Images are the property of the Lebanon Historical Society and copyright laws may apply.

Bringing in hay on the Burgess farm on Kick Hill Road

Photographer:  unknown

Date:  circa 1890-1920

Image of four unidentified men posed in a hay field.  One is driving a horse-drawn hay rake, one stands with a scythe, one is driving a two-horse team pulling a loaded hay wagon, and the last is standing on top of the load of hay.

According to the donor in 1899 her great-grandmother Emma Daggett, wife of Joseph Nathaniel Daggett (a Civil War veteran and manager of Wanamaker’s department store in Philadelphia and New York,) purchased a farm on the Lebanon Green from the estate of Dr. Charles Sweet.  The Daggetts apparently hoped that their son Joseph would be interested in farming. The family used the farm as a summer home and hired Frederick A Burgess as resident farmer.  Emma Daggett sold the property in 1902 but her daughter had fallen in love with Fred Burgess and the two were married in 1906.

This image was taken on Martha and Fred Burgess’s farm on Kick Hill before they purchased the “Simeon Gray Tavern at 896 Trumbull Highway.  Fred Burgess was a trial judge for twenty years and held court in the front parlor of their house.


Provenance:  Gift of Margaret Daniel

Chestnut Hill Train Station

Subject:  Chestnut Hill train station

Photographer:  unknown

Date: circa 1900-1920

Description:  A small “Victorian” train station with a station master in uniform standing outside.  Two oxen yoked to a four-wheel wagon stand behind the platform to the right of the station.

History:  During the early 1870s a second attempt finally completed a railroad (called the Air Line) from New Haven through Middletown and on to Willimantic where passengers and cargo could transfer to trains to Boston. Earlier plans for a single railroad from New York through to Boston along this route had been abandoned.  In Lebanon, stations were built where the tracks crossed Leonard Bridge Road (Leonard Bridge station) and on Route 87 just north of the Columbia town line on the Ten Mile River (Chestnut Hill station).  These small stations facilitated mail delivery and provided a way for local farmers to move produce to market.  Passengers could buy tickets to travel from one village to the next or to the larger towns along the route like Middletown, Colchester and Willimantic.


Provenance:  Gift of Mr. & Mrs. William Kotrba

Grange Hall

Photographer:  P. F. Rockett, Photographer, Willimantic, Conn.

Date:  circa 1890

Description:  Large Queen Anne style two story & attic building with its gable end facing the road.  Built in 1885 as the cooperative store with second floor as a meeting hall of the Lebanon Grange, Patrons of Husbandry #21.  Front porch across the gable front and loading dock along the south side.  Entrance to the meeting hall is near the rear of the south wall.  Gentlemen are unidentified.

History:  Lebanon’s Grange was a year old in 1884 when the organization purchased a building lot from the Ashers who then owned the Dave Trumbull Mansion (aka “Redwood”).  The deed specified that the Grange would construct a building to be “used for Grange purposes containing a Hall, a Reading Room and a Store.”  The hall was also used for community events, school graduations and even basketball games.  The cooperative store, however, proved a challenge to operate profitable.  The store was first leased out in 1892 and the building sold in 1930.  It has remained in private hands since; for many years serving as a country store and breakfast-lunch eatery.  The hall was divided into apartments.


Provenance: found in collections

Night School Graduating Class

Photographer: unknown

Date:  circa 1929

Description:  Group of 27 adults and 4 children seated in wooden school benches with teacher George Briggs standing between the windows.  Table in the front of the room (lower right corner) holds tumblers with napkins inside and plates of food including numerous bananas.

History:  Picture was taken in the Cullen school house at the corner of Clubhouse Road and Rte 207.  In 1928, twenty-two adults petitioned the town for an evening school.  The town agreed and opened the school in the District 13 (Cullen) school house.  Despite needing to travel long distances, often during bad weather, the school maintained an average attendance of fourteen.  For those who did not speak English, language classes as well as other practical course work was offered.


Provenance:  Gift of Eva Himmelstein

Registering to Vote

Photographer:  unknown

Saturday, September 18, 1920

Description:  Photograph includes from the left:  C.J. Abell (town clerk), Mrs. Lillie, Carl Bishop (First Selectman), James Randall (Registrar), Fred Taylor (Registrar) and William Clark (Second Selectman).  The United States flag, which appears to be hanging backwards, may indicate that the negative was reversed in printing.

History:  Elizabeth Clark was born February 1, 1821 and died October 20, 1920 about three weeks after a catching a cold while registering to vote. She was one of 118 Lebanon residents who registered to vote that day, most of whom were women who registered for the first time ever after the women’s suffrage amendment was ratified on August 26, 1920.


Provenance:  Gift of Paul E. Bliss

Captain (Daniel) Tilden House in Liberty Hill

Subject:  Captain (Daniel) Tilden House in Liberty Hill

Photographer:  unknown

Date: before 1938

Description:  Rear view of a center chimney salt-box style house standing neglected and abandoned in a field with a large tree on the left of the image.

History:  Tradition suggests that this was the home of Daniel Tilden (1743-1833) who served in the Lebanon militia during the Lexington Alarm and Battle of Bunker Hill.  His military record and the pension application that he filed in Hiram, OH when he was 89, document his participation in the Battle of Trenton with the Continental Army and later at New London with the Connecticut Militia.  Mrs. Edward Stiles, who grew up in the house, recalled playing as a child with a sword believed to have belonged Captain Tilden.  The house collapsed in 1938 after the large sycamore tree in this photograph fell into the structure during the hurricane.  The house was located off Tobacco Street down a long dirt driveway


Provenance:  Gift of Mr. & Mrs. William Kotrba