19th century fashion history at McArthur Library

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If you haven’t been into the library lately, be sure to stop in before December to check out the text/image exhibit we have on loan from the Victoria Mansion in Portland. You’ll find it up on the second floor near the Carroll Room (looking out over Main Street).

The exhibit, “The Way We Wear: Fashion & Industry in the 19th Century“, was on view at the Victoria Mansion Carriage House Gallery through the 2016 season, and featured materials from numerous organizations, including McArthur Library.

This exhibit explores the connection between industrial changes and shifting styles of dress in the Victorian era, and visitors will learn about the influence by exploring topics including Fashion, Manufacturing in Maine, Department Stores and Ladies Magazines.

In compliment to the exhibit, a display case of artifacts from the Biddeford Mills Museum is located adjacent to the Victoria Mansion text/image panels. Thank you to the Victoria Mansion for loaning us the material, and we hope to see you this fall at the library!

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October is (sorta) Family History Month!

Picture2Hey so October is unofficially the official month where we celebrate Family History in the U.S.A.! (Note of explanation: OK, so FHM is an official thing in Australia, and some states and municipalities in the U.S. have designated it as a permanent thing; the U.S. Senate declared October “Family History Month” in 2001 then again in 2005– but for those years only. That’s official enough for us, so we’ll just go with it.)

The important thing is this: MCARTHUR LIBRARY LOVES FAMILY HISTORY!

And we want you to know there are TONS of resources, both online and here in the library, for those interested in researching, preserving and sharing their own family history. 

So, in honor of Family History Month, we’ve got all kinds of things happening.

  • On the blog/social media sites: we will feature two upcoming posts with resources: “Caring For Your Family Treasures” and then “Sharing + Preserving Your Family Stories”.
  • In the library: we have several great programs that connect with the theme of Family History (check out the calendar of events), and there will also be a display upstairs of handouts and books available on Family History, Doing Genealogy, Caring For Family Treasures and Sharing + Preserving Your Family Stories.

 

JOURNAL TRIBUNE OBIT INDEX!

So you are trying to locate an obituary that may have appeared in the Journal Tribune? Did you know that if it is 1977 or later, you can search online??

Yes friends, it’s true! At Goodall Library’s Online Obituary Index, you can search for obituaries which would have appeared in the Journal Tribune from 1977 to Present (they have much more to offer as well, you can read all about it on their site). They have created a simple, user-friendly index where you can see the name and age of the deceased, as well as the newspaper and date on which their obit appeared. With that information, you can contact or visit the library of your choice to access a copy of the obituary.

[We here at McArthur Library would like to officially announce that we think the folks at L.B. Goodall Library in Sanford are, well, amazing.

Wayne and Garth

Thank you for your hard work! You guys ROCK!]

Learn about bringing your family photos into the digital era…

Attention family historians and genealogy enthusiasts!

Here is a great opportunity to learn about scanning/photographing YOUR historic photographs and then how to share them. The workshop takes place in Boston on March 27, 2015 and the cost starts at $50. It is presented by Northeast Document Conservation Center (NEDCC) and New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS), real experts in the field.

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Unidentified family group, Elite Studio collection, circa 1920. Courtesy of McArthur Public Library.

 

Amateur Newspapers – Resources

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I was so pleased to get the chance to speak about the Walter Perkins Amateur Newspaper exhibit at Maine Historical Society today, and ramble a bit to a group of captive listeners! 🙂

In any event, I do hope everyone got a little something from the talk; whether it was an appreciation for creative youth culture, or a first glimpse into the workings of a digitization project. Here are links to the various web-based resources I mentioned…enjoy!

Ahhh summers at the Pool…(Biddeford Pool, that is)

Timber Point CenterThe library is so pleased to host a new display which has been organized and curated by the folks at the Timber Point Center. The exhibit, “The Ewing Family: Life at Timber Point”, gives a fascinating peek into the life of one of the numerous families who called Biddeford and Biddeford Pool home during summers of old. The Ewing family, who built the seasonal residence on Timber Point over 1929-1931, are pretty typical of the summer families of the era. Well-to-do urbanites who retreated to the peace, calm and beauty of the Maine coast during the summer season, enjoying family and friendships and a break from the hectic pace of working life.

The display is a vivid snapshot of life for these families, but even more interestingly shines a light on a way of life that many of us do not know about. That is, it shows that these large summer “cottages” and the residents within are somewhat less grand than we may imagine. The Ewings, in particular, seemed to have enjoyed a simple, industrious, and quiet life at Timber Point that you may be surprised by. Even their famous friends seemed to have (happily) come and gone quietly, and perhaps that in itself helps the rest of us understand the draw of this area to the well-heeled…even today.

Please come see this lovely display, it will be up through the beginning of April. You can read about it and catch a sneak-peek at Timber Point Center’s blog:

(http://timberpointcenter.org/2014/01/21/the-ewing-family-life-at-timber-point-2/).