We’re all familiar with the Long Trail and its many environmental, recreational and economic benefits. Connectivity for wildlife, protection of forest tracts that are sustainably managed, and recreational tourism are just a few of the gains that come from the Long Trail.

But did you know that it isn’t completely legally protected? There are 6.5 miles of the trail statewide that are privately owned and have uncertain futures.

The Trust for Public Land and the Green Mountain Club have joined in an effort to close that gap by buying the land or easement rights where gaps exist. In their words: “One of these unprotected sections runs through the 167-acre Codding Hollow property in Johnson and Waterville. After a nearly 30-year wait, we have the opportunity to permanently conserve it as an addition to Long Trail State Forest. This property also is part of the Northern Green Mountain Wildlife Linkage, one of the most important wildlife corridors in the Northern Appalachian ecoregion.”

They’ve raised over 60 percent of the $211,000 price tag and are trying to find the remaining $25,000 through donations before the end of September.

For more information and to make a donation, contact Kate Wanner of the Trust for Public Land at 802-922-0180 or at kate.wanner@tpl.org, or contact Mollie Flanigan of the Green Mountain Club at 802-241-8217 or at mflanigan@greenmountainclub .org.

• Congratulations to Robert and Gloria Griswold Mobbs, who celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary on Sept. 10. They married in the Johnson Nazarene Church in 1949, and they came home to Johnson 25 years ago. Send them a card at 218 Lower Main St.

• A correction: Jay Stanton’s name isn’t on the Tuesday Night Live website, though he’s not only a committee member but perhaps the most dedicated one of all.

Jay has a long history of supporting Tuesday Night Live. Sixteen years ago, he and Clare Salerno were the very first vendors at the revival of the weekly concerts on Legion Field, when they made and sold their Lucky Beads. Over several years, they sold over $1,000 worth and donated it all to the Food Shelf.

One can hypothesize that such a generous community action set the stage for the huge community success Tuesday Nigh Live has become. Jay was also one of the first “bucket kids,” who carried a bucket around the field collecting donations that helped the event. He’s still an active community volunteer. Sorry for the omission, Jay!

• The final household hazardous waste collection of the year is at Tatro’s Jeffersonville parking lot on Sept. 21 from 9 to noon. Check out the waste district’s website at lrswmd.or for information on what they will and will not accept.

• It’s a short news week, so here’s a bit of history from the “History of the Town of Johnson, Vermont, 1784-1907.” It was published in 1907 by the Oread Literary Club in 1907 for the benefit of the library.

“Those early-time people found it necessary to make their own lights. At first they dipped pieces of old cloth in grease or oil, such as they had, and burned it in an old saucer; this was called a ‘slutlight.’ The mills and factories requiring a more brilliant light used refuse fats in a shallow, iron kettle, placing quite a large piece of cloth in the center of the kettle, bringing together, and tying, near the top, for a wick. Whale oil was burned in small tin lamps by those who could afford it on extra occasions.

“Of course, tallow for candles was rare in [e]arly days, for the settlers could not spare any of their few cattle to be killed. Eleanor Dodge (afterwards Mrs. Thomas Waterman), who came here from New Boston, N. H., about 1800 to keep house for her brother Elisha, before his marriage, used to tell of her first winter in town, when, by close economy, she managed to get together enough tallow to run two candles in tin candle-moulds. Then Mrs. Atwell gave her three candles, and another good woman gave her two more, so she had seven, quite a good winter’s stock.

“Nobody thought of such an extravagance as lighting a candle except in case of severe illness, or so[m]e great emergency. All meals were cooked at the big fireplace, supper was eaten and dishes washed by its cheerful light, and the family gathered around it for their evening’s work, the women with sewing, knitting or spinning, while the men scraped axe-helves, tinkered farming tools, or tapped their cowhide boots.”

Food for thought when the light bill seems high!

— Sue Lovering, 635-8315

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