January 2017 Newsletter

Volume XIV No. 1

June 23-24
Litchfield, CT and Goshen, CT

Hello Cousins,

The DFA board had our fall 2016 meeting at the Publick House in Sturbridge, MA and our January 2017 meeting at J Anthony’s in Oxford, MA.  We discussed reunion plans, publications, board member vacancies, genealogy software options, as well as other topics.  It has been confirmed that our 148th Reunion will be held in the following two towns:  Litchfield, CT on Friday, June 23rd and Goshen, CT on Saturday, June 24th.

“Reunion Preview”

Several of our ancestors were early settlers of Litchfield and its surrounding towns.  The 2017 reunion will focus on the development of the Milton Village section of Litchfield and will highlight the experience of a few illustrative individuals and their families, such as Anson Dickinson, one of the country’s most celebrated miniaturist painters of the 19th century.

We will also explore various ancestors who achieved notable success outside of Connecticut:  Andrew Dickinson, who was a writer and merchant in NYC; Daniel Dickinson, who was a miniaturist painter in Philadelphia (Anson’s brother) and several others; i.e.  Atty. Daniel S. Dickinson of Goshen, CT, who was a US Senator for several terms,  NY State Attorney General, and a political leader during the Civil War Era.

Friday, June 23rd Activities: 

From 11am – 5pm, the Litchfield Historical Society Museum, located on Capt. John Marsh’s III / Col. Ebenezer Marsh homestead lot, adjacent to Litchfield’s Green @ 7 South Street, will offer a display table of Anson Dickinson’s miniature painting collection, as well as displays of various items from their permanent collection and archives which relate to the Dickinson Family.  The display will include photos, letters, newspaper articles, account books, and a portion of an original window from the Milton Trinity Church.  The church, whose construction is attributed to Master Builder, Oliver Dickinson, Jr. (1802) and the adjacent Milton Hall (1900) whose construction was partially financed by Edwin and Ithamar Dickinson will be open for viewing.   The Milton Village Historical District, located towards the Town Line of Goshen and Cornwall (Litchfield’s northwest quadrant), is a unique rural area where several Dickinson families resided for over two centuries, and several of their 18th and 19th century homes are well restored.  A free guided walking tour of Milton Village will be tentatively held on Friday at 1pm, beginning at the Milton Trinity Church, located at 536 Milton Rd.  The Litchfield Historical Society also offers tours on Friday afternoon at a small fee of $7.00 per person.  Tour Option #1:  Litchfield’s Green (Revolutionary War Period importance) and Tour Option #2:  Litchfield Law School, where Atty. Daniel S. Dickinson attended in 1827.  Tour Option #3:  A bus tour may also be an option.  Descriptions of these tours can also be found online at:
http://www.litchfieldhistoricalsociety.org/tours/adults.php.  Friday evening’s dinner / informal meeting will most likely be held at the Litchfield Inn (Tavern Off the Green Restaurant) @ 432 Bantam Road (Route 202) starting at approx. 5:30 pm.

Saturday, June 24th Activities: 

From 8:30 am – 3 pm, will be located at St. Thomas of Villanova Church, located at 71 North Street, Goshen, CT. This air-conditioned, modern, ADA accessible facility is found less than a half mile north of Route 4 (main route leading from I-84 Exit 39 in Farmington westerly through Torrington into Goshen).  Goshen, CT is also home to several wineries, a chocolate factory, Action Wildlife Foundation, and Mohawk State Forest.  Our current main speaker topic: “Anson Dickinson-Renown Miniaturist Painter” will be provided by, Alexander Dubois, LHS’s Curator of Collections. 

In addition, it is intended that a group of related family members will provide a presentation on other Dickinsons who resided in Litchfield and its surrounding towns.

We look forward to your attendance.

Ken Dickinson,  Vice President


The DFA needs a few more of our members to help out on the board.  We have two impending vacancies among elected board positions, namely treasurer and scholarship chair.  Virginia Allis has done a superb job as treasurer for over 15 years and wishes to retire.  Jean Whitten has served as scholarship chair for several years and also wants to step down. Also the position of Publication Treasurer may be available.

We would also welcome some new committee members on scholarship and finance.   Committee members are not required to attend board meetings, so they could reside anywhere.   Elected board members are expected to attend meetings when possible (we have 3 per year), so it is helpful if they live in the general southern New England area.

Please give this some serious consideration and let us know on the enclosed form about any areas in which you can help.  If you have any questions, contact nominations chair Dale Williams daw451@verizon.net ,  vice president Ken Dickinson kend@ssgpools.com , or past president Alan Dickinson anbdickinson@charter.net.

Finally, our invitation to attend a board meeting still stands.  If you would like to be notified of the time and place of the upcoming board meeting, indicate that on the survey card.  We’d love to have you come and see what we do!


     Application forms are now available for the 2017 DFA scholarship.  Applicants must be descendants of Nathaniel Dickinson and must be accepted to a four-year college or university.  The deadline for submission is April 30, 2017.  Full information on requirements and an application form may be found on our website.  For additional information you may contact our scholarship chair, Jean Whitten, 9 Shepherd Road, Manchester, NH 03104, jwhitten128@gmail.com. If you don’t have access to the internet, contact Jean and she will send you the form.      As always, we rely on contributions from DFA members to sustain and increase the scholarship fund.  If you are able, we would appreciate your help.  Indicate “scholarship fund” on the January Survey form if you wish to make a donation.


The card enclosed with this mailing serves several purposes.  Primarily it is to give us a rough idea of how many to expect at the reunion in June.  We know that plans may change between January and June, but if you are hoping at this point to attend, please send the card back to let us know.

The survey also gives you a chance to volunteer to help the DFA in a meaningful way.  For those of you who live within a reasonable distance of the area where we usually meet, we would like to invite you to come to a board meeting.  We usually meet in October, January and April, starting with lunch and in January and April concluding with the assembly of a mailing.  If you come, you can get a “behind-the-scenes” look at how the DFA operates, have an opportunity to participate in our discussions, and maybe even find a niche for yourself on the board.  Please consider that possibility, and let us know if you’re interested.

Whether or not you can volunteer to work on the DFA board, all can help financially.  As you know, we do not have dues, but we depend on members who are able, to make a contribution for operating expenses and/or for the scholarship fund.  Any amount you can contribute is gratefully welcomed and will help the association.


     We know e-mail addresses change frequently and it is easy to forget to update them.  So if your e-mail address and/or your postal address changes we would greatly appreciate your sending the new one to our membership clerk,  Beth Landolina, at bethL0719@sbcglobal.net

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