Born in Pittsfield in l940. Moved away in l954 and have been back a few times. Pittsfield has changed, but still has the flavor of small town upbringing.
Remember living “down” the hill at the woolen mill, just north of Main Street on the right. Has become part of CianBro I believe. When I lived there us children had pretty much free reign weekends. The homes were owned by the mill and we rented. Father worked at mill . The watchman, on weekends, would unlock the warehouse. This was to give us children a place to play. We had more fun jumping around burlap bags full of woolen strips. That place was a gold mine for kids with little else.
We used the church hill above the mill for sliding. Also, were able to slide down the roads adjacent to the mill. I guess automobiles were of little concern on weekends. Mill was closed on Sundays and left us with freedom to do about anything outdoors.
We used the river to “raft” down. My mother had a fair share of frightful moments wondering what happened to me. My friends and I could get a good distance from the house on handmade rafts. Can’t remember how we got home. Probably slipped a little cardboard in our shoes and hoofed it.
Us kids (had four brothers and sisters) spent a lot of time at the movies. My father worked as the “pop-corn man” while we were there. It was convenient for him to watch us (Mom at work) and work his part-time job at the same time. I think most of the movies of the 40’s and serial shows are embedded in my brain somewhere.
Could write on and on about the things kids did during WWll and Korea, but for another time. Just remember collecting paper for the war effort. Also, some of us were spotters of aircraft at the airport. We had to call Dow Air Force Base identifying planes, direction flying, weather conditions. Can you imagine! We were probably 12 or 13 year old kids!
My family was disrupted by the closing of the mill in 1954 (I believe). We moved to Waterville with furniture and five kids piled in the back of an old stake truck. Closes thing to the “dust bowl” experience I ever experienced.
I go on,
Wayne H. Cochrane