February already?! We usually try and make reservations very early for a St. Valentine’s dinner out. I imagine what few tables are available have already disappeared. Takeout it will be, then!

Last week I was chatting about museums and libraries with their online talks and classes, but I forgot to mention the Senior College at Belfast. UMaine’s Hutchinson Center has a full slate of classes available on Zoom. Check them out at Belfastseniorcollege.org.

I was reminded to share this as I gave a talk myself in one of the classes this past Wednesday. About what else? Sheep! The class was called “A Good Yarn — The History, Art & Joy of Knitting in Maine.” There were close to 40 participants from all around Maine, and the class was full. I guess even on Zoom there is a limit to participants. If I get asked to speak again, I will be sure to mention it early enough for ya’ll to sign up. It was so nice to be a part of bringing people together, especially to talk about sheep and wool.

Town Office

The next selectmen’s meeting is Tuesday, Feb. 9, at 6:30 p.m. All are welcome in person while respecting COVID guidelines. A reminder, as spring gets closer, that if you are planning new construction, any building for a residence, or any other use, that is greater than 200 sq. ft. requires a Building Notification Form to be filed. Any building needs to be 15 feet from abutters' property lines.

If you are operating a business in town, don’t forget to file a Business Registration. There is no fee to file these forms.

Following the gold

I had an interesting conversation with Andrew Burbelo from Monroe about that Jackson gold. Turns out Andrew has an interest in mining and quarries in the area. Through his local conversations, along with checking out the Maine Geological Survey online and research in the book "Maine Mines and Minerals: Vol 2: Eastern Maine" by Philip Morrill and William P. Hinckley, it turns out we might have a pretty good idea of where this Jackson gold mine might have been.

The Jackson Gold Mining and Milling Co. was incorporated in 1955. The mine, with an open cut 7 feet wide, was on the land of Levi Stevens, who owned a store in Brooks and the store that used to be on the corner of Bog and Village roads. Within his open cut of clay and quartz was a “vein close to brook.” The online maps appear to show this location as about a half-mile down Hadley Mill Road, on the right near the North Branch Marsh Stream.

But, best to check in with local landowners before tromping through their woods in search of it. There are even some who pan for gold in the streams around here — and find the odd nugget.

Have a great week and I’ll be back with a new nugget next time.