History can often be fickle, just memories passed down from generations. That is why it is so important to have a visual record of places, and people to make those memories come alive. Groton historian Rosemarie Palmer Tucker, has taken those memories and photographs and turned them into a new book, "Images of America: Groton."
The book, released by Arcadia publishing, is full of photographs some from the early 1900s. The reader gets to see what Groton looked like in its early years, along with many people who lived in Groton at the time.
The book also has photographs of some of Groton's famous citizens, including Sylvester Pennoyer, who grew up in Groton and later became the Governor of Oregon. The Conger family has many photos in the book, as they were an important family in Groton's history.
Palmer-Tucker was first contacted to write this book in May 2008 because she is the Town of Groton historian. "It was a lot of fun reviewing the pictures and trying to create the captions with all the information possible including the dates. I was allowed 70 words per pictures. Arcadia permitted extra words for the pictures where names are listed. I even found one picture that had my father's uncles, although their last names were spelled Parmer instead of Palmer. It seems that the census and school records sometimes spelled names the way the names sounded, causing a change in last names," said Palmer-Tucker.
The book took a little over a year to put together and it was a time consuming venture for Palmer-Tucker. "When I agreed with Arcadia Publishing to do this book, they sent me a contract and guidelines as to the requirements for scanning the pictures. After a lot of research, contacting local people and organizations with pictures, and writing captions, etc. I sent the pictures, captions, and other narrative information to Arcadia on CDs in late May 2009. Arcadia Publishing processed everything on their end and returned an electronic version of page proofs for me to review and correct. I had one week in which I was to review and return the page proofs," said Palmer-Tucker.
Looking over the book is like stepping back in time, the people, the buildings, and the different businesses seem to scream nostalgia. Putting this historic work together Palmer-Tucker learned even more information about Groton. "I learned things that I didn't know and was reminded of things that I had forgotten. As mentioned on the back cover, I have lived in Groton most of my life. I went to school here from Kindergarten through 12th grade and am very proud of the education provided by Groton Central School," said Palmer-Tucker.
The future holds new challenges for Palmer-Tucker as she contemplates what her next piece of literature might be. "I most certainly do plan on doing another book or maybe additional books about Groton. I think it is important to preserve the history of our towns. This is one way that others can have copies of some of those pictures of which there is only one," said Palmer-Tucker.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes history or anyone who enjoys looking at pictures of a simpler time. I learned a lot about my hometown, and was mesmerized by some of the historic pictures. "Images of America: Groton" went on sale November 16 and is available at all Borders and Barnes and Nobles bookstores and locally, at Walpole's, Groton Hobby Shop, and Thou Art Gallerage on Main Street in Groton. Palmer-Tucker is also scheduled to do a book signing at Brittany Station in Groton from 5-7pm on Friday, December 4.