Presque Isle area From our Files – Week of December 15, 2021

2 years ago

75 Years Ago –   Dec. 12, 1946

Eva Zippel elected head of Aroostook Teachers’ Association — Mrs. Eva Zippel, principal of the Presque Isle Training School, was elected president of the Aroostook County Teachers’ Association, and Presque Isle was selected as the site of the county convention for an indefinite term of years, at the annual meeting of the association held at the high school.

Other officers elected for the coming year were: Albert A. Cyr, Madawaska, vice president; Eugenia Rugan, Caribou, secretary;  Leonard Page, Presque Isle, treasurer; executive committee: Superintendent, L. S. Bagley, Island Falls (three years), Principal, Stephen J. Drotter, Fort Kent (two years), and Miss Marion French, Fort Fairfield (one year).

Power shortage still serious — Stream conditions had held up remarkably well since the first announcement of a power shortage in Aroostook County, L.H. Alline, president of the Maine Public Service Co., announced. The power company official, speaking for the ten electric companies of Aroostook County, said the Maine Institute of Potato Starch Manufacturers, the Maine Potato Growers and Shippers Committee, Inc., and other large users of electrical power had been largely responsible for easing the critical shortage during the peak demand hours of 3:40 to 8 p.m. Their cooperation was credited with reducing the system peak demand “to a point which allows more satisfactory operation of the system.”

50 Years Ago –  Nov. 15, 1971

Barnes named Northern Maine Fair president — The membership meeting of the Northern Maine Fair Association was held Dec. 6 in Presque Isle with the same 37 members elected to the board of trustees. Immediately following the meeting, the board of trustees met and elected new officers for the ensuing year. George H. Barnes, who had been in charge of the livestock department in the previous year, was elected president, to replace Kenneth H. Irving of Caribou who had held the position of president for the previous 11 years. Olen E. Holmes, who had been the race secretary for the Northern Maine Fair, was elected vice president and general chairman, to replace Clifford L. Stimpson. Herbert W. Towle was elected treasurer, replacing Franklin S. Cunningham. Robert D. Andrews was elected secretary. The three departing officers had served the fair faithfully for an approximate total of 61 years combined.

Presque Isle chapter captured district top honors — Five contests were held during the first meeting of the Northern District, Future Farmers of America, when they met in Mars Hill Dec. 11. There were five chapters participating in the competition with Presque Isle bringing home the top honors. Nine FFA members from Presque Isle attended the district meeting, along with Paul Lynch, advisor, adn three guests. Greg Smith and Dave Voisine entered the contest on potato diseases, with Smith placing second in individual judging, Voisine placing third and the Presque Isle team coming in second. In the shop materials division, Mark Kelley and Alan Perry entered with Kelley bringing home third place and the team taking first place honors. The creed speaking category was entered by Randy Martin and Linda Lynch from Presque Isle. Miss Lynch received top honors with the Presque Isle team also taking the top spot. Presque Isle High School’s participants in the rifle shoot competition were Warren Carney and Vaughn Chase. Other chapters present and the order of their placing included Fort Fairfield, Limestone, Easton, Central Aroostook High School of Mars Hill, Caribou, Katahdin and Houlton.

25 Years Ago –  Dec. 11, 1996

Presque Isle students collect nearly 1,200 pounds of food for the homeless — Elementary students at Cunningham Middle School did their part to feed needy people by collecting nearly 1,200 pounds of food for the Temporary Shelter for the Homeless. Goldie Whitmore, shelter manager, explained both the students and Shelter benefit from the Yuletide offering. Whitmore added the donated food items, ranging from bags of potatoes to canned goods, had a dual purpose for the Shelter. Not only was the Shelter able to restock its food pantry, it also put up several holiday food boxes for needy families during Christmas. Whitmore said the holiday season is traditionally a slower time for the shelter, but the numbers were on the rise. The Shelter was averaging about 10 people, including two families. The maximum capacity at the Shelter was30 individuals.

Solidarity march — Future Farmers of America students from many central Aroostook schools as well as local clergymen, were just some of the many individuals showing their support for area potato farmers during a solidarity march in Presque Isle. The rally was orchestrated in protest of unfair trade practices and also as a show of support for Wathen Farms Inc. of Fort Fairfield. The farm was liquidated and auctioned at the Northeastland Hotel in Presque Isle for a combined $718,790. The farm was foreclosed by Farm Credit of Maine.

Label donation — Graves Shop ’N Save of Presque Isle donated 15,900 Campbell’s soup labels to Mapleton Elementary School, Pine Street Elementary School and Zippel Elementary School. The Camplbell’s Labels for Education Program enables schools to purchase extra supplies, such as computers and other pieces of equipment.