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Keepers of the Boston Post Cane:

It started in 1909 as a gimmick to increase the circulation of the Boston Post.

There were 431 of the canes to begin with, made of African ebony with 14-carat gold heads. Some say that Edwin A. Grozier, publisher of the Boston Post, had picked them up cheap at an auction before he came up with the idea of distributing them to New England towns to be presented to each town's oldest citizen then passed along to the next oldest as each holder of the cane departed the earth.

Though intended at first only for men by 1930, women were receiving the canes.

Apparently no towns in Connecticut were included in the distribution of the canes, and only two towns in Vermont are known to have had canes.

The cane, or staff, is an ancient symbol of deference to age and reverence for ancestors.

Missing Canes in New Hampshire as of March 1983:

Brookline
Epping
Milford
Westmoreland
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     On December 5, 2017, the Gilmanton Board of Selectmen, Chairman, Stephen McWhinnie and Michael Jean, presented Hazel N. Fletcher with a replica of the Gilmanton Boston Post Cane. Hazel was born to Alice and Samuel Lucas Clark on February 16, 1921 in Epsom, NH on the family farm, where she grew up on Old Orchard Road. When her dad passed, Hazel’s mom sold the farm and moved Hazel and her sisters, Doris and Bea, to Pittsfield where Hazel starting working at the shoe shop in Pittsfield at the age of 15. She married in 1942 to Howard Fletcher during World War II, while Howard was on furlough. After the war, they settled in Pittsfield, then moved to Loudon with their son, Richard. Hazel worked in Manchester at a shoe factory and then worked for the Page Belting Company in Concord in the early 1960’s. In 1963, the Fletcher’s moved to Gilmanton. In 1973, Hazel’s husband, Howard, passed at the young age of 53; her son, Richard, moved back to Gilmanton to help his Mom. Hazel continued to work and retired from the Company in 1986 at the age of 65; both she and Richard remain active and busy.

     
                                                                    

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 Boston Post Cane Recipients:

 

Name

Birth

Death

Age

Horace Metcalf

June 18, 1818

June 2, 1913

94

Arrabelle Zulema (Moody) Knowles

October 17, 1850

September 7, 1942

91

Alice A. (Metcalf) Morgan

May 19, 1856

March 7, 1951

94

Richard Frank Varney

January 31, 1873

June 12, 1968

95

Swen Alban Burg

1884

May 4, 1970

86

Herbert (Bert) W. Omstead

May 15, 1881

March 19, 1974

92

Florence M. (Merrill) Durgin

May 29, 1884

April 22, 1977

92

Cynthia (Nelson) Brown

1891

September 19, 1986

95

Mildred E. (Page) Potter

May 3, 1894

September 19, 1990

96

Clayton Gerald Hobbs

July 12, 1896

January 21, 1995

98

Katharina (Gegger) Geiger

February 25, 1901

May 16, 1997

96

Hazel Parsons

November 28, 1898

October 17, 2001

102

Leona McClary

April 5, 1905

January 12, 2003

98

Lizzie Bickford

September 18, 1908

June 11, 2005

96

Doris Price Jones (Posthumously)

December 12, 1910

December 1, 2005

94

Ellen N. Cunliffe

May 5, 1911

March 1, 2008

96

 James G. Pennock

June 27, 1914 

February 20, 2014 

99

Rose Marie Young

October 14, 1917

August 28, 2017 

99 

 Hazel N. Fletcher

February 16, 1921

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 





Documents and Forms top of page
    Join us for the Presentation of the Boston Post Cane - On Wednesday, June 4, 2014 at 3:00 p.m. Rose Marie Young was honored as she was presented with the Boston Post Cane.
Presentation of Gilmanton's Boston Post Cane - Please join us on Tuesday, December 5, 2017, in the auditorium of the Academy Building, at 6:00 p.m., the Board of Selectmen will honor Hazel Fletcher with the presentation of Gilmanton's Boston Post Cane; light refreshments to follow the ceremony.