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Home » ARTS AND CULTURE in VT » VERMONT (all topics) » The Hale Street Gang
Margaret Egerton of The Hale Street Gang
The Hale Street Gang

A Memoir Writing Project in Vermont

By Allison Flint | November 18, 2010

Seniors are writing their stories of youth and creating their own history, having lived nearly a century in Vermont and beyond.

Idora Tucker of The Hale Street Gang

In an effort to assist her mother in writing her memoir, Sara Tucker, a successful writer and editor, offered a memoir writing workshop at the Randolph Senior Center in Randolph, Vermont.

This first meeting led to a weekly writers group and two years later became the recently published book, The Hale Street Gang: In Cahoots, a collection of stories written by Sara’s “students.”

Their ages range from 81 to 99 and include Sara’s mother, Idora, who completed her own memoir with the support of the group.

The writers look to Sara for guidance and assistance, but the depth of experience and passion for life come through in the memoirs.   Their voices are clear and natural as they are proud to tell their own stories.

Sara and her group have taken their show on the road, so to speak, and currently can be found at the Folklife Center in Middlebury, Vermont.

Charles Cooley of The Hale Street Gang

Visitors take an audio tour through the gallery, listening to stories read by the writers themselves, with the one exception of Margaret Egerton, whose story is read by Sara.   The senior member of the writing group, Margaret passed away earlier this year at the age of 99.

Visitors to the exhibit at the Folklife Center can gaze at portraits taken by Jack Rowell, a 5th generation Vermonter and successful artist.   Studying the portraits here, and delving further into Rowell’s portfolio, it’s clear that his talent for capturing and energizing his subjects is breathtaking.   Margaret’s portraits take center stage at the show, exuding her spirit, humor and strength of character.

For back-story on the memoir project, you can hear Sara and a group of seniors in a broadcast with Steve Zind on Vermont Public Radio from February, 2010.   They talk about the process, obstacles and intent of recording their own stories, mostly for their children and grandchildren.

Ruth Demarest-Godfrey of The Hale Street Gang

In addition to the finished project of The Hale Street Gang, Sara Tucker continues to share her craft by leading memoir writing workshops around the state.

She is a talented writer who has a gift for helping non-writers or first-time writers explore their history and transfer it to the page.

The subject is deep as she is mainly working with seniors whose valuable experiences and wisdom can be preserved and shared.

The Hale Street Gang: In Cahoots (ISBN: 978-1453811405, $16) was published on September 17, 2010 and is available from all good retailers including Amazon.


The Vermont Folklife Center, 88 Main Street, Middlebury, VT 05753

(802) 388-4964

The Hale Street Gang: Portraits in Writing will be on display at the Vision and Voice Documentary Workspace of the Vermont Folklife Center until December 18, 2010.

See their website for more details.

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