close
close

Historical events are keeping the West Springfield group busy this summer

The Ramapogue Historical Society continues to host events this summer, even though the Josiah Day House on Park Street in West Springfield is closed for renovations.

Publish file photo reminder

WEST SPRINGFIELD – Although everyone sees it, the Josiah Day House remains a mystery to most West Springfield residents despite the immense history it tells about the city.

“So many people drive by the house all their lives and never stop by, whether it’s for our events or when the house is open for tours,” said Samantha DePergola, president of the Ramapogue Historical Society, which manages the house. “It is one of the oldest, if not the oldest, brick saltbox houses still standing on their original foundations in America. A house that is old has a kind of prestige. It is not the prestige that a richly decorated mansion carries, but the prestige that a building that has been around for some 270 years and has experienced the history of West Springfield firsthand carries. It is a time capsule for many people and holds the secrets of our community’s history.”

Founded in 1903, the Ramapogue Historical Society has cared for the building for more than 100 years and is committed to preserving the stories of people who can no longer tell their own.

“It represents 270 years of history. It is a time capsule that tells stories that no one can tell anymore,” DePergola said. “The archives we have tell stories about the daily lives of people who lived within the community. This hidden gem is so much more than a brick house on a busy road; it is a beacon of history that shines brightly in our city.”

To preserve and share that history, the association leads tours of the building by appointment, works with grants and donations to maintain the building and hosts events throughout the year to give people a glimpse into life centuries ago.

On June 1, the First Congregational Church in West Springfield will present “I Now Pronounce You Lucy Stone,” presented by the historical society. The play tells the story of the first woman to earn a college degree in Massachusetts and had a passion for human rights.

“The Lucy Stone event has never been hosted by the RHS before, and we are proud to partner with History At Play LLC and Judith Kalaora to bring such a great show to West Springfield,” said DePergola.

Tickets for the 1 p.m. performance are $10 for ages 12 and up and include free future admission to the Josiah Day House when current construction work is completed. Tickets can be purchased at www.josiahdayhouse.com.

On June 15, from noon to 3 p.m., the association will host its annual Strawberry Social on the grounds of the Josiah Day House, although the house itself will still be closed for construction. Tickets, also available online, cost $5 for ages 12 and older, $2 for ages 5-11.

On October 19, the association has its annual fall festival and cemetery tours, both of which are free; donations are accepted.

In addition to these events, the association is looking for ways to collaborate with other local historical societies and museums to better preserve its artifacts and participate in the America 250 celebrations, which will mark the country’s 250th anniversary in 2026. to celebrate.

“The Josiah Day House and the Ramapogue Historical Society are an integral part of West Springfield,” DePergola explains. “We are constantly looking for people who want to be active on our board and for companies that want to help sponsor parts of our maintenance or programming. Just like when the RHS was first founded in 1903, helping maintain the Josiah Day House is a community effort.”

Thanks to funding from the city’s Community Preservation Act account, the house has undergone repairs that will allow it to have new exhibits and maintain its presence in the city for centuries to come.

“The repairs currently being made with CPA financing are going well,” DePergola said. “Because the house was built in 1754, we always expect repairs to be needed no matter how much money we spend on the house. Our goal is to preserve and protect the Josiah Day House, so we continually monitor and do our best to monitor repairs and find ways to finance them.

Anyone who would be interested in volunteering for the Ramapogue Historical Society can email [email protected].



Back To Top