Autumn in the North Cemetery.

Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?

These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.

Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...

...seems to be working so far

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

An Autumn Mystery

When Mary and I moved into our home, at 60 Brookfield Road in Fiskdale in 2006, one of the small things we found was the tiny sundial pictured below.  I stumbled upon it this morning as I was packing up to move once more.  Not to worry, we are staying in town.

The sundial is made of bronze, and has a stand on the back. I imagine it would have been very comfortable sitting on someones desk years ago.

Also on the reverse is an inscription.  "Sturbridge  Lat 42D 7M - Long 72D 5M  JAN 1946".  Apparently, this sundial, and the location inscribed on the reverse held some significance for the owner.

The map below shows the exact location of the coordinates.  It falls in someones back yard.  The other map is from the towns website, and shows two properties on the corner of New Boston Road, and Preserve Way, but I don't think the mystery location falls on either parcel.  The town map shows two slivers of land running between the larger parcels, and those slivers are owned by the Town of Sturbridge.  Seems the town has had them since 2012.

What would be so important that its location was inscribed in bronze on the backside of a tiny sundial?  My imagination is telling me that it could be a lot of things.  Secret, treasure things, or just some memories buried by a veteran returning from the war.  Whatever the reason is, it is obvious that the location meant something to someone in 1946.

It's a mystery well worth some investigating, if for nothing else, so that we can all get some sleep tonight.


  1. The placement of a sun dial to work properly has to be "set" based on the lat long and time of year, (just like stones at stone hedge )

    So a simple explanation is previous property owner had set this dial in their yard, and had the references engraved on the back.

    Who owned the property in 1946?

    Tom C

  2. Good question, Tom. Maybe someone could research it, and we could get the sundial back to the family?


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