December 14, 2013

POUND RIDGE PAST and the Christmas Spirit

Pound Ridge is blanketed in its first snowstorm of the season and Christmas festivities are in full swing. In my book, POUND RIDGE PAST: Remembrances of Our Townsfolk, Joseph D. Quillian, Jr., pastor of Pound Ridge Community Church from 1946-1950, shares the following glittering memories in a letter to  The Reverend T. Cecil Swackhamer:

"I always remember with great warmth, and a sense of lift of spirit, the Christmas Eve services at Pound Ridge Community Church. The white church was always decorated with two Christmas trees, decorated with blue lights, on either side in the front. Inside, there were numerous candles and beautiful crystal chandeliers. My wife Betty had (and has) a beautiful soprano voice, and Winston Sharples had a true and delicate tenor.
     "The service included Christmas scriptures intermingled with solos and duets by Betty and Winston, and a brief sermon by me. We always started at 11 o'clock and concluded on the stroke of midnight, at which time Carl Offen would go over to the Presbyterian Church [Conant Hall] (for it was the only one that had a bell) and ring the bells as people left the service.
     "Frequently, we would have had a beautiful snowfall on Christmas Eve. And many of the people would have come to church from formal parties, dressed in evening clothes."
                            -- Joseph D. Quillian, Jr.
                               Pound Ridge Community Church Pastor from 1946-5

To read more personal recollections about life in Pound Ridge from the 1920s to the 1970s, go to Signed copies are available at Scotts Corner Market, Booksy GalorePound Ridge Historical Society and Plum Plums in Pound Ridge, Erica's Kitchen in Bedford Village, N.Y. and design solutions in New Canaan, Conn.

** POUND RIDGE PAST is a terrific gift for the holidays!

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