that the February packets were sent electronically as well as mailed.  Collins inquired if members would prefer to receive their packets electronically.  Discussion resulted that members would receive all office generated communications electronically, but materials submitted by applicants would be mailed. 


Meeting adjourned at 8:20pm.