Odds and Ends From The MUSEUM!
By Trudy Wyman, Curator, Millinocket Historical Society Museum
It seems that golf began to gain in popularity in Millinocket in the 1930’s. Recently the museum was given a vintage wooden golf club by David Levesque. This club has a metal insert with a marking on its base identifying it as spoon. (Research says early wooden clubs often had a lead insert on the back of the head to add weight). The club had been Royden Pratt’s, a founder of Hillcrest Golf Club, and had been given to Levesque when he was twelve years old.
In the late twenties and early thirties interest in the sport of golf in town grew and by the late 1930’s there was a six-hole course operated by the newly-formed Hillcrest Golf Club. The Laverty book states that following difficulties operating as a private business, the town took over (1949) and placed the course under the direction of the recreation commission. With Great Northern’s help, three new greens were added making it a nine-hole municipal golf club. Later, Royden Pratt and others were able to get the club back to private status and membership grew.
The golf course was laid out on high land in the area of town known as Skunk Hollow. The road leading to it was first named Hillcrest Avenue. Today, the golf club uses the street address Golf Course Road. Subsequently, as new houses went up and new streets were named, this area of town was named Hillcrest Development.
Other information about the golf club is from articles by Darrell Pratt, son of Royden Pratt that were printed in The Katahdin Times in the summer of 1998. A few interesting tidbits are included here. In 1932 there were only a few temporary holes in the wild and rough ground. Very few locals had any idea how to play the game as they had never seen the game played and learning from a book was not very satisfactory. By 1933, a golf pro from Bangor came up once a week to give lessons. Pratt father and son took advantage of about six of those half hour lessons at a cost of $1.00 each.
In the museum’s collection are two books, Golf in Maine (1930) and Golf in Maine (1950) donated by Dorothy Pratt. On display with the recently donated golf club is a 1920’s golf club made of hickory.
In the Museum Store!
*** Preowned yearbooks – $10.00 each.
*** Matted photos, various prices – GNP mill, Little Italy, river drives, Mt. Katahdin.
*** 2020 Calendars, a few left – Beyond the Mill ($10)
*** DVD’s from both Little Italy Part 1 and Part 2 are available at the museum ($15 each) or mail order ($15 each).
***Books available: “Within Katahdin’s Realm, Log Drives and Sporting Camps” (Bill Geller) $30.00; “Logging Towboats & Boom Jumpers” (Moody) $18.00; “Tanglefoot,” (Edwards) $15.00; “Millinocket” (D. Duplisea) $20.00; “A Little Taste of History” cookbooks – $15.00; both Laverty books, $25 for history & $10 for architecture; “No Time for Moss (McKeen) $15.00.
*** All items may be mailed – add $5 SH each item.
***Museum open Thurs., Fri., Sat. Noon – 3PM, weather permitting.
*** For information, groups or appointments, contact Curator Trudy Wyman, 723-5477 or firstname.lastname@example.org or the Millinocket Historical Society, P. O. Box 11, on the web at www.millinockethistoricalsociety.org or on Facebook.