The Maine Potato Board has announced that the 2012 Farm Family of the Year is the Rudy Parent family of Hamlin. Rudy Parent, his wife Dinah, son Jamie and brother Bill farm 1,200 acres in the St. John Valley.
Jamie Parent is the seventh generation to work this land. Rudy started farming right out of Van Buren High School in 1970, and he purchased the farm from his father Gerard in 1986. Rudy and Dinah raised four children on the farm: Jamie, their older son; Nick, who also works on the farm; and two daughters, Heather and Michelle.
The family grows 600 acres of potatoes and 600 acres of grain. Rudy Parent was selected as a McCain Top Ten Grower in 2011. Gerard Parent is now 87. The annual Harvest Mass, which rotates among Hamlin, Van Buren and Cyr Plantation, is held in the Parent potato house when it is Hamlin’s turn to hold the service.
My husband’s Chamberland ancestors were farmers. A monument to his grandparents, Belone and Edithe (Chasse) Chamberland, is on the site of their original farm in St. Agatha.
My sister and her husband both work at TruTextile in Guilford, once called Guilford Industries or “the woolen mill.” My parents both worked there, as did my brother, and my Steeves grandparents both worked in textile mills. So did two of my great-grandfathers, Harry Steeves and Stanley Roberts.
Stanley Roberts was the grandson of Alfred Hart, who worked at the mill in Dexter in the 1800s. His family in Trowbridge, Wiltshire, England, also worked in textile mills there, for a total of seven out of eight generations, I believe.
Along with surnames and geographical locations, think of occupations as a way to learn more about your family members.
I will give a talk on “Bangor Public Library and UMaine’s Fogler Library — Worth the Trip” at the meeting of the Taconnett Falls Genealogical Society at 2 p.m. Sunday, July 15, at the society’s library at 10 Lithgow St., Winslow.
The library will open at 1 p.m. that day and is a wonderful resource. Hope to see you at the meeting.
The Wassebec Genealogical Society will hold a meeting and potluck meal at 6 p.m. Thursday, July 12, at the home of Bill and Jane Macomber at 114 North Shore Road, Blanchard (off Pond Road, Abbot).
Place settings and drinks will be provided, but bring a dish to share. The program will feature Betty Carolin and her cousin, who is visiting from Poland. During a recent trip to Poland, Betty Carolin connected with her Polish roots. For more information or directions, contact Bill & Jane at 876-4125 or Wayne & Estella at 876-3073.
The descendants of James E. Emerson will hold their 71st family reunion at noon, July 15, at the home of David Smart, 22 Taylor St., Lincoln. Bring a potluck dish to share and family information. For information, call Alison at 794-8227, Ursula at 794-3905 or David at 794-8470.
Summer is a great time to check out local historical societies. The Brewer Historical Society is open 1-4 p.m. Wednesdays at the Clewley Museum, 199 Wilson St. The Corinth Historical Society is open 2-7 p.m. Wednesdays at the society’s building on Main Street.
For information on researching family history in Maine, see Genealogy Resources under Family Ties at bangordailynews.com/browse/family-ties. Send genealogy queries to Family Ties, Bangor Daily News, P.O. Box 1329, Bangor 04402, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.