NO. R-63.  House concurrent resolution honoring Norton Town Clerk Miriam Nelson on her retirement after her historic 53-year tenure and recognizing her family’s 118 years of continuous municipal public service on behalf of the citizens of Norton.

(H.C.R.27)

Offered by:  Representative Johnson of Canaan.

     Whereas, the town of Norton, which sits directly astride the Canadian border in the Northeast Kingdom, is perhaps more directly associated with a single family, the Nelsons, than any other organized municipality in the state’s history, and

     Whereas, for over 53 years, since November 1949, Miriam Nelson has served as the competent and conscientious town clerk, one of the longest tenures in the state’s history, and her sister, Ruth Nelson, has long served ably as assistant town clerk, a post her brother Bill has also held, and

     Whereas, when Norton held its inaugural town meeting in 1885, the first town clerk was Albert McLean, Miriam Nelson’s great uncle, while her grandfather Wilmont G. Nelson was elected to the selectboard and also served as a judge, and

     Whereas, in 1911, her father assumed the town clerk’s position, performing the associated duties with such competence and proficiency that the town’s citizens entrusted him with this exalted office until his death 38 years later in 1949, and

     Whereas, the Norton Selectboard immediately appointed Miriam Nelson, who graduated from the Norton village school, attended high school at the local convent, and ultimately completed her formal education at Elmira College, to succeed her father, and she was easily elected to the position at Town Meeting in 1950, and has held this important municipal responsibility ever since, and

     Whereas, the Nelson family’s association with the town of Norton extends beyond serving in public office as the family’s historic store, which straddles the U.S.-Canadian border, and until a few years ago operated as the W.G. Nelson & Company, still serves as the town clerk’s office, and

     Whereas, Miriam Nelson, who, since 1950, has never missed a town meeting and remains the same caring, considerate, dedicated, and faithful individual who assumed the office of town clerk over a half-century ago, has decided to conclude her career in Norton town government and will not stand for reelection at Town Meeting on March 5, 2003, now therefore be it

     Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives:

     That the General Assembly congratulates Miriam Nelson on her retirement after her historic and honorable 53-year tenure as Norton Town Clerk, and recognizes her family’s impressive 118 years of continuous municipal public service on behalf of the citizens of Norton, and be it further

     Resolved:  That the Secretary of State be directed to send a copy of this resolution to Miriam Nelson in Norton.