RSSAuthor Archive for Ruthie Douglas

Ruthie Douglas is originally from Springfield but has called Chester her home for 58 years, and has been writing the Chester Chatter column for more than 40 of those years. Ruthie is also a longtime volunteer throughout the community.

Chester Chatter: TV continues to fascinate

Chester Chatter: TV continues to fascinate

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC I was 15 years old when my family finally got a television set. My sister and I hurried home from school so that we could watch The Mickey Mouse Club. We watched the show almost every day. While my mother was getting supper ready, my father watched the […]

Chester Chatter: Every cemetery tells a story

Chester Chatter: Every cemetery tells a story

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC Chester has seven cemeteries. For many years, Ken Barrett was the cemetery sexton for those cemeteries, taking quite good care of them. Chester’s cemeteries are very well kept, which is not true of other towns. Years ago, Ken gave me a tour of the graveyards in his pickup […]

Chester Chatter: Giving them a ghost of a chance

Chester Chatter: Giving them a ghost of a chance

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC Year’s ago, on a warm summer day while I was working at Raspberries and Tyme restaurant, a woman and her son came in for lunch.  A waitress invited the pair to sit down as they finished setting up. After a while, the woman asked one of the waitresses […]

Chester Chatter: In honor of Vivian and Helene

Chester Chatter: In honor of Vivian and Helene

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC I used to honor two mothers on Mother’s Day: my own mother and my mother-in-law. Every Mother’s Day, my mother Vivian would receive a wide variety of gifts seeing that there were five of us daughters. My gifts to her were apt to be things I made at […]

Chester Chatter: Farm life is hard, but rewarding

Chester Chatter: Farm life is hard, but rewarding

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC As a new farmer’s wife I had lots to learn. For instance, I had never considered farming to be a business. But it sure as heck is. On our kitchen table came many farm-related news announcements and there were many many meetings to attend. Some of us farmers […]

Chester Chatter: Getting cozy with farm life

Chester Chatter: Getting cozy with farm life

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC Coming to Chester and moving into the big farm house, I faced a brand new way of life. Especially when my new husband Don said, “Come out to the barn and see the cows.” I had lived my entire life in Vermont, but until that day I had […]

Chester Chatter: Uncle Kenny was a kid's best friend

Chester Chatter: Uncle Kenny was a kid’s best friend

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC I adored my Uncle Kenny. When I was growing up, he and my Aunt Dottie lived right next door to us. They ran a small mom & pop grocery store as well a butcher shop that attracted customers from miles around. The store was in the basement of […]

Chester Chatter: Creating wonderful family scenes during Covid

Chester Chatter: Creating wonderful family scenes during Covid

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC The Covid-19 pandemic has been tough on all of us. Wouldn’t we all wish it would come to an end? However not all is bad. We have learned some lessons from staying home and not moving about for trips and going on shopping sprees. For the first time, […]

Chester Chatter: Support your local businesses

Chester Chatter: Support your local businesses

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC Decades ago, one did not have to leave Chester for most things. We had three grocery stores: Jamison’s Market, Al’s IGA and Gould’s. We had two hardware stores, a grain store, two diners and gas stations galore. Usually, you would travel to Claremont, N.H. for special purchases, such […]

Chester Chatter: My resilient grandmother Mabel

Chester Chatter: My resilient grandmother Mabel

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC My grandmother Mabel was raped. She was barely 16 years old and discovered later that she had become pregnant. This was in the late 1800s. The small Canadian town she lived in was religiously conservative; upon learning of Mabel’s situation, her mother threw her out of the house. […]

Chester Chatter: A short-order cook stands tall

Chester Chatter: A short-order cook stands tall

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC In the late 1950s, my husband Don bought a pair of Morgan draft pulling horses. The matched pair were strictly for showing. On the country fair circuit, they won many awards and appeared on television at the Eastern States Fair — the Big E — in Massachusetts. We […]

Chester Chatter: Honoring Helene for Women's History Month

Chester Chatter: Honoring Helene for Women’s History Month

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC This is the month of the woman, Women’s History Month. Who is the woman you honor? My mother-in-law, Helene Douglas, meant a lot to me. It started when I married her son and moved into their farmhouse. I was 16 and didn’t know how to run a vacuum […]

Chester Chatter: After WWI, Johnnie Walker finds home in Vermont

Chester Chatter: After WWI, Johnnie Walker finds home in Vermont

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC Johnnie Walker fished the Williams River in front of my farmhouse and many times would seek a ride back up to town. That gave me a chance to really get to know Johnnie. At one point, my editor — I believe it was at the Black River Tribune […]

Chester Chatter: Kindness abounds in our community

Chester Chatter: Kindness abounds in our community

by Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC Here I go again. Do you realize how lucky we are to be living here? I am now very familiar with the emergency room, hospital and rehab facilities nearby. Working in these facilities are the staffs. Those folks are some sweet people. The kindness they show their patients […]

Chester Chatter: Rewarding friendship spans age

Chester Chatter: Rewarding friendship spans age

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC A house in our neighborhood in Springfield stood vacant for some time. Then one summer day, a moving truck backed up. We kids crept near behind some bushes to see: Would there be any kids to play with? No, it turns out. Just two old people, Henry and […]

Chester Chatter: Remembering Johnnie Walker

Chester Chatter: Remembering Johnnie Walker

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC Johnnie Walker had come up from working in a foundry in New Jersey to work with horses at a boys’ school in Jamaica. He was extremely talented in working with those horses, but he didn’t know how to read or write. With the closing of the school, he […]

Chester Chatter: Happy Valentine's Day to all

Chester Chatter: Happy Valentine’s Day to all

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC Love is in the air. Can’t you hear it? Can’t you feel it? It’s time to let those we love really know it. Right now is the perfect time to make some memories since the Covid-19 pandemic rules say that we should be staying at home. Gather up […]

Chester Chatter: Navigating life in a wheelchair

Chester Chatter: Navigating life in a wheelchair

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC I now know what handicapped really means. For instance, many stores have doors that are too cumbersome to open if you are in a wheelchair. Walking paths are often too narrow for wheelchairs. Tables at restaurants are many times too high for comfortable dining for those who must […]

Chester Chatter: A town I never want to leave

Chester Chatter: A town I never want to leave

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC In 1957, when I came to live in Chester, I knew that I would never want to leave. It seemed that everyone knew everyone else. Folks liked each other here.  As a farmer’s wife, I was eased into that role slowly. I came to know the hardware store […]

Chester Chatter: Long winters spent indoors

Chester Chatter: Long winters spent indoors

By Ruthie Douglas ©2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC Because the house I grew up in in Springfield was so small — four rooms for a family of five — we had to share our space. Come a cold winter day when my sister Marie and I could not play outside, so winter meant a lot of […]