Chamberlain Days and Lovers leap in Bangor

It’s time for another annual Joshua Chamberlain Days event in the town of Brunswick Maine, hosted by the Pejepscot Historical Society.

Here’s the ininerary from their website, which you can find here in its entirety, as well as more on this Civil War heroe from Maine.

CHAMBERLAIN DAYS 2011

AUGUST 25 – 28, BRUNSWICK DOWNTOWN

Thursday, August 25

7 pm – Opening Lecture – Thomas Desjardin, Chamberlain scholar

Title: “The Chamberlain You Never Knew”

Location: Curtis Memorial Library, Morrell Room

Friday, August 26

11 am – Walking Tour of Chamberlain’s Brunswick

Guide: John Cross

Logistics: Meet at the Chamberlain statue at the corner of Maine St.

and Bath road, free but registration required (call 729-6606).

12 – 5 PM – Civil War Encampment with 20th Maine Regiment

Logistics: Brunswick’s Lower Mall, Free and open to the public.

2 pm – Workshop – “The Life and Times of a Confederate Surgeon and Medical

Practices of the American Civil War”

Presenter: Chris Nulle (15th Alabama Company G reenactor)

Logistics: Lower Mall (with rain location, PHS Museum)

4 – 6 pm – General Chamberlain Reception

Host: The Brunswick Inn, 165 Park Row, Brunswick

$25 donation per person, cash bar

(tickets available through PHS and during Chamberlain Days)

6 pm – Centennial Band Concert – 19th century music

Location: Gazebo on the Brunswick Mall

Saturday, August 27

10am – 5 pm – Civil War Encampment with 20th Maine Regiment

Location: Brunswick’s Lower Mall, Free and open to the public.

10 am – Walking Tour of Chamberlain’s Brunswick.

Guide: John Cross

Location: Meet at the Chamberlain statue at the corner of Maine St. and

Bath road, free but registration required (Call 729-6606)

11 am – Workshop – “The Life and Times of a Young Confederate Soldier”

Presenter: Kate Nulle

Location: lower Mall (with rain location, PHS Museum), free but

donations welcomed!

12 – 1:30 – Civil War Bake Sale – Hardtack, 1800’s candy, beef jerky etc.

Location: Lower Mall

1 pm – Lecture – By author Ned Smith Maine author and scholar will be presenting a talk on

“22nd Maine Infantry”

Location: Morrell Meeting Room, Curtis Memorial Library, Brunswick

2 pm – Lecture – Diane M. Smith, author of Fanny and Joshua: The enigmatic

Lives of Frances Caroline Adams and Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain (1999,

Thomas Publications)

Location: Morrell Meeting Room, Curtis Memorial Library, Brunswick

7 – 8:30 pm – “From the Land of Spruce Gum and Buckwheat Cakes!”

A series of readings and song from Joshua Chamberlain and contemporaries

of the Civil War.

Location: Theater Project, 11 School Street, Brunswick.

Tickets: suggested $10 (on sale through PHS or during Chamberlain Days)

Sunday, August 28

9 am – Parade of Respect and Honor – Leaving from the 20th Maine Encampment on the

Brunswick Mall to Chamberlain Family gravesite in Pine Grove Cemetery.

(all welcome to join – meet on the mall at 8:45 am)

Organized by:

PEJEPSCOT HISTORICAL SOCIETY

159 Park Row, Brunswick, ME 04011

207-729-6606

Please contact Interim Executive Director, John Briley, with any questions.

~~~

Lovers leap, on the Kenduskeag in Bangor Maine

It seems as though every state in the Union has a lovers leap, some have more than one, and Maine is no exception. Up in Bangor, just outside of town on the Kenduskeag is a massive, and impressive cliff known as Lovers Leap. It is situated just across the stream where William Potter built a sawmill in 1795. The tales are many as to how this spot became known as Lovers leap, and the piece by Walter Allen Rice at the end of this post is probably the best legend. But no matter how the spot came to be called lovers leap, it didn’t prevent it from becoming a famed meeting place for lovers of all ages.

Young men would carve lines of prose into the trunks of trees extolling the virtues of their loves, and here are a couple of inscriptions that had been copied for The History of Penobscot County in 1882.

Lines copied from a tree in a beautiful and romantic spot on the banks of the Kenduskeag;

Miss…Thy beauty rivals all the classic pride
Of sculptured forms that taste has deified;
Love’s earliest light plays timidly and shy
In the soft lustre of that gentle eye;
Yet have I dared, thou most enchanting maid,
To inscribe thy name within this hallowed shade:

Another Inscription copied from a tree near Lover’s Leap:
Miss …Of lovely Sophia’s eyes beware,

Mirth and mischief mingle there;

I with her have careless laugh’d,

Nor fear’d shy beauty’s dangerous shaft;

But pensive now I linger heTe,

To trace a name forever dear.

Here is a photo of Lovers leap I took while on a visit to Bangor:

THE LOVERS LEAP
A Legend ; Walter Allen Rice

It is down mid the forests of Maine,

Where Kenduskeag still flows thro’ the hills,

From the days when the Indian held reign,

Whence cometh this legend that thrills

The listener’s heart. Long ago,

When the settler first paddled this stream,

Long ‘ere the wide woods were laid low,

Or the red man awoke from his dreams;

Up circled the smoke to the sky

From a wigwam where dwelt Raven Hair;

Not a brave of the tribe but would die

For the sake of this maiden most fair,—

For the love of the chief’s only child;

Though twenty brief summers had flown,

On none of the band had she smiled,

But to all her young heart was as stone.

The chieftain oft grieved as he thought

Of his daughter so cold and so proud,

And entreated to better her lot,—

Yield her heart and her hand to White Cloud ;

But sadly she bowed the fair head,

And firmly she answered him “nay”;

For “another she’d promised,” she said,

And she turned from her father away.

“My daughter, what stranger has won

The pride of thy father’s brave band ?”

Proud the answer—”The settler—the son

Of the paleface—the brave Iron Hand.”

The fierce warriors stole forth on that night

To the vale where the villagers lay,—

But swifter than they in her flight

Raven Hair thro’ the wood sped away.

At his post her young lover she found,

In a breath all their danger she told ;

About her his strong arms he wound,

And kissed the fair cheeks strangely cold:—

“Iron Hand, for thy life thou must flee,

There is war ‘tween the red and the white;

So risk not thy welfare for me—

Forsake Raven Hair this sad night.”

“Forsake thee, my own!” and his breath

Fell hot on the dusky maid’s cheek,

“Not in life—but united in death,”

His husky voice choked nor could speak.

“By death we escape the dire hate

Of thy father and scorn of the white;

Yonder stream cannot tell of our fate,

Shall we go to the hunting-grounds bright?”

In answer her hand pressed his own,

Together they sped toward the stream,

Till they stood on the cliff high and lone,

Like a phantom—a vision—a dream;

But a moment two shadows as one

Were darkly outlined on the sky,

Then a leap through the air—it was done;

‘Twas the depth of their love e’en to die.

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Categories: history, Maine, Maine things to do, museum news, stories, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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