Annual Hope Historical Society Meeting
October 19, 2021
The meeting was called to order at 6:30 PM by President, Juanita Hunt - attendees Donovan Bowley, Diane Sprowl, Linda Hillgrove, Ann Leadbetter, Gwen Brodis, Marie Berry, Margaret Morse, Sonja Howard, Ron Howard, Nancy Ford, Ron Smith, Bill Jones, Judith Jones, Catherine Pease, Jim DellaPenna, Cindy DellaPenna, Bunny Gleason, and Viola Richardson.
This is election year for officers, which takes place every two years. First on the agenda, nominating committee spokesperson, Marie Berry, stated there had been no interest or opposing parties for the current officer lineup. Marie nominated Juanita Hunt to continue as President; Linda Hillgrove nominated Marie Berry as Vice President; Marie nominated Cindy DellaPenna as Secretary; Juanita nominated Gwen Brodis as Treasurer - there was no discussion, motions were seconded and passed.
A motion was made by Marie Berry to name the next nominating committee comprised of Linda Hillgrove, Margaret Morse and Donovan Bowley - this was seconded and passed.
Gwen Brodis presented the itemized Treasurer's report - she explained a nominal Camden National Bank fee, which should be refunded, if we switch to a different checking account. Our former CD matured in 2021 and the Executive Board had approved a higher interest paying fund, facilitated through Camden National Bank, with New Mass Mutual; all other itemized items were self-explanatory. Our financial situation has improved by over $10,000 since last year; however, we have upcoming expenses and purchases. There was a motion to accept the Treasurer's report, the motion seconded and was unanimously passed. Donovan motioned to swap the current Camden National Bank (CNB) checking account to another CNB account, as Gwen had recommended, to avoid the service charge. The motion was seconded and passed.
Next on the agenda under old business - a discussion whether there is a need for more cookbooks; we need a count as to current inventory. There is a currently a short-lived 15% discount promotion at the printers (we had been able to obtain 10% on our last order). Marie will provide a count and if deemed appropriate, we will take advantage of the 15% promotion.
There was a discussion about the failed dehumidifier. Jim DellaPenna explained his attempt to unclog the
direct drain line inside the machine that directs water down to the basement drain, but it was to no avail. Currently, all drain water goes into the collection reservoir, which would require daily emptying, clearly not feasible. We need a dehumidifier to protect our collections; moisture had additionally caused the house's wallpaper to detach, Ron Smith repaired the peeling wallpaper this year - thank you. Donovan proposed to purchase a new dehumidifier at a price not to exceed $500 - the motion was seconded by Ann and unanimously passed.
There was a discussion of our attempts to secure the services of an electrician to upgrade the house's outdated duplexes and circuit breaker box - a safety concern. We had two bids, one that had been excessively high and the other more reasonable. During the June 7th Executive meeting, we had voted to accept Justin Electric's proposal, but needed to obtain from him a slightly modified written proposal due to a little tweaking, such as the elimination of one duplex. The electrician has been swamped all summer and unable to respond; Jim DellaPenna has communicated with the electrician's wife. It is hoped we can get Judson Electric in the house over the winter, during his slow time. No vote necessary, as approval vote has already been made.
Lawn care - Marie and her husband Wayne Berry have maintained the lawn for the last several years bringing their mower down regularly on a trailer. Ron Smith has bush hogged and then hand mowed the periphery of the Society's lot to a point that it looks very neat. We thank both the Barry's and Ron for their services. Marie stated she and her husband are retiring their mowing service and Ron stated a load of topsoil would be good to fill in uneven spots where he has been mowing - would make it easier, if mowing is contracted out. There was no vote, but clearly before next spring we need to address the mowing issue. Juanita stated she had been informed that contract mowing runs over $60 per trip and Marie stated that the lawn needs care about three times a month during summer.
The Hope town manager has invited us to again man a table of baked goods during voting day, November 2th. Marie will be in contact with our membership bakers for contributions.
It is the general consensus we should hold a November meeting on the 16th. We will again request use of the Fire Station as it allows people to spread out. There will be further information forthcoming.
Bunny and Viola showed a quilt dating to the 1940's sewed by Georgia May Fernald Brownell, Viola's mother. Viola stated most of the material used were grain bags. Apparently, during the war years, grain bags were very colorful. Viola Richardson is donating the quilt to HHS in memory of her mother. Additionally, Viola is contributing a cast-iron iron, circa unknown. Thank you, Viola, for your donations.
Donovan showed a medical book donated by Sandy Delano, a Lincolnville resident and historian. The book is entitled The Modern Practice of Physic, Exhibiting the Characters, Causes, Symptoms, Prognostics, Morbid Appearances and Improved Method of Treating the Diseases of all Climates, written by Robert Thomas, M.D., published in New York, 1817. Of local interest is the fact that the book had been owned by Moses Dakin, Hope's first MD. To see what our local doctor used as a medical reference is of high interest.
Catherine Pease discussed donating her family's wood cook stove currently in the possession of her sister. The stove is marked as being manufactured in Camden, Maine. Our archivists are quite interested.
The meeting was adjourned at 7:30 PM.
After the meeting, we enjoyed time socializing and partaking of the many wonderful desserts.
Cynthia S. DellaPenna, Secretary
Postscript - Juanita had intended to mention that the Historical Society has received several years of Hope's town reports, beginning with 1913, from the Robert & Geneva Hall family. Several maps (one dated 1779) and three iron tools used for setting the teeth on a hand saw from the William G. True family.