Monday, February 1, 2016

Doctor Magnus Ridlon



A LOCAL COUNTRY DOCTOR’S SOLUTION
 TO WINTER IN MAINE

         
It is common knowledge that doctors, especially country doctors, used to make house calls routinely to treat their many patients. Although they had an office, it was expected in most cases that the doctor would go to the patient at all hours and regardless of the weather. This was true well into the 1940’s.

Dr. Magnus Ridlon of Kezar Falls was no exception. He practiced here for over forty years beginning in the horse and buggy days. When automobiles became available he was one of the first to buy one in this locality. Traveling in the winter on country roads was difficult and sometimes impossible. Dr. Ridlon’s solution was the vehicle shown below – an early version of a snow mobile.



Dr. Magnus G. Ridlon was born in Freedom, New Hampshire Dec. 13, 1880, the son of Walter H. and Carrie (Wakefield) Ridlon but his family came early to Kezar Falls, Maine where he lived most of his life. After graduating from Bridgton Academy in 1902 and Bowdoin Medical School in 1907 he served an internship at Maine Eye & Ear Infirmary in Portland, Maine.

He married Adelia Turner and returned to Kezar Falls to set up practice and served this community for more than forty years. They had one daughter, Edythe who married Merle Day. The house where Dr. Ridlon lived and had his office still stands on Elm Street at the end of the bridge on the Parsonsfield side of the Ossipee River and is the residence of his son-in-law, Merle Day. Dr. Ridlon died July 20, 1950 at the age of 70.

Do you have any special memories of winter in Maine?  Add a comment and share your story.




Friday, January 15, 2016

Rolling the Snow


This photo taken in 1926 is of Norman Pratt (1913-2010) and Charles Merrill in front of the Stanley Block with the bank, and Norton Block with the post office, on Federal Road in Kezar Falls. Note they are towing a snow roller, a smaller version of the ones commonly used to pack the snow on the roads before snow plows came into use. Perhaps this one was used for sidewalks in the village.





This is a double snow roller used by Parsonsfield in the 1900’s. It is in front of Ansel West’s barn on Devereux Road (now Paul Poulin’s).

 
Here is another double snow roller being used on the Kezar Mountain Road in Parsonsfield.