On March 22, 1621, a Native American delegation walked through what is now southern New England to meet with a group of foreigners who had taken over a recently deserted Indian settlement. At the head of the party was an uneasy triumvirate: Massasoit, the sachem (political-military leader) of the Wampanoag confederation, a loose coalition of several dozen villages that controlled most of southeastern Massachusetts; Samoset, sachem of an allied group to the north; and Tisquantum, a distrusted captive, whom Massasoit had brought along only reluctantly as an interpreter. Massasoit was an adroit politician, but the dilemma he faced would have tested Machiavelli. About five years before, most of his subjects had fallen before a terrible calamity. Whole villages had been depopulated. It was all Massasoit could do to hold together the remnants of his people. Adding to his problems, the disaster had not touched the Wampanoag’s longtime enemies, the Narragansett alliance to the west. Soon, Massasoit feared, they would take advantage of the Wampanoag’s weakness and overrun them. And the only solution he could see was fraught with perils of its own, because it involved the foreigners—people from across the sea.
The Indians who first feasted with the English colonists were far more sophisticated than you were taught in school. But that wasn't enough to save them In addition to providing a beautifully written account of what happened, the article does something subtle but incredibly cool in using a Native centered perspective that really illuminates how dramatically silenced and othered Native voices are in other accounts. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb
on Nov 28, 2013 -
“For more than 150 years, logging techniques remained the same. Men cut trees by hand and loaded them on horse-drawn sleds to be hauled over snow to the river. Skilled river drivers maneuvered the logs downstream, risking their limbs and lives every day. [From Stump To Ship
] survives as a record of the long log business. Highly detailed scenes, filmed year-round, are uniquely enhanced by the original script, written to be read with the silent footage in the 1930s. The soundtrack is brought to life by Tim Sample
, narrator and renowned Maine humorist, in the role of the filmmaker, Alfred Ames.” [more inside]
posted by zamboni
on May 1, 2013 -
Robert Campbell of Glenburn, Maine, has been baking beans in a bean hole for nearly forty years. “Even when I don’t need the beans,” he says, “When Friday night comes it’s just an urge comes over me to start that fire and start baking bean-hole beans.”
posted by moonmilk
on Dec 29, 2012 -
Life on Matinicus Island
: "Matinicus lies 23 miles out to sea, the most remote inhabited island on the Atlantic seaboard... one of a vast necklace of islands, more than 3,000 in all, spread out along the Maine coast as far north as the Bay of Fundy. A century ago, 200 or more of them were fishermen's communities; today, only 14 are inhabited year-round... Today, two years after putting a bullet into the neck of another lobsterman, in defense, he says, of his daughter, Vance Bunker is a pariah on the island: legally acquitted but privately unforgiven, widely but quietly reviled." (via longform)
posted by flex
on Oct 28, 2012 -
In 1975, with $3,000 in savings Roxanne Quimby and her boyfriend moved to Maine
. They bought a tract of land on which they built a cabin and an outhouse. Near her Guilford homestead, Quimby later met beekeeper Burt Shavitz and used his beeswax to create candles (making $20,000 in her first year selling at local crafts fairs) -- and later their (yes, the two cofounded a company together
) best selling product Burt's Bees Lip Balm
(it's Burt's image
that still graces many of the company's products). With the phenomenal success that followed, she sold 80 percent of her shares in the company
to New York investors in 2003 (eventually the company was sold to Clorox
) to help fund significant land purchases
. For years Maine sportsmen have been outraged with Quimby for forbidding hunters, loggers, snowmobiles and all-terrain vehicles on the 120,000 acres of woodlands she now owns. Quimby has recently offered a compromise. She wants to donate 70,000 acres
to help create a new national park (Maine Woods National Park
) while "setting aside another 30,000 acres of woodlands
... to be managed like a state park, with hunting and snowmobiling allowed." [more inside]
posted by ericb
on Mar 28, 2011 -
The American Image: The Photographs of John Collier Jr.
at the University of New Mexico. "In 1941 to 1943, Collier worked as a photographer with the Farm Securities Administration and the Office of War Information under Roy Stryker and documented many areas around the eastern U.S and northern New Mexico.
" The full photoset is at flickr here
posted by dersins
on Nov 11, 2009 -
Science & technology funding has an enormous long term impact on the economy, a fact that has not escaped China. Yet, Senators Ben Nelson (D-NE) and Susan Collins (R-ME) have proposed cutting
all National Science Foundation and Department of Energy Office of Science funding from the Senate American Reinvestment and Recovery Act
, along with almost all other proposed funding of the sciences and technological development, as a part of a $77.9B reduction effort. Why? Well, you'll notice that Nebraska & Maine don't contribute much to science & technology in the United States, nor win many grants, and hence no bacon for Nelson and Collins. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges
on Feb 6, 2009 -
Mounted 70 feet up in a white pine tree on the coast of Maine, the BioDiversity Research Institute's live eagle webcam
provides, "live video of a nesting pair of bald eagles, 24 hours a day. These eagles are the most successful pair in the state. They have nested at this site for 13 years, and raised 20 offspring."
Warning: the live stream can be habit forming (especially when waiting for the eggs to hatch).
posted by VicNebulous
on Mar 27, 2008 -
It's that time of year
- time for thru-hikers to start the Appalachian Trail! Last year, over 1700 hikers
started the hike with only 352 completing the 2,200 mile walk from Springer Mtn, Georgia to Katahdin, Maine. Given that walking the AT takes about six months, most hikers start in March and April so they can finish before winter sets in.
With town spread out along the trail, many hikers keep online journals
- probably some of the few blogs where what you had for breakfast and what the weather was like make for interesting topics.
posted by borkus
on Feb 29, 2004 -
6000 breathtaking aerial photos
of American towns and other sites, with particularly good coverage of towns in New England (MA
). All of this by one photographer, Joseph Melanson, whose mission in life is "to show you facets of your environment that you never realized no matter how long you lived there."
posted by dougb
on Aug 6, 2003 -