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Stockton Springs Historical Society

Please consider joining the Historical Society. Dues are $10 per person for the year or $15 for a family membership. A lifetime membership is $100. The society needs your support especially during the pandemic. Please make checks payable to the Stockton Historical Society and mail them to 6 Station St., Stockton Springs, ME 04981. The society is also on Facebook and frequently posts interesting history about Stockton Springs.

Town Office

February recycling dates will be Thursdays, the 11th and 25th. The office will be closed for President’s Day, Monday, Feb. 15.

I read an article on Maine author Ruth Moore in the Portland paper last weekend. Her first book, “The Weir,” was published in 1943 and dealt with life in our coastal fishing villages. Islandport Press is republishing her books.

When I first moved to Maine, I took a course at the Penobscot Marine Museum taught by Faith Campbell. She gave out a list of books about Maine, which I still have. Authors include Elisabeth Ogilvie, whose first book, “High Tide at Noon,” was published in 1944. She lived on Gay’s Island in Cushing and wrote about island life and lobstering families along the coast.

Then there is Louise Dickinson Rich, who wrote of inland Maine. Her most famous book was “We Took to the Woods,” published in 1942, about living in a remote cabin near Lake Umbagog in Oxford County.

Another great book is “Silas Crockett” by Mary Ellen Chase, which was published in 1935. It is about Searsport and local sea captains, and how the life of boatbuilding and sailing the world had come to an end for the families living in the Midcoast region.

Carolyn Chute’s “The Beans of Egypt, Maine,” published in 1985, is also about families living in small-town Maine. There are so many wonderful authors, past and present, writing about Maine, including Richard Russo, Stephen King and many others. A lot of history is depicted in these books about what life was like growing up and living in different times and areas of Maine. If you are bored and tired of being cooped up, there are always good books to read.

This week has been far colder that what January has given us up until now. There is an icy rim on the shoreline when the tide goes out and leaves a coating of white on the beach and rocks, only to disappear later when the tide comes back in. This morning there was a dusting of new snow on the ground after most had melted.

Still most days I bundle up and head out for a walk. Irving Parson’s barn on Cape Jellison Road is being stabilized and restored by George, who told me that the barn used to be across the street and was moved to the other side. Many years ago, Mr. Parsons told my neighbor, Pat Roche, that his father used to walk across the harbor ice to the factory, dragging his boat behind him. The harbor rarely freezes over now, but chunks of ice litter the shoreline when it is cold enough. Stay warm and stay well.

Thought for the week: “Manual labor to my father was not only good and decent for its own sake but, as he was given to saying, it straightened out one’s thoughts.” — Mary Ellen Chase.