Library Park, that beautifully maintained, triangular park bounded by Ferry, Derry, and Library streets was a gift to the Town of Hudson by Mary Field Creutzborg and the efforts of her son-in-law Dr. Alfred Hills. There is a granite boulder with a tablet at the park near the intersection of Ferry and Derry Streets The tablet reads: LIBRARY PARK – The gift of Mary Field Creutzborg 1911.
Just prior to 1911, this parcel of land was owned by parties living in Nashua. They had sub-divided it into eleven house lots and offered then for sale. Two had been sold and a house was being erected on one of them. The residents of Hudson were beginning to realize that a potential of eleven houses in that area would be of no real value. There had been earlier discussion about acquiring the land for a public park; but, no action had been taken.
A special town meeting was called May 15, 1911 to see if the town would authorize the Selectmen to acquire this land by eminent domain for the purpose of a public park. Dr Hills offered a resolution: that the Selectmen be authorized to acquire the property for a public park, to be known as Library Park, at no expense to the town. The resolution passed unanimously. The owner of the house under construction was compensated with a much larger lot in a more desirable site.
The selection of the name Library Park was deliberately chosen by the Hills/Creutzborg family. Mrs. Ida Virginia Hills had passed away and the nearby library had been presented to the town in her memory.
Our first photo of Library Park was taken C 1920 from the corner of what is now Ferry and Library Street. This photo is courtesy of Gerald Winslow and a part of the Historical Society Collection. The second photo is Library Park from Ferry Street looking toward Library Street C 1976 and is also a part of our collection.
Library Park is greatly appreciated by the citizens of Hudson. We are grateful to the donors for their foresight and generosity.
George and Marion Derby opened their dairy bar at the end of Ferry Street in March 1950; advertising the best food cooked and served the way you like it!! A few years back I talked with my cousin Ray Parker about Derby’s. Ray and some of his high school friends had a small band. One day this group stopped into Derby’s, got talking, and as a result Mr. Derby offered them a place to practice. After all, it might help his business! For the next few months this group practiced and played at Derby’s. Ray found some old derby hats in his attic; thence their name became “The Derby Hatters”. This group contained 5 guys: Ray Parker on the drums, Dave Thompson at the piano, Wilford Boucher on the base fiddle, Lewis Carter with his sax, and a friend from Nashua on the trumpet. According to Ray, they did not play very long, nor did the dairy bar remain in business for long.
According to Manning’s Hudson Directory, Derby’s Dairy Bar and Trailer Court remained in business until 1954. That location became Moore’s Trailer Park and more recently Merrifield Park. It was located at the end of Ferry Street just before the name changes to Burnham Road. Photo courtesy of Gerry Winslow and now a part of the Historical Society Collection.
In 1960 the State of New Hampshire commissioned an engineering firm to conduct studies and make recommendations relative to the ever increasing east-west traffic flowing between Hudson and Nashua on the bridge. The resulting Campbell Report, issued in late 1960, stimulated discussion and controversy which required some 7 years to resolve. During that time traffic problems continued. Traffic continued to increase placing more and more stress on the existing, inadequate, and deteriorating concrete bridge. Almost unnoticed the bridge had slowly deteriorated to a point of real danger. Load limits were placed on vehicles crossing the bridge and emergency repairs were planned.
While these repairs were underway the bridge was closed to all but pedestrian traffic! Those commuting to/from Nashua would park one vehicle on the Hudson side, walk across the bridge, and continue to their job using a second vehicle on the other side.
This week’s photo, taken from the Nashua side of the river, showns the results of the emergancy repairs made to stabilize and shore up the bridge in an effort to prolong its use until the Veterans Memorial Bridge could be completed. Photo by Tom Muller and a part of the Historical Society Collection.
As you cross from Nashua into Hudson on the Taylor Falls Replacement Bridge you can see the abutments for this bridge down river on your right. This was the bridge used by the steam railroad as it crossed the river in to Hudson. The original wooden railroad bridge, built about 1874, burned in 1910 after being set afire from a locomotive. It was replaced by this iron bridge which stood until the metal was salvaged in 1944 during World War II.
The abutments can also be seen from the shoreline of Merrill Park, located at the end of Maple Avenue. The park entrance is built on a part of the old railroad bed.
After crossing the river, the steam railroad continued northeasterly, crossing over Lowell Road and the street railroad on a trestle just south of the junction with Central Street (near Hammond Park). The train continued on to the station at Hudson Center, off Greeley Street and behind Wattannick Hall. It then continued easterly to West Windham. In this C 1910 photo we are looking upriver at the railroad bridge and the newly constructed cement Taylor Falls Bridge which is visible under the bridge. Photo from the Historical Society Collection.