If you’re looking for a one-stop-shop on every historical sight in Marlboro, look no further than the new historical walking tour App, Discover Marlboro.
The new app, which debuted in the app store in July, is free to the public and can be downloaded on any smart phone. The app was created by staff at the Marlboro Free Library.
“Over the last three years Ashley Poulin, Emily Amoia and I have been digging through our Local History Collection to find content for the Library’s annual Dark Side of Marlboro Walking Tour, which is usually held around Halloween,” Librarian Lindsay Jankovitz said.
Once the pandemic hit, Jankovitz and her coworkers realized that they wouldn’t be able to safely host the Dark Side of Marlboro Walking Tour, and they would have to find new ways to educate and involve their community. A walking tour app has been an idea they’ve been playing around with for a while now, and COVID gave them the push they needed to actually create it.
“Marlboro has such an interesting background and we here at the Marlboro Free Library are always looking for ways to make our Local History Collection more accessible and for opportunities for it to reach a broader audience,” Jankovitz said.
Making the app was a relatively quick experience for the library, but wouldn’t have been possible without the hard work that has been going on for the past three years to grow the Local History Collection. Poulin and Amoia have spent the last thee years constantly engaging in local history and adding to the collection. Jankovitz and her coworkers pulled together photographs for each write up, which quickly became stressful during the fact-checking portion.
“Some accounts and write ups are so vastly different. In these circumstances, we really had to deconstruct every little detail to see what lined up and what didn’t,” Jankovitz said.
Everyone on staff has their favorite stop on the app. Poulin’s favorite stop is the Hartshorn Building, where Pizza Town is located now, because it’s right in the center of town and most people don’t recognize it’s long history. In the photo on the app the 123-year-old building looks almost exactly the same, but with horse-drawn carriages out front instead of cars.
Though the app is full of information on the town of Marlboro, the staff made sure not to overwhelm users with too many details. To find every detail the library has on the town, you can check out the Local History Collection. The library is also currently working on creating a binder full of the research they used for the app, plus more.
The library is going to miss hosting the annual Dark Side of Marlboro Tour so for a limited time this October on the Discover Marlboro app, with no cost to you.
“Marlboro is a historically rich town,” Jankovitz said. “The app is a great way for individuals and families to safely get out into their community, spend time together, facilitate dialogue, and to learn something new.”