AYER — Barry Schwarzel of the Ayer Historical Commission wanted to get back in touch with his family’s roots, which run 100 years deep. He was discouraged there was no historical reference book available detailing the town’s history.
“I brought it up at one of our meetings and asked the question ‘Why don’t we have one?'” recalled Schwarzel. “They said ‘You want to do it?’ and I said ‘Sure.'”
Arcadia Publishing’s Images of America series boasts more than 7,500 local and regional histories. But on July 2, Arcadia will release the first copies of the Ayer Historical Commission’s 128-page book entitled “Ayer: Images of America.”
The hope is that by Ayer’s Independence Day celebrations on July 7 that the book will be available at Kelly’s Hallmark on Main Street and at a booth during the festivities at Pirone Park.Amazon.comand Barnes & Noble (BN.com) are taking advanced orders now. Each copy sells for $21.99.
The goal is for proceeds to flow into town coffers to be redirected into a fund to allow the Commission to “buy more goods and artifacts and preserve more history,” said Schwarzel. “We don’t run on a big budget.”
Schwarzel said he’s not drawing payment for directing the project. “It’s just my way of giving back. I learned a lot.”
“We wanted to make sure it’s correct and factual,” said Schwarzel. That meant plumbing some of Ayer’s historical treasure troves.