Brattleboro >> Come meet the author Thomas Fontaine at a special book signing event at the Brick Meeting House in Grafton on Friday, beginning at 5 p.m. It is free and open to the public and welcomes children as well as adults to hear Fontaine discuss how he came to write about this fourteen year-old-boy in the Civil War.

The new historical novel, "The Messenger Boy of Grafton Vermont," was published this fall by the Grafton Historical Society. It is about the brief army career of Henry C. Spring, whose family was one of the early settlers in Grafton. It takes place at the beginning of the Civil War when Henry signed up in 1861 to be a soldier in the Union Army.

Fontaine wrote the children's novel when he was a teacher at Grafton Elementary school.

The Grafton Historical Society discovered it had the manuscript in its files, and decided it would make a logical addition to its collection of books that it currently sells for children, Alex's Primer and Daisy and The Doll. "The Messenger Boy" is written for the 6th- to 8th-grade level reader and features some of the 1860s history of Grafton in its pages, as well as many historical photos from the GHS archives.

The Meet the Author event will feature cheese, wine and soft drinks, and will be located in the exact building in which the families of Grafton and their young men met as the Civil War unfolded. Fontaine who is currently a science and math teacher at Kurn Hattin School in Westminster will also discuss and answer questions about the Henry Spring family and the impact the war had on the town.


For further information about the book or the author event, contact the Grafton Historical Society at or 802-843-2584.