Hope Historical Society

Meeting of February 21st, 2006


President Lois Hebb called the meeting at the Hope Volunteer Library to order at 9:30. Present were: Joe Berry, Faith Hart, Herb Hart, Neil Hebb, Bill Jones, Dottie Kimball, Barbara Ludwig, Evelyn Ludwig, A. Lawrence & Janet Pease and Gen Perpall, plus visitors, Heather Bilodeau from Camden & the Camden Area History Center and Steve Rzasa from Appleton and the Camden Herald.

Treasurer Faith Hart's Treasurer's Report was presented and accepted.

President Hebb reminded of our need for a Secretary. Bill Jones volunteered to act as Secretary until one could be found.

President Hebb reported on the new display in the Town Office display cabinet. She thanked Gwen Brodis and Faith Hart for doing it.

President Hebb reported that she would be manning the Hope Historical table in the library at the 1st annual Hope General Store Winter Carnival on February 25th. We will be looking for new members and selling HHS monographs, including Bill Jones's new "Facing Hatchet Mountain," a history of Hatchet Mountain, which is supposed to be done by then.

President Hebb reported on programs for the rest of 2006 (summary attached). March 21st meeting will feature Elizabeth Moran and Heather Bilodeau of the Camden Area History Center. Barbara Ludwig will look after refreshments with assistance from Dottie Kimball and the Hebbs will look after coffee. On April 18th, Bill Jones will present "Facing Hatchet Mountain." At an evening meeting on May 16, Rev. Thomas Buckley, former pastor of Hope Community Bible Church, will return to present the history of the church. This meeting will be held at the church. For subsequent meetings and for other local historical events, e.g. the April 22nd Come Spring meeting of local historical societies, see the distribution.

President Hebb reported that we have sent away for a new coat rack.

President Hebb has prepared and submitted the HHS entry for the 2006 Town Report.

Herb Hart reported that he had obtained and brought a new 4.3 cu.ft. refrigerator for the Hope Historical Home and would install it after the meeting with assistance.

The program was a talk by A. Lawrence Pease on growing up in Peasetown (Hope) and in neighboring north Appleton. Lawrence was born in Peasetown in 1924, descendant of James & Mary Pease who came from England and settled there in the late 1700s, placing them among Hope's first settlers. His mother was from north Appleton (formerly part of Hope). Lawrence explained locations of Pease family houses, starting with those built of logs. He initially lived on the family house off Peasetown Road but the family moved to north Appleton to make it easier for him to attend school. He was an avid and very good baseball player and horseshoe pitcher.

In Lawrence's youth, the Pease family was partly self-sufficient. Besides crop farming, they had a cow or two for milk and butter, two pigs, hens and chickens. They made their own clothes with a sewing machine and without patterns. They had beans at least twice a week nd lots of biscuits they made. Lawrence was bprn at home but his younger siblings were born at Gould's Hospital in Hope. Thanks to Frank Morse's wiring, electricity arrived in Peasetown in ca. 1938. They got refrigeration shortly thereafter. Washing was done with tubs and scrub boards.

In Lawrence's youth, the Peases obtained the cash they needed by growing and selling vegetables and blueberries and by cutting wood. They had a Model T Ford and then a Model A Roadster, which permitted them to market vegetables, blueberries and wood. In season, they took a car full of vegetables to Camden, selling first to Carleton. French; Brown's Market: and Nash's, then door-to-door, giving leftovers to less fortunate families. Firewood was $6/cord delivered.

This talk/interview was recorded and will be issued as a Hope Historical Society monograph.

Heather Bilodeau. Assistant Director of the Camden Area History Center, came at our request to explain the Center's program in oral history, which she heads. CAHC uses a mini-recorder and microphone (together costing ca. $80-125) and typically interviews a subject for about one hour, trying not to be too directive. This produces high-quality audio tapes, which can be consulted at CAHC. To produce a print product takes, for starters, 8-10 hours of transcription. CAHC is generating oral history booklets by having them published on-line by lulu.com

Respectfully submitted,

Bill Jones, Acting Secretary