Millinocket Historical Society

Preserving Millinocket’s heritage, one story at a time.

Month: July 2018

A Genealogy Trek

Time to catch up with new items in the museum’s collection. We’ve been busy sorting and cataloging these along with enjoying visits with former residents, hikers, campers and other visitors to the Magic City. The states on the 2018 map of the U.S. are rapidly being colored in with Kentucky, Colorado, Texas and Tennessee just last week.
Thanks to Betty Steeves for donating bound copies of Stearns HS yearbooks 1928 through 1960. These have been placed in the museum’s archives. Other copies of SHS and St. Martin’s yearbooks continue to be available for browsing in the museum’s Research/Genealogy Room. Bound copies of several years of GNP News were given by David Wollstadt, former editor of that business newspaper. These are located in the Research Room with other GNP scrapbooks, publications and news articles already in the collection. Wollstadt also donated unbound copies of McLeod’s The Northern, McCann’s Timber and papers relating to the mill’s history. One booklet has photocopies from glass negatives in the GNP collection in the Fogler Library, University of Maine Special Collections.
Two books of area interest have been added to the museum’s library. Grandma Gatewood’s Walk, the Inspiring Story of the Woman Who Saved the Appalachian Trail was donated by Leola Dubois. It takes place in the 1950’s when the trail was much different than now. This writer donated Cross Border Tales. Mostly a family genealogy researched and written by Charles McGowan. It covers his family history in Maine and New Brunswick. McGowan visited the museum earlier this month while in town awaiting a flight to Ragged Lake to retrace his great-uncle’s journey as a lumberjack in the early 1900’s. McGowan shared the story of his relative’s trek to Millinocket and Ragged Lake where he subsequently drowned as he and others were crossing the lake on their way back to the logging camp. The body was recovered, hauled by sled to Greenville, loaded on the train to Bangor where it was transferred to another train to New Brunswick and finally taken by raft down the St. John River to the man’s final resting place. McGowan emailed after his return home to Massachusetts that he had flown over the lake and to Greenville and then traveled to New Brunswick. He collected some water from Ragged Lake and poured it on his great-uncle’s grave. By the way, Dr. McGowan is 86 years old and drove himself from Massachusetts to Millinocket to pursue this family story. Both books may be seen at the museum and both are available on-line.
Copies of Within Katahdin’s Realm, Log Drives and Sporting Camps by Bill Geller is available at the museum. Cost is $30.00. By mail add $5 SH. The new 2019 “Sports for All Ages” themed calendars are available at the museum, Save-a-Lot, Steel Magnolias, Katahdin General Store and Trailside Country Store, $10.00 each (by mail add $4.00 SH).

***Books by local authors, sets of GNP/Bowater drinking glasses & some matted 8” x 10” and 5” x 7” photos for sale.
*** A Little Taste of History, recipes from Millinocket pioneer families and their descendants. 200 pages. $15.00 (mail orders $5.00 SH each). At the museum, Memories of Maine Gallery, Steel Magnolias, Katahdin General, Gracie’s Aunt’s Emporium, Trailside Country Store & by mail.
*** Engraved pavers are $100.00 each. Up to 3 lines, 15 letters, symbols, spaces max per line. Contact museum for form or more details.
***Contact me, Curator Trudy Wyman, 723-5477 or trudy18@beeline-online.net. For groups or appointments, contact the Millinocket Historical Society at P. O. Box 11, on the web at www.millinockethistoricalsociety.org or on Facebook.

1914-1919 Water Levels at Dams

Monday, July 20, 1914, Chesuncook. Two shallow gates opened 5’, 5:30 AM. Two gates in log sluice opened 5’, 5:30 AM. New sluice opened 5:30 AM. New sluice, two gates in log sluice closed 6:30 PM. Two small gates closed 4 ½ ft., 6:30 PM. Two small gates 3 ½”. Moosehead, 6:00 five gates and logway. North Twin, 493.05. 5:30 AM opened log sluice. 7:00 PM closed log sluice to 5’ 0”. Quakish, 5:00 AM, 30” = 460.50, 5:00 PM, 32”.
This is part of an entry in a small, black bound journal for 1914 donated to the museum by William Burke, Jr. This journal and two others (for 1915 and 1919) had been in the possession of William Burke, Sr. All three journals contain handwritten notations by several different people. On the covers of two of the journals, someone has written Water Levels. Although much of the information makes some sense to those of us unfamiliar with the dams and the drives, a lot is unclear. We would appreciate anyone stopping in at the museum to assist us in understanding these journals.
The 1915 journal does not contain any specific information on the dams. Instead it has sparse notations relating to the comings and goings of personnel and some notes regarding communication. For example, Monday, April 5, 1915 states: FCB at North Twin Dam, PM. Millinocket Mill began piling logs. (Assume FCB was Frank Bowler. Two different handwritings in this entry.) The July 31 entry states that I. Schenck left for Boston in auto, AM. The Oct. 24, 1915 entry: Drained canal to overhaul penstock headgates. Racks very dirty – large accumulations bark & mud in front of 11 ft. penstock. Estimate over 100 cu. yds. to be removed. The 1919 journal sentries are similar to the 1914 book.
Copies of Within Katahdin’s Realm, Log Drives and Sporting Camps by Bill Geller is available at the museum. Cost is $30.00 and if mailed, shipping charges will be added. The new 2019 “Sports for All Ages” themed calendars are available at the museum, Save-a-Lot, Steel Magnolias, Katahdin General Store and Trailside Country Store, $10.00 each (by mail add $4.00 SH).

***Books by local authors, sets of GNP/Bowater drinking glasses & some matted 8” x 10” and 5” x 7” photos for sale.
*** A Little Taste of History, recipes from Millinocket pioneer families and their descendants. 200 pages. $15.00 (mail orders $5.00 SH each). At the museum, Memories of Maine Gallery, Steel Magnolias, Katahdin General, Gracie’s Aunt’s Emporium, Trailside Country Store & by mail.
*** Engraved pavers are $100.00 each. Up to 3 lines, 15 letters, symbols, spaces max per line. Contact museum for form or more details.
***Contact me, Curator Trudy Wyman, 723-5477 or trudy18@beeline-online.net. For groups or appointments, contact the Millinocket Historical Society at P. O. Box 11, on the web at www.millinockethistoricalsociety.org or on Facebook.

New book available!

Within Katahdin’s Realm, Log Drives and Sporting Camps, a great area book researched and written by Bill Geller is now available at the museum. A limited number at $30.00 each plus $5.00 SH may be had by visiting the museum at 80 Central Street or by sending a check or money order to Millinocket Historical Society, PO Box 11, Millinocket, ME 04462.
The author did ten years of research, walked and canoed most of the area from Medway to Rip Dam and interviewed numerous knowledgeable people in preparing to write this very inclusive book. Get yours while they last. Note: A portion of your payment goes to the museum thanks to the generosity of the author.

49 and 50 Flags Raised on Katahdin

A mystery solved! The location of the flags raised at sunrise atop Mt. Katahdin to mark the occasions of Alaska and Hawaii becoming states has been discovered. They are in the Memorial Room at the Millinocket Memorial Library. As we know, Mt. Katahdin is the first location in the U.S. to receive the sun’s rays and as such, an appropriate spot to be the first locations for the new 49 and 50 star flags to see the light of day on July 4,1959 (for Alaska’s new statehood) and on July 4th, 1960 (for Hawaii’s statehood).
Last year, the museum received a photograph of the new 49 star flag raising in 1959. Present on the mountain were members of American Legion Post and Boy Scout Troop 58. Shown with the flag are Alfred Jenkins, Everett Barnes, Scoutmaster Herbert Tucker, Frank Perry and Dana Burleigh (holding a small Alaska flag). Boy Scouts shown are Wayne Kidney, Bob Ellis, and John Barker.
Recently a donation of several items was made to the museum by Janice (McCauslin) Watson. Among the donations was a card with words spoken by John McCauslin as he presented two flags to the local library. Actual date of the donation is unknown. The card says, in part, “At this time I would like to present to the Millinocket Memorial Library the first 50 star United States flag to greet the sunrise July 4th,1960 at monument peak Mt. Katahdin. I would also like to present the official state of Hawaii flag which was given to Francis E. Elliot Post by Gov. Wm. F. Quinn of Hawaii, which also took part in the flag raising ceremony. The Francis E. Elliott Post would be honored to have these placed in the Memorial Room of this Library.”
I checked at the library, and yes, all three of these flags can be found in the Memorial Room high atop the shelves housing many of the library’s collection of military related books. Each flag is in an appropriate flag case and there is a label on each container. If anyone has photos from either of these occasions, the museum would be pleased to have copies or scans.
Copies of Within Katahdin’s Realm, Log Drives and Sporting Camps by Bill Geller is available at the museum. Cost is $30.00 and if mailed, shipping charges will be added. The new 2019 “Sports for All Ages” themed calendars are available at the museum, Save-a-Lot, Steel Magnolias and Katahdin General Store, $10.00 each (by mail add $4.00 SH).

***Books by local authors (gently used) plus other items of interest. Several sets of GNP/Bowater drinking glasses donated to use as a fundraiser. Sets of four in original boxes sell for $10.00 (if mailed, SH to be added). Some matted 8” x 10” and 5” x 7” photos for sale.
*** A Little Taste of History, recipes from Millinocket pioneer families and their descendants. 200 pages. Each cookbook is $15.00 (mail orders $5.00 SH each). At the museum, Memories of Maine Gallery, Steel Magnolias, Katahdin General, Gracie’s Aunt’s Emporium & by mail.
*** Engraved pavers are $100.00 each. Up to 3 lines, 15 letters, symbols, spaces max per line. Contact museum for form or more details.
***Contact me, Curator Trudy Wyman, 723-5477 or trudy18@beeline-online.net. For groups or appointments, contact the Millinocket Historical Society at P. O. Box 11, on the web at www.millinockethistoricalsociety.org or on Facebook.

July 4th, Now (2018) and Then (1924)

“Wonderful, a great asset to the community, nice displays, it’s important to keep our history!” These are some of the words volunteers at the museum have heard this summer and especially during the ten day stretch the museum was open around the July 4th holiday. The museum’s front porch was lined with parade watchers as floats, boy scouts, golf carts and fire trucks passed by! The heat and humidity didn’t lessen the enthusiasm. The museum was visited by people in town for their 50th high school reunion, hikers, campers and locals. Many see items that bring back memories, others tell stories of their families. More items are being added to the museum’s collection also.
In 1924, the July 4th parade featured the town band, dignitaries and members of Company I, Maine National Guard (the local company). There were automobiles decorated with hand-made crepe paper flowers and colorful floats. The winning float from the Opera House had music provided by a pianist, violinist, cornet player and drummer. The float was covered with purple and white paper flowers. The parade ended at the old Armory where baseball games took place between Co. I and Brownville Jct. There was a midway and the popular merry-go-round. The Opera House and Dream Theater ran popular movies (silent) throughout the afternoon and evening. Fireworks and a dance at the Armory ended the day. Stop by the museum to read more of the details in the news article from July 4, 1924!
Thirty-six new laser-engraved pavers have been placed in front of the museum. These join others already in place. Many were purchased by people in memory of loved ones. Others honor a person, business, class, sports team etc. Orders are currently being taken for additional pavers to be placed next year at this time. Monies from this on-going fundraiser go towards completing the second floor renovations.
More copies of the Geller book are here!! Within Katahdin’s Realm, Log Drives and Sporting Camps is available only at the museum. The author is generously donating much of the sale price to the historical society. Cost is $30.00 and if mailed, shipping charges will be added.
The new 2019 “Sports for All Ages” themed calendars are available for purchase at the museum, at Save-a-Lot, Steel Magnolias and Katahdin General Store, $10.00 each (by mail add $4.00 SH).

*** Stop by the museum for calendars, books by local authors (some are gently used) plus other items of interest. We have several sets of GNP/Bowater drinking glasses donated to use as a fundraiser. Sets of four in original boxes sell for $10.00 (if mailed, SH to be added). Some matted 8” x 10” and 5” x 7” photos for sale.
*** A Little Taste of History, recipes from Millinocket pioneer families and their descendants. 200 pages. Each cookbook is $15.00 (mail orders $5.00 SH each). At the museum, Memories of Maine Gallery, Steel Magnolias, Katahdin General, Gracie’s Aunt’s Emporium & by mail.
*** Engraved pavers are $100.00 each. Up to 3 lines, 15 letters, symbols, spaces max per line. Contact museum for form or more details.
***Contact me, Curator Trudy Wyman, 723-5477 or trudy18@beeline-online.net. For groups or appointments, contact the Millinocket Historical Society at P. O. Box 11, on the web at www.millinockethistoricalsociety.org or on Facebook.

Salvation Army in Millinocket

The Salvation Army was established in England in the mid1800’s by William Booth. A minister, Booth eventually took his teachings to the streets where he preached to the poor, homeless, hungry and destitute. The Salvation Army concept spread throughout the world and is still active today in more than 100 countries. At the museum, we are looking to learn about the Salvation Army’s presence here in the Millinocket area. A recent donation sparked this interest. The museum received a black bonnet with ruffled brim, bow on one side and a long wide black ribbon tie. A red band with the words Salvation Army appears on the bonnet’s front. Several books of the group’s teaching were donated with the bonnet. The bonnet belonged to Marion Bradbury, long time Millinocket resident. Two of the books have the names Marion Bradbury and Grace Bradbury on the front. A framed certificate announces that Marion had passed several “classes” of instruction for the Salvation Army. This is dated 1930. A photograph (possibly late 1920’s) shows a large group of children on the steps of Stearns High School with several Salvation Army garbed adults in the back row. According to Anna Sears (museum volunteer), her mother is one of the children in the photo and is from a Christmas party held by the Army for town children. Donor of these items is John Ferguson.
A large stack of GNP plans, workbooks, conversion charts and more, all relating to various motors and some from the #11 rebuild were donated by Frank Crosby. They are available for use by researchers. Massachusetts visitors donated a six inch decorative plate made in Germany for Fuller Furniture. It has a picture of the GN Hotel and decorated with roses. It is on display with other dishes with hotel and mill pictures. Many businesses had similar items
Bill Geller’s book, Within Katahdin’s Realm, Log Drives and Sporting Camps, has been well-received. The museum is currently taking names and contact information for those who would like to purchase a book. Cost is $30.00 and if mailed, shipping charges will be added. Stop in at the museum or contact me (see phone, email below) to be added to the list. There is a copy of the book at the museum so you can see what it is.
The new 2019 “Sports for All Ages” themed calendars are available for purchase at the museum, at Save-a-Lot, Steel Magnolias and Katahdin General Store, $10.00 each (by mail add $4.00 SH).

*** Stop by the museum for calendars, books by local authors (some are gently used) plus other items of interest. We have several sets of GNP/Bowater drinking glasses donated to use as a fundraiser. Sets of four in original boxes sell for $10.00 (if mailed, SH to be added). Some matted 8” x 10” and 5” x 7” photos for sale.
*** A Little Taste of History, recipes from Millinocket pioneer families and their descendants. 200 pages. Each cookbook is $15.00 (mail orders $5.00 SH each). At the museum, Memories of Maine Gallery, Steel Magnolias, Katahdin General, Gracie’s Aunt’s Emporium & by mail.
*** Engraved pavers are $100.00 each. Up to 3 lines, 15 letters, symbols, spaces max per line. Contact museum for form or more details.
***Contact me, Curator Trudy Wyman, 723-5477 or trudy18@beeline-online.net. For groups or appointments, contact the Millinocket Historical Society at P. O. Box 11, on the web at www.millinockethistoricalsociety.org or on Facebook.

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