Susan K. Walsh, author of “Edgewood, An Old Farm in the New Millennium” on
Haverhill Community Television’s “Write Now” hosted by Gayle C. Heney. 4/26/2011
© 2011 Gayle C. Heney.
“Early one morning in June 1971 I rode my trusty gelding Majorca to the top of Weir Hill. We stood there for a few minutes looking down on the Stevens Mill below, then rode down the western slope and up onto the old railroad bed. It ran behind Stevens Pond, crossed Stevens Street, skirted the back yards of the row of mill houses there, then opened onto Osgood Street. The rails had long since been removed, but the cinder bed made a nice level path. When we got to Osgood Street, we turned right and trotted along the grassy verge of the road, following the stone walls. The old Captain Peter Osgood house stood on our left, and as we jogged along beside the big hayfield there, we could look up ahead to the Isaac Osgood house standing guard at the far end of the field as pristine as the day it was completed in 1803. We crossed over to the head of Stevens Street, where the Johnson House faced us, then up to the main entrance to the farm. Two big elm trees, their foliage hanging as thick as grapes over the road, shaded the drive by the front house, with its lilacs in full bloom. The big barn loomed up ahead, its double doors wide open in the heat of the day, and in the distance the haying machinery worked the upper hayfield, pulsing like some great mechanical heart. By then, we had already sent a man to the moon. Yet on this morning, riding that mile or so from Weir Hill back home to the farm, I experienced sights and sounds no different from those of the last century, and almost no different from those of the last two hundred years. In the coming years, the farm and its surroundings would undergo more changes than it had for those two hundred, but at that moment, that rare day in June, it stood unchanged, timeless – the epitome of the New England farm in Spring.” Taken from the back cover
Susan K. Walsh grew up just a few miles west of Edgewood, and moved there upon her marriage to Jim in 1970. A graduate of Wellesley College with a Master’s from Harvard, she taught Latin and Greek at the Shady Hill School in Cambridge for 25 years, until devoting herself full time to the raising and racing of Thoroughbreds. She is now a State Steward at Suffolk Downs, and still lives in North Andover with her husband Jim. There they care for a small family of Edgewood-born horses, a herd of farm cats, and a venerable Irish Wolfhound.