Monday, October 14, 2019
Florence, just 16 years old at the time of her father’s death, took over clerking at the Kezar Falls Post Office at which her father had been Postmaster. She then worked as a clerk in a dry goods store according to the 1910 census, perhaps the store her father owned at the time of his death in 1902.
In 1915 she married John Warren Higgins who worked at the County Registry of Deeds and they established their life in Skowhegan. Florence became an accountant with the Registry of Deeds and, with her husband, amassed enough money to be able to make substantial bequests in her will.
Soon there will be no one alive who ever knew Aunt Flossie, as she was affectionately called, but her legacy will live on in her support of education and the town of Porter.
Tuesday, October 1, 2019
Helen Stearns was born August 6, 1900 in South Hiram, Maine, the daughter of Frank E. and Bessie M. Stearns. She attended local schools and graduated from Porter High School in 1919. She taught school at Baldwin and later was employed as a clerk at the Ridlon Drug Store in Kezar Falls. In 1922 she married Harry Merrifield and they made their home on School Street, Porter. They had one child – Elizabeth Ann.
In 1956 she was named correspond-dent for the “Portland Press Herald”, “Evening Express” and “Sunday Telegram” covering the Kezar Falls area. In 1961 she was awarded the Gold Press Card for the best small town coverage. Besides working for the Portland papers, Mrs. Merrifield also had been a community correspondent for the “Sanford Tribune” and the “Carroll County Independent” of Ossipee, NH.
Helen was also very active in civic and charitable organizations. She had been treasurer of the Town of Porter, was often a ballot clerk, and active in the Republican Town Committee. During WW II Helen was secretary of the local branch of the American Red Cross and successfully managed its fundraising campaigns and blood donor activities.
She was a participating member in the Methodist Church and several women’s clubs, the Kezar Falls Library Association, the Parsonsfield-Porter Historical Society and Porter High Alumni Association.
Her life was dedicated to loving care of her family and of service to her church, her community and her country which she deeply loved. She liked people and touched the lives of many. Helen Merrifield passed away November 22, 1970.
Helen’s reporting kept local residents informed about what was happening in our towns for many years. The news from this area has been sadly neglected ever since.