From our Archives December 1991
A look back at Down East twenty-one years ago.
North by East
Its Name Is Mud
Political correctness, we fear, has reached the Maine woods. A petition by landowners in the town of Sinclair asks the Maine legislator to change the name of Mud Lake to Loon Lake, in part to make the lake’s summer cottages more appealing to renters. Butch Thibodeau says it’s aptly named. “It’s shallow, and, well, muddy. There are some loons on the lake in summer, but there are loons on all the lakes.”
Just Do It!
Eighty-year-old Barrington Ivers — the 1929 Maine state champ in the one hundred-yard dash — sprinted one hundred meters in 15.3 seconds at the Maine Senior Games, good for a new world record for runners aged seventy-five and older. “I‘ve done 14.7 in practice,” Ivers tells us, “and I seem to be improving with age.”
This New Year, Walter Elliot, of Grand Lake Stream, will be popping open a bottle of homemade sparkling birch. He is, as far as he knows, the first one in the country to make birch wine — at least the first since the days of Viking explorer Leif Ericson. And how does it taste? “Oh, it’s great,” he maintains. “Well, it’s pretty good, anyway. I’ve given some to friends and nobody spits it out.”
The Maine Viewpoint
The law restricting the hours teenagers can work is a step in the right direction. —Portland Press Herald
The decision by Acadia National Park to not allow the Tour d’Acadia this fall is unfortunate. What sort of park mission excludes cyclers at the expense of automobiles?
— The Bar Harbor Times
In Maine, you need a license to drive even the smallest moped, but to operate the biggest, fastest powerboat, all you have to do is turn the key. – Morning Sentinel, Waterville.
There are thousands of miles set aside for the internal-combustion engine; the Appalachian Trial is only 275 miles long here. It’s not asking too much for the trail to be reserved for hikers. — Bangor Daily News
The Great Doughnut Debate
The hole in the doughnut was invented nearly 150 years ago by Down East sea captain Hanson Crockett Gregory, of Camden. This claim has been challenged repeatedly, however, and led to a hotly contested doughnut-frying bout between the governors of Maine and New Hampshire, a challenge to a duel, threats of sea-borne retaliation, and finally a decisive debate in New York’s Astor Hotel. A Cape Cod lawyer settled the debate in favor of Gregory’s ancestor, who argued effectively the falseness of the claim that the hole was created by a Native American shooting an arrow through the fried dough of a Pilgrim.
Down East Homes
Six-bedroom Victorian within 1,500’ of Long Lake Beach. Two porches, barn with storage space, workout room, and well-maintained perennial gardens and fruit trees. $229,000.