A Window In Time: New Salem, MA

About 20 years ago I was bicycling around the Quabbin Reservoir in central Massachusetts and stumbled across the tiny village of New Salem. I found a long town green lined with mature, old trees, surrounded by 18th and 19th century homes and buildings. There was no sign of a traffic light, convenience store, gas station, or of any modernity what-so-ever. I felt as though I had stepped  through a window in time to the year 1830. I half expected to see a movie crew  appear from behind the false facades of each of the buildings. But, these building were real on my first visit, and just and fantastic today when I returned to New Salem on the way home from a photo shoot in Hadley, MA about 15 miles away. A sign indicates that this is indeed an historic district. It is so important to preserve windows in time like New Salem. I imagine that each of the 50 US states has precious little villages like this one, seemingly unaffected by the giant footprint of development and economic growth. I’ve felt the same sense of wonder and excitement while “discovering” a silver mine in Colorado, the remains of a logging camp in Maine, and a farm valley in Rochester, Vermont known as North Hollow. If you know of secret little villages like New Salem, please let me know. Maybe this will the beginning of a photo essay or book!  

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Ipswich River On A Winter Afternoon

[The Mouth of the Ipswich River]
the Mouth of the Ipswich River

On a winter day in early January when snow and ice usually blankets the North Atlantic shoreline, I spent an afternoon meandering around Ipswich Massachusetts, looking for dramatic afternoon light. This view of Castle Hill is from the tiny neighborhood of Little Neck, a hilly promontory covered with a mix of year-round and summer homes, each with a dramatic view of the sea and the river.

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