As a young not-for-profit organization, the work and mission of the Ridgefield Historical Society is advanced by our friends and believers — through memberships, donations, grants, collaborations, volunteerism — plus good old-fashioned kindness. In our two-decade history we’ve been lucky to have good friends who share our conviction about the importance of history and heritage, and the value in understanding, preserving, and sharing that which came before. Thank you.
This past summer, we were the grateful recipients of special gifts from friends and supporters at the Anne S. Richardson Foundation, Fairfield County Bank, and the Goldstone Family Foundation. These organizations and their gifts, unique to themselves, all are contributing to the growth and stability of the Ridgefield Historical Society.
The Anne S. Richardson grant will support a capital project at the Scott House to resolve potential water drainage issues which could threaten the RHS Archive and the Collections it houses. For those unfamiliar, the Archive is located in a state-of-the-art vault in the basement of the Scott House and serves as the principal repository for the Town of Ridgefield’s historic documents, images, artifacts, newspapers, maps, and ephemera, the majority of which are accessible to the public online. The items in the RHS Archive span hundreds of years and include materials from all eras of the town’s history.
In recent years, the vault which houses the Archive has become victim to water leakage through several locations on the exterior. The issue intensifies with significant rain and during times of local flooding. Due to the value of the RHS Collections, and the value of the items stored, it is critical that we resolve the drainage and flooding issues now and protect the historical contents of our vault. The Anne S. Richardson grant will allow us to do this.
The Schoolhouse, which is owned by the Town of Ridgefield and overseen by the Historical Society, is a small museum in itself, offering insights into life in Ridgefield during bygone eras. The original schoolhouse was built in 1756 in a small triangle of town-owned land where Silver Spring Road met West Lane and South Salem Road. In the middle of the 19th Century, the current larger schoolhouse replaced it.
The Ridgefield Historical Society opens the Schoolhouse doors during the temperate months — May through October — welcoming visitors to enter, imagine, and learn — just as the former pupils did. Fairfield County Bank’s generosity allows us to keep this treasure alive, and bring smiles to the faces of the guests we host.
This past summer, the Goldstone Family Foundation — which also contributed significantly to the Ridgefield Historical Society’s 20th anniversary celebrations, including the Battle of Ridgefield 245th Anniversary commemoration — supported two interns at the Ridgefield Historical Society, Francesco Carro and Elizabeth Jasminski.
These two collegians brought extra hands and fresh energy to our lean staff, making us think twice and helping us progress on several initiatives and projects — historical, intellectual, physical, and all of the above.