April 18th, 2012
Ladd & Whitney Monument
151 years ago tomorrow, 214 soldiers from Lowell who just days before were mill workers, lawyers and laborers, were attacked by a pro-Southern mob as they marched through Baltimore on their way to reinforce undefended Washington against an imminent Confederate attack. The northern troops were members of the Sixth Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry Regiment that had mobilized on April 15, 1861 – the day after Fort Sumter surrendered – in response to President Lincoln’s call for 75,000 troops to put down the rebellion.
The Sixth Regiment consisted of eight companies of 50 soldiers each. Four companies were from Lowell, two from Lawrence and one each from Acton and Groton. The first leg of the regiment’s journey took it by train from Lowell to Boston where three independent companies were attached. The quickest route to Washington led through New York, Philadelphia and Baltimore, a city of extensive economic, social and cultural ties to the south.
The regiment arrived at Baltimore’s President Street Station at 11 am on April 19, 1861. To continue on to Washington, the unit had to make its way through the city to Camden Station about a mile and a half away. En route to the second station, a mob attacked the marching soldiers first with rocks and bricks and then with gunfire. Four soldiers – Luther Ladd and Addison Whitney of Lowell, Sumner Needham of Lawrence, and Charles Taylor whose residence was unknown – were killed in the exchange of gunfire and 32 other soldiers were wounded. At least 12 civilians were killed by return fire from the Sixth Regiment.
Ladd and Whitney’s bodies were returned to Lowell and a monument was erected in their honor. That monument still stands in front of Lowell City Hall and Ladd and Whitney remain buried beneath it.
April 18th, 2012
The scent of vulnerabilty surrounds the position of Northern Essex Register of Deed . Until yesterday, Register Robert Kelley was the target of former Methuen Mayor Bill Manzi. With Manzi now focused on the First Essex State Senate race, two other Democrats are now taking aim at Kelley. In recent months the first term incumbent was revealed by local Fox News as doing other than Deeds duties doing the workday. Well-known Democrats Jack Wilson of Andover and Paul Iannuccillo of Lawrence have declared their candidacies. Iannuccillo, a former area State Rep and Lawrence City councillor now counsel for the Mass House of Representatives claims to have been “keeping an eye on this seat” for the last few years. Wilson who most recently ran when Sue Tucker retired from her Second Essex/Middlesex State Senate seat – now held by Barry Finegold – is a longtime political activist – familiar with the workings of government. A real estate lawyer, Wilson says ” taxpayers deserve a register who is accountable, transparent and dedicated full-time to the elected post.” Andover attorney Brian Corrigan is already in the race running as an independent.
There will be a hot primary/election season in the Lower Merrimack Valley as this race for Deeds, the race in the First Essex Senate District as well as the Rep races in the new 17th and 18th Rep Districts play out. And of course, there are the races for Congress, the U.S. Senate and for President!
Read the full article by Jill Harmacinski here in today’s Eagle Tribune.
April 18th, 2012
Former Mayor of Methuen Bill Manzi (from the files of the Eagle Tribune)
Since former State Senator Steve Baddour resigned from his seat on April 1 to join a prestigious Boston law firm, rumors have been running around the Valley about a possible successor. Would former State Senator and Baddour-mentor Jim Jajuga run? Would former Methuen Mayor Bill Manzi switch gears from a determined primary run against incumbent Register of Deeds Essex-North Robert Kelley? What about Haverhill Mayor Jim Fiorintini and Newburyport Mayor Donna Holaday? As the May 1st deadline for signatures needed for nomination looms, the candidate roster is becoming clear.
With Jajuga, Fiorintini and Holaday opting out of the race, Bill Mazi has declared that he is “in” the Democratic nomination race along with Methuen City Councilor Sean Fountain, Methuen resident Sharon Birchall and Newburyport City Councilor Kathleen O’Connor Ives. On the GOP side Haverhill School Committee member Shaun Toohey and Haverhill resident and former congressional candidate Sam Meas took out papers along with Amesbury City Councilor James Kelcourse who opts for a run as an unenrolled candidate. They need 300 certified signature to qualify for the ballot.
Stay tuned for an interesting race with Bill Manzi surely the front-runner all around.
Read more here in Doug Moser’s article in today’s Eagle Tribune.