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Memories of a New Year’s Day

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Memories of a New Years Day 2019

Photo by Ira Srole

It was a New Year’s Day tradition in the 19th century for families in the Old Third Ward, now known as Corn Hill, to hold extravagant open houses, especially if those homes had daughters of a marketable age! Young swains wore top hats and fine clothing as they traveled through the neighborhood, paying court to each lovely hostess. When three ten-year-old boys, more interested in the food than romance, make the rounds on January 1, 1881, it leads to adventure and some misadventure.

On Sunday, December 29, at 2 p.m., historian Jim DeVinney and his troupe of players gather at Ralph Avery Park between South Plymouth and Adams Street to present “Memories of a New Year’s Day,” with readings and songs commemorating social and cultural traditions from that long-ago time.