10 years ago — July 3, 2004
(As reported in the Bangor Daily News)
BANGOR — Sunday’s Fourth of July fireworks will be the same high-quality display Bangor residents have come to expect over the years, but it also may be the last, according to organizers.
Due to a lack of fundraising, the nonprofit Bangor Fourth of July Corp., which is coordinated by the area Kiwanis clubs, might, in future, be forced to forego the fireworks display and parade it organizes, according to Marla Saliba, the group’s chairwoman.
Last year’s fireworks display was as large as Bangor has ever had, thanks to WABI Channel 5’s donation of $15,000 that matched the funds raised by the group. WABI made the donation in honor of its 50th anniversary.
This year’s show may not be as large as last year, but spectators will not be disappointed, according to Rick Briggs, Blue Hill Pyrotechnics president and co-owner.
Briggs said the crew of 16 will shoot off about 1,000 fireworks from the Bangor waterfront for more than 20 minutes. He added that, for the Bangor show, the crew will use no electronics and light each firework by hand.
BANGOR — Donn Fendler became America’s most celebrated Boy Scout in 1939 when as a resourceful 12-year-old, he survived nine days alone in the Maine wilderness.
His up close encounters with bears and black flies are immortalized in Joseph B. Egan’s inspirational book, “Lost on a mountain in Maine.”
Now a vigorous 77, Fendler remains one of the state’s most active seasonal residents.
This summer, 65 years after his ordeal, he will make approximately 35 appearances at Maine schools and libraries, where children, accompanied by their parents, will line up to meet a living legend.
The retired Army lieutenant colonel, who lives winters in Clarksville, Tennessee, squeezed a July 6 appearance at the Bangor Public Library into his busy schedule.
25 years ago — July 3, 1989
BUCKSPORT — David Craig, 8, Lucas Craig, 9, and David Lehman, 10, all of Bucksport entered their frogs in a frog jumping contest at the Family Field Day at Doyle Field in Brewer. The event was one of the many programs scheduled as part of Brewer’s centennial celebration.
FRANKFORT — Mount Waldo Park, an area along the Penobscot River that once was home to a flourishing granite industry, will be dedicated on July 8, after six weeks of beautification work by community volunteers.
When Mount Waldo and the area of the old stone shed along the river reverted to the town of Frankfort from the state, the stipulation in the transfer was that the land be used only for recreational purposes.
Sandra Stone, a junior Girl Scout leader and chairman of the Frankfort recreation committee, thinking in terms of young people, told her husband, Roy, that she thought the area would make a great park for children.
After several inquiries and meeting with the selectmen, Mrs. Stone’s idea was accepted. The funds were acquired and, with the town’s bicentennial celebration set for late June, it gave Stone a goal to strive for.
Work began about six weeks ago. Working under the direction of their leaders, with the assistance of parents, grandparents and friends, were Junior Girl Scout Troop 694, Cub Scout Pack 34 and Brownie Troop 692, with Jeffrey Redmond, Cub Scout den chief.
50 years ago — July 3, 1964
BANGOR — Contrary to most adults’ opinions, teenage taste in music is not limited to “Beatlemania.”Teens in the Bangor area like popular music, but they also enjoy everything from Beethoven to Bela Bartok.
Fifteen-year-old Elizabeth A. Kellogg, daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Robert O. Kellogg of 212 Kenduskeag Ave., likes the music of modern composer pianist Bela Bartok. She thinks classical music has a message that popular music doesn’t have.
Another Bangor teenager discovered the opera in Europe two years ago. Roberta M. Stern, 18, daughter of Mrs. Harry Stern of 58 Pearl St., said she likes popular music and likes to dance but she thinks the classical opera is exhilarating. Her favorites these days is “Carmen” and Puccini’s “La Boheme.”
“I never go anywhere without my portable radio,” said another Bangor teen. “My friends and I like to keep up with the new hits.” But Sheila J. Smith, 13, daughter of the Rev. and Mrs. Rex H. Smith, added that she also enjoys the operettas of Gilbert and Sullivan, especially “The Pirates of Penzance.”
BANGOR — For the first time in 75 years Bangor may find itself without a motorized transit system. John L. Graham, manager of the Hudson Bus Lines Inc., told the NEWS that his company will discontinue its six city lines, possibly before the end of the month, if additional revenue sources are not found to compensate for losses the line has been carrying in its transit service.
The move would bring an end to one of Bangor’s proud traditions, started on April 28, 1899. On that day the Queen City became the first municipality in the nation to begin electric trolley car service. Since that date the city has enjoyed an unbroken transit service, although trolley cars gave way to buses in 1942.
The company, which just last month dropped the Hampden run, some days operates its buses at expenses better than double the revenue taken in, according to Graham. He stated that it costs his line at least $400 a day to keep the six city lines serviced.
BANGOR — Approximately a month ago some concern was voiced nationally about the shortage of an immediately available supply of coins. What has happened to this shortage on the local level, here in Bangor? The city’s bankers generally agreed that the shortage is being felt here, but is being met adequately.
According to Gary Stover, vault teller of the Eastern Trust and Banking Company, the degree of shortage depends on the individual bank. The greatest shortage is in nickels, he said, and justifiably so. All of the big wholesale stores in the area take in a tremendous amount of coins to use for change; lately they all seem to prefer nickels to other currency.
100 years ago — July 3, 1914
WINTERPORT — The 47-year-old two-masted schooner Mary Augusta, abandoned by her crew, was washed up on the rocks at Walker’s Point. One of the masts was down and the cabin was awash. Nothing was known of the schooner’s trouble until she drifted in from the sea about 2:30 p.m.
The schooner was built at Ellsworth and owned by Capt. Tainter of Winterport, who was in command of her. She registered 115 net tonnage.
Capt. Winfield Tainter, his son Raymond, and the third member of his crew landed in their powerboat, having abandoned the schooner before she reached the rocks. The schooner was laboring in a big sea, while bound from St. George from Swans Island, with 250 tons of soft coal, when the shrouds gave way and the mast went overboard. She will be a total loss.
BANGOR — The announcement in yesterday’s NEWS that two pretty and expert swimmers, Cecelia Friedberg and Esther Charm, are to swim five miles in the Penobscot River on the Fourth of July, attracted much attention. They will start from Franklin Street bridge in Bangor at 9:30 a.m. and will finish at Riverside Park. The winner will receive $25.
Long-distance swimming contests for women are numerous in and near Boston, but nothing of the kind has ever been conducted here, and it goes without saying that there will be thousands of spectators.
Compiled by Ardeana Hamlin