Owascoag Newsletter

The January-February 2020 Issue of Owascoag was released.

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February Presentation: African Americans in Maine Prior to 1800

February 2, 2020 – 2:00 p.m. 

Scarborough Public Library, 48 Gorham RD, Scarborough, ME O4074

After a short business meeting, Vana Carmona will present “African Americans in Maine Before 1800” to the historical society.

About the Presentation

Photo of the entrance into the Eastern Cemetery, Portland, ME taken by Vana Carmona.

Photo by Vana Carmona.

The Eastern Cemetery is the final resting place of Portland’s founding fathers.  We know them for their contributions to the area’s political, social, cultural, and often military fabric.  But most do not know their “other” lives:  the lives in which they enslaved African Americans or were complicit in their enslavement.  Six years ago, Vana Carmona discovered inadvertently that her ancestors were among them.  This inspired her to launch The Prince Project, her study of slavery in Maine during the period before 1800.  As a docent for Spirits Alive, which overseas stone conservation and education in the Cemetery, she has used her knowledge to organize a tour of these very people.  She uses gravestones as a basis for discussing the individuals as well as the history of slavery in Maine.  She also provides insights on those African Americans buried in the two sections of the burial ground set aside to segregate them.  Her presentation is a virtual tour of Eastern Cemetery and covers these topics.

About Vana Carmona

A descendant of several early notable Maine families, Vana left the State after high school to indulge her wanderlust.  Her journey took her abroad and on to Sarah Lawrence College in New York, where she graduated with a BA in Italian and international studies.  Vana went on to work for the Italian press for several years.  Then, she had a “temporary” stay in Northern California that lasted 30 years.  During that time, she raised her two daughters, rode her horses, developed her business, and eventually returned to college for an advanced degree.  She holds a Masters in Medieval History from California State University Sacramento (CSUS).  Ten years ago, she returned to her hometown of Portland, bringing her Los Angeles husband with her.  They settled on Munjoy Hill, the area she most loved as a child.  Immediately she became involved in several local historic venues:  Maine Historical, Portland Observatory, and Eastern Cemetery.  During the last six years, she has pursued a major research project seeking out information on African Americans who were in Maine before 1800. They are all part of The Prince Project, her database of over 1600 free and enslaved people living here through the post-Revolutionary period. In her tours of Eastern Cemetery, Vana uses this work to help educate people about the history of slavery in Maine, a topic she believes needs greater attention.

The meeting is free and open to the public. (Donations are always welcome.)

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January Meeting Cancelled

Out of respect for the Pearson family, we are canceling the January meeting of Scarborough Historical Society.

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Added in December 2019

Main Room

Bookcase 1 – Back – Top 

Scarborough Annual Reports – Scanned, OCRed, and posted the Scarboro Annual Report for 1908 to Digital Maine and to Archive.org
I also uploaded the 1891 Annual Report to Archive.Org.


Prouts Neck Highlights – Prouts Neck, Scarborough, Maine.

Prouts Neck Historical Society Executive Director Phil von Stade speaks about the Prouts Neck Historical Society, Prouts Neck during the 17th and 18th-century conflicts, and changes in Prouts Neck between 1939 and 2019 to the Scarborough Historical Society on December 1, 2019. Available for viewing on YouTube.



A collection of seven newspaper clippings from the 1970s and 1980s from a loose file folder including “Tax Plan Hearing,” “Industrial Park Plans,” “Sewer Plan,” a Scarborough Taxpayers Association town charter change proposal, “Budget Hearing,” The Recreation committee wanting to buy the old State Police Barracks, New England Telephone erecting a tower.  Scrapbook (loose) 2019.57.01a-g.

Various clippings relating to the Scarborough Planning Board from 1972 and 1973. OCRed images are HERE – OCRed text only id HERE. Accession #2019-57.02.


Photos added


Created a new “Transportation” photo Gallery.

Includes a photo of the Trolley Tracks being removed circa 1932. 


Student Photos – Moving to Flickr.

I opened a Scarborough Historical Society account (and Photostream) on Flickr. I then created an album for Student Photos and added two photos. 

  • Olive Jefferson – Scarborough HS – Class of 1930
  • Stanley Pederson “Pite” – 1929

Photo: 30 Students c. 1946 – 2019.60.01

Students included:

Stephen Libby – Maravene Clough – Robert Moran – Patricia Lysaght – Robert Olsen
June Malloch – George Pooler – Patricia Briggs – Francis Picher – Nettie Noble
Robert Ferrelli – Jeanne Ridlon – Donald Burnham – Carole Sturgeon – James Pearson
Helen Clarke – Dewey Thompson – Edith LaRochelle – David Collins – Virginia Sampson
Rae Jones – Rickard Ganem – Clifton Temm – Ruth Mitchell – Royetta Chandler
Albert Varney – Susan Martin – Margaret Wright – James Barney – David Swanson

Student Photos – Moving to Flickr.

I opened a Scarborough Historical Society account (and Photostream) on Flickr. I then created an album for Student Photos and added two photos. 

  • Olive Jefferson – Scarborough HS – Class of 1930
  • Stanley Pederson “Pite” – 1929

Beech Ridge School Restoration Project

Digital Maine

We uploaded a photo of horses hitched to snow roller to Digital Maine.

Horses hitched to a snow roller.

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eMail Crash – Update


Due to continued problems with our @maine.rr.com email, we have shifted to GMail as our primary email address.  Please use ScarboroughHist@gmail.com for all correspondence to the Scarborough Historical Society and Museum.

Thank you

We have had problems with our email for the past couple of weeks.

eMail sent to our primary eMail address, scarboroughhist@Maine.rr.com between December 16th and December 26th went into “never-never” land and has been lost.

We still have emails prior to December 16 in backup and archive, but we’ve lost new emails. So, if you’ve sent the Historical society anything important or anything needing a response between Dec 16th and December 26th, you might want to resend your correspondence.

Thank you,

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Added to the Website in November 2019


A piece of democracy – Rodney Laughton with a Scarborough Ballot Box from the 1930s or 40s.

Maine Room

Bookcase 1 – Back – Top 

Posted the Scarborough Annual Report – 1906 to Archive.Org and Digital Maine.
Posted the Scarborough Annual Report – 1907 to Archive.Org and Digital Maine.

Middle Room

Tax Valuation Books

Added links on our Tax Valuation Books Page to access images of the 1882, 1886, 1887, 1888, 1894, 1895, 1905, 1910, and 1914 Tax Valuation Books. 

Photos added

Businesses – Hotels

Added another photo of The Danish Village showing the fountain.

Businesses – Restaurants

Added a photo of Nell and Marks Southgate Restaurant (in Dunstan)

Other Businesses

Added photos to Other Businesses Gallery: 

Beauty-Rest-CampsBeauty Rest Camps
Telephone Forest 1596-2
4 Miles from Portland – 6 Miles to Old Orchard.
Running Water – Electric Light
Located on Route One at the South Portland line. The Volvo dealership would be right across the street.

Added a photo of the Original Len Libby Candy Shop  
Added a photo of Sage: An Esoteric Shoppe, 2015

Added four photos of various Snow’s Labels. 

(Higher quality images available.)


Added a photo of the Southgate House when it was The Carriage House Restaurant (This is a scan of a photo that is museum mounted photo located in the Middle Room).

Markers of Scarborough

Added King Cemetery sign installed by the Eagle Scouts on 17 August 2019.

People Photos

Added an 1895 photo of the John Vaughn Merrick family at “The Knoll.”
Added a 1949 photo of Emma Gochie (Thurlow) as a child holding a doll. 
Added a photo of Lona A Owen Hunkins (1880-1962) who was the wife of Arthur A. Hunkins (1878-1970).
Added a photo of Rencel H. Colby (1882-1952). Ordained in Scarborough 1913; served as the minister at Black Point, drew maps. Served in Reserves as a chaplain during WWII; he lost a son in that war.

SHS Laptop Photos

Started a new Photo Image Collection based upon the scans done to the SHS Laptop from 2011 through 2015.  I began with Aviation Photos.  All photos are sized for the web, however, higher quality resolutions are available electronically for a small fee.

  • Aerial of Air Meet, Portland Airport, Scarborough Maine – 1928.
  • Aerial view of Portland Airport, Scarborough, Maine
  • Aerial View Portland Airport, Scarborough
  • Air Meet at Portland Airport, Scarborough
  • Airplanes at Grand Beach
  • Amelia Earhart, 3rd person from the left
  • Hanger – Portland Airport, Scarborough, Maine
  • Pioneer Aviator Merle Fogg & Stuntman George Sparks

Student Photos

I added the 1916 Scarborough High School Class photo. [Includes Standing: Richard Libby, Edna (Purchase) Gower, Flora “Nellie” (Hudson) Higgins, Ruth Johnson, and Raymond Sargent. Sitting: Elinor (Harmon) Wright, F. “Herbie” Wentworth, and the Teacher, Miss Litchfield.]
I added a newspaper article clipping about the 1916 Scarborough High School Class
I added a photo of the 1966 Scarborough High School Class.


I updated the Ephemera Finding Aid, both in Table Press & in Google Sheets with an 8 November 2019 version.

Beech Ridge School Restoration Project

Added 4 photos taken on 15 November as the schoolhouse was being moved onto the new foundation.


Photo by Karlene Osborne


Photo by Karlene Osborne


Photo by Karlene Osborne






Photo by Joyce Alden


Photo by Joyce Alden

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Scarborough Historical Society Meeting – December 2019

Black Point, Scarborough, ca. 1741

Black Point, Scarborough, ca. 1741

Sunday, December 1, 2019 from 2 to 3 PM.

After a short business meeting Phil von Stade will speak about “Black Point & Prout’s Neck – Some History, Highlights, and Reflections.”

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Arguments of Men of Scarboro at Augusta

[Transcription of a letter to the editor, ca. 1902]

To the Editor of the Argus:

     I was much interested in the arguments of the men of Scarboro at Augusta yesterday, as to what the electric road could and would do for that ancient town.  It is somewhat curious that a town situated so near to a populous city of 15,000 inhabitants, as Greater Portland may be considered.  Should be dwindling in population and wealth, as the town has been doing as far as regards the strictly agricultural sections.  Tumble down and abandoned farm building are to be found in every part of the upper section of the town.  There is no town in the State that is richer in stirring and romantic historical associations that Scarboro, and none that by the variety of its scenery would attract more tourists or the wealthy urbanites, who seeks more room and purer air than is afforded by the congested confines of a great city.

     The hills in upper Scarboro almost rise to the dignity of mountains, while the marshes along the coast, where once roamed the sanguinary* Squanto and his murderous myrmidons, afford a variety of scenery and land adapted for hunting and fishing that is unique and unlike other towns in the state.  To one who is familiar with the past glories Scarboro there is something pathetic in its present decay and almost desolation.

    I drove the other day through the village of Dunstan and it is hard to realize that ‘Sleepy Dunstan’ as it is sometimes referred to was once the rival of Portland in population and business, and was the birthplace of a president of Harvard College, a Senator of the United States and minister to England, a Congressman, the first Governor of the State, and judge of probate of the county for Twenty years, and other men who played an important and honorable part in the early history of the country during the colonial, revolutionary and earlier years of the last century.  The rural mail delivery system, electric roads when we shall soon have because it is right we should, will restore the ancient prestige and importance of Scarboro, and while I am second to no one in my respect for good preaching that calls sinners to repentance and good works in this present life.  I honesty believe that as a civilizer, by obliterating the distinction between the city and the country, the electric road and the Rural free delivery will do more good than all the sermons that were ever preached.

     Corbett declared more than a hundred years ago the London was a hideous wen upon the fair face of England, and our cities bid fair to rival London in kind, if not in degree, while many of our rural communities were moral, spiritual, political and intellectual decay reigns triumphant, present a picture as forbidding to the social philosopher as the abominations of city life.

     The electrics and the free delivery will hasten the time when there will be no city and no country, and who shall stand in the way of this consummation so devoutly to be wished for.  

W. H. McLaughlin

* involved in or causing much bloodshed

This is the transcription of a clipping from The Daily Eastern Argus newspaper, published in Portland.  The date is unknown. It predates the establishment of the Portland Railroad Company trolley service through Scarborough in 1903.  This editorial was written in response to those who opposed the trolley line.

Transcription by Rodney Laughton, November 2019.

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Scarborough High School Classes 1928-1931

Do you know any of these students?

Scarborough High School Classes 1928-1931.

The students in this photo are numbered. If you know the identity of any of these students, please let the historical society know so we can add their name to the list of individuals.  Currently identified individuals, my number, include:

Scarborough High School, Classes 1928-1931 – Individuals Identified

  • 1. Joseph Libby, ‘29
  • 2.
  • 3. Clayton Urquhart, ‘29
  • 4.
  • 5. Stanley Pederson, ‘29
  • 6. Kenneth Laughton, ‘31
  • 7.
  • 8.
  • 9. John Ferguson, ‘30
  • 10.
  • 11. Sidney Pooler, ‘31
  • 12. Ralph Lorfano, ‘28
  • 13.
  • 14. Ella Sawyer, ’31 (or #67?)
  • 15. Marguerite Shaw, ‘31
  • 16.
  • 17.
  • 18.
  • 19.
  • 20.
  • 21. Almeda Moulton, ‘31
  • 22. Hope Fergatto, ‘31
  • 23. Dorothy Clark, ‘31
  • 24. Helen Scamman, ‘31
  • 25.
  • 26.
  • 27.
  • 28.
  • 29.
  • 30. Dagna Olesen, ‘28
  • 31.
  • 32.
  • 33. Delia Smith, ‘29
  • 34.
  • 35. Ernest Bowley, ‘29
  • 36. Chester Scammon, ‘28
  • 37.George Douglas, ‘31
  • 38.
  • 39. Gerald Pillsbury, ‘28
  • 40. Norman Morse, ‘29
  • 41. Stanley Harmon, ‘28
  • 42. Thornton Woodard, ‘28
  • 43.
  • 44.
  • 45. William Faulkner, ‘29
  • 46.
  • 47.
  • 48. Walter Douglas, ‘29\
  • 49. Dan Snow, ‘31
  • 50.
  • 51. Henrietta Meserve, ‘28
  • 52.
  • 53.
  • 54. Gertrude Pooler, ‘28
  • 55. Delia Woodward, ‘28
  • 56.
  • 57.
  • 58. Rachel Shaw, ‘29
  • 59.
  • 60.
  • 61. Dagmar Nielsen, ‘31
  • 62. Marjorie Milliken, ‘31
  • 63. Barbara Harmon, ‘31
  • 64.
  • 65. Hilda Harmon, ‘30
  • 66. Esther Nielsen, ‘30
  • 67. Ella Sawyer, ’31 (or #14)
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Added Oct 19 to Oct 31, 2019

Happy Halloween!

Surname Files


New Verticle File Folder: Locales – Scarborough Beach

The Carolyn Philbrick Collection

Twenty-three photos of people of interest to Scarborough were added to the People Gallery including the following:

  • Martha Ann Aldrich
  • Ruth Bragdon
  • Louville Deering
  • Millie Dyer
  • Chester Frost, Jr.
  • Gertrude Hasty
  • Ader Harmon
  • Ralph Leon Lary
  • Daniel Libby
  • Jane Libby
  • John Augustus Libby
  • Shirley Estelle Libby
  • Bobby Lincoln
  • Leon Meserve
  • Charles Mitchell
  • Elsie Mitchell
  • George Mitchell Sherman
  • Ora Sherman
  • Bertha Storey
  • Maybel Storey
  • Jesse Tapley
  • Mary Ella Tapley

The 1927 program for the Dedication of the Scarborough High School. The school was “Dedicated to the Boys and Girls, Our Citizens in the Making.” 

There were two businesses photos, one “The Wayland” which was added to the Restaurants Gallery and one, “Prouts Neck Garage” which was added to the Businesses Gallery. 

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