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Monday, April 30, 2012

The Week in Preview for Monday, April 30

Week in Preview


Saving the Nashua River

The Hollis Social Library, Beaver Brook Association and the HBHS Green Group are excited to tell the story of how activist Marion Stoddart led the cleanup of the Nashua River as told in “The Work of 1000,” a 30-minute documentary film about Stoddart. The self-described ordinary housewife took on big business, politicians and public skepticism to save the Nashua River, at the time one of the 10 most polluted rivers in America. After the documentary, there will be a question and answer session with Stoddart and an informal reception.

Admission is free and open to all, in the Hollis Brookline Cooperative High School auditorium.

For more information, call the Hollis Social Library at 465-7721 or Beaver Brook Association at 465-7787.


Spam, spam, spam!

The first spam email wasn’t sent by a money-hungry opportunist posing as exiled Nigerian royalty, but by a Digital Equipment Corp. marketing employee looking to spread the word about his company’s products. It hit the inboxes of a number of West Coast ARPAnet users today in 1978.

That Internet precursor (the Advanced Research Projects Agency Network was the first operational packet-switched network) was restricted to government employees, military officials and computer scientists. As a computer manufacturer, DEC had access and marketer Gary Thuerk decided to use it to his company’s advantage. He sent an email to numerous users informing them of the new DEC-20 machine, which came with ARPAnet protocol already installed, as well as several open houses that were scheduled to demonstrate the machine.

Some welcomed the information in Thuerk’s email, finding it more relevant than smaller mass mailings they had received about, for example, a fellow employee’s new baby. Others were not so pleased, including Maj. Raymond Czahor, chief of the ARPAnet Management Branch, who branded it a flagrant violation of ARPAnet usage.

Thuerk did not attempt another product-oriented mass mailing. Indeed, it would be roughly another decade before anybody else dared try again.

If only, in this era of spam showing up on cell phones, that restraint still held.


Richard Widhu art

Paintings by Nashua artist Richard Widhu will be on display in the Image Gallery at the Nashua Public Library during May and June.

Widhu has exhibited at the library several times in the past, but in the past two years, he has moved away from his focus on abstract painting to a more representational approach, inspired by walks in the woods and the mountains of New Hampshire.

Widhu’s numerous shows include juried exhibitions in Cambridge, Mass., Providence, R.I., and New York City.

An artist’s reception will be held from 3-5 p.m. Saturday, May 5. It is free and open to the public. The exhibit can be viewed during regular library hours.

The library is at 2 Court St. Call 589-4600 for more information.


The Negro Leagues

Can you name the stadium where the first racially integrated modern team played baseball in the U.S.? That would be Nashua’s Holman Stadium. On Sunday, May 6, find out more about this historic venue and those who played there when collector Joe Caliro visits the Nashua Public Library to speak about “The History of the Negro Baseball Leagues.”

More than 400 items of memorabilia from the leagues will be on display. Caliro has collected 48 autographed baseballs from the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s, including nine from Hall of Famers and three from the only women ever to play professional ball. He will show game posters, Negro League artwork, photos, and oddities such as poker chips, matchbook covers – even a lock for a beer bottle.

Caliro will also display three sets of baseball cards from the leagues.

The exhibit will run from 2-3 p.m., with the talk following from 3-4 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

For more information, call Carol at 589-4610.

The library is at 2 Court St. For directions and information on parking, visit

Know of an event worthy of filling this space? Call 594-6466 or email Information should be submitted at least two weeks prior to the event. Follow TWiP, Tete-a-tete and Teresa’s articles at