Hope Historical Society Minutes
September 20, 2022

The meeting was called to order at 6:30 PM by Society President, Juanita Hunt. There were 18 members present: Margaret Morse, Juanita Hunt, Bill Jones, Judith Jones, Ron Smith, Gwen Brodis, Linda Black, Bruce Linthicum, Mary Ireland, Ann Leadbetter, Diane Sprowl, Jim DellaPenna, Catherine Pease, Marie S. Berry, Donovan Bowley, Bernice Gleason, Nancy Ford, and Cindy DellaPenna. Also in attendance, our guest speaker for the evening, Kevin Johnson, photo archivist for Penobscot Marine Museum.

President Hunt asked if there were any errors or omissions to the August 16, 2022 Secretary's report, previously emailed to all members; there were none. A motion to accept the minutes was made, the motion was seconded and all voted to accept.

The Treasurer's report for the period July 31 to August 31, 2022, was given by Gwen Brodis. There was $965.54 in income and $615.71 in expenses. The checking account balance was $999.84 and the balance in savings $24,374.05. Gwen pointed out the receipt of $80.00 from the Union Fair booth that Juanita & Bunny had won 2nd place for HHS, $100.00 in Memory of Faith & Paul Hart, $500.00 from Fidelity Charitable, and $50.00 more from the June 25th open house/yard sale, which Marie Berry clarified was for the belated sale of a cabinet and dolls. (On the day of the yard sale, HHS took in $662.45.) Our major expense in August was $250.00 for lawn care. Supplies were the next highest expense at $210.86, electricity at $104.26, and internet at $50.59. A motion was made to accept the report, seconded and approved by the members present.

We did briefly discuss Coastal Opportunities, again. Their instructions as to where our HHS-tagged can and bottle bags are to be placed have apparently changed. Bill Jones stated their staffing continues to be an issue, but the $0.06 per can/bottle is greater than other redemption centers and that the other centers are having staffing issues as well. He will get bag placement clarified.

Marie Berry is coordinating the HHS table under the tent at Hope Orchards for their Fall Festival on Sunday, October 9th. She sent a sheet around the room soliciting apple pies, which will be served by the slice. She also requested baked goods with an apple motif. The table will display the Raffle basket, cookbooks, table cloths & miscellaneous kitchen aides. She asked for loans of old apple utensils for a cooking implement display.

Marie is also the coordinator for the baking tables that will be set up at the Town Office on voting day, Tuesday, November 8th.

Juanita briefly reiterated that HHS now has internet access and a telephone but not to leave messages on the answering machine. She stated email setup has not yet been addressed. She alluded to having met with several heat pump contractors, but they have not provided quotes. She has met with a cellar specialist regarding our damp cellar which flooded during one of the heavy rainstorms a year or so ago. These concerns have been discussed at Executive meetings along with other maintenance issues such as painting and gutter repair. There will be further discussions at Executive meetings.

Juanita mentioned that Cindy DellaPenna is attending a grant writing class to learn more about the viability of applying to various charitable organizations/foundations for assistance in major renovation projects i.e.: heat pumps, painting, remedial cellar work, etc.

The Home Clarion cast iron wood cook stove, donated by Mary Pearse, has been spruced up, stove blacking and silver polish, by Roger Hunt. It is on display in the HHS garage and is highlighted by a pine board wall backing installed by Jarvis Johnson and Roger Hunt. Gift and volunteer time much appreciated. Catherine Pearse Pease and her sister Mary Pearse grew up using the stove purchased used by their parents, John & Ruth (Stone) Pearse, about 1950. Catherine and her sister Mary have composed a very nice memoir regarding their fond memories and the year-round importance of the old kitchen stove; a copy of their story has been given to HHS. Their interesting composition is worth a read.

Cindy DellaPenna discussed improvements at both Hope Grove and Morey Hill Cemeteries that have been done in 2022, spearheaded by Hope's Sexton Beth Gindel. There have been at least 16 gravestones set upright and repaired at Hope Grove and with luck there will be another volunteer day this fall to repair some of the gravestones up at Morey. Several unknown gravesites have been identified at both cemeteries. An updated grid and burial list are being worked on for Morey Cemetery and will be made available on the HHS website later in the year. Additionally, the three Bartlett gravestones that had covered the well adjacent to Route 235 have been placed as memorials at Hope Grove - Daniel, Polly & their son David. Daniel Bartlett was an original lot owner and actually owned the property where Hope Grove Cemetery is now located.

Our next meeting will be a pot-luck supper on October 18th - more to follow. Margaret Morse informed us that there will be an open house at Lincolnville Historical on October 15th - they are celebrating their major renovation; might be an opportunity to see their restoration accomplishments.

The general meeting concluded at 6:55 and our speaker, Kevin Johnson, was introduced by Bernice Gleason.

Kevin gave a very interesting presentation by narrative and slides of the life and photography of Kosti Ruohomaa. The title of the talk was "Kosti Comes Home". Penobscot Marine Museum has been given hundreds of negatives of the pictures Kosti took during the late 1930's through early 1950's. The presentation had a good number of slides of Maine people captured in what appeared as unsuspected moments, however, he explained that in most cases the pictures were well choreographed. Kosti grew up on Rockland's Dodge Mountain but left the state to pursue his interests in art and photography. He returned in his later years and lived in a cabin on the mountain. Many of his Maine photographs can be seen in the book entitled Night Train at Wiscasset Station text by Lew Dietz; photographs by Kosti Ruohomaa. Kosti died in 1961. Penobscot Marine Museum in Searsport is currently exhibiting many of Kosti's pictures - the slides shown this evening are far superior to the reproductions in Night Train and I am certain the photos on display at the museum are even better. Kosti captured a way of life during the early and mid-20th century that we find nostalgic today. If interested his biography with photos was published in 2016 by Deanna Bonner-Ganter entitled Kosti Ruohamaa: The Photographer Poet.

Respectively submitted
Cynthia DellaPenna, HHS secretary