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  • Hello subscribers and others.

  • It's David Hopping filmmaker, and I'm about to show you a clip off Mainers.

  • People from Maine talking about their town, Rockport and the battles that took place between their town right board and Camden.

  • So think about me.

  • I'm in New York.

  • I'm a young filmmaker.

  • I'm in Queens.

  • It's 1973 and people are moving back to the land.

  • That was a thing back then.

  • Get out of the cities that scary.

  • There's drugs.

  • Violence moved to the country, moved back to the land, and I did not only alone, but with my whole company of 10 people.

  • I moved to Rockport, Maine.

  • Beautiful little town on the water.

  • I went there because I had some relatives who came from Camden, the next town that rock boards here, Candace here.

  • There's one little road between them, and I became a major.

  • You had to live through the winter to become a major.

  • But after I lived through that winter and I got involved with the community, people began to accept me as one of the outsiders who love Maine.

  • And each year my film company, which was growing at that time, gave a free documentary to some local organization, which I really believed in.

  • We did one on child sexual abuse.

  • We did one on women's rights.

  • We did one on the kind of fishing that took place around my town, and we did one for the 2/100 anniversary of Rockport, Maine, with the old timers came out and said, I want to tell you my story about Rockport, Maine, and you're going to see clips from my film which give you a sense of these old main characters.

  • And they're wonderful accent.

  • You know, I have a New York accent, as you can see, and I want Point tried with up a little bit of a main accent and failed.

  • But I do love the accent.

  • I love the people, and I love the time that I was there, and I love that to little towns right next to each other.

  • Couldn't get along.

  • Do you live in a town on you next to another town?

  • And do you not get along with that other town?

  • That's some hostilities that just don't make any sense at all.

  • We're at the time right now off the Corona virus pandemic virus out there that could kill me.

  • So right now everybody seems to me and my down to be getting together, taking care of each other.

  • It's quite beautiful.

  • But in Rockport, Maine, they fought with each other, and those fights got pretty severe.

  • Beneath this old photograph lies the following inscription.

  • Final Separation of Rockport, Maine, from its nearest neighbor, Camden, Maine, took place on February 25th 18 91 as faras.

  • The census and tax folks were concerned.

  • Camden Rockport was one town, but to the residents of Camden and Rockport, there were two distinctly different towns.

  • Camden had a larger downtown area and more wealthy citizens, while Rockport had the lime industry and a profitable ice business, which employed many more people.

  • Cam tonight's looked down at Rockport folks and Rock Porter's thought canned invoke were superior rock.

  • What boys would get over by the line and then we stopped.

  • They used to say, uh, Camden bombs live on rum.

  • We'd say, Rob what?

  • Paddy whackers with one soda crackers.

  • They used to get out that with the quarries of the town line, throw rocks.

  • Each other is a pastime For the in the evening, there was always a difference in the class of people all the in Camden and Rockport.

  • And when Rockport needed help to restore a bridge to rebuild a bridge, across Goes River, a Camden did not want to help, and there was a fistic think that sometimes Rockport felt, too, that there was a sense of jealousy we'd never could figure out why.

  • Hostility between the two towns exaggerated a dispute in 18 84 over whether or not Rockport should have a new iron bridge over Ghost River and in residents felt the old bridge was sufficient.

  • Rockport residents wanted a new bridge that would be safer.

  • Ganden residents didn't feel that they should pay for this luxury.

  • They insisted that the Rockport part of Camden separate and become its own town.

  • They decided that Camden wanted to withdraw and wanted to go on their own.

  • And so I think rock board said Good enough go.

  • That was just about the idea of the thing.

  • You know, they just felt that well, we could do it alone.

  • In 18 91 the tension between the residents of Camden and the Rockport part of Camden reached ah fever pitch, as the newspapers reported it today, February 25th 18 91.

  • Rockport, Maine.

  • And Camden, Maine, have finally decided to separate.

  • The two communities have little socially and economically income.

  • Rockport is the more rural in character, while Camden has established itself as a centre of trade.

  • In a recent meeting, a climax was reached.

  • Several brawls have been reported in recent days.

  • You had to save and skimp and fight shovel snow.

  • Whatever you can find, all the kids shows.

  • No, I shall was no, because 25 cents an hour we shoveled snow.

  • We shoulda sidewalks or sold across the bridge.

  • And, uh, all the sidewalks were shoveled in those days, and the kids did it.

  • Onda soul hand worker.

  • Actually, you know, you hired a neighbor that had a team of horses plowing aerial garden.

  • From there on, it was Holy man, and we did.

  • My father used to use his team, his horse and wagon, and every Saturday would go to Rockport, the pedal of eggs and butter.

  • And as a little girl, I used to go with him, and that's when I win and how I learned to make change.

  • Businesses flourished Rockport Ice Company Story, shirt Factory, Coop Origen Risk mill of S E and H L Shepard Company, not to mention the carpenters, basins, boat builders, sail makers and granite workers.

  • Most important economically Rock Board was to become the center of one of the greatest line producing regions in America.

  • Rockport Slime Industry The largest employer in the area.

  • The quaint, charming and quiet Rockport of today was around 1900 an industrial noisy, smoky place.

  • Yeah, the lime killed dominated the town.

  • Freshly cut lime rock was brought from several local quarries to the Kills for processing.

  • The kills were huge pressurized ovens that baked the line, which was then bagged and used for cement mortar.

  • They would go out or on a platform with cables coming down the four corners of the platform with no sides on it all and just stand on that platform and go down hundreds of feet down into that quarry.

  • The Jacob quarry that's right beside the Union Street is the deepest one, and I remember looking down in there, they look like flies down there and down there they were drilling and blasting and lots and lots of injuries, and the same thing down at the Kills, where they brought the limestone over and put it into the tops of the Kills and down below where they live.

  • Live line came out, the if any water touches them and they would spark up.

  • And men were burned very often, sometimes lost a hand or something.

  • Austin I things like that because it was really, really hard work and always will.

  • Long kills had to be going 24 hours a day.

  • They smoked up the whole town.

  • Sometimes the smoke literally obscured the sunlight from the Rockport skyline.

  • We had this lime in the world drop what camp best lime in the world and the reason we lost it because China had good line and they could produce it for 1/3 of what we was.

  • That's the reason we lost it.

  • You could commit a rock.

  • What harbor and they were.

  • The place was so full of boats that you could want right from one short of the other boat to boat because there were boats in they're bringing in, would you know to burn the lime, kills boats in there, loading for lime and then bolts in there, loading for ice for the rock.

  • What eyes Lily Pond, not only famous for its beauty, but for the purity of its water.

  • And it's ice, which was sold all over the world.

  • You didn't make ice in them days.

  • No one knew how you didn't have a machine.

  • That NATO there was no the only ice was anywhere in the world.

  • What was cut off from the lip on?

  • There's some other bond.

  • The Rockport Ice Company provided work for the men who cut it and summer work for the men who stored it and shipped it.

  • The ice was cut by hand and, uh, had big sores.

  • And you only have one man using those songs because he couldn't get on the other end.

  • It was in the water below, and then they were put on toe sleds.

  • Horses, uh, called jiggers.

  • They were hauled over to the, uh, ice held us across the harbor below Mechanic Street, and that had about three or four big ice houses, and they went on a conveyor belt on were hoisted up on a conveyor belt, so that was stacks and stacks of chunks of square ice, and those were put onto big budges and shipped down.

  • All show the South because there was no refrigeration.

  • In those days, the blocks of ice slid from Lily Pond to the harbor, where large ships packed with sawdust carried the ice to the Southern United States, the Caribbean and South America.

  • They used to call it the Rock.

  • What blue eyes?

  • Because it was so clear that you could put a dime down, set a cake of ice on it and looked out through the cake.

  • Read the date on the dime, 1904 a year for endings.

  • That was the year the last commercial ship was built in Rockport and also the last year for the ice industry, which came to an end with the introduction of refrigeration here today, the lily still grow in Lily Pond, but the water is not as bad as it was six years ago is not good enough to drink.

  • And in 1907 a great fire destroyed the Rockport line killed.

  • Although fireman worked heroically, fire could not be put out because water cannot extinguish burning line.

  • That fire marked the end of rock ports last major industry.

  • It was common for a businessman to share a meal with a poor farmer on a cold winter night.

  • In the 1923 tax report, there is a listing for care of the poor and the sum of $3349 set aside so that Rockport could take care of its less fortunate.

  • Nobody ever thought about somebody else's property.

  • I mean, they knew it was their property, but there was no law against walking across it or going freely on the on the beach and on the, uh, the shipyards.

  • And so far I like that.

  • It seemed to be common ground, really.

  • They'd come a fun in time time.

  • We should have a garden plants and grain stuff.

  • I came home from the lookout one day in the field is full of neighbors flowing, putting God.

  • They did such things.

  • Is that all the time?

  • My father, Every spring, he would take his tractor.

  • You need right down the road and you stop these different places, plow up the gardens and then go back so many days later and hair of them so they'd have gotten.

  • That's just one example.

  • My mother didn't get a driver's license.

  • She was about 50 Uh, but she used to pick up neighbors who needed a ride to go grocery shopping, huh?

  • Rockport residents not only cared about each other's wellbeing, but they also cared about the land.

  • Many farmers, town residents and summer people saw themselves as stewards of their land, replenishing the soil, planting trees, keeping the land beautiful and healthy.

  • Results of that effort are evident all around Rockport today.

  • When school let out and summer came, it was a wonderful time.

  • In Rockport, there were swim meets held in the harbor, camping and hiking in the hills.

  • A carnival and Oakland part, a fabulous amusement area with teenagers loved it all.

  • They had a pavilion, a big dance hall, a dining room, uh, ice cream parlors, a ferry boat and all families and all school Children.

  • And Sunday school Children always get the picnics, and they had ball games, baseball games, at least two a week, and sometimes they had dances three times a week.

  • It was really something in the summertime, and it was beautiful.

  • You ever saw the moon coming up out of the bay and on a nice walls with a nice guy, you know, it was beautiful and I loved it.

  • I think it came from Freeport and they were up then I think his father was a minister.

  • And so, uh, we were about 14.

  • I guess somebody like that.

  • And so he wanted to take me to the movies and Camden.

  • And so I was allowed to go.

  • And after the movies, we went into the RICO spot, which is about where the, um well, it's just a little over ideas in one of those little buildings.

  • Now, you know, they have a little one through there.

  • Well, he took me in there and we sat up of the counters of marble counters and we had a banana split.

  • We didn't just have one banana split.

  • We had two banana splits.

  • You.

  • The floating of the Dodge House was a strange sight to see.

  • But older Rockport residents say that it was not as strange as the story of the donut.

  • Down to Greg Reason.

  • In Glencoe, he was in the Navy that the boy, he came home and they made donut hole in the hole and he's in.

  • He said.

  • You know what they do in the Navy?

  • He said they put a hole in them doughnuts.

  • Since she should have fun.

  • He's had no that cook better or something.

  • So she made the first in this area the first hole in a moment.

  • Yeah, this is Gregory.

  • Doughnut was invented a sailing ship times or the sail on l'm on a spoken Put a doughnut there so we could eat it staring us yet, you know, Probably had 23 Don't.

  • Far as I know, my mother invented she always had a jar of donuts under the cupboard.

  • Uh huh.

  • Every kid in the neighborhood stop the house to get the school bus.

  • And a lot of was looking for donors.

  • While it seems true that the donut waas invented by a rock port resident as of the making of this program, it appears that no one in Rockport profited from this brilliant discovery.

  • Everything changed for Rockport citizens and for the rest of America.

  • After October 1929 the Great Depression hit rock port hard.

  • But because of the rural farming communities and their ability to grow food, Rockport residents did not star, but they had no money to improve their homes and their industries.

  • If we had a depression Now, people in the cities and in the any congested area.

  • We'll be hurting.

  • But if our is out here where we were, I mean run.

  • Too bad.

  • The Depression is supposed to be hard times, but you had more free time and you had to make your own way.

  • And like if we play ball, we had to get off field and fix it up.

  • And somebody had a bad Somebody had a ball.

  • If we went skiing, we had, ah, homemade skis.

  • We had to make our own ski trails, our own jumps, and I think it was good for you.

  • There was a woman, a wealthy summer long time resident who loved Rockport and its people.

  • She was a member of the well known Bach family, and her name was Mary Louise Bach.

  • Mrs.

  • Block with a perfectly lovely person and a tall, stately looking lady.

  • And, uh, she treated everybody just the same.

  • Uh, they wash it a feeling between these people to the other people.

  • But I think that a lot of the natives felt, you know, blow up by themselves, you know?

  • But, uh, she really felt the need for help.

  • Heal.

  • And she did so much my oldest brother got a loan from Sarah, said Curtis, Mary, Mary Louise, Mark Curtis's father, because my father was working for him at this time and he got a $500 long.

  • And so when he went back to pay it, he says, no, he's just pass it on to the next brother.

  • And so we did, and they passed it on all the way down.

  • Through the family, Mary Bach contributed to individuals in the Town by rebuilding their houses, loaning the money for school expenses and for their businesses and by rebuilding the decaying harbor, she saw to it that the harbor area had ample places for boating, bathing and housing.

  • People in town, they come here because they like the place we got.

  • I guess they got treated like everybody else because I know I didn't wasted any time being different doing.

  • I don't know what anyone else ever did.

  • They, uh, they came here because they like the way we did things.

  • In the 19 sixties and seventies, thousands of tourists were attracted to rock ports.

  • Most extraordinary resident ever Andre the Seal Andre was found by fishermen Harry, good rich.

  • Over a 60 year period, the two developed a close friendship, and for a time Andre even lifted the good rich home.

  • Together, they not only developed an array of tricks, but Harry also learned of his friends.

  • Remarkable intelligence.

  • Andre could locate and retrieve submerged objects and long distances.

  • He responded the language, and he frolicked on equal terms with skin divers, worried about 100 quickly got around.

  • And when Harry and Andre practice tricks in the harbor, a crowd often gathered my the early 19 seventies, the crowds grew quite large, and Andre began attracting nationwide media attention.

  • There were many articles written about him, and he even appeared on national television.

  • Andre was more than an extraordinary paint.

  • He was also a town character who was named honorary Harper Mr because of all he had done for Rockport.

  • Although he roam free from Boston domain, he never failed to return home.

  • When Andre died at 22 years of age, Janeway's he designed and built a sculpture of his likeness, which now sits facing the sea at the head of Rockport Harbor.