News of the Day


by Craig Altschul

Morristown was the home in the ’40s and ’50s to Alfred “Crazy” Chase, a talented fiddler and entertainer. He apparently was hard to miss, according to the News & Citizen. Crazy was a big, solid man who wore a dress, stockings and makeup, often with a cigar in his mouth. Author Allen Church immortalized Crazy in a recent two-act play, “The Return of Crazy Chase: The One Man Mini-Musical Comedy.” The first act is based on actual interviews with locals who remembered Crazy; the second act lets Crazy (played by Church) speak and fiddle for himself. Church said Crazy was “well liked, but maybe not always understood…a person who had a certain lust for life.” Church wanted his play to be entertaining and fun, but also respectful. The play was sponsored by the Middlesex Historical Society where a turnout of 40-50 people was expected. Guess Crazy can still draw the crowds as over 150 showed up.

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About Craig Altschul

Craig Altschul is Editorial Director of He is a veteran snow journalist, having covered the sport for more than 40 years. His syndicated snow sports humor column, Ski Tips, ran in newspapers across the country for 20 years. He was Global Editor-in-Chief for OnTheSnow for 12 years and has written for a variety of magazines and newspapers. Altschul is past president of both the Eastern Ski Writers Association and the North American Snow Journalists Association.


  1. Holly Byers

    I was reading your story about Alfred Chase. My Grandmother was nurse at the farm where Alfred resided until the state shut it down then she brought Alfred to live with us. That is my family in Morrisville in the 1950’s. I have some photos of him with my family when I was about 6 or 7 years old. I remember the sound of his violin as he played for us on the front porch. My Grandmother moved to Brattleboro sometime before 1959 and I do not know where he went when she left.


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