Meows from Mudpie!
Today we have a guest post from one of our favorite authors, Connie Archer. (Back in 2013 Connie and her husband vacationed in Vermont and Mommy got to have lunch with them!)
Connie writes the Soup Lover's mystery series set in the fictional town of Snowflake, Vermont. The fifth book in the series, A Clue in the Stew, is due on store shelves next Tuesday, April 5th.
Ah . . .
Just the sound of that word conjures up visions of green hills, cows, barns and quaint villages. Just like Snowflake,
where you can
find the By the Spoonful Soup Shop in the Soup Lover’s Mystery series. Take a deep breath and feel your heart rate
slow and your shoulders relax. A place
we’d all like to escape to when the going gets rough. Bucolic and peaceful, right? Well . . . it wasn’t always so. In fact, it would rival the history of the
Balkans in terms of disputed territory. Vermont
I grew up in New England but I have to admit my knowledge of colonial history is sketchy at best, so in writing this series, I felt it was only fair to devote some time to
research. Here’s what I discovered: Vermont
Back in the day, everybody wanted a piece of what is today
The Dutch and the British were constantly warring over claims to
territory. To complicate matters,
in 1620, King James I of Vermont England
declared that the land from 40 to 48 degrees north latitude, from the Atlantic to the Pacific Oceans belonged to him. Quite a claim! King James was nothing if not ambitious. Some might say avaricious.
It took another forty-four years before the English finally succeeded in chasing the Dutch out of
North America. But the people of New York weren’t happy. They thought their boundaries should be the
same as they were under the Dutch, i.e.,
its eastern border should be the Connecticut River. Its eastern neighbors disagreed. Bottom line, no one quite knew where Vermont began and ended. King George III, yes, James the First was
gone by now, in 1741 decided the southern border of Vermont
would follow the Merrimack River until the river
turned north. So that took care of
The English really didn’t care. They just didn’t want anything to interrupt commerce along the
St. Lawrence River. The best thing, they decided, was to draw a
line and leave those French-speaking people to themselves and not rock the boat,
if you’ll pardon the pun. So in 1763,
King George III declared that the 45th parallel from the St.
Lawrence River to the Connecticut River, would be the border between the province of Quebec
and the colony of New York.
This still didn’t very well because when the
New York tax collectors attempted to extract tax money in
the area that is now Vermont,
they were confronted by the muskets of Ethan Allen and the Green Mountain Boys. Believe it or not, it was the American
Revolution that saved the day. It began
just in time to prevent violence.
declared its independence.
The Continental Congress refused to recognize it.
It was George Washington who was able to calm hotter tempers. He pointed out that his troops would have no interest in fighting fellow Americans. A good thing too, because the Green Mountain Boys certainly did their share in fighting the British.
It wasn’t until 1789 that Congress officially recognized the state of
and marked its borders.
Whew! A good thing, if all that hadn’t happened, we never would have had a
Vermont . . . or a Snowflake. Even if that tiny village does have a rather
high murder rate.
Here’s a bit more information if you’d like to read more:
From the publisher: When Lucky Jamieson opens up By the Spoonful to host an event with a famous author, she’s not expecting a bunch of nuts to descend on her small-town soup shop. But the author’s exasperating entourage—from a prickly publicist to a snippy son and his tipsy wife—give fresh meaning to the phrase, too many cooks spoil the broth.
The evening is more than spoiled, however, when it ends with a homicide. When the manner of the murder—as well as another recent unsolved crime—echoes the author’s fiction, Police Chief Nate Edgerton realizes he has a copycat killer on his hands. And Lucky hopes that one of her regular customers who has mysteriously gone missing isn’t involved. Once again, the soup shop owner will need to stir up some clues to find her friend and catch a cunning killer—before things really take a tureen for the worse...
Giveaway: Leave a comment by noon eastern on Friday, April 8th for your chance to win a copy of A Clue in the Stew. (US entries only, please.)