Saturday, May 14, 2016

The "Dark Day" in history, Eaton Day & White Elephant Sales & Ice cream!

Tommy at last year's Eaton Day!
The month is slipping away and the weather.... well that is another story.  As the week progressed down here in “old Eaton” it did improve but of course... that is scheduled to change to flurries of the s.... variety on Sunday night.  This always turns my head to the question of “what will the weather be like on Memorial Day Monday???”

As our small group puts the final push on to make Eaton Day special for the Town of Eaton and the community, thoughts always turn to ...”what if it rains?”  So without a doubt we are all praying to the powers-that-be for a good day.

This year's day is going to feature something new... a White Elephant Sale of sorts, which will include new and gently used items.  We have been collecting things all week that include items from large appliances to sets of china and paintings...  We all have them, you know the too good to throw away or take to the reuse bin...but stuff we want gone.  The idea is good and I think since my world is filled with “garag-ies” as I call them... it should be popular.  These folks actually share garage sale lists each week!

The other neat thing is troubadour Tommy Hoe and his guitar will be coming down to play some old “everybody knows” songs during our Ice Cream Social that starts at 1 pm. We are hoping to have some tables set up so you can sit and enjoy things as if it was the times in Eaton when the community celebrated together and looked forward to a change of pace day with the whole family. There will be hot dogs, soda, popcorn, coffee and an old-fashioned root beer float. So come on a pie or bake good...and say hi!

Someone mentioned the fires in Canada this past week and as always it set me on a “history quest”.  I knew the story but forgot the particulars but knew the date was May 19th in the year in 1780. 

The sun shown bright red in many places before that date and was followed on the 19th by a black cloud that settled over an area that stretched from New York to Maine.  It was so dark that candles had to be lit at noon and the darkness never stopped until the following night. Since there was no weather or news broadcasts in those days it brought many to the conclusion that the “World” was coming to an end as predicted in Biblical teachings.

One famous scene attributed to this was a story made famous in a poem by John Greenleaf Whittier.  His name and the poem are called Abraham Davenport.  Davenport was legislator in Connecticut who when his colleagues wanted to adjourn a session because of the darkness exclaimed: “I am against adjournment.  The day of judgment, is either approaching or it is not, if it is not, there is no cause for an adjournment, if it is, I choose to be found doing my duty.”

The Shakers of then Niskayuna (Waterveliet) Colony were seeking new converts to their religion and were out proselytizing when the event occurred and received a record number of converts because of it.

Many years later (recently) the cause was confirmed to be massive forest fires in Ontario, Canada.  College researchers examining the scar damage on the growth rings of trees attributed the “Dark Day” to a fire in today's Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario.

Here is a video of today's work to restore the Shaker Colony of Niskayuna. Enjoy and come out to Eaton for our special “Day”!

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