Old Berwick Historical Society - Historical Programs for the public
9:30am - Led by Old Berwick Historical Society volunteer Ernie Wood. Meet at the corner of Liberty & Vine Streets, and take a stroll down Vine Street to Leigh’s Mill Pond, learning the history of the street along the way. Sponsored by D.F. Richard Energy
7:00 pm - (South Berwick Public Library)
The Biddeford Mills Museum will be visiting the South Berwick Public Library to present a program called “The Mill Girls,” which intertwines historical fact with real life experience. The presentation is co-sponsored by the Old Berwick Historical Society.
“The Mill Girls” lecture will be given by former textile mill workers. The lecture will start with a brief historical background covering the industrial revolution, and Frances Cabot Lowell and the Lowell Mills circa 1825. The presentation will discuss the establishment of the Biddeford Mills by Samuel Bachelder from the Lowell Mills, the first mill operatives, the New England farm girls, the boarding houses that were required to housed and protect these young ladies, the reasons the girls left the farms for the Mills, the work conditions, and life in the big city.
7:30 pm (Berwick Academy)
Perched on the edge of the English Atlantic empire, New England’s people and economy were intertwined with the wider English Caribbean world. At the center of it all were the enslaved people—Africans and Indians—who worked in thousands of English homes and farms. Dr. Linford Fisher grapples with the meaning of such cultural interactions, the realities of slavery, and the connections between New England and a wider Atlantic world of trade, culture, and commerce. READ MORE. Photo credit: John Carter Brown Library
1:00 pm - South end of Vine Street
The resting place of a local militia captain whose gravestone was recently discovered will be one of those visited on the Old Berwick Historical Society’s upcoming "Tour of Old Fields Burying Ground." Capt. Ichabod Goodwin died in 1777.
Old Fields Burying Ground is located near the corner of Vine and Brattle Streets. South Berwick’s oldest community cemetery, dating to the 1600s, is part of the “Old Fields” area that was once the center of town. A meetinghouse stood nearby, and many people earned their livelihood at sawmills on the Great Works River and shipyards on the Salmon Falls River.
The cemetery tour will last approximately an hour. It is open to the public and is free of charge. Comfortable shoes are recommended. Sponsored by D.F. Richard Energy
7:30 pm (Berwick Academy)
Abenaki scholar Dr. Lisa Brooks speaks about the northern front of King Philip’s War in Wabanaki country. New maps of “Native space” and littleknown historical documents reveal a very different view of both the war and the territory known as northern New England. Brooks demonstrates that the war did not end with the death of the Wampanoag leader King Philip in 1676, but rather with a process of Native alliance making and treaties between colonial authorities and Wabanaki sachems. Photo credit: Ken Hamilton
7:30 pm (Berwick Academy)
During some of the coldest decades of the Little Ice Age, Wabanakis and English colonists traveled along snowshoe routes connecting the Piscataqua region to a wider winter world. Diplomatic envoys, raiding parties, captives, and military patrols journeyed along customary paths that Wabanakis used in peacetime to visit kin and access seasonal subsistence sites. Dr. Thomas Wickman discusses Wabanaki knowledge of the region’s diverse winter ecology and English settlers’ evolving sense of place. Photo credit: Hudson Museum, University of Maine
7:30 pm - Counting House Museum
Lecture by Birgitta Ingemanson, Professor Emerita of Russian Studies. Her book, The Sunny Neighborhood: A Vladivostok Tale, tells the story of Eleanor Lord Pray, a newlywed from Berwick transplanted to the east coast of Russia in 1894, and three decades of cultural adaptation and political upheaval in a foreign port.
7:00 pm - South Berwick Public Library
Historian Patricia Q. Wall will discuss startling new information from her new book, Lives of Consequence: Blacks in Early Kittery and Berwick in the Massachusetts Province of Maine. Based on careful research conducted over many years, this book presents the first detailed look at the lives of more than four hundred Black individuals who lived in Kittery and Berwick, Maine, from the seventeenth century until about 1820. Pat has patiently combed the available public and private documents to find whatever scraps of information had been recorded about these African Americans. Because most lived their lives in the shadows of the historical record, much has been lost. As Pat reveals, however, in addition to the personal trajectories of their own lives, they also played important roles in the life of their towns. Thanks to her research, we have a much better understanding of the importance of the Black, Native American, and mixed-race populations in southern Maine, both in qualitative and quantitative terms. Copies of Lives of Consequence are available at the Counting House Museum.
7:00 pm - South Berwick Public Library.
Based on the compelling true narrative of Mary Rowlandson, of the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1676, Flight of the Sparrow tells the fictionalized story of Rowlandson, captured by Native Americans, and her struggles upon her return, as she begins to question the Puritan edicts that have guided her. Copies available at the library throughout October.