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

Month: May 2020

Odds and Ends From The MUSEUM!
By Trudy Wyman, Curator, Millinocket Historical Society Museum

Millinocket has had some form of a post office since the early days. The first mentioned was somewhere on the mill site (Fowler farm). Then the post office was located in various rented buildings. In 1937, the federal government erected a post office building on Penobscot Avenue.
The cornerstone was laid on April 17 with appropriate ceremony. A parade formed at the armory, marched to the park and back to the post office site. The Millinocket band played and school children sang. Acting Postmaster Garfield Jones (also chairman of ceremonies) welcomed visitors and the keys to the new building were given to Jones by Harold Gates, ex-postmaster. There was an address (The Magic City) by Robert Hume (Supt. of GNP) and other speeches by representatives of the US Postal Service and Governor Barrows. Tokens representing many civic organizations and citizens were placed in the cornerstone box.
Many organizations deposited items in the box (also referred to as a time capsule). A list of each group and what they deposited is on the program for the day’s events. The museum has several of these programs. When completed, the copper box was sealed and placed in the cornerstone. This was followed by more music, ceremony, taps and a benediction.
During the town’s 100th celebration, that time capsule was removed and opened. Its contents are displayed in a large shadow box in the Millinocket Municipal Building. The museum has a scrapbook of photos of each of the items that were in the box. The museum also has a photo taken August 23, 1937 (day after opening day) showing a man identified as George Jones (not sure this is correct) at one of the windows and the museum has a three cent stamp said to be the first stamp sold that day.
Many take note of the large logging mural in the lobby. The Laverty book states this mural was one of several commissioned for new post offices by the federal government as part of the Public Works Project. Garfield Jones was the first postmaster at the new post office, followed by Willis Gates.
Museum open again Thursday, June 4 with masks and social distancing in effect. Visit to make a donation of those items you have been saving to bring in. You can view the displays, share information and ask questions, all at a safe distance as individuals or small family groups. We look forward to seeing you and will be ready to accept items or monetary donations or sell you one of our books, DVD’s or photos. We plan to be open 11 AM to 3 PM, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Stay safe!

In the Museum Store!
*** Preowned yearbooks – $10.00 each.
*** Matted photos, various prices – GNP mill, Little Italy, river drives, Mt. Katahdin.
*** 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.
*** For information, groups or appointments, contact Curator Trudy Wyman, 723-5477 or trudy18@beeline-online.net or the Millinocket Historical Society, P. O. Box 11, on the web at www.millinockethistoricalsociety.org or on Facebook.

New Donations

Odds and Ends From The MUSEUM!
By Trudy Wyman, Curator, Millinocket Historical Society Museum

Several items were donated to the museum prior to the virus shutdown. A pencil sharpener from Stearns HS was brought in by Barbara Waters and Mary Santerre sent in several local newspapers. We always accept newspapers as we are trying to fill in the gaps. A few books came from the Millinocket Memorial Library. One in particular, Seboomook, From Native Americans to POWS (Parker) has been added to the Logging Room library. James Day brought in a felt repair kit. This small box contains a set of felt repair tools used in the mill’s paper room. It was made by the Linday Wire Weaving Company, Cleveland. The museum had some of the same repair tools, but this is a complete kit. Cal Wilson donated a photo from one of his dad’s class reunions (Class of 1940). Copies of bills and receipts for services or goods are always interesting. A piece of furniture that once belonged to a member of the Corrigan family had a piece of paper tucked inside. It was a typed billing statement for labor on a camp in 1957. The work was done at the rate of $1.75 an hour and showed payments and balance still due. It was donated by Ellen Bozeman. A photo card received by mail recently from Janet Mishoe has two pictures of the Mishoe/Michaud children, Susette, Robert, Janet, Michael (1958 photo) and Shyla (1962 photo). We accept photos of any family or individuals who have called Millinocket home at some time.
Bill Geller, author of Within Katahdin’s Realm, Log Drives and Sporting Camps (available at the museum) has a new book. The title is 832,000 Acres, Maine’s 1825 Fire and Its Piscataquis Logging Aftermath. It deals with the east and west branches of the Piscataquis River, the fire and the years following the fire. Copies are available by contacting the author or the Monson Historical Society. Our Millinocket museum has one copy for research purposes.
Plans are underway to reopen the museum Thursday, June 4 with masks and social distancing in effect. You can visit to make a donation of those items you have been saving to bring in. You can view the displays, share information and ask questions, all at a safe distance as individuals or small family groups. We look forward to seeing you and will be ready to accept items or monetary donations or sell you one of our books, DVD’s or photos. We plan to be open 11 AM to 3 PM, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Stay safe!

In the Museum Store!
*** Preowned yearbooks – $10.00 each.
*** Matted photos, various prices – GNP mill, Little Italy, river drives, Mt. Katahdin.
*** 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.
*** For information, groups or appointments, contact Curator Trudy Wyman, 723-5477 or trudy18@beeline-online.net or the Millinocket Historical Society, P. O. Box 11, on the web at www.millinockethistoricalsociety.org or on Facebook.

Military Items Donated

Odds and Ends From The MUSEUM!
By Trudy Wyman, Curator, Millinocket Historical Society Museum

The search goes on for more photos and information on local military men and women. This town has had an important military presence since the early days especially for WWI and WWII. Those are the eras that make up the majority of the museum’s military display.
Earlier this year, Paul Pasquine visited the museum and donated a number of items from his father Romus J. Pasquine, WWII. A copy of his enlistment record and discharge papers was included and a photo (in uniform). A field manual, a soldier’s handbook and two gunner’s instruction manuals for anti-aircraft artillery that had been issued to Pasquine are now in the museum’s military room. Another book titled General Marshall’s Victory Report on Winning WWII in Europe and the Pacific includes a list all the local men and women from all branches who served in that war. The book gives credit for the list to the Army Mothers Service Club of Millinocket. This club had officers Harriet Hatfield, Neva Rideout, Hazel Chase. Lillian Campbell, Margaret Carr, Mary Hikel, Claire Hatfield, Dorothy Hope and Stella Pound.
Many small photos were donated depicting men and scenes from some of the places where Pasquine served (Algeria, Sicily). They are being placed in a scrapbook. Four rolled panoramic photos from Camp Edwards in Massachusetts were also in the Pasquine collection. Camp Edwards was the jumping off point for many New England military in WWII.
Pasquine gave several books for reference including The Lakes of Maine (Merrill), Camp Phoenix (Horner) and The Long Search, Abnaki of the Katahdin Region (Donato). Camp Phoenix was a sporting camp in T5R10, Nesowadnehunk Lake. Robert Donato, author of the Abnaki book was from Millinocket. Another local author, Peter Cummings, wrote a fiction book titled The Neuropathy of Zombies. A copy of this was donated by Pasquine.
Books and other items for sale in the museum store are available. Contact me for mail orders or a “social distance” porch sale. At this time, we think the museum will reopen the first week in June when the 2nd phase of the state reopening plan goes into effect. Masks and social distancing will be in effect, but doable as visitors normally come as individuals or small family groups. We look forward to seeing you and will be ready to accept item or monetary donations or sell you one of our books, DVD’s or photos.

In the Museum Store!
*** Preowned yearbooks – $10.00 each.
*** Matted photos, various prices – GNP mill, Little Italy, river drives, Mt. Katahdin.
*** 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.
*** For information, groups or appointments, contact Curator Trudy Wyman, 723-5477 or trudy18@beeline-online.net or the Millinocket Historical Society, P. O. Box 11, on the web at www.millinockethistoricalsociety.org or on Facebook.

Commencement

Odds and Ends From The MUSEUM!
By Trudy Wyman, Curator, Millinocket Historical Society Museum

Graduations/commencements have been a spring ritual for many years in our schools and colleges. This spring has allowed time to reacquaint with some museum items that were added to the collection early on. At Millinocket High School and later at Stearns HS, small folded programs for the graduation exercises were handed out to attendees. Some of these had cords attached in the class colors.
The Millinocket High School class of 1913 had six members with Marion Bradley giving the salutatory address titled Our Flag, The Protection of Nations. The valedictory address was titled The Impossible is Un-American and was done by Leona Theriault. Annie Dwyer presented the class history, Winnifred Bragdon gave the class prophecy and an oration on the Panama Canal was given by Chester Hathaway. The class gift presentation was by Gladys Thorpe.
The museum has similar programs for the class of 1915 (eight students), 1922 (35 students) and 1923 (twenty-one students) and programs for many additional years. It is interesting to note that often the graduating classes had more girls than boys as many boys had left school to go to work. The 1922 and 1923 years followed the destruction of the Millinocket High School building by fire in November of 1921. School was held at the armory and various halls around town with double sessions which possibly affected the number of students who actually finished and graduated.
A 1921 newspaper article describes at length the 1921 graduation held at the Opera House. Small spruce trees were in place, greenery was in evidence around the orchestra pit where the school band performed and class colors adorned the chairs. The stage background held more greenery flecked with pink carnations. The four girls in the class wore white gowns (dresses, not traditional caps and gowns). The audience was described as “interested and sympathetic.”
Another article from 1927 states that over 700 people attended that year’s graduation ceremony. Miss Annie Bears, highest ranking female graduate, introduced the commencement speaker who gave a talk on education. Miss Bears later taught many years in the Millinocket school system.
Books and other items for sale in the museum store are available. Contact me for mail orders or a “social distance” porch sale. At this time, we think the museum will reopen the first week in June when the 2nd phase of the state reopening plan goes into effect. Masks and social distancing will be in effect, but doable as visitors normally come as individuals or small family groups. We look forward to seeing you and will be ready to accept item or monetary donations or sell you one of our books, DVD’s or photos.

In the Museum Store!
*** Preowned yearbooks – $10.00 each.
*** Matted photos, various prices – GNP mill, Little Italy, river drives, Mt. Katahdin.
*** 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.
*** For information, groups or appointments, contact Curator Trudy Wyman, 723-5477 or trudy18@beeline-online.net or the Millinocket Historical Society, P. O. Box 11, on the web at www.millinockethistoricalsociety.org or on Facebook.

Millinocket Trust Company

Odds and Ends From The MUSEUM!
By Trudy Wyman, Curator, Millinocket Historical Society Museum

The stay-home order has allowed for some remote museum work. In looking through a box of paper items that had been donated to the original museum years ago, I came across some interesting items. One is dated Dec. 28, 1911 and appears to be a cancelled check. It from an account at the Millinocket Trust Company (first bank in town) and was made out to J. F. Kimball. Kimball was an early merchant with a store in the mill yard and later with the Kimball Trading Company at the corner of Penobscot Avenue and Central Street. The check was for the sum of $50.00 and signed by George M….. the rest of the cursive signature is illegible.
Millinocket Trust Company had a charter from the state about 1906. Business was first done from an office in the A.C. Smart building until the 2 ½ story brick building was completed in 1907. Later, a small addition was constructed on one side of the building. John J. Moore was the first president, John King was treasurer and Miss Emma Gonya was clerk.
The following is from the Laverty book Millinocket, Magic City of Maine’s Wilderness. “Bank robberies were not as prevalent in those days. Millinocket’s big robbery scandal concerned a young man’s theft of some mailbags, but the bank produced a scare that made all the newspaper headlines and was the talk of the county in 1909. On the afternoon of November 15. An inspector was about to check the bank’s vault. Daylight was waning that wintry day, and the man struck a match to light the lamp in the room. No one knew that the gas jet had been on all that particular day. A mighty explosion occurred, blowing out windows, scattering money everywhere and killing the inspector. Miss Gonya was later praised for her quick thinking in locking the bank doors to prevent curious onlookers from entering.”
In the 1920’s, the bank was part of Eastern Trust & Banking Company with presidents including George Stearns and William Newman. Other bank officers through the years were Carl Stockwell (who lived above the bank) and John Borodko. In the 1950’s a branch was opened in East Millinocket. In 1967, another branch opened in the Northern Plaza shopping center.
The museum has several coin banks and some money bags from the Millinocket Trust Company.
Reminder, we are still taking paver orders for summer placement. Contact museum for information and form. Books and other items for sale in the museum store are available. Contact me for mail orders or a “social distance” porch sale. Hopefully the museum will be open for visitors soon!

In the Museum Store!
*** Preowned yearbooks – $10.00 each.
*** Matted photos, various prices – GNP mill, Little Italy, river drives, Mt. Katahdin.
*** 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.
*** For information, groups or appointments, contact Curator Trudy Wyman, 723-5477 or trudy18@beeline-online.net or the Millinocket Historical Society, P. O. Box 11, on the web at www.millinockethistoricalsociety.org or on Facebook.