WHS Virtual Summer Program 2020: III. Colonial Wethersfield through the lens of the Ancient Burying Ground

In this next installment of the Virtual Summer Program, WHS Research Librarian Martha Smart takes us on an insightful guided tour of some of the highlights of Wethersfield’s oldest and most recognized landmark: the Ancient Burying Ground. The tour focuses on a few specific monuments in the cemetery and how they reflect contemporary values about lineage, status, and one’s accomplishments in life and how those values evolved over time. Ms. Smart is an engaging and knowledgeable host, providing the viewer with a fundamental understanding of historic burial practices and the religious and cultural influences that gave rise to them.

This content was made possible in part by a grant from the Robert Allan Keeney Memorial  Fund at the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving and the generosity of our members.

Appendix: As an added bonus, there is an additional short video below where Ms. Smart recounts some of the details of the life and career of Wethersfield notable, Rev. Gershom Bulkely and contrasts his memorial with that of Leonard Chester’s.

If you have been following this series, you know what comes next. Now that you have watched the video, it’s time for a Colonial Wethersfield Scavenger Hunt.

Directions: The people of Colonial Wethersfield are scared because they believe that there is a dangerous witch causing trouble in their community. Search for clues in the following places in Wethersfield to decode the name of the accused witch. Click here for your own PDF copy of the hunt. You can download and print it or work from your mobile device. Good luck!

Learn more:  What follows are a series of links and recommendations to curated sources for additional detailed information about Colonial Wethersfield.


Historical Fiction:

  • Elizabeth George Speare, The Witch of Blackbird Pond (1958)