JacksonTownNews@gmail.com

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Meredith Toumayan

Maine Open Farm Day was Sunday, July 25. Hopefully some of you got out to enjoy some farm visits despite the rainy day. A friend and I headed Down East to visit Starboard Farm, near Machiasport. They keep Baby Doll Southdown sheep, a small sheep breed that caps out at about 100 lbs. and up to 2 feet tall — making them much more manageable on the farm. They grow a very sproingy wool, but the best thing about them is that they always look like they are smiling! I also picked up a Down East delicacy, pickled conch. The hubby (not me!) says they taste like chewy clams with a briny garlic taste.

On a somber note, I see that as of Saturday, July 31, Waldo County COVID-19 infection numbers had earned it the unfortunate distinction of being elevated to “high” risk for unvaccinated people by the U.S. CDC. As such, those in Waldo County are recommended to wear masks in indoor public settings by the U.S. CDC.  Time to wash those masks and refill my purse and glove compartment.

Condolences

Heartfelt sympathy to the family of Maggie Comer, who “lived with a terrible cancer for two years.” You can find Mike’s lovely obituary for Maggie in The Republican Journal. Condolences also to Brenda Dennison, and her family, for the loss of her mother.

Town Office

Please note that the Town Office will be closed Thursdays, Aug. 5 and 12, and Tuesday, Aug. 17. The next Select Board meeting will be Tuesday, Aug. 10, 6:30 p.m.

Jackson Library

New kids’ books (yay!) have been purchased and have arrived for the Jackson Library. They are currently being catalogued and will be available for borrowing shortly. Reminder: The library is open whenever the Town Office is open, you may get the key from the Town Office. It is also open on Sundays during transfer station hours.

Won’t you volunteer?
If you are comfortable with updating computer content on a website, the town of Jackson could really use a new webmaster. Content changes are easily available from the Town Office. You could do this volunteer position entirely from the comfort of your own home. Take a look and see if this might be the opportunity you’ve been waiting for to give back to your community: jacksonmaine.net/.

Waldo County history nugget

I spoke a few weeks back of the Brighton Market outside Boston and the driving of sheep to market there. In fact, all sorts of livestock were walked to market, and cattle drovers walked their cows from up in Aroostook, through Dixmont and on southward.

“The practice of driving cattle from Maine to Massachusetts was begun by back-country storekeepers as a means of collecting debts. By 1850, 14,000 Maine cattle were yearly being driven to Brighton or Cambridge … . Twenty miles was a good day’s walk … . Perils of the road included weather extremes, poorly fenced crops, poorly fenced bulls, heifers in heat, ugly dogs, forks in the road, high “taxes” for pasture, sore feet, and finally, the sharpers in Brighton.”

(“A Day’s Work: A Sampler of Historic Maine Photographs 1860-1920,” Part I, Annotated and Compiled by W.H. Bunting p.26)