The Camden Spyglass, Nov. 16

Nov 18, 2017
Courtesy of: The Camden Spyglass This was one of the more festive and seasonal business signs we encountered this week.

Ms. Joan E. Cavanaugh of Mystic, Conn., sent in a letter this week entitled "Around the Square in the '30s," about her adventures growing up on Sea Street in Rockport.

The square was formed by the four streets just south of Hoboken School. She and three other neighborhood girls grew up there flying kites they made from brown paper bags, picking strawberries and even picking at a small dump, which was in the vicinity.

"We slid on Moon's Hill in winter when our parents asked the town fathers to refrain from sanding it when the sledding was good," she writes. They also used to slide on the tiny falls of the brook behind the Fosters' on Maple Ave.

"We searched the seaweed for crabs and collected periwinkles to be cooked for our cats... The most fun we had was playing hide-and-seek at dusk on summer nights when everyone joined in with visiting friends and neighbors -- a sense of mystery and revelations thereof pervaded!"

It reminds us of Scout and Jem playing outside in "To Kill a Mockingbird." Too bad kids today do not know the joy of simple outdoors play and turn instead as modern lotus eaters to lifeless screens.

Cavanaugh also mentions several local people, including 1930s newspaperman Earle C. Dow and his granddaughter, Nan Dow (now Mulford), who lived in Rockport at the time. Dow's legacy is well remembered at the offices of The Camden Herald, where his scrapbooks and photos reside on loan from Sue Thurston of South Thomaston. Some of his adventures have been published recently in our sister publication, The Courier-Gazette.

Thank you for the thoughtful note; we look forward to future dispatches.

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Maine Maritime Academy over in Castine is apparently in need of some publicity. It has sent a glossy book full of facts and figures about the school that we in the biz know had to be an expensive print job to all the local newspaper offices. It is a highly specialized institution teaching engineering and providing top-notch nautical training in maritime fields. Many a local sailor has been educated there since it was established in 1941 by an act of the 90th Maine Legislature. It currently has 1,014 undergad students; 309 staff and faculty; 8,448 living alumni and a spring 2017 dean's list of 38 percent.

We like the little note included stating: "Navigation training utilizes both traditional tools and the latest technologies."

Technology can let you down and some sailor will surely be thankful for that policy at some point.

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“Content makes poor men rich; discontent makes rich men poor.” ― Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard's Almanack

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Thanksgiving is next week, in case you forgot, and something called a Pop-up Thanksgiving Farmers' Market is planned at Appleton Creamery, 780 Gurneytown Road, Appleton, Sunday, Nov. 19, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., come sun, rain, snow, warmth or cold.

This will offer fresh local goods to provision Thanksgiving dinner. There will be cheeses, baked goods, something called cajeta and table arrangements. The kids will be excited to hear the market also has vegetables.

The children can meet the kids, or goats, that is, as well as the puppies, peacocks, chickens and Guinea fowl. For updates visit appleton.creamery on Facebook or appletoncreamery.com.

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It was so cold on Friday, Nov. 10, some of the people who go about in their pajamas all day long seriously considered putting on pants.

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According to History.com, deer meat stew, seafood such as mussels, and ducks, geese or swans were as likely as wild turkeys to appear on the menu that first Thanksgiving. Potatoes were not served at that time. "...the Spanish began introducing the potato to Europeans around 1570. But by the time the Pilgrims boarded the Mayflower, the tuber had neither doubled back to North America nor become popular enough with the English to hitch a ride."

Corn would have been served as a mashed porridge, possibly sweetened with molasses, and they didn't have the butter or wheat flour needed to make pie crusts. There may have been some kind of pumpkin confection roasted in the hollowed-out gourds.

You may want to be a purist in preserving Puritan tradition, but we're happy to incorporate more current additions to the plate. Whatever you find on your plate, remember to give thanks!

Be one of our spies: Send in your Camden-area observations, humor, history, trivia, bits of New England poetry, photos, proverbs and wisdom. Handwritten notes and postcards are accepted and encouraged. Be sure to include your name, address, phone number and email. If your item is chosen to appear in The Camden Spyglass, we'll send you a token of our appreciation. Email spyglass@villagesoup.com or regular mail to 91 Camden St., Suite 403, Rockland, ME 04841. Follow on Twitter @CamdenSpyglass.

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