Upcoming Events Calendar

  • Columbia Lake - through the Years

    08/12/2018 – 1:00pm - 4:00pm
    The History Place

    On May 20th, the Columbia Historical Society will open it’s first exhibit in its new home, The History Place (Across Rt. 87 from the Library). On Selected Sunday afternoons through October, the exhibit will be open to the public at no cost.

    The exhibit will trace the history of the Columbia Lake Watershed from its early use by Native Americans, to its industrial uses during the 18th & 19th centuries, and its recreational use since the early twentieth century. It also examines the more recent history of stewardship by the town and private groups, to ensure that it provides scenic and recreational resources for humans and important habitat for wildlife well into the future.

    A special “Go Fish” game will be offered to children twelve and under who visit the exhibit and learn about the fish who live in the lake. Participants will be entered into a free drawing with the chance to win fishing equipment prizes.

    Sunday May 20, 1-4
    Sunday June 3, 1-4
    Sunday June 17, 1-4
    Wednesday July 4, 9-12
    Sunday July 22, 1-4
    Sunday August 12, 1-4
    Sunday August 26, 1-4
    Sunday September 16, 1-4
    Saturday October 20, 12:30-4

    Associated Activities:
    Sat. June 2, 1-3pm – Utley Mills & Lake Watershed walk. Leaders – Joan Hill & Ann Dunnack. Meet at rear of Recreation Park (60 Hennequin Rd) at 12:45

    July 15 & August 19 3PM & 4PM, Historical Float trips on Columbia Lake. Prior registration is required at millieramz@gmail.com or 860 729-5472.

    Sat. October 20, 11-12am – Lake Brook Ravine Walk. Details will be published in Walktober brochure.

    Columbia Lake - through the Years

  • Member of Infantry Division That Liberated Dachau Concentration Camp Gives Talk

    10/28/2018 – 2:00pm - 3:30pm
    Yeomans Hall, Columbia CT. Rt. 87

    The Columbia Historical Society is pleased to have Ben Cooper, a WWII veteran, with family ties in Columbia, as our guest speaker on Sunday, October 28th at 2:00 PM in Yeomans Hall on Rt. 87.

    Ben Cooper’s Infantry division liberated the Dachau concentration camp on April 29, 1945. Cooper was so traumatized, so heartbroken, over what he had witnessed that it took him 45 years to talk about it.  Once he did, he found that sharing his experience was a healing process for himself and an eye-opener for those who listened.  “Telling my story continues to be my mission. It is crucial to preserving history,” Cooper says.

    For years Cooper didn’t tell his wife or children what he saw at Dachau. He didn’t tell anyone. He couldn’t.

    “I had it hidden here,” Cooper says. “And it bothered me. It just, like festered there all the time. and I couldn’t talk to anybody about it. There was no one to talk to, you know. That’s why I didn’t talk for 45 years.”

    “But now I do. Now I want people to know it happened.”  Ben has told his story numerous times – to high schools, colleges, civic groups and to historians at the Veteran’s History Project.  (Excerpts from HEARTBEAT Nov/Dec Issue 2017)

    Light refreshment will be served.  An afternoon not to be missed.