Book tells family’s story of running a Bridport country store
BRIDPORT — What happens when an English-born, Long Island housewife moves her family to rural Bridport, Vt., in the early 1960s to run a country store?
“The Red Brick Pantry,” a new book by Margaret (Rother) Nocca, tells the story of her and her family as they lived it in Bridport, just a few feet off Route 22A. Proceeds from the sale of this slim volume, whimsically illustrated by the author, benefit the Bridport Historical Society.
The book’s title is a reference to the building that was the country store that still stands today near the 1700s-era house the family lived in, now the home of the Bridport Historical Society.
For those who can remember life in the early ’60s, “The Red Brick Pantry” is a reminder of how difficult it was to keep a house warm in the winter, how difficult it could be to get around on back roads, and despite that, how Vermont’s charm and neighbors make it all worth putting up with.
This small oeuvre is a slice of life from a different time, which in many important ways isn’t so different from today, at least in Vermont.
Nocca, who ran the store with her husband Frank Rother, went on to establish her own photography business in Middlebury, the Rother Studio of Photography, later known as Margaret R. Photography. She was president, secretary and newsletter editor for Vermont Professional Photographers. Later she became the first woman president of the Professional Photographers Association of New England.
After earning her pilot’s license, she also ran an aerial photography business: Plane Vues, Inc. Upon her retirement from professional photography in 1998, she focused her efforts on her first love: writing.
Margaret Nocca lives, writes, photographs and gardens in Bridport.
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