As you all know, my father's greatest interest in life was Hopedale. He
    wished to leave behind him a permanent expression of this interest and
    after much thought he decided to give this Community House to be used
    and enjoyed by the people of Hopedale whom he loved. It gives me great
    pleasure to deliver in his name the keys of this house to you, Mr Dutcher.
    Helen Draper Taft, June 1923

    Mrs. Taft: - In behalf of the trustees of Hopedale Community House, Incorporated,
    it is my pleasant duty to accept these keys which symbolize the transfer of the
    Homestead land, with this beautiful building and its equipment, together with
    endowment funds toward upkeep, from your father, the donor, and his family, to
    the Corporation organized to hold the property and administer the trust.

    "We have all looked forward to this day, and our one regret is that your father was
    not spared so as to have been present on this occasion. Frank J. Dutcher

    It is appropriate that this building is located on the site of the homestead of your branch of
    the Draper family. Here seventy years ago, your grandfather, George Draper, established
    the home in which he resided for the remainder of his days. Here, your father George A.
    Draper was born. Hopedale was his home for his entire life. He was always interested in
    his home, and in the welfare of its people. Frank J. Dutcher

    Lunch with Santa   

    Christmas in Early Hopedale (Not a new page, but included here because 'tis the season.)

    Deaths   

                                                         <><><><><><><><><><>

    The Elder (John) Jones increased and prospered. He soon afterwards built the first framed dwelling house
    in  these parts, east of Neck Hill. Meanwhile he had possessed himself of the valuable houselot at the town
    seat, and began to have various-sized tracts of land laid out to him on Mill River. Having located his family in
    "The Dale," and provided himself with a small stock of cattle (fed at first chiefly with hay cut on Beaver
    Meadow), his wealth began to increase rapidly and especially in lands. He brought to his new home, in
    1701, from Hull, his wife, three daughters and two sons, and they afterwards had two sons and one
    daughter born in "The Dale." Genealogy of the John Jones Family   Click here to read more about John
    Jones
    .
    "We're in  the country. We had our cities - too much of them in the decorating business on New York's Park
    Avenue and Boston's Back Bay. We wanted pine trees, not pavements - sunsets, not stone walls - clean air
    and lots of space, not crowded cocktail lounges. Some of you will understand," wrote the late Harry and
    Elizabeth Lacy to their customers around 1952. Milford Daily News. Click here for more on the Lacys and
    the Harel House.

                                                            <><><><><><><><><><>

                                           Hopedale Community House Trustees
                                                Receive Gift From Draper Heirs.

    With simple, yet impressive exercises, the great gift to the Hopedale residents and workers by the late
    George Albert Draper, The Hopedale Community House, was conveyed to the trustees of that corporation
    this afternoon by Mrs. Helen Draper Taft, daughter of the donor. It was not practicable for her brother,
    Maj. Wickliffe Draper, U.S.A., to be present.

    After a selection by the orchestra, Mrs. Taft presented the keys to the trustees of the Hopedale Community
    House, Inc. In a brief address, Frank J. Dutcher, president of the trustees, accepted them in an appreciative
    address and in that connection spoke of the benefits and uses of the Community House.

    There is a personal touch of Maj. Draper in  his gifts of heads of African game, shot by himself and selected
    from more than 50 specimens as appropriate wall ornaments of the rooms. In the billiard room are the
    heads, finely mounted, of a water buffalo and a Thomson's gazelle. Elsewhere are the heads of an oryx, a
    lesser kedar(?), and a roan deer. Milford Daily News, June 23, 1923.

                                                                                  <><><><><><><><><><>

                                     Hopedale Community House Opening Success;
                                           Addresses by Mrs. Taft and F.J. Dutcher

    There was not a single inadvertence to mar the success of the public opening of the Hopedale Community
    House to its beneficiaries and its formal transfer by Mrs. Helen Draper Taft to the trustees last Saturday
    afternoon, from the beginning of the exercises in the auditorium until the last of the guests left the building
    after an afternoon of constant enjoyment.

    The exercises of presentation in the main auditorium with two selections by the Narducci & Marsh
    orchestra, "Stares and Strips Forever" march and the "Mazeppa" overture, excellently played. Then Chairman
    F.J. Dutcher, Mrs. Taft and Supervisor Robert E. Gourlie took seats on the low platform and the transfer
    ceremony took place.

    Mrs. Taft said: "As you all know, my father's greatest interest in life was Hopedale. He wished to leave
    behind him a permanent expression of this interest and after much thought he decided to give this
    Community House to be used and enjoyed by the people of Hopedale whom he loved. It gives me great
    pleasure to deliver in his name the keys of this house to you, Mr Dutcher.

    Mr. Dutcher first formally accepted on behalf of the trustees of The Hopedale Community House,
    Incorporated, the property and then made a formal statement as to the building and its purpose. He first
    said:

    "Mrs. Taft: - In behalf of the trustees of Hopedale Community House, Incorporated, it is my pleasant duty to
    accept these keys which symbolized the transfer of the Homestead land, with this beautiful building and its
    equipment, together with endowment funds toward upkeep, from your father, the donor, and his family, to
    the Corporation organized to hold the property and administer the trust.
    "We have all looked forward to this day, and our one regret is that your father was not spared so as to have
    been present on this occasion.

    "It is appropriate that this building is located on the site of the homestead of your branch of the Draper
    family. Here seventy years ago, your grandfather, George Draper, established the home in which he resided
    for the remainder of his days. Here, your father George A. Draper was born. Hopedale was his home for his
    entire life. He was always interested in his home, and in the welfare of its people. Milford Daily News, June
    25, 1923

    Thanks to Miriam McDonough, the Bancroft Library and the Milford Library for these articles. Click here to
    read the complete articles.

                        
  George Draper     George Albert Draper     Helen Taft Draper    Wickliffe Preston Draper   

                                                               
Frank Dutcher                 Community House

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