In September 1915 four women embarked in an open car from San Francisco’s Panama Pacific International Exposition on the country’s first cross-country road trip for a cause.
An Inside Look at Dick Proenneke of One Man's Wilderness, Twin Lakes, Alaska by John Branson, Park Historian Lake Clark National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Despite his remote location at Twin Lakes, wilderness icon Dick Proenneke maintained friendships and correspondence while living an inspirational life untethered to the commercial world. You are invited to an evening presentation on Proenneke's life at Twin Lakes and an inside scoop on the man himself!
Join us as John Branson, Lake Clark National Park historian and son of Doctor Sidney Branson, tells the story of his friend Richard L. Proenneke. Proenneke gained national attention for his book One Man’s Wilderness and the PBS program Alone in the Wilderness that appeared on PBS stations from coast to coast. Both chronicled his life in remote Twin Lakes, Alaska. Branson was a good friend of Proenneke’s and is currently editing his journals for the National Park Service. This is a great opportunity to get some insight into this wilderness icon and gain an understanding of his unique way of life.
This is our annual opportunity to get together and socialize with other members of the Society. Just bring a dish to share and grab a chair and enjoy an evening of good food and company while learning about what the Society has been up to during the year and find out what is planned for the future.
Lifetime Windham resident and Historical Society member Don Rich will talk about his memories of growing up in Windham. Don will reminisce about Windham during the 1930's, 40's and 50's. He’ll talk about the British pilot training plane that crashed by the head gates one winter day. He’ll also reflect on his early oil business days and his first truck (which has a history all its own). This is a special opportunity to learn about Windham in the mid-twentieth century as remembered by a real fixture of the Windham community.
DON RICH – LIFE IN NORTH WINDHAM IN THE 30’s, 40’s & 50’s
‘I’VE GONE A MILE AND A HALF IN 83 YEARS!’
When: Monday, July 23rd at 7 PM Where: Society’s brick building
Because he lived it all, he has a wealth of stories from which to choose, including tales of gypsies, narratives of the games he played as a boy, his childhood remembrances of WWII, the plane crash he witnessed on Sebago Lake, the C BAR C Ranch and first jobs.
Suggested donation - $5.00 per person with light refreshments served
June Program Update
This month’s program is a unique field trip that is guaranteed to be fun for folks of all ages. On Monday, June 25, David Kierstead of 115 Standish Neck Road in Standish is opening his backyard to the public to see the outdoor train exhibit he has put together there. This is a “G” scale working train exhibit that Mr. Kierstead has been compiling for the past 10 years. Visitors are welcome to stop by between 6 and 8 p.m. The presentation is free and open to the public, but donations are welcome. Light refreshments will be served.
This entertaining event will give visitors a firsthand look at the miniature railroad that David has set up in his yard. We’re starting the program an hour earlier than usual in order to provide ample daylight for viewing the trains. Some seating will be available for those who prefer not to walk on uneven ground. More details will follow as we get closer to the date of the event. This program will be fun for people of all ages and the Society thanks Mr. Kierstead for graciously allowing us to visit his home.
Rosemary Mosher, who works with the Geographic Information Center (GIS), will present this wonderful program that will begin with the earliest history of Windham using early maps, particularly the map of 1871. Through her GIS work, Rosemary is able to isolate homes, stores, schools, cemeteries, and other notable town locations and she will show aerial “now and then” comparisons of various areas of town. This program is quite remarkable and we guarantee it will intrigue you.
This fascinating program will feature Brad Fogg, who will be sharing slides and giving a talk about the History of Windham’s Correctional Center. Because of anticipated interest in this topic, the event will be held at the Little Meetinghouse, which is located next door to the North Windham Union Church on Route 302. Brad is a former employee of Windham Correctional who has continued his interest in the facility by collecting items and conducting interviews over many years. This should prove to be a very interesting program as we explore the prison from its early days and learn how it has evolved into the facility we see today.
Anne Gass, a local author, will discuss her book, Voting Down the Rose: Florence Brooks Whitehouse and Maine’s Fight for Women’s Suffrage, which chronicles her
great grandmother’s leadership in the Women’s Suffrage Movement in Maine from 1914 to 1920. The talk will be accompanied by a slide show.
Refreshments will be served. Suggested donation: $5.00
Location: 234 Windham Center Road, Windham 04062
Author Anne Gass will be the guest speaker at the WHS March program.
Last October, the Windham Historical Society hosted a Fall History Tour. People aboard our History Bus were taken on a history-filled trip through time. They learned about Popeville, our town’s early settlers, and about South Windham in the 1920s. Stops along the way included such historic sites as Babb’s Bridge, the Parson Smith House, Friends Meeting House, Windham Hill United Church of Christ, and Gambo Falls.
An herbal luncheon to benefit the Historical Society was held at member Haley Pal’s house in early September. Haley gave a short tour of her herb garden and served luncheon dishes that were made with fresh herbs. A salmon quiche with mixed herbs, a salad with fresh nasturtium flowers, and lavender cookies were some of the items on the menu. Luncheon guests were also given bottles and provided the materials they would need to make an herbal vinegar they could bring home with them.
Michael Shaughnessy spoke about the 5 mile historic corridor. His narration including the following topics:
- Protect & improve water quality
- Protect & restore indigenous Fish
- Provide Recreational opportunities
- 25 year mission to restore the Presumpscot River
- Remnents of Historic Cumberland-Oxford Canal
- Mt. Division Trail next to the old RR bed
Harry Hepburn III
Windham Historical Society
Bring your clocks and he will tell you value...
Hepburn will speak on the style and history of a newly donated paint grained Whiting Winchester Grandfather Clock that has always been in the family of Ebenezer Barton of Windham. Donated by Dale King of Raymond
The Great Fires of 1947 destroyed a total area of 17,188 acres of wooded land on Mount Desert Island and 200,000 acres statewide. Author and storyteller Jo Radner holds a BA, MA, and PhD from Harvard University. She has published many books on a variety of historic events. The 1947 fires in Maine impacted the state and its people for years. Radner’s presentation, focused on the Brownfield area, is sure to enthrall. $5 donation. Refreshments.