North America’s largest apatite found in Maine

This 65.5 carat purple apatite is cut down by South Paris business owner Dennis Creaser for a Connecticut mineral dealer, which Creaser says is the second largest ever mined in the world.

PARIS—To the untrained eye, the purple ridged gemstone that landed on the faceting machine of South Paris jeweler Dennis Creaser appears small, but not only did it break a state record, it is the largest piece found in North America to date, he said. On Tuesday, Creaser—who owns of Creaser Jewelers on Main Street—showed off […]

Domestic violence is a community issue, educator says; presentation at Mechanic Falls Town Office on Tuesday

MECHANIC FALLS—Hosting the upcoming discussion on domestic violence is one way Safe Voices Community Educator for Androscoggin County Julia Teitel helps shed light on what she calls a “community issue” by not keeping the once taboo subject behind closed doors. Teitel will be on hand from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 27, at […]

Ice fishermen are a special kind of fish out of water

David Billings, of Otisfield, holds a 21.5 inch togue, or lake trout, he caught while ice fishing on Thompson Lake on Sunday.

OTISFIELD—David Billings steps outside of the shanty his grandson built and immediately points his finger to the orange flag that’s tipped up from the hole in the ice just 15 feet beyond. He quickly walks over to the edge of the ice, bends down and looks at the line. “I think he stole my bait,” […]

American Legion to hold discussion on homelessness Monday

OXFORD—More than a half million people have experienced homelessness, according to the State of Homelessness in America 2014 report, compiled by the National Alliance to End Homelessness and the Homeless Research Institute. More disturbing and shameful is that 49,933 veterans in this nation are homeless. “Although some individuals choose to be homeless because they prefer […]

Dunham, and WW II, made Norway America’s snowshoe capital

Photo courtesy of Sidney Gordon

From the late 1940s until the 1980s, this 16-foot tall giant snowshoe stood at the entrance of Norway, which was dubbed 'Snowtown of America.'

NORWAY—The giant snowshoe that once stood at the entrance of town greeting residents and visitors alike and dubbing Norway the “Snowshoe Town of America” is a lot like Elvis, says the curator of the Norway Historical Society. That’s because there’s been sightings of the iconic sculpture, but not proof that it exists, since it disappeared […]

Harrison wants more money for capital improvements

HARRISON—When Harrison Town Manager George “Bud” Finch offered a glimpse of the town’s economic standing at last week’s Selectmen’s meeting, he stressed the importance of allocating more money for capital improvement projects and purchases as it heads into the budget season. At the Thursday, Jan. 8 meeting, Finch told Selectmen that Harrison has upped the […]

King staffer to visit Norway

NORWAY-The office of U.S. Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, announced that a member of his staff with be in town on Wednesday, Jan. 14, from 10 a.m. to noon at the Norway Town Office, 19 Danforth St., as part of his “Your Government, Your Neighborhood” initiative. This gives area residents the opportunity to meet directly with […]

The town of Harrison goes to court over land division

HARRISON—A former selectman is heading to Bridgton District Court next week for a pretrial conference after the town of Harrison alleged he created an illegal subdivision by selling too many parcels of land during a five-year time frame—and could go to court with the town of Waterford for the same issue. The land in question […]

Buckfield Town Manager’s truck purchase ‘likely permissible,’ lawyer says

BUCKFIELD—The Board of Selectmen again was split Tuesday night on its decision to research other towns’ emergency purchasing policies, after Town Manager Cindy Dunn replaced a plow truck that burned during a nor’easter last month without notifying the board beforehand. The vote was 2-1 with Chairwoman Martha Catevenis and Scott Violette voting for Catevenis’ motion […]

A look back at the Real People of Western Maine

Laurent Brondel

The year 2014 brought 52 fascinating Real People to these pages, all of whom live right here in Western Maine. There certainly are a variety of people here—vets, immigrants, artists, college students, bakers, race car drivers, farmers and more. Though every person is unique they all had one thing in common—a love for rural Maine. […]