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Planning Board Minutes 08/07/2014
August 7, 2014
Regular Meeting

Members & Staff Present:        Diane Chauncey (Secretary)          Jeanne Cahoon (Alternate)     Chris Condon (Chair)             Michael Frosch (Member)             Bob Holmes (Alternate)        Jesse Lazar (Vice-Chair)   Steve MacDonald (Member)          Janet McEwen (Member)     Gordon Webber (Ex-officio)  

Members & Staff Absent:         Carol Ogilvie (Consultant Planner) Sarah VanderWende (Member)       
Elsa Voelcker (Alternate)  
Public Attendees:  Ben Pratt
7:00PM Public Meeting:

Chair Condon appointed Mr. Holmes to sit for the absent. Ms. VanderWende.

History of Antrim Water & Sewer Department – Ben Pratt

  • The Antrim Precinct had been established in the 1800s to extinguish fires in the South Village.
  • The water works were installed in 1893.
  • The Town of Antrim had purchased Campbell Pond.
  • Campbell had a small dam. An outside company was hired to dig trenches and a 10 inch wooden water main was installed from Campbell Pond under Elm Avenue to Goodell Road to North Main Street. The trench was dug 4’ deep – all dug by hand. The entire distribution system was also wooden pipe, some 6” and some 4”.
  • The pipelines were built of shaped lumber –“good clear lumber with no knots”. Each length was rolled in pitch and enclosed in wrought iron (actual pieces of the system are located at the Water & Sewer plant, as well as, in the Historical Room in the Tuttle Library). The 6’ – 8’ wooden pipes were joined with wood couplings or nipples. Although the fitting were not water tight when first assembled, once water filled the system, the fittings would swell and become waterproof.
  • 1893 – 1906:   Not sure who did the maintenance
  • 1906 – 1921:    Mr. GH Caughey began maintaining the water system.
  • 1922 – 1941:  Caughey & Pratt (an Antrim Construction firm) was established and then maintained the water works. In the 1930s, the main line or Main Street was replaced with cast iron pipe. (Picture attached). Once again, the digging was done by hand (backhoes were not used until after WWII). Each man on the crew was expected to dig a 4’ deep trench – 20’ long per day! The man who ran the crew, E. Bill Edwards (“quite a guy”), could dig a trench 40’ long!!!
  • The water was not treated in the early days. Copper sulphate was added in the summer.
  • 1930’s – the State of NH demanded chlorination of the water.
  • 1941 – The State ran out of patience and made the Town get a chlorinator. The chlorinator (located at the junction of Elm Avenue and Pierce Lake Road – you can still see the structure if you look carefully). The chlorinator and water system were all gravity feed with a meter. A reagent was added to a water sample to test the level and determine the rate.
  • Lester Hill ran the chlorinator for many years.
  • 1960: Mr. Pratt became a commissioner and took over as chlorinator tender. He told of many a cold dark night that he spent in the chlorinator building figuring out some issue.
  • 1960: Bill (George??) Edwards replaced the remainder of the wooden pipe.
  • Campbell Pond, as the sole source of water, was not going to be adequate.
  • 1963 – Money was appropriated to find the best location for a gravel pack well. The commissioners at the time were Ben Pratt, Carroll Johnson, and Milt Attridge. Mr. Attridge was in charge of finding the well site. Regretfully, there was no appropriate site in Antrim. There was a good site in Bennington on land owned by Harvey Balch.
  • The Town of Antrim purchased the west end of Balch Farm, built a gravel pack well, and pumped the water under the Contoocook River and across Tenney’s fields to hook up to the existing system on Pleasant Street. For many years, it was just a backup. “A tricky operation”
  • 1965: Bennington installed a well a short distance from the Antrim well.
  • 1980: Antrim precinct was dissolved. The first commissioners for the newly formed Antrim Water & Sewer Department: Eric Tenney, Carroll Johnson, Ben Pratt
  • 1980: Until this time, the sewer in Antrim was Great Brook. The current sewer system was put in place in 1980.
  • 1986: Jim Caruthers was hired as Superintendent of the Antrim Water & Sewer Department. Mr. Pratt commented on the “remarkable job” that he has done operating both the Bennington and Antrim water & sewer systems.
  • 1988: A water storage facility was built on upper Pleasant Street on Nahor Hill. The Town wanted to continue with Campbell Pond as a backup, but the State would not allow it.
  • 1990: The Bennington & Antrim water systems were connected. It is a good system because either well can supply both towns.
  • Maintenance on the water & sewer systems of both towns has been done by Jim Caruthers, Bill Cleary, and Harry Clough. Mr. Pratt commented on the thousands of dollars that the Town has saved because of the way in which these men work together with frugality and cleverness.
In closing, Mr. Pratt commented on future items needing work. He is especially concerned with the Highland Avenue & Pleasant Street project (replacement of the too small piping and correcting a drainage problem). He also stated that the pipe from the well under the Contoocook River and across the Tenney’s fields should be replaced.

The Board thanked Mr. Pratt for his historical perspective.

Approve July 17 Meeting Minutes Mr. MacDonald moved to accept the minutes; Ms. McEwen seconded. There was discussion. The minutes were approved unanimously, as amended.

Upcoming PB meetings; workshop in October? The Board would like Ms. Ogilvie to create a list of workshop possibilities.


Transportation Alternatives Program – new federal grant program to enhance safety and convenience for non-motorized modes of transportation. Letter from JB Mack of SWRPC explains the program. FYI

Workshops and Trainings:

Municipal Law Lecture Series – sign up with the Secretary
Lecture One - The ZBA in NH: Janet McEwen, Steve MacDonald
Lecture Two – How to Run a Land Use Board: Bob Holmes, Michael Frosch, Janet McEwen, Jeanne Cahoon, and Chris Condon
Lecture Three – Impact Fees in NH: Janet McEwen

Ms. McEwen moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:30 pm; Mr. Frosch. Seconded. All agreed to adjourn the meeting.

Respectfully submitted,
Diane Chauncey, Secretary for the Land Use Boards.

Town of Antrim, NH P.O. Box 517, 66 Main Street Antrim, NH 03440
Phone: (603) 588-6785    Fax: (603) 588-2969    Monday - Thursday 8:00am - 4:00pm
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