In partnership with the Maine Memory Network Maine Memory Network

Presque Isle: The Star City

Farm Life

Myron Gartley Farm, Presque Isle, 1976
Myron Gartley Farm, Presque Isle, 1976Presque Isle Historical Society
King Farm, Presque Isle, ca. 1920
King Farm, Presque Isle, ca. 1920Presque Isle Historical Society

Text by Jordi, a student at Presque Isle Middle School
Images from Maine Memory Network

Jean Florence is my grandmother. Her name came from a schoolteacher. The teacher was a good friend of her mother, my great grandmother. Her middle name is from her aunt, my great great aunt. Jean has lived in Maine all her life. She lived on a farm until she graduated from high school at 18. She then moved to Presque Isle to find a job. She found one at Newberry.

All her brothers and sisters worked on the farm including her. There were four boys and two girls. They picked potatoes in the end of September and early October. They picked strawberries in early June. They also picked the raspberries in August.

They would wake up early, at five o’ clock, to do chores around the farm and house. She worked in the gardens. She also had a garden after she got married. Her father and brothers took care of the horses and cows. They had five cows and two horses. Her mother tended the chickens and they ate the eggs for breakfast. They also sold many of the eggs. They had twenty-five to thirty chickens. My great grandmother use to make her own butter with milk from their cows and sell it to local customers. She did not put any yellow dye in the butter. Her children would help their mother churn the butter. They also brought the butter to the customers and collect money. She sold the butter for seventy-five cents per pound.

As you can see farm life has changed tremendously in some ways but in other was its still the same.