SOUTH HOPE — “Beth” Guiseley, 87, lovingly known as “Muz” to her family, died May 22, 2022, at the Sussman House in Rockport after a period of declining health.

Born in Hudson, N.Y., Nov. 18, 1934, she was the daughter of German immigrants, Claus and Berta (Lührs) Schnackenberg.

Beth attended Hartwick College in Oneonta, N.Y., as a botany major. She met Ken Guiseley, her husband of 65 years, there, and they were married at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Hudson on Sept. 1, 1956, after her graduation. Soon after, the newlyweds moved to Syracuse, where Ken was a PhD student in organic chemistry at Syracuse University. Beth worked as a lab assistant in the hospital before their first two children, Cindy and Pam, were born.

From there, they moved to Rockland for Ken’s new job at Marine Colloids (now FMC) as a research chemist. Soon after, David was born. Beth joined Beta Sigma Phi where she made lifelong friends, served as treasurer, and enjoyed helping others. She was a founding member of Nativity Lutheran Church in 1963. She served on the church council, the call committee, and as a Sunday school teacher and choir member.

In 1965, they moved to their forever home in South Hope, where Ken immersed himself in vegetable
gardening — and Beth accepted the annual challenge of canning, freezing, and making jam with patience and good humor. She loved being able to go down cellar to “shop” for her delicious meals.

Hope had no early education program, so when David was four, Beth decided to start a nursery school in her home. Parents and kids alike found her to be a naturally kind, supportive, and creative teacher, and word spread.

A couple of years later, the district superintendent appeared at her door, imploring her to apply for a first-grade position at Hope School. In her first year there, she began working on her teaching degree, and soon became the much beloved “Mrs. Guiseley.”

Here, she learned to teach with two grades in one room. Her creativity and innovation as a teacher were legendary. She created the “International Program” where she offered the first-graders a very hands-on, multifaceted program to help them learn about other cultures — she made them costumes, coordinated with the school cook to provide meals from each culture, and offered dancing, art projects, and guest speakers in class.

Beth loved to sew, and after years of making clothes for her family and costumes for her class, she discovered quilting. She was a member of a number of quilting groups, and created many elaborate wall hangings and quilts. She sewed her love into colorful blankets for her grandchildren.

Beth remained dedicated to education and her community throughout her retirement as volunteer library director at Hope Library. She remained active with Nativity Lutheran Church and Beta Sigma Phi as well.

Beth is survived by her husband, Ken Guiseley, of South Hope; daughter, Cindy Guernsey and husband, Stewart, of North Yarmouth; daughter, Pam Sabol and husband, Paul, of Blue Bell, Penn.; and son, David Guiseley and fiancé, Nancy Antich Murphy, of Naples, Maine. She leaves grandchildren, Heather, Emily, Christina, Gregory, Jacqueline and Aaron, as well as numerous cousins, nieces and nephews in the U.S. and Germany.

She was predeceased by her parents; brother, John Schnackenberg and his wife, Berta (Mallaly); brother, William Schnackenberg; and daughter-in-law, Mary (Zeegers) Guiseley.

There will be a memorial service July 14 at 10:30 a.m. at Nativity Lutheran Church, 179 Old County Rd, Rockport, Maine, with Reverend Wendy J. Anderson officiating. A reception will follow.

Memorial contributions may be sent to Hope Library (hopelibrary@gmail.com or 443 Camden Road, Hope, Maine, 04047); or to the Guiseley Family Endowed Scholarship at Hartwick College (hartwick.edu or PO Box 4022, Oneonta, N.Y., 13820).

To share a memory or condolence, visit her book of memories at bchfh.com.

Arrangements are in the care of Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock Street, Rockland.