historic preservation

The Poland Spring Inn

Poland Spring, Maine has been a fixture for over two hundred years now (215,actually), having been opened in 1797 by Jabez Ricker, after settling at that location in 1794. I came across an article in the June 1922 issue of the Bankers Magazine. I thought I would share with those interested in the history of the Poland Spring Inn. The advertisement shown here is from a 1922 issue of the national Magazine.

THE Poland Spring House is situated on the old homestead estate of Wentworth Ricker in the heart of one of the loveliest regions of Maine and New England. In 1794 Jabez Ricker with his four sons and six daughters arrived and settled in a small house on the land south of the present Mansion House. In 1795 the building comprising the northwest corner of the present Mansion House was commenced. This building was first occupied in 1796, and during the following year was finished as an inn; a signpost was erected at the northwest corner with a sign bearing the words: “WENTWORTH RICKER, 1797.” It is recorded that the morning following their arrival, and when there was no regular highway in these parts, two men who were passing through the country called for meals. Since that day, for a period touching three centuries, these doors have never been closed to the coming guest. It is also worthy of note that the “Wentworth Ricker Inn” was one of the first to offer “entertainment for man and beast” on the post highway from Portland to Montreal.

The original Mansion House was opened by Wentworth Ricker, the grandfather of the present proprietors, Hiram Ricker & Sons, as Jabez Ricker had previously settled all his sons on properties, practically all of which have since been taken into the present estate, originally containing about 300 acres; and now over 5000 acres in the entire Poland Spring property.

Nearly 120 years of hotel-keeping have evolved the Mansion House, the Poland Spring House, and developed the estate; and the Riccar Inn at Poland Spring, which was first opened in 1913, derives its name from George and Maturin Riccar, the founders of the Ricker family in America. Side by side with the growth of Poland Spring as a Famous summer and winter resort, has developed also the history of the Poland Spring itself, and Poland Water has become famous throughout the civilized world.

Poland Spring is about 800 feet above sea level, twenty six miles north of Portland, Maine, and about five miles via the Poland Spring Automobile Stage Line from Danville Junction station of the Maine Central Railroad. The facilities for reaching Poland Spring from new York, Boston and other centers are unexcelled. The Poland Spring property of 5000 acres is of diversified character, and a small army of workers is employed in its upkeep. The scientific drainage, the electric lighting system, the water supply and fire protection have attained the perfection possible only through unrestricted study and expense. The well planned system of water towers, hydrants and sprinklers, and the system of fire brick walls afford the utmost protection.

Of the many lakes and ponds about Poland Spring, the nearest of importance is the Range Lakes encircling the western foot of Ricker Hill, less than a mile from either hotel. These are well stocked with bass, togue and other game fish. Within a few miles are other noted waters: Lake Auburn, Thompson’s Pond, Sabbath day Lake, etc., and if a guest should desire to visit the Rangely’s, which are within easy distance, arrangements may be made to occupy the Poland Spring Camp on Mooselukmeguntic for short periods.

The long sand beach at Middle Range Lake is a constant delight to children. There is every opportunity for boating and swimming, and a modern bathing pavilion, with instructors and boatmen, will be found at Middle Lake.

The tennis facilities have kept pace with the increasing popularity of the game; the three clay courts are the best that can be built, and are maintained in first-class condition. Riding is a feature that has had much attention, and an excellent string of saddle horses, and a riding master from the staff of the Durland Academy of New York, are available during the season. The links —an eighteen-hole course—rank with the best in the country.

The Mansion House and Riccar Inn are open the entire year and offer every modern comfort and convenience to the guest with long-distance telephone and steam heat in every room. Particularly during the winter season which is at its height from the first of December until the last of March, the Mansion House is the most modern of the winter resorts in New England.

A notable feature of Poland Spring is the “Maine State Building”—the official building of the State of Maine at the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893, when Poland Water received the Grand Prize. At the close of the Exposition this building was purchased, and re-erected at Poland Spring. This building houses the annual exhibit of representative American artists, in addition to the growing permanent exhibition of the owners, and the library of over 6000 volumes of modern, classical and historical literature; the reading room is provided with the more important periodicals, under the charge of a competent librarian.

All Soul’s Chapel—erected through the cooperation during many years of proprietors and guests, by direct contributions, and the proceeds of an annual fair for the purpose—is adjacent to the Poland Spring House, and on Sundays is the scene of services of various religious denominations for all who desire to attend.


Times have certainly changed, and the Poland Spring resort, while still a grand destination is but a shadow of what it was in Maine’s bygone days. The Ricker’s began to market the world famous Poland Spring water in the late 1840s, originally bottling it in green bottles with green labels to emphasize the natural properties of the water. You can learn more about this destination and its history by visiting the Poland Spring Preservation Society’s webpage.

Categories: historic buildings, historic preservation, historical societies, history, Maine, Maine things to do, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Daily News

The newspaper. Everybody knows what it is, but do you realize what an important part of our heritage these paper bound glimpses of the past are? Many do not, and because of this, we see a marked decline of the presence of these purveyors of the news and views of today.

At the last count, I could only find about thirty newspapers still publishing here in Maine, which is a far cry from where we used to be 150 years ago, back before the world began to spin ever faster upon its axis. Why are they important to our history? Because they offer a printed picture of what society can look like at any given moment in time.

Newspapers contain advertisements that help local businesses stay in business. We can look a newspaper and see what kinds of business are down the street, across town or in neighboring communities. When we need something but don’t know where to get it, we look in the paper. Plus they have coupons. Coupons are good, they save us money.

If you need to get a new apartment, you look in the classifieds where you can find your new dream home. You can also buy and sell your car, pick up somebody’s unwanted washer and clothes dryer, antiques and collectibles, check out the yard sales, and find a job.

But more importantly, newspapers provide us with a way to share our opinions in a way that cannot be done in any other way, including the internet. You can write a letter to the editor and get whatever is eating you off your chest. You can read the editors opinion and call him, or her, whatever names you wish because you disagree with their views.

The news of the day on an international, national, regional, and local level can be found in a newspaper. Headlines shout out the latest breaking story, while interior articles sift through the grit and grime of daily politics and business news. How to’s help you decorate your house, buy a new car, or repair an old one, take care of your lawn, and help you with many other problems.

And don’t forget about the cartoons! A little slice of humor brightens everyone’s day.

Newspapers have been the medium of information exchange for centuries, from the little upstart local papers to the huge international dailies of today, and sadly, this part of our heritage is disappearing from our lives as we turn more and more to a quick glimpse of make believe reality on the internet. The net has its place, mind you, but an unfortunate side affect of its very abilities to inform and entertain are destroying what has been in the past a part of our everyday life.

In many parts of the world newspapers are still the number one source for information and education where there is no widespread internet availability, but here in the US the traditional paper bound slice of life is nearly gone, and it is unlikely to return, thanks to this media you are now enjoying.

What do we lose by not having a local paper? We lose a lot, really. We lose the connections to our local community that the WWW just cannot provide. We miss the birth announcements that shouted to the world that Johnny and Sally were born. We miss the school news that says Johnny made quarterback on the local football team and Sally was picked for head cheerleader.

We miss the wedding announcement that proudly boasts of Johnny and Sally’s engagement and marriage. The news of Johnny’s promotion at his place of employment is gone too. Gone also are the proud moment of the birth of Johnny and Sally’s first child, The retirement of this couple from working life, and sadly, the obituary that notifies the world of their passing from this life.

What we really miss by not having a local paper is the sense of community that we all once had. Instead, we have become part of a larger community controlled and fed by instant news, but none of it local, unless it sells advertising, and most of it dictated by editors and boards of conglomerates that are only interested in the revenue provided by the pay per click advertising.

I buy the local papers, but I also get many online newspapers, and the difference in the quality and the content between the two is becoming more and more disheartening. Dailies rely upon other dailies to provide content, and thus local news becomes less and less a part of the cycle. We have to turn to Craig’s List and EBay to buy and sell our unwanted things, and we no longer get to see who’s who.

The opportunity for local people to bask in the glow of local fame is gone.

And unfortunately, gone too are the records of the daily snapshots of opinion, the facts and details of our daily lives. We have become too fast, too instantaneous in our lives. We no longer have the option of reading the paper over our morning coffee, and discussing the latest zoning proposal or tax issue at the town and county level over lunch with our friends. We lose our connection the local community when we have no local newspaper.

We lose a record of our history that no other medium can duplicate, even the internet.

One of the things historians do is pour over periodicals to pick out little details that help us understand what life was like in the bygone days of yesteryear. There are not that many left. Many newspapers simply shutter their doors and fade into the inglorious sunset of failure. Others merge and become part of a larger presence in the greater community, thus losing their local charm. For the sake of history, we should all support our local newspapers buy buying a copy on a regular basis, if for no other reason to say you helped keep a part of yesterday alive.

I came across this list of newspapers and periodicals from the 1856 Maine Register and Business directory, giving frequency of publication and subscription rates:


Age, Augusta, weekly, Fuller & Fuller, $2.00. Tri-weekly during Session of Legislature.

American Sentinel, Bath, Jas. M. Lincoln, $1-50.

Bangor Daily Whig & Courier, Wheeler & Lynde, $5.00.

Bangor Courier, weekly, Wheeler & Lynde, $1.50.

Bangor Daily Journal, W. E. Hilton & Co., $4.00.

Bangor Weekly Journal, weekly, W. E. Hilton & Co., $1.50.

Bangor Jeff’ersonian, weekly, Bartlett & Burr, $1.50.

Brunswick Telegraph, weekly, G. W. Chase, $1.50 per year.

Calais Advertiser, Calais, weekly, John Jackson, Publisher, terms, $1.50 pr. yr.

Christian Mirror, Portland, weekly, Charles A. Lord. $2.00 per year.

Clay’s Medical Rambler, Portland, weekly, R. R. Clay.

Daily Mercury, Bangor, S. P. Dinsmore, $4.00.

Democrat, Bangor, weekly, Wm. Thompson, $2.00.

Democratic Advocate, Danville, C. Record & Co., $1.50.

Democratic Clarion, Skowhegan, weekly, Moses Littlefield, $1.00 per year.

Down Easter, Minot, M. F. P. O., weekly, Cady & Co.

Eastern Argus, Portland, daily, John Appleton & Co., $5.00.

Eastern Argus, Portland, tri-weekly, John Appleton & Co., $4.00.

Eastern Argus, Porthnd, weekly, John Appleton & Co., $2.00.

Eastern Mail, Waterville, weekly, Maxham & Wing, $1.50.

Eastern Times, Bath, weekly, John Abbott, $1.50.

Eastport Sentinel, Eastport, A. H. Close & Co., $1.50 per year.

Ellsworth Herald, weekly, W. H. Chaney, Editor, E. Couillard, Publisher,

$1.50 per year. Gem & Gazette, Dexter, weekly, J. F. Witherell, $1.00.

Glenwood Valley Times, R. M. Mansur, Vienna.

Golden Wreath & Ladies’ Advocate, Minot, M. F. P. O., monthly, Cady & Co.

Gospel Banner, Augusta, Joseph A. Homan, $2.00.

Hallowell Gazette, weekly, E. Rowell, $1.50.

Independent Dexter Advertiser, Dexter, W. S. Cilley.

Journal & Enquirer, Portland, weekly, B. D. Peck, $1.50.

Kennebec Journal, Augusta, weekly, Stevens & Blaine, $1.50. Tri-weekly during Session of Legislature.

Ladies’ Enterprise, Portland, weekly, Augustus Robinson, $1.50 per year.

Lewiston Falls Journal, weekly, Wm. H. Waldron, $1.50 per year.

Lincoln Democrat, New Castle, weekly, J. J. Ramsey, $1.50 per year.

Machais Union, weekly, Drisko & Furbush, $1.50 per year.

Maine Democrat, Saco, weekly, A. A. Hanscom, $1.50.

Maine Evangelist, Portland, weekly, S. C. Fessenden, $2.00.

Maine Farmer, Augusta, weekly, Russell Eaton, $1.75.

Maine Expositor, Portland, weekly, Thomas Nichols, $1.00 per year.

Maine Free Press, Belfast, weekly, M. V. Stetson & Co., $1.50 per year.

Maine Temperance Journal, Portland, weekly, Benj. D. Peck, $1.50.

Masonic Journal, Brunswick, monthly, G. W. Chase, 50 cents.

Northern Home Journal, Gardiner, weekly, A. M. C. Heath, $1.50.

Northern Tribune, Bath, daily. Northern Tribune, Bath, weekly, $1.25.

Norway Advertiser, weekly, Geo. W. Millett, $1.50 per year.

Oxford Democrat, Paris, weekly, W. A. Pidgin & Co., $1.50 per year.

Pleasure Boat, Portland, weekly, Jeremiah Hacker, $1.00 per year.

Piscataquis Observer, Dover, Geo. V. Edes, $1.50 per year.

Portland Advertiser, Portland, daily, John M. Wood, $5.00.

Portland Advertiser, tri-weekly, John M. Wood, $3.50.

Portland Advertiser, weekly, John M. Wood, $2.00.

Portland Genius, weekly, Josiah L. Thomas, $1,00.

Portland Inquirer, Portland, weekly, Benjamin D. Peck, $2.00.

Portland Transcript, Portland, weekly, Gould, Elwell, Pickard & Co., $1.50.

Portland Eclectic, Portland, weekly, Gould, Elwell, Pickard & Co., $1.50.

Progressive Age, Belfast, weekly, W. M. Rust & Co., $1.50 per year.

Representative Journal, Belfast, weekly, Moore & Diekerson, $1.50 per year.

Rural Intelligencer, Augusta, weekly, W. A. Drew, $1.50.

Rockland Gazette, weekly, John Porter, $1.50 per year.

Saturday Evening Transcript, Gardiner, weekly, R. B. Caldwell, $1.75 pr. yr.

Somerset Spectator, Anson, weekly, Bodney Collins, $1.50.

State of Maine, Portland, daily, Bearce, Starbird & Co., $5.00.

State of Maine, Portland, tri-weekly, Bearce, Starbird & Co., $3.00.

State of Maine, Portland, weekly, Bearce, Starbird & Co., $1.50.

The Chronicle, Farmington, weekly, L. N. Prescott, $1.00.

Thomaston Journal, weekly, C. H. Paine, $1.50.

Touchstone, Lewiston Falls, A. Young, Jr., 50 cents.

Union & Eastern Journal, Biddeford, weekly, Lewis O. Cowan, $2.00 pr. year.
United States Democrat, weekly, A. & E. Sprague, $1.50.
Weekly Mercury, Bangor, S. P. Dinsmore, $1.25.
Zion’s AdvocatPortland, weekly, J. B. Foster, $2.00.

Comparatively speaking, I’d say we are missing a great deal.

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Historic Group Buys Sullivan House

Here are a few more headlines from around Maine to pique your interest. Seasonal projects are starting to fire up again around the state of Maine, hope you all have good fortune, and if you would like to share feel free to drop a line to me. Use the message box below or email if you have a longer piece. The photo to the right is of a couple of lobster boats moored at Harpswell landing.

Keeper of Yarmouth’s past finds fresh future

Linda Grant, left, chairwoman of the Yarmouth Historical Society, Program Director Amy Thompson and Executive Director Michael Chaney are among those looking forward to the construction of a new Yarmouth History Center to enhance the…

Historic group buys Sullivan house

A local property with a house that dates to the early 1800s is being acquired by the local historical society. The Sullivan-Sorrento Historical Society indicated in a prepared statement sent out Sunday that…

Hope gravestone photos available on society website

Other topics well worth a look include History and Homes. The site also has a copy of the column I wrote about Hope Historical Society in 2009. If you know of Maine and New England cemetery listings online, let me know the Web address by sending it to…

Group in Lincolnville wants to move 130-year-old schoolhouse …

The Lincolnville Historical Society is working to move the 1880s school across the … By Heather Steeves, BDN Staff LINCOLNVILLE, Maine — There are several…

New website offers searchable info on one of oldest cemeteries in northern Maine

… in February at the Campus Center, celebrating the project that was conducted by staff at UMPI’s GIS laboratory and a team of UMPI researchers working in partnership with the Fairmount Cemetery Association and the Presque Isle Historical Society.

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The First Railroads in Maine

The wood block print to the left is from 1836, and depicts what the artist called the Veazie Railroad, or the Bangor, Oldtown and Milford, which was the first railroad constructed in the state of Maine. The first railroads were actually of wood rails laid on log ties, and pegged into place when needed with widen pegs. Later, the wood rails would be replaced with iron strapping, then bars, and finally the t shaped rails we see today.

Initially, horses pulled the rail cars, which were actually stagecoaches and wagons fitted up with special wheels that were grooved or shaped somehow to engage the rails in use. After the early 1800’s, steam engines, having proved successful in other enterprises such as steam boating, began to be built for these railroads.

Today, much of Maine’s history would have been quite different if these railroads had not been constructed. Much of our sporting and early tourist heritage would never had been birthed if it were not for the railroads ability to carry passengers and freight to the out in the boonies sporting camps and hotels.

Aroostook’s potato industry would not have been possible without the railroads freight capabilities to haul the annual harvest to points out of state. Railroads are just another part of who we are, and as such we should take the effort to learn more about this part of Maine history, and if you have the opportunity, please visit some of the railroad museums and displays and think about volunteering at one of the many non-profit societies working to preserve this part of Maine’s heritage.

Early Railroads in the state of Maine

[From History of the Railroads & Canals of the US of A, Henry V. Poor, pub 1860


Androscoggin and Kennebec.
Atlantic and St. Lawrence.
Bangor, Oldtown and Milford.
Calais and Baring.
European and North American.
Great Falls and South Berwick.
Kennebec and Portland.

Lewey’s Island.
Maciiiasport Or Franklin.

Penobscot and Kennebec.
Portland and Oxford Central.
Portland, Saco and Portsmouth.
Somerset and Kennebec.
York and Cumberland.

The first railroad constructed in the State of Maine was the Bangor, Oldtown and Milford, under the title of the Bangor and Piscataquis Railroad and Canal Company, chartered on the 8th of February, 1833. It was opened in the latter part of 1836. It has proved unproductive, in part from the unfortunate location of its line.

The road next constructed was the Portland, Saco and Portsmouth, as a prolongation of the Eastern and the Boston and Maine Railroads of Massachusetts. The means for the construction of the same were furnished chiefly by parties connected with these Companies, to which it was leased on the 28th of April, 1847, for a term of 90 years, with a guarantee of dividends at the rate of per cent, per annum. These, however, have been earned by the road.

The third road undertaken was the Atlantic and St. Lawrence, and was the first attempt at anything like a railroad system for the State, having for its object the development of its resources and the centralization of its trade and that of the interior at its chief commercial city. It was constructed with a view of uniting with the St. Lawrence and Atlantic of Canada commenced at the same time—the two to form one line between the Atlantic Ocean and the River St. Lawrence. It now forms a part of the Grand Trunk Railway of Canada, to which it is leased at the rate of 6 percent, per annum on its capital. Since the date of the lease the Grand Trunk Company has expended in construction about $1,500,000. This enterprise led to the immediate commencement of the Androscoggin and Kennebec, the Kennebec and Portland, and the Buckfield Branch. The Androscoggin and Kennebec Railroad was commenced in July, 1847, and completed in November, 1849. For several years past this road has been united with the Penobscot and Kennebec Railroad, both of which are operated as one line. Its earnings have been sufficient to meet the interest on its indebtedness, but not to divide anything on its share capital.

The construction of the Kennebec and Portland Railroad was commenced in 1847, and finally opened to Augusta early in 1852. It commenced at the point of junction with the Atlantic and St. Lawrence Railroad, but as it adopted a different gauge, the construction of a new road into Portland, a distance of 11 miles, became necessary. This was constructed in 1850-1, The road was necessarily expensive, and the Company for several years past has only been able to meet the interest on its first mortgage amounting to $800,000, and on the extension certificates $202,400, which are a first mortgage on that portion of road. In the season of navigation the road sufiers from the competition of a parallel water line.

The Buckfield Branch (Portland and Oxford Central) Railroad was opened in 1849, but having proved unproductive has been abandoned.

York and Cumberland was commenced in 1849, and opened to Gorham, 10i miles, in 1851, and to the Saco River, 20 miles, in 1853. It has been uniformly unfortunate and unproductive.

The Calais and Baring, a local road, was opened in 1837. Its earnings have been sufficient to meet the interest on its indebtedness, and pay 3.2 on its share capital.

The Androscoggin was opened to Livermore Falls in 1852—to its present terminus in 1859. This road has failed to pay the interest on its last class of bonds.

The Penobscot and Kennebec Railroad was commenced in 1852, and completed in 1855. This road and the Androscoggin and Kennebec are operated as one line. Its net earnings have been sufficient to meet the interest on its two first mortgages, amounting to $1,050,200.

The Great Falls and South Berwick Railroad was opened in 1854, and has proved unproductive. After being disused for some time, it has again been put in operation.

The total amount of share capital and debts of the railroad companies of the State is $17,923,612. Of the share capital, $4,297,300 receives, (with the exception of the Calais and Baring), dividends at the rate of 6 per cent. Of the total indebtedness, interest is paid at the rate of six per cent, on $7,819,718; leaving share capital to the amount of $3,188,411, and debts to the amount of $2,618,183, on which neither interest nor dividends are paid. The total amount of productive capital invested in railroads in the State is

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The Territory of Perkins Maine

The Kennebec River at Swan Island ca 1900

1890 topographic map of Swan Island

Maine is unique in that we have more unorganized territories than most of the other states in the union, with the exception of Alaska. Most of these unorganized territories are uninhabited, and lie to the northern and western regions of the state. One territory in particular lies in the more heavily inhabited portions of Maine, that being what is known as Perkins Township, located on Swan’s Island in the Kennebec River.

Perkins was initially settled in the mid 1700’s and became an incorporated township in 1847 when Thomas Handasyd Perkins, a summer resident paid for the costs of incorporating as a community in the state of Maine. During the 1800’s, Perkins was a small but thriving community with a brisk trade in shipbuilding and ice harvesting. As the 19th century came to a close, industry and interest drew people away from the town and by 1918, Perkins had become an un-incorporated township. After the ravages of the depression and WWII, not to mention the increasing levels of pollution in the Kennebec, Perkins was left with few residents and the last family left by the mid 1940’s.

At the turn of the century (1900), the US census listed just 61 full time residents, and by 1920, the population had dwindled to just 20 full timers.

The1890 topographic map here shows that there was quite a bit of activity, so what happened to all of the residents? One may surmise that people tend to go where the money is, and with the world changing as rapidly as it was during the last few years of the 19th century, there just was not any money to be made on Swans Island.

Dresden and Gardiner, during the ice harvesting heyday contained some of the largest ice companies in the northeast. Much of the ice was harvested on both sides of the island, with houses lining the banks in both Dresden and Richmond. Very few were built on the island itself, but many of the residents were occupied in the labor end of the ice trade.

Shipbuilding was a larger part of the island commerce, and could be conducted year round to some extent. One of the main components missing from the community was a bridge linking the island to the mainland. A bridge is a connection to the rest of society, and a community can feel left out of the rest of society if that link does not exist.

When the area was first visited by the Europeans, mainly the English, the island was occupied by the Canibis Indians, of whom the great Chief Kennebis (Sebenoa?), who was said to have resided on the island opposite of where the town of Richmond now lies [1]. There were an estimated 1500 braves living on the island at the time [2].

Varney writes[3]:

Perkins in Sagadahoc County, lies in the Kennebec River between Richmond on the west bank and Dresden in Lincoln County, on the east. Its length is about 3 miles and 4 miles in width. It bore the name of Swan Island almost from the time when it was first known until its separation from Dresden and incorporation under its present name in 1847. It lies 14 miles north of Bath, on the line of the Kennebec, Portland and Boston steamers. The nearest railroad station is at East Bowdoinham for the southern part and Richmond village for the northern. The town is mostly level, and is well wooded and fertile. When first discovered by Europeans, the island was the residence of Sebenoa, the sachem of the lower Kennebec. Col. Church and his men in 1692 had a conflict wjth a large body of savages at this place, in which the Indians were routed, some escaping to the mainland, and some to their fort at Teconnet, near Waterville.

The post-office for the town is Richmond. Perkins has one public schoolhouse, valued at $600. The valuation of estates in 1870 was $36,792. In 1880 it was $37,594. The population in 1870 was 71. In 1880 it was 78.

Having been obviously settled to a great extent by the whites prior to the 1800s, the island was at the time a sort of river-way trading settlement, with agriculture being the main industry. There must have been a great deal of traffic in fact, as we find a historical reference as to a Dr. McKechnie having treated a patient for small pox in 1764, blood letting other patients and supplying large quantities of drugs to the residents of the island [4].

The presence of a regular physician indicates a community at least large enough to provide an income for the doctor in residence.

It is unfortunate that such a treasure trove of history has been left to return to the wilds without extracting and retaining as much of our heritage as we can. The 1922 State Assessors Report claims that Swan’s and the smaller Alexander Island (Little Swan) that had made up the township of Perkins consisted of 1344 acres of Wildlands valued at a combined total for estates and Wildlands at 16,119,608. Much of the estate land consisted of cottages and farms, with the American Ice Company and the Crosby Navigation companies being the largest commercial owners of land on the island.

The Demaresq house, Swan Island ca 1900

The Barker House, at the foot of Swan Island ca 1900

  1. Varney, George Jones, Gazetteer of the State of Maine, page 295, pub 1881
  2. Ibid
  3. Ibid, page 440
  4. Kelly, Howard A., Burrage, Walter L., American Medical Biographies, Page 745, pub 1920
  5. Images ca 1900 from the New England Magazine, Ancient Pownalboro and Her Daughters, Charles E. Allen, pub 1901


Categories: historic buildings, historic preservation, history, Maine, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

130 Antique Stage Curtains Found in Maine

Here is another roundup of Maine history news headlines! Even though the temps are plunging there is still a lot of activity in the world of Maine history. It appears as though things may be changing in that for moat local societies the winters are becoming less and less of a shuttered organization during the winter months, fortunately.

Bass Harbor lighthouse, Acadia to appear on new quarter

BASS HARBOR, Maine — For the second time in a decade, an iconic Maine lighthouse will soon start appearing in the pockets and pocketbooks of people across the country. Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse on Mount Desert Island will be featured on the back of a U.S. quarter to be issued…

Appraisers’ Roadmap: Navigating the World of Marks
Many might wonder, when watching appraisers on the “Antiques Roadshow,” just how they can determine so much information by simply flipping a porcelain cup, silver platter or glass vase upside down? They are looking for a mark—the appraiser’s seemingly arcane language that is a mystery to the budding collector. Worthologist Mike Wilcox says that once understood, marks can save hours of time and frustration trying to figure out exactly what you are holding in your hands. Need a primer? Mike just happens to have one that gives an overview of what you can find painted or impressed on the underside of most pottery, glass or metal items that can be used to decipher vintage, authenticity and origins of your antiques and collectibles…

Curtains Without Borders finds 130 antique stage curtains in Maine

NORWAY — A stage curtain in Norway Grange 45 on Whitman Street is being documented as part of a regionwide effort by the Vermont organization Curtains Without Borders to conserve and protect stage curtains throughout New England and beyond. Curtains Without Borders Director Christine…

The Virtues of Virtual

As the world becomes more virtual (but not necessarily more virtuous), many museums and historical societies are moving their collections online. The Maine Memory Network, launched by the Maine Historical Society in 2001…

Picturing Portland in the digital age
Oldham, a volunteer with the Maine Historical Society, takes a photo in Portland Friday. The historic block of buildings along Fore Street at Boothby Square, with 340 Fore St. at the far right in the 1924 archival image. The three-year project…

Troy church among most recent additions to National Register of …

The Troy Union Meeting House, built in 1840, has made it to the National Register of Historic Places. The Maine Historic Preservation Commission singled it…

Hines speaks on art restoration

Camden — The historic Conway House’s Maine Living series will host a talk by art restorer Blaikie Hines Sunday, Jan. 8 at 2 pm at the Conway House complex…

Historic photographs at Camden library

Research for the exhibit was conducted by individuals and historical societies … The exhibit was funded by a grant from the Maine Community Foundation and…

Libraries collaborate on Civil War book group

The discussions will be facilitated by Candace Kanes, a historian at the Maine Historical Society, who is provided by the Maine Humanities Council. …

Categories: antiques, articles, historic preservation, historical societies, history, Maine, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fort Williams to be Unearthed?

Dining with Antiques – Christmas Rosettes
In the 1840s and 1850s, Scandinavian settlers brought to the United States the tradition of making an assortment of delicious Christmas cookies using open fireplaces and cast iron implements. Over time, cultures blended into America’s melting pot and traditions became diluted, but these fascinating cookie-making tools can still be found, hidden among the Dutch ovens, skillets and other cast iron miscellany on tables at outdoor flea markets. The items, resembling small branding irons (with screw-on “brands”), are used to make rosettes, a favorite Nordic Christmas treat. Check out Worthologist Liz Holderman’s primer on these vintage kitchen implements, as well as a traditional recipe for those interested in trying to make them. Read “Dining with Antiques – Christmas Rosettes”

History buried at Fort Williams Park

The park’s charitable foundation plans to explore the possibility of uncovering a buried gun battery.

CAPE ELIZABETH – Large interpretive signs help explain Battery Blair to visitors at the town’s Fort Williams ParkJoe Edgar says much more interesting things are under those visitors’ feet. Edgar is a director of the Fort Williams Charitable Foundation, which has raised more than $36,000 for an engineering study to determine whether a buried section of the gun battery — which includes the ammunition magazines, plotting rooms, and space for tool storage, generators and latrines — can stand the stress of being uncovered.

“Spend Christmas in Jail!”

The Ellsworth Historical Society will again be having their annual open house and “Old Fashioned Christmas” with free admission to the museum on December 3, 11:00-3:00 at the home of the Society” The Old Hancock County Jail”, 40 State Street Ellsworth next to the Ellsworth Library.

The 1886 home of the Sherriff will decorated for the holidays with hot mulled cider and cookies. Guests will be welcome to tour the 1886 home of the Hancock County Sherriff’s of the past and see how they spent their day-to-day lives and tending the prisoners in the jail. Guests will also be allowed to tour the Sherriff’s office and the cellblock of so many of our notorious Ellsworth prisoners!

A special exhibit will also be on display “A Soldiers Christmas” that will display military items from the archives of the society as well as items on loan. One very special exhibit we will have this year is a recent donation to the society of a 12 lb British Canon Ball that was shot at a Ellsworth Barn on the Union River believed from the Revolutionary War period. So many Ellsworth boys were not home for the holidays so we felt it was important to show our support and remember the soldiers of Ellsworth at this special time of year.

The society continues its goal of preserving the artifacts of Ellsworth History and as always needs your support. Donations are welcome and may be sent to The Ellsworth Historical Society PO Box 355 Ellsworth, Me 04605. If you have items to donate or any questions, please contact Terri Weed Cormier at 667-8235 or Linda Grindle at 667-5716. The society is currently looking for glass locking display cabinets to display items securely, if you have one to donate please contact us. Thank you and we look forward to seeing you all at the Open House for some cider and cookies and lots of reminiscing about Ellsworth’s past.

Museums of Old York

Upcoming Programs
For a complete and up-to-date calendar please see our website.


3rd Join us this Saturday for A Christmas Tea at Jefferds Tavern.

As a part of the annual Festival of Lights celebration in York Village, Museums of Old York hosts a favorite holiday tradition at historic Jefferds Tavern from noon until 4 p.m. on Sat., Dec. 3. This yuletide fest, managed by volunteer Michele LaBranche, offers traditional Victorian-style holiday cheer to the whole family. Candlelight, a cozy fire, shining silver, delicate teacups and holiday greens set the stage in the Tavern. But the desserts are really the highlight of the afternoon!

Created by local bakers and talented volunteers, this year’s menue of tasty treats includeds: Apple Crisp, Harvest Pumpkin Pie, Cheesecake, Chocolate Cake, Raspberry Almond Pie, Lemon Pie, Fluffy Peanut Butter Pie, and Indian Pudding. Enjoy the ambiance, company of friends and delicious desserts as you warm yourself by the fire. The last sitting will be at 3:30 p.m. Admission is $6 and includes a choice of two desserts and tea. No charge for children under age 5 and no reservation required.

14th Candle Dipping and Holiday Decor. Without electricity how did people light their homes at night? With candles of course! Dip your own candles for when the power goes out this winter or as a centerpiece for a holiday dinner. Create colorful curled candles, string cranberries and make a decoration for your window or Christmas tree. 3-5 p.m. at The Parsons Center. Registration required, ages 8 and up, $10 ($8 members).

Stories from Maine Memory Network

Bringing in the Swedes

30th Anniversary Celebration, New Sweden, 1900

The settlement of the Swedish colony in Aroostook County in the 1870s is a remarkable story. Political leaders, spurred by the Homestead Act and led by W.W. Thomas, actively recruited Swedish immigrants to northern Maine, both to encourage economic development and to secure the northern border with Canada. By the 1890s, nearly 1,500 Swedish immigrants had settled in Aroostook County and established a vibrant community that remains strong to this day.

View the exhibit from Maine History Online for an overview. To explore the story further, visit the website a local team from New Sweden developed through the Maine Community Heritage Project.

TRAVELIN’ MAINE(RS): Head to New Gloucester and have yourself a Merry Shaker
Kennebec Journal
Shaker Village includes a store with many interesting products, a fascinating museum, a craft store with locally made crafts from lamps to baskets to cheese balls, a farm with sheep and goats and several historical buildings

Farmington Historical Society to sell wreaths
Lewiston Sun Journal
Along with a parade and other activities, the Titcomb House Museum is open from 9:30 am to 3 pm All proceeds support the Farmington Historical Society’s mission of preserving Farmington’s history and maintenance of the Titcomb House and North Church

Schooner Bowdoin’s Untold Story Subject of Upcoming Castine Exhibit
The Maritime Executive (press release)
The untold story of Maine Maritime Academy’s (MMA) historic schooner Bowdoin will be illuminated in an upcoming exhibit at the Castine Historical Society scheduled for the summer of 2012. The exhibit, entitled “Schooner Bowdoin on the Greenland Patrol”

Leeds Historical Society views Harry Cochrane Murals
Lewiston Sun Journal
LEEDS — Members of the Leeds Historical Society met recently at the old Methodist Church on Quaker Ridge with artisan Tony Castro from New Gloucester. Castro has worked for more than 25 years in the field of decorative painting, and some of Maine’s…

Maine fish passage restoration effort get $92K grant
The Republic
Maine Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe says the $92505 grant is going to the Nobleboro Historical Society. Through the years, the towns have undertaken several

Categories: antiques, articles, breaking news, collectibles, events, Geneology, headlines, historic buildings, historic preservation, historical societies, history, Maine, Maine Historical Society, Museums of Old York, stories, Uncategorized, WWII | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

U-Maine’s folklore collection to get new home at Library of Congress

Welcome to another round of Maine history headlines and news from around the web! A special thanks to those who have sent in links to share. Just a comment on that, by the way. Please make sure you have a valid description of your email in the subject line. If there is no relevant wording in the subject line it will go into spam, and as the amount of spam mail is increasing again, I will no longer look at emails in my spam box. Send in your news, links and event notifications to editor@touringmaineshistory.com if you have something to share.

As a note for future interest, I am interested in receiving guest posts from historical society fans covering meeting and events around the state of Maine. It will be a good way to share news of what you are doing with a greater audience than you might get otherwise.

If I do not get time to do another post before Thanksgiving, have a happy holiday, and enjoy the day!

Joe Steinberger: Rockland History, in Context
Freepress Online
by Joe Steinberger This Saturday at 12:30 pm at the Rockland Public Library, there will be a presentation by members of the Rockland Historical Society about the Lime Rock Railroad that once linked Rockland’s limestone quarries to the shore side kilns…

All aboard for history of Rockland’s industrial railroad
The Rockland Historical Society and the Rockland Public Library will present a multi-media program about Rockland’s Lime Rock Railroad on Saturday, Nov. 19 at 1:30 pm The program at the library will be preceded by the historical society’s annual…

Official issued proclamation against Penobscot Indians in 1755
Bangor Daily News
The page refers to “Documentary History of Maine,” Baxter Manuscripts, Vol. 24 Page 63, and also the Androscoggin Historical Society at http://www.rootsweb.com/~meandrhs. So in addition to taking land and spreading disease and paying Native Americans…

Belfast women sewed a patriotic legacy in 1864
Bangor Daily News
Discovering the phrase “Belfast, Maine, June 17, 1864” printed on a white stripe, the woman contacted the Belfast Historical Society. According to Pinette, after the Armory Square Hospital closed in 1865, the Belfast quilt “was most likely given to Dr…

Town histories a great source for veterans lists
Bangor Daily News
They are among the Abbot World War I veterans listed in “A Centeseptquinary History of Abbot, Maine 1827-2002,” a book that continues to be available through the Abbot Historical Society. Gerrish, Morse and Orff served in places such as St. Mihiel and…

UMaine ‘national treasure’ of folklore to get new home at Library of Congress

ORONO, Maine — Legend has it that the Maine Folklife Center hatched from a shoebox under the desk of University of Maine professor Edward “Sandy” Ives. Half a century ago, that box held just a few audio recordings of Mainers describing their way of life and way of making a…

Museums of Old York schedule of events;


19 Visual Language and Constructed Views: New Exhibits at George Marshall Store Gallery. Opening reception on Saturday Nov. 19, 5-7 p.m. This exhibition runs through December 18. Gallery Hours are Wed. – Sat. 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Sunday 1-4 p.m. and by appointment.

21 The Art of Wreathmaking
Join MOY staff as we prepare wreaths to decorate our historic properties for the holiday season.
Meet at 2 p.m. at Remick Barn in The Parsons Center, 3 Lindsay Road in York Village.

30 Gingerbread House Competition. Help the Museums of Old York decorate a gingerbread rendition of the John Hancock Warehouse. Use frosting and candy to add windows, shingles, a ramp and the ocean so the house can be entered in York Library’s gingerbread house contest! After helping with our gingerbread house, decorate your very own house in true Victorian holiday style to take home. 3-5 p.m. at The Parsons Center. Registration required, ages 5 and up, $25 ($20 members).

3 A Christmas Tea at Jefferds Tavern. The Museums of Old York will once again host a favorite local holiday tradition at the historic Jefferds Tavern from noon until 4 p.m. on Saturday, December 3 as a part of the annual Festival of Lights celebration in York Village. This yuletide happening, managed again this year by volunteer Michele LaBranche, brings traditional Victorian-style holiday cheer to the entire family. Candlelight, a cozy fire, shining silverware, delicate teacups and Christmas greens set the stage at Jefferds Tavern. But the desserts are really the highlight created by local bakers and talented volunteers.

This year’s menu of tasty treats includes Apple Crisp, Harvest Pumpkin Pie, Cheesecake, Chocolate Cake, Raspberry Almond Pie, Lemon Pie, Fluffy Peanut Butter Pie, and Indian Pudding. Enjoy the ambiance, company of friends and delicious desserts as you warm yourself by the fire. The last sitting will be at 3:30 p.m. Admission is $6 and includes a choice of two desserts and tea. There is no charge for children under age 5. FMI, please email or call 207-363-4974.

14 Candle Dipping and Holiday Decor. Without electricity how did people light their homes at night? With candles of course! Dip your own candles for when the power goes out this winter or as a centerpiece for a holiday dinner. Create colorful curled candles, string cranberries and make a decoration for your window or Christmas tree. 3-5 p.m. at The Parsons Center. Registration required, ages 8 and up, $10 ($8 members).

Categories: breaking news, headlines, historic preservation, historical societies, history, Maine, Maine things to do, museum news, Museums of Old York, stories, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Logging with Tractors in the Maine Woods

Casting Call for New Collecting Television Show From Worthpoint
Is collecting a part of your daily life? Are parts of your collection in every room of your house? Do you have unique and special objects that you are extremely proud of? Finally, do you want to show off your collection on television? The producers of “My Collection Obsession,” which will air on a national cable network, are currently looking for serious and dedicated collectors of all kinds who could appear on the show. Find out if your collection is truly obsessive enough to make the cut. Read”Casting Call for New Collecting Television Show”

PHOTO: Museum L-A site work begins

“It’s starting!” exclaimed an excited Rachel Desgrosseilliers, Museum L-A’s executive director, as she watched workers at the future site of the museum Thursday in Lewiston. Benjamin Construction’s Richard Lee, left, and Ed Benjamin, in the skid steer, were demolishing damaged sections of t…

Textile industry heritage celebrated
SOUTH BERWICK, Maine — A special fund-raising event that gives a nod to the thriving textile industry of the past will benefit the Old Berwick Historical Society this weekend. The Lighting Up Ball and second annual silent auction will be…

Presentation to feature Maine Indians
LISBON FALLS — The Lisbon Historical Society will host guest speaker and author, Nicholas Smith of Brunswick, at 7 pm Wednesday, Nov. 9, at the MTM Center. Smith will give a presentation on his recently published book, “Three Hundred years in Thirty,”…


Logging with Tractors in the Maine Woods

Popular Science Monthly, 1916

LOGGING has remained for generations the most primitive of all modern operations. The logging railroad is a comparatively recent development, but even that falls far short’of being an active agent in reducing the vast waste necessitated by the fact that only such timbers can be moved out as will pay for expensive transportation. In the tropics a mahogany log worth hundreds of dollars in New York is valued at only a few demonetized dollars as it stands in its forest, and almost priceless hardwoods are left to rot or burned up in the clearing of ground simply because they cannot be “squared” to the formal size, about one foot on each side.

To a lesser degree the same problem faces the timber cutter in the forests of our own country. The long hauls through the woods to streams or roads, even to the roughest sort of logging roads, is discouragingly expensive, and from there to the railroad or mill entails another long haul with primitive means, either oxen or horses.

Modern power appliances are, however, slowly coming into use as they prove their worth. In certain sections of the Maine woods, where logging is the winter occupation of fanners from nearby sections, tractors are now in use. The drive on these engines is by caterpillar wheels, broad enough to keep from sinking into the snow, and the forward part of the tractor is mounted on sleigh runners, which are turned by hand to guide the tractor and its train of logging sleds.

The tractor is crude in a way, but it can reach sections of forest country to which even the ordinary logging railroad, with its clumsy engine, cannot readily penetrate.

In the tractor shown here, the runners at the front make steering easy and accurate. The unwieldy front wheels of the ordinary tractor would hardly serve in the forest.

Categories: articles, breaking news, events, headlines, historic preservation, history, museum news, stories, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

WWII Warbirds Flock to Auburn

Hello everyone! I’ve been vacationing, so a lot of news has been missed, but here is another roundup (a long one this time) of Maine history news highlights and headlines from around the state. Lots of exciting things going on, from the visit of some WWII warplanes to the LA municipal airport in Auburn. Also, a lot of events are still happening all over, even though Fall is coming, along with the traditional shuttering of many historical society operating seasons.

As usual, if you have trouble with a link, copy and paste it into your browsers search window to visit the site. And if you have any news to share ot events to schedule, feel free to email them to me at editor@touringmaineshistory.com.

I would like to give a shout out this week to Susan Sheffield of Dover Delaware for emailing a couple of excerpts from an issue of the New England Magazine with a story about Thomas B. Reed. It is unusual to find something like that so far from its home area. Thanks Susan!

Journalist/author visits Thomaston Historical
Thomaston — Author Kevin C. Mills will discuss his journey researching his family history to publishing his first novel, “Sons and Daughters of the Ocean,” at the monthly meeting of Thomaston Historical Society at the Knox Farmhouse, 80 Knox St. The…

Author to discuss Civil War regiment from Maine at Heritage Day in Brooks
Brooks — Brooks Historical Society will hold its annual Heritage Day Open House on Sunday, Oct. 9 from 1-4 pm at the Pilley House. New this year will be a featured speaker Peter Dalton of Northport, author of “With Our Faces To The Foe: A History Of…

Bird talks on ‘Rockland, Maine’s Tidal Turn’
Rockland — On Tuesday, Oct. 11 at 6:30 pm, Rockland Public Library will present a talk John Bird on his recent book, “Rockland, Maine’s Tidal Turn.” The talk is co-sponsored by the Rockland Historical Society. Bird has compiled a series of columns…

Clean gravestones with water, elbow grease, gentle brushes
When I hear them talk about their travels — a newly discovered cemetery in Mercer, a historical society meeting in Hope — all I can think of is a pinball machine pinging them around Maine’s graveyards in need. Bill’s slide presentation took us along…

25 things to do this fall — festivals, foliage and fun
See how Mainers from the past two centuries got dressed up at the Maine Historical Society’s fashion in Maine exhibit, which runs into 2012. Hats, jewelry, shoes, hair combs, walking sticks and several complete costumes are on display along with a wide…

Irish lecture series proving to be a hit
A former teacher, he is a member of the Androscoggin Historical Society, Maine Historical Society and the Irish American Club of Maine. He has authored two books, “Early Murphy Descendants of Mary Hurley and James McCarthy” and “Androscoggin Irish…

Hauling History: Jon Hentz to share lobster trap lore
But through personal memory, research and craftsmanship, Hentz has hauled up more than a century’s worth of trap-making that he will present at the Georgetown Historical Society building Tuesday night. The free talk will trace the development from the…

Surprise takes WWII veteran back to old heights

A ride in a historic plane honors a Maine Tuskegee Airman who served his country and came home to face racial bias.

World War II bombers make stop in Auburn

AUBURN — “You see them on TV, but you never really know what they’re like inside,” marveled Russ Allen of Auburn as he made his way slowly through the belly of the B-17G Flying Fortress at the Auburn-Lewiston Municipal Airport on Monday afternoon. Inside, the plane was a…

Wings of Freedom bringing vintage planes to airport

AUBURN — Former New Gloucester resident Tom Driscoll picks up the leather flying jacket that his father, Lt. John Driscoll Sr., wore when he piloted B-17s in the 1940s. The jacket is a family treasure and symbol of the stories that John finally began telling about the war near th…

Old Otisfield Town House may be raised to save historic listing

OTISFIELD — The old Otisfield Town House and the approximate one-half acre of land it sits on may be raised 52 inches so it can retain its listing on the National Register of Historic Places. The wood-frame 1905 building on Bell Hill Road has its original oak chairs and voting booth…

From WorthPoint; Q& A: Talking 125 Years of Coke
This year, Coca-Cola marks the 125th anniversary of the creation of the famous beverage, first introduced as a fountain drink in Atlanta, Ga., in 1886. The popularity of the sparkling refreshment was aided by a merchandising frenzy, as thousands of mass-market advertising collectibles were produced over the years—from promotional items, holiday-themed items and signs—and all proved to be pretty durable, making collecting fairly easy. In that vein of thought, Worthologist Liz Holderman interviews Denis Bardin, the president of the Coca-Cola Collectors Club. Check out what hardcore Coke collectors are looking for these days. Read “Q & A: Talking 125 Years of Coke”

Museums of Old York Events:

3 Needle Wizards. Join us every Monday morning as we socialize while sewing costumes for Old York’s education interpreters. Whether you are good at cutting out patterns, hand-sewing caps, piecing skirts or sewing on the machine, we could use your help. Come to The Parsons Center upstairs in the gallery at 3 Lindsay Road for an hour or the whole morning. 9:30 a.m. – 12 p.m. For more information, email Cindi Young-Gomes at registrar@oldyork.org.

6 Who Discovered York? Observe Columbus Day in a different way by learning about the several “discoveries” of York from the 1630s – 1900s. 7 p.m. at The Parsons Center.

10 Needle Wizards. Every Monday from 9:30 a.m. – 12 p.m. upstairs at The Parsons Center. Email registrar@oldyork.org for more information.

12 Scarecrow Making. Learn the origins of the scarecrow while you make one to decroate your yard. Bring old clothes to struff with leaves and create a crazy face out of cloth. 3-5 p.m. at The Parsons Center. Ages 6 and up, $8 per child ($6 members). Registration required. Email education@oldyork.org to sign up.

15 Marketfest! The Museums of Old York will be a busy place Saturday October 15th from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Jefferds Tavern will be open to the public for $1. Visitors can watch the Tavern Mistress cook a full meal over the open fire, enjoy traditional crafters, and check out our new upstairs exhibit on WWII home front efforts. Outside Jefferds Tavern children and adults can help press apples into cider, enjoy home baked goods and have fun making a rag doll at our kids table. The Parsons Center will be open for $1 with the upstairs exhibit on life in 17th century York, titled “The country heer is plentiful”, open all day. Downstairs people can view the pies entered in our Autumn Pies contest, or have their photo taken in costume in our Old Time Photo Booth. The pies will be judged in the The Parsons Center at 2 p.m. The 1719 Old Gaol will be open all day so people can see the original stone cells and learn about the prisoners incarcerated within. For $1 join us at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., or 3 p.m. to watch theatrical prisoner performances and hear stories told by the jail keeper! If you would like to enter a pie in the Autumn Pies contest, or are interested in volunteering at the Museum for Marketfest, please email education@oldyork.org.

17 Needle Wizards. Every Monday from 9:30 a.m. – 12 p.m. upstairs at The Parsons Center. Email registrar@oldyork.org for more information.

19 Fall Fair Day. Join us for traditional fair activities and fall fun! Potato sack and three-legged races, human ox pull, skillet throw, bobbing for apples, leaf diving for treasure and apple cider pressing. 3-5 p.m. at The Parsons Center. Ages 6 and up, $8 per child ($6 members). Registration required. Email education@oldyork.org to sign up.

24 Needle Wizards. Every Monday from 9:30 a.m. – 12 p.m. upstairs at The Parsons Center. Email registrar@oldyork.org for more information.

26 Pumpkin Carving. Come carve pumpkins in front of the fire! Learn the history of Halloween as you transform your pumpkin into a jack-o-lantern and eat the seeds roasted over the open fire. Bring your own pumpkin. Knives, newspaper and cleanup will be provided. 3-5 p.m. at The Parsons Center. All ages are welcome. $5 suggested donation. Registration encouraged. Email education@oldyork.org to sign up.

29 Haunted Historical Halloween — Where Facts are Scarier than Fiction! Join a tour of historic ghosts starting at The Parsons Center and traveling through the buildings and grounds at Old York. For the young or skittish, we offer storytelling in Jefferds Tavern and spooky games in the Parsons Center. 6 – 8 p.m. All ages are welcome. Members free. $5 for teens and adults and family rates for non-members.

Maine Historical Society Events:

Tuesday, October 4, 12pm

Book Talk: Our Game Was Baseball

Presenter: John Hodgkins, Author

Get in the mood for the World Series with this wonderful new memoir of growing up with the Temple Townies in the 1940s and ’50s. Our Game Was Baseball follows A Soldier’s Son, Hodgkins’ poignant memoir of his childhood in Temple, Maine during World War II. Hodgkins interviews former team members, recounts his own passion for the Townies, and explores the central role the Townies played in the life of this western Maine community.

Friday, October 7, 5-8pm

First Friday Art Walk: Two Fabulous Fashion Exhibits

Thursday, October 13, 7pm

Book Talk: Brilliant: The Evolution of Artificial Light

Presenter: Jane Brox, Author

Saturday, October 15, 1-4pm

Maine Home Movie Day with Northeast Historic Film

Categories: antiques, articles, collectibles, events, headlines, historic buildings, historic preservation, historical societies, history, Maine, Maine Historical Society, Maine things to do, museum news, Museums of Old York, preservation, Uncategorized, WWII | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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