Thursday, September 27, 2012

Explosive documents- POW!

Some of the things if my office are so interesting that I just have to share. I have many completed applications for "A LICENSE To purchase, own, possess, transport or use Explosives" from residents and businesses in the Town of Greenwich from 1945-1974.

These forms came from the NYS Department of Labor. If someone needed to use explosives for business or home use, they would come to the town clerk's office and request an application. The completed application would then have to be signed by the town clerk. The applicant had to state their reasons for requiring the use of explosives. The following lists the main reasons listed and their frequency.

  • 65- remove stumps/ rocks from fields
  • 15- general contract work
  • 15- roadwork
  • 12- reloading shells/ hunting
  • 7- general use of farm
  • 2- splitting wedges for pulp wood
  • 1- build a silo
  • 1- cellar
  • 1- water pipeline for house
  • 1- sewer line
  • 1- sink oil tanks
  • 1- chemical research

Explosives application- Stevens & Thompson Paper Co. 1951
 An example of the Explosives application. The above document is dated  January 10, 1951 and is signed by Town Clerk, Elizabeth Wilson. The Stevens & Thompson Paper Co. needed the licence "for our ground wood operation- splitting wedges on pulp wood". At that time the application fee was 25 cents! One copy went in the town clerk's file, one copy went to the "nearest police authorities", and one went to the sheriff.

Come on down & check 'em out. (The "sinking oil tanks" & "chemical research" are interesting....)

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