The custom of visiting localities where branches of the Clough, Cluff Family were pioneers has been followed since Walter Cluff and Mrs. Bernice Rogers organized our Society. From the “landing place” in Charlestown, Mass., we have explored Salisbury and Haverhill, Mass. In Maine, we saw Kennebunkport, Goodwin’s Mills and Portland, and in New Hampshire our reunions have been held at Salem, Manchester, Canterbury and Haverhill.
Last August the reunion was no exception to this custom. Our President, Alvern Phineas Clough, descended from the Hopkinton, N. H. Branch. He enlisted the assistance of members of this line who arranged all of the details for a delightful gathering.
The south wing of the Highway Hotel in Concord, N. H. was well filled on Saturday afternoon, August 17th with members from far and near.
The New Hampshire Highway Hotel dominated Fort Eddy Road for almost 40 years before its sale and demolition in 1988. See Remembering the New Hampshire Highway Hotel. – Editor.
The NH Highway Hotel was “a mammoth hotel that hosted most of the important political figures in the country at some point or another during its life span from 1951 to 1988.”
The grand surprise was to meet again Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin P. Clough from Burbank, California. Rev. Maxwell and his wife from Pawtucket, R. I., were present for the Board of Governors’ meeting and the afternoon session. Cousin Maxwell displayed an increasing list of Clough lines in Vermont that he is preparing for the second volume of the Clough Genealogy.
To our readers who have not had the pleasure of acquaintance with our President, we introduce him as a tall, broad-shouldered man who possesses an exceedingly pleasing personality. His wife, Elizabeth, graciously welcomed us in the lobby with a cordial handshake. His experience in large organizations has given Cousin Alvern the ability to create an atmosphere of ease and friendliness that induced the members to freely express their suggestions for the future of the Society during the business meeting.
The Genealogist, Cousin Vivian Lord, explained that with her own funds she had increased our doubtful adventure in research in the early records of Massachusetts settlements, especially around Ipswich, called the “Jane Fund,” to $100.00 and has engaged Miss Charlotte Reed of Boston to study early records in Massachusetts with the understanding that the possibility of discovering the maiden name of the wife of our John Clough is problematical. Cousin Vivian reported about her trip to Brandon, Vermont, where she found records of the missing Moses from Salem, N. H., which prove his lineage and also eliminates one of the lost Moses.
The sports program for the late afternoon did not progress although Cousin Austin E. Lewis and his two sons from Bradford, Mass., were ready to organize games had the younger people been present. This plan may be attempted at another meeting.
At 6:30 o’clock, we gathered in the commodious chapel of the First Congregational Church in Concord where Cousin Richard Clough is a prominent deacon. He arranged with the women’s organizations for a delicious dinner with turkey and all its accompaniments and hot homemade rolls and assorted cakes with ice cream and coffee in abundance. The husbands served as waiters with practiced efficiency and the pleasure for the kindness of these women and men who prepared such a repast on a summer Saturday was heartily expressed by our members.
As we sat around the tables, the usual roll call with responses by each member was, as always, enjoyable. Also two soprano solos by Cousin Martha Lord, one the “Hills of Home,” accompanied by Robert at the piano gave additional pleasure to this part of the program.
As the members stood to announce their names and lineage and related personal items about their family events, an unusual group was received with applause. Prof. Everett B. and Mrs. Strong of Ithaca, N. Y., and his mother, Mrs. Annie Strong of Elmira, N. Y., were accompanied by Mr. and Mrs. Stanley L. Johnson (Ruth Strong) of Allston, Mass., and their twin sons, seven months of age, Christopher and David Johnson. These lovely babies sat quietly in their carriage, enjoying their bottles of food as their parents ate their dinner, and when their proud grandfather introduced them, they raised their alert faces to watch him like two cherubs as they certainly were to never make a sound to indicate that they were present. We shall watch for them at future reunions. Prof. Strong fills the chair of engineering on the faculty of Cornell University.
As we were leaving the tables to adjourn to the upper auditorium, Mr. and Mrs. Harry E. Clough of Brunswick, Maine, arrived, two new members to be welcomed to our clan, whom we mention in another column.
Several selections on the pipe organ by Cousin Robert S. Lord were, as always, enjoyable and then she and Martha were obliged to leave since Robert was due at the church in New Haven on Sabbath morning where he is minister of music.
Detailed plans for the drive to Hopkinton and exciting events in the early history of the vicinity where the Cloughs settled were told most vividly by Prof. Francis Clough, now of Center Barnstead, N. H., but formerly a teacher of mathematics in Massachusetts. Here we interrupt our narrative to insert a correction from last year. In the Bulletin we said that Mr. F. Tenney Clough of Amherst, N. H., was the son of Richard of Concord. Naturally his mother, Mrs. Francis Clough, informed the editor that this young man and his wife and two sons, Roger Dustin Clough and Alan Tenney Clough, belonged to her and Cousin Francis, not to Deacon Richard. The editor regrets her mistake.
The evening program closed with a most enlightening talk by the pastor of the church, Rev. Tel-fer Mook, who related his experience in World War II on an island in the Pacific where he was stationed with his outfit and also 3,000 starving children from Korea and many of their parents. How Mr. Mook organized these refugees and, with the assistance of Seabees, managed to find food and clothes and even materials for schools was a tale of almost unbelievable adventure and Christian fortitude.
We were impressed with the tight schedule for the Sunday program and surprisingly at 7:30 A. M., everybody was in the dining-room and at 8:30 were following Cousin Francis toward Hopkinton, a fifteen mile drive. The first stop was at the site of the Woodwell Garrison, an early fort that was attacked by Indians. Soon we stopped again at the homestead of Phineas Clough-5, a two story house sheltered by tall, old trees. The original house and barns were erected across the road by James-4 about 1772.
Then we drove to Cloughville on the shore of Clough Pond, now called Clement Lake and a summer camp for young people occupies the buildings that Cloughs erected. There was the small schoolhouse of former days, and a cottage that Mrs. Francis Clough had named “Honeymoon Cottage” because there she and Cousin Francis began their honeymoon. But time was pressing and we hastened to the cars and returned to prepare for church. We attended a union service at the White Memorial Church in Concord where three front pews were reserved for us by Cousin Richard, and we listened to an excellent sermon by Rev. Mook from the text, “In My Father’s house are many mansions.” We wished that Cousin James had been present for he would have approved this Sabbath program.
We returned to the hotel for lunch and there found Mrs. Herridge. Her daughter and husband, Mr. and Mrs. Ted Collins of Stevens Circle, Andover, Mass., had brought their mother from the home of Mrs. E. K. Lopeman at Schaghticoke, N. Y., to the reunion although she is crippled by a stroke but because she desired to come, even for a few minutes, her family, who are devoted to her every wish, made this attendance at the lunch hour possible.
The goodbyes were said again and we scattered to our homes around two P. M.
About 60 were present including Elizabeth Hannon from Connecticut, the Lindleys, Mr. and Mrs. Woodman Clough of Reading, Mrs. Clara C. Bent of Brookline, all of Massachusetts. The faithful members from New Hampshire: Mrs. Rogers, Dixon, the Scotts, Martha, Kate and Nell, three sisters from N. Haverhill and Marian Rowe and Mrs. Howard B. Clough from Portland, Maine. One special attendant whose name does not appear, we regret, on the register, was an experienced traveler, a Manx cat, belonging to Mrs. Howard Clough. The past seven years this well behaved pussy has been to Florida and return, her favorite seat at the rear window of the car. Restrained by a light harness, lest she stray into danger, Puss adapts herself to any situation where her mistress stays and we doubt if the management of the hotel knew that this visitor was staying in their house.
Cousin Alvern declined reelection because of business requirements. Mrs. Doris Clough Dixon graciously accepted the invitation of the Nominating committee to become President. Cousin Doris was Recording Secretary two successive years and understands the customs of the Society. Her close friend is Vice-President Elizabeth Hannon and they are certain to plan with original ideas for the nineteenth reunion.