One Wednesday in Marblehead

MARBLEHEAD Although technically there is no school building in the village of Marble
Jason Werling
May 24, 2010

 

MARBLEHEAD

 

Although technically there is no school building in the village of Marblehead (the schools are in Danbury Township -- more on that later), school was in session for me when I traveled to Marblehead on June 6 for my "One Wednesday." I was educated in various subjects throughout the day: geography, history and even biology.

This subject was perhaps my most intriguing throughout my dawn to dusk in Marblehead. You see, we have strict guidelines to this “One Wednesday” project. 

1) All photos must be taken in the one Wednesday that the photographer chooses to descend on a town, and

2) All photos must be taken within the corporation limits of the community. So here’s a little quiz and the answers will be at the end of this column.

See if you can pick correctly if the following is in the Village of Marblehead or outside of the village in Danbury Township:

The Marblehead Lighthouse

a) Village of Marblehead

b) Outside the village in Danbury Township

The Prehistoric Forest

a) Village of Marblehead

b) Outside the village in Danbury Township

Johnson’s Island

a) Village of Marblehead

b) Outside the village in Danbury Township

The Keeper’s House

(The original house of the first Marblehead Lighthouse keeper Benajah Wolcott)

a) Village of Marblehead

b) Outside the village in Danbury Township

LaFarge Quarry

a) Village of Marblehead

b) Outside the village in Danbury Township

History

I traveled to the old lighthouse keeper’s house: But was I in Danbury Township or in the village? The first lighthouse keeper, Benajah Wolcott, either rode a horse or walked more than two miles to get to the lighthouse every day. His main occupation as a farmer kept him on his farm, which was about two miles from the lighthouse. Another history tidbit, courtesy of the historians at the lighthouse, was that Rachel Wolcott, Benajah’s wife, took over as keeper of the lighthouse after her husband died from cholera.

Biology

Or in this case, botany. I had never heard of the Lakeside daisy before my Wednesday trip to Marblehead. Sure, a photographer does some research before setting foot in a given community for “One Wednesday” and I have been to Marblehead countless times for both business and pleasure (I proposed to my wife at the lighthouse), but I had never heard of the Lakeside daisy nor the preserve where you can find it. Maybe that’s because it is the rarest flower in natural population in the United States (and, if you want to get technical about it, the Lakeside daisy isn’t even in Lakeside--it’s in Marblehead). It only blooms in mid-to-late May, so I was lucky there were still a few around on June 6. There may still be one or two there today, otherwise you’ll have to wait 11 months for the Lakeside Daisy festival.

A couple of other things I learned while in Marblehead one Wednesday:

No matter how early you get to the Marblehead Lighthouse, the caretaker John Zura is already there.

Jill Schrock of Jill’s Sweet Delight Bakery starts work at 10 p.m. to have fresh donuts and cookies at 5:30 a.m.

Everybody knows Betty as the lady with the hats and the black car. (See photo below)

A merry-go-round makes a 31-year-old dizzier quicker than a six-year-old.

And I learned the lighthouse and Johnson’s Island are in Marblehead, the Keeper’s House and Prehistoric Forest are in Danbury Township, outside the village. LaFarge Quarry is in both the village of Marblehead and Danbury Township. (A special thanks to LaFarge Superintendent Steve Dresser for making sure I was taking photos in the right place in the quarry--Marblehead.)