THE 50

Title

THE 50

Description

This collections features the 50 community objects curated by the Worcester in 50 Objects Committee and displayed at the Worcester Historical Museum from October 17, 2016 to March 11, 2017.

Collection Items

NORTH HIGH VARSITY LETTER FOR TRACK
I picked this varsity letter to represent a place: Lake Quinsigamond. When I was in high school, I was part of the cross-country team at North High and we practiced there; it has a very special place in my heart. The cross-country team itself was…

NIPMUC POW WOW REGALIA
This is one of several outfits or ‘regalia’ worn at Nipmuc Indian events in the 1940s and 1950s by Carl O. Bates Sr., Chief Supercloud [1888-1973], whose family were the last owners of the Nimpuc Indian Reservation at Woodstock, Connecticut. He…

SIGMUND FREUD'S 1909 VISIT TO CLARK UNIVERSITY
Interview with Robert Deam Tobin:
In 1909, Clark University President G. Stanley Hall, as part of the university’s 20th anniversary celebration, brought Sigmund Freud to Worcester for a major conference on psychology.  Freud, who as a European found…

DAVID CLARK HEADSET
Interview with Mark Gardell:
You’ve seen them on television, in movies and in use by military forces on the news every day: Those distinctive green headsets worn by pilots, firefighters, military crews, coaches and many others to provide…

I LOVE WORCESTER PIN
Interview with Jessica Walsh:
When I moved to Worcester in 2007, I quickly fell in love. The history, the people, the food, the art – everything Worcester – was exactly what I wanted in a place to call home.  After the “I LOVE Worcester” pin I…

NOBEL PRIZE
Interview with Mark L. Shelton:
Craig C. Mello of the University of Massachusetts Medical School received the Nobel Prize in Physiology of Medicine in 2006 for his discovery, with Andrew Fire, of the phenomenon of “RNA interference - gene silencing…

ISAIAH THOMAS TOMB KEY
Interview with Ellen S. Dunlap:
This key opens the tomb of the Thomas family in Rural Cemetery.  Revolutionary War patriot Isaiah Thomas, founder of the American Antiquarian Society, died in 1831 at age 82. He was laid to rest in Mechanic-Street…

SIGN FROM GEORGE'S CONEY ISLAND
Interview with Kathryn Tsandikos:
Coney Island started in 1918, and my grandfather, George Tsagarelis, bought the business in 1927.  In the 1940s, neon signs were popular, and my grandmother, Catherine Tsagarelis, wanted a sign for the store.…

GIRL'S BILL OF RIGHTS
“The Girl’s Bill of Rights” was introduced in 1940 at the annual meeting of the Worcester Girls Club.  The board of directors, including Mrs. Francis Dewey, Mrs. Winfred Whiting, Mrs. Ralph Gow and Mrs. George Booth, approved a list of nine rights…

PROGRAM AND TICKET FROM PRESIDENT JOHNSON'S WORCESTER VISIT, JUNE 10, 1964
Interview with Wayne A. Dufault, Sr.:
In 1964, I was fifteen years old and fascinated by the presidents. Holding my ticket for President Johnson’s speech at Holy Cross, I waited on Chandler Street for his motorcade. Suddenly, he pulled up, rolled…

NOVEMBER PROJECT
Sam Kenary: “The November Project is a free fitness and community-building movement in the U.S. and abroad that we brought to Worcester to help knit the community together.  It’s important to me because it’s redefined what it means to be social in…

LAKE QUINSIGAMOND AND JOSEPH GARAFALO OAR
From turn-of-the-century White City’s sparkling lights to picnics and soccer games in Lake Park, Lake Quinsigamond has always been a recreational icon for Worcester. Crew racing appeared on the lake in the mid-nineteenth century and Olympic rowers at…

ABBY KELLEY FOSTER MEDAL
Abby Kelley Foster was a delegate to the British/Foreign Anti-Slavery Convention held in London, England, in June of 1840. Although unable to attend as a delegate from Massachusetts, the state’s only woman voted to be an elected delegate, this medal…

EL MOROCCO RESTURANT SIGN
The El Morocco, known to all as simply as “the El,” was one of the first Middle Eastern restaurants in New England. The Aboody family, headed by Paul and Helen, opened the restaurant in 1945 in a three-decker at 73 Wall Street. For decades, the El…

1838 VIEW OF WORCESTER TAKEN FROM UNION HILL
In 1838, the Blackstone Canal was halfway through
its twenty-year lifespan, its 45-mile waterway connecting Worcester to Providence and opening the Blackstone Valley to trade and a broader cultural perspective. It was a conduit between past and…

RALPH'S
Interview with Caitlin McCarthy:
"Eat at Ralph's & Live Forever" is the slogan of
Ralph's Rock Diner. The place is certainly immortal for Worcesterites. How many friendships and romances have been forged over burgers and chili in the diner, drinks…

LETTER OF REFERENCE FOR AN IRISH SERVANT
Interview with Matt Reidy:
My paternal grandmother, Mary Kett, was 18 years old when she came to Worcester from Ireland in 1907. It was a time when many Irish immigrants were servants and laborers, and she worked at 10 Oxford Street for Mrs. Gilman,…

THE SMILEY PIN
The smiley face pin came from honest and humble beginnings. The face on the pin was created by Harvey Ball, in Worcester in 1963 for a morale campaign at Worcester-based State Mutual Life Assurance Company. It was an instant hit and quickly went on…

WTAG MICROPHONE
Interview with Hank Stolz:
To me, the classic look of the mike symbolizes the time when WTAG would have been in the same building with the “Telegram” and the “Evening Gazette”, when you had the big studios, the orchestras, and everything was live.…

JERRY'S ICE CREAM TRUCK
Interview with James Nguyen:
When it gets hot outside, it is always refreshing to get an ice cream, especially from Jerry’s Ice Cream Truck. To me, Jerry’s Ice Cream truck matters because Jerry is that guy who reminds me of my childhood. Jerry’s Ice…

WCCA TV
A great window into Worcester’s heart, fiber, soul—warts and all—is WCCA TV’s video archive...the largest about Worcester in the world! WCCA has over 5,100 full video works uploaded online plus hundreds more tapes on site on Main Street.

TABLE TALK PIE TIN
Interview with Harry Kokkinis:
My grandfather, Theodore Tonna, and Angelo Cotsidas started the business in 1924. They were basically baking pies at night and delivering them during the day. My grandfather was the baker and Angelo was the salesman.…

MOSELM BURIAL GROUND MARKER AT HOPE CEMETARY
Interview with Imrana Soofi:
In Hope Cemetery, dedicated in 1852, a tall monument dated 1918 and engraved with the words, "Moslem Brotherhood Association of Worcester, Mass," stands at the center of a small section of Muslim graves. The gravestones…

GODDARD ROCKET
This is a slightly smaller reproduction of the rocket that Robert H. Goddard launched on May 16, 1926. It was the first successful liquid-fueled rocket and was the start of the space age. Goddard went on to obtain 214 patents that were used by NASA…

CANDELPIN BOWLING SET
Interview with Paul Wambach:
Candlepin bowling was invented here in Worcester in 1880. The first pins were made from broomsticks, about 16 to 17 inches high, and set up in the traditional formation. Years ago, before automatic pinsetters were…

POLAR BEVERAGES
Interview with Christopher J. Crowley:
We don’t know who came up with the polar bear image, but the company was founded in 1882 to provide “arctic pure water” at a time when the water supply was really rough. People drank beer because it was a much…

APPIAN WAY PIZZA MIX
Interview with Gregory Califano, Jr.
Appian Way Pizza Mix was the first pizza pie mix, developed and marketed by Frank A. Fiorillo of Worcester in the early 1950s.
After going to Italy and loving that light and airy Neapolitan pizza, my wife and I…

KINEFAC
Interview with Leslie Greis:
In 1989, the Louvre, a treasured asset of France and the largest museum in the world, completed construction of a large glass pyramid in its central court to serve as a new main entrance for visitors. Designed by…

TURTLE BOY
Interview with Nicole Apostola:
Harriet Burnside, who died in 1904, left a bequest to the city for a fountain for horses and dogs in memory of her father, Samuel Burnside, a prominent Worcester resident and lawyer. The basin, in beautiful pink…

BIRTH CONTOL PILL
Interview with Barbara Haller:
In the 1950s, it was Margaret Sanger, birth control pioneer and the founder of Planned Parenthood, who urged endocrinologist Gregory Pincus at Clark University’s Worcester Foundation for Experimental Biology to…

PRIDE TV
Interview with Dale LaPage:
I’m an entertainer and a singer-songwriter, with two shows on Charter TV3. Last year, I started Pride TV, the first LGBT television show anywhere in New England. The show provides support for everyone in the LGBTQ…

"CASEY AT THE BAT"
Interview with Joy Hennig:
The legendary poem, “Casey at the Bat,” with its reminder that our highest hopes are so often dashed, appeals to everyone. Native son Ernest Thayer wrote “Casey” in Worcester in 1888; it took him two hours. It appeared in…

THE TORY PROTEST, 1774
In 1774, bitter discord divided Tory and Whig in Worcester as elsewhere in the colonies, and the Whigs seemed to have the upper hand. In June, 52 loyalists sent a vitriolic screed to the press and asked town clerk Clark Chandler to copy it into the…

SIEGFRIED
This model of Siegfried, is one of nine full size models created by Paul Jonas Studios after the Sinclair Dinoland exhibit at the 1964-65 World’s Fair in New York. The full scale model of the Stegosaurus arrived at the museum in the fall of 1964. The…

C. C. Lowell
C.C. Lowell was founded in 1852 by Mr. O.C. White who began by selling basic paint and art supplies. Later the business was sold to an employee of Mr. White - the stores namesake - Mr. Charles C. Lowell. In the early 1900's, the store was moved to…

1953 TORNADO
Interview with Najemy:
I was 3 ½ years old but I certainly remember that day and that sky. I usually rode with my aunt to pick up her husband from Norton’s. We never brought my two older brothers age 7 and 10 along with us. But this day for some…

HILL DRYER ON A TRIPLE DECKER
One summer night, a few friends and I found an abandoned building and climbed up to the roof to watch the sun set over triple deckers as far as you could see. I felt so at peace in that moment, realizing all of the reasons I loved Worcester. My first…

MUSIC WORCESTER
Our annual tradition of performing Handel’s “Messiah” on the first Saturday of December is almost 120 years old and running. This program is from a singular performance from 1977, which coincided with the renaissance and reintroduction of Mechanics…
View all 49 items

Have a Story to Add to this Object