Meet Me:
Elizabeth B. Wright

 I discovered that in Milford, there are so many gifted people with not enough opportunities to be showed-cased. For artists, there are arts & craft shows, several art galleries, special shows, but as I have personally experienced, not enough. Artists can go out of town or online and have many avenues that I don't know much about. But I do know that many artists need a place to be; and art galleries serve that important role.

 Another area of great interest to me is the amazing history of the Myrtle and Walnut Beaches. The area has almost gone full circle from a salt meadow to farms, to the trolley bringing the public to the shoreline in huge droves, a celebrated amusement park and the Great Depression which started the slow decline. But first the hurricane of 1938 started a slide that was later interpreted as an irreparable blight. Part of the problem was that many cottages were rented to soldiers returning from World War II. Of course they were not winterized and there were only lot by lot septic systems which were really just holes in the ground. These small GI families had little space for their children and belongings which created somewhat of a year round slum.

 The city decided that the Walnut Beach and Myrtle Beach area was blighted and vowed to replace the entire area with a modern sea side resort. Those plans failed to attract one stunning developer, so the area was then chopped up into lots for apartments and condos.

 Eminent Domain was seen as the cure-all back in the 1960's. To my horror as I researched the Housing and Urban Development plans from that era, my current home on South Street and many surrounding streets, were also in the plan. But we survived the "renewal." Why? Because the city ran out of matching funds thus bringing urban renewal to a halt.

 When my family moved to Milford 28 years ago we were told that our neighborhood used to be a mess, but had since recovered. Myrtle and Walnut Beach residents' never had that chance. However, the "beach kids" are very much still around. The community that grew in the Walnut Beach area was sound and cherished. Those staying close to the demolition area continued to thrive although it did gain a label of rowdiness that survives to this day.

 The recent storms have eroded the beaches and nature threatens to recreate the salt marsh. Until then, I wish to be part of telling the story through art and using history to create pride in this historic part of the city of Milford, Connecticut. 

 In late 2014, I co-authored the book “Maps & Scraps" with Ellie Benefico. Pre-orders and sales were a complete success for the first edition of this book, concentrating on local historical maps and vintage photos of Milford's original west side beaches.

So, now you know, I am a historian who wishes to make a difference. The 2nd edition was published at the end of 2017 with some additional chapters.

Currently I have started research on a “Streets of Milford” book which will also include many of my favorite Milford maps and photos. 

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