My blog has been changed to make it more appealing for those who have New England ancestors and want to see the area through photos. Things I’ll include are typical white New England churches, libraries showing their genealogical collection, historical societies, cemeteries, war memorials, in general, anything to do with history.

For four years I’ve blogged mostly about my personal genealogy in New England (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire), New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, and the Eastern Townships of Quebec, Canada. I still will, can’t forget my own roots.

Please check out the labels on the right side for articles. The header tabs at the top are a work in progress.

Monday, December 9, 2019

McArthur Public Library, Biddeford, Maine

McArthur Public Library
270 Main Street
Biddeford, York Co., Maine

I always enjoy old libraries and even the ones with new additions to the original building. The McArthur Library is the only library I've visited where the original library was in a church. Another thing I like is when I see an archives room, or a local history room or section in the building.

We were in Biddeford, Maine on a quiet September day to visit their library, and were quite surprised to see a full-time security guard seated near the librarian. I had a chat with him and discovered that there had been enough theft in the library to warrant his position.

Biddeford is a coastal town 15 miles from Portland. I often drive through it on the highway but have never gone into the downtown area. The city brings back a memory of when my girlfriend and I took a bus from Lowell to Biddeford, and then transferred to another bus to take us to a town near Lewiston, where she lived. I think I remember this because we traveled during a large snowstorm in December (abt. 1967) and saw Christmas decorations along the way. 

To research for genealogy resources, click on their website, then go to Research, then History and Genealogy. You will be taken to the Archives & Special Collections (there are several options to choose from.) 

Photo of old entrance and staircase to the first floor.

First floor of the Pavilion Congregational Church photo, circa 1860. This room is now the children's room. Below is the a photo of the balcony, looking down at the old front door.

Some of the library is housed in the old church, shown below. A new addition was completed in 1996.

New Local History area, above and below.

Biddeford and Maine books.

New area with a display of historical artifacts.

Map of Biddeford and Saco.

The new area for books, reading and study areas.

Looking down Main Street, the view is a few feet from the library.

Mentioned below: "Robert McArthur bought the Pavilion Congregational Church at 270 Main Street and in October of 1902, it became the library's permanent home."

Friday, December 6, 2019

Libby Memorial Library, Old Orchard Beach, Maine

The Ferris wheel caught my eye when we walked into the library in Old Orchard Beach. These photos were taken during Labor Day week, and the tourist season was winding down. I haven't been to the town since the 60s, and it was a nice surprise to see how clean and exciting the town was. While I visited the library, my husband walked along the seven-mile beach. I loved the design of the library and the fact that there was an jam-packed archives room.
Libby Memorial Public Library
27 Staples Street
Old Orchard Beach, York Co., ME 04064
Phone: 207-934-4351

Sides of the library.

Sign about the library and the town.

Reference Desk.

Children's room above and attached reading room below.

Additional reading rooms.

Archive Room, with photos below. The reference librarian unlocked the door for me and allowed me to take photos. Unfortunately, I don't have any relatives or ancestors from this area.

The ocean resort is very popular with French Canadians, and several of the people we met spoke broken Englis. I can't recommend any restaurants because we didn't eat there, nor did we stay long since we had another library stop further south. We would love to go back and play tourist.
Poster in the lady's room. I saw the 9/24 date for a genealogy seminar.

Town of Old Orchard Beach, the library and the Atlantic Ocean.