Looking Back

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The view of Bridge Street from Main Street was taken in the early 1970s. The building on the left was the Warren Furniture Store. The next building was an apartment house with a Salvation Army Thrift Store on the first floor. On the right is Paul's Shoe Store (formerly Carr's Shoe Store) and the Papermakers Union office. Coiffures by Irene occupied the next building, which was originally a New England Telephone Co. office, and the Bridge Bar was the building next to the bridge over the Presumpscot River. Stultz Electric Co. and the old Bean house can be seen on the other side of the bridge. Portland Pie occupies the building on the left, and the apartment house is gone. On the right, the Frog & Turtle Restaurant currently occupies the old shoe store and union office, the Arabic Market occupies the next building and the old bar is gone. The former RSM Disability riverfront office building occupies the land on the other side of the river, where Stultz Electric Co. once stood. To see more historical photos and artifacts, visit the Westbrook Historical Society at the Fred C. Wescott Building, 426 Bridge St. It is open Tuesdays and Saturdays, 9 a.m.-noon, and the first Wednesday of each month at 1:30 p.m., September-June. Inquiries can be emailed to westhistorical@myfairpoint.net. The website is www.westbrookhistoricalsociety.org. Photo and research courtesy of Mike Sanphy

June 26, 1991

The Gorham Planning Board may have turned a preliminary thumbs down on the proposed Hannaford shopping center, but several interested parties, including the town manager and town councilors, are not ready to let the project slip away so easily. Meanwhile, some residents are talking about a petition drive to force a referendum on the shopping center.

Westbrook friends of the young men and their families are in shock over the death of Robert B. Abbott Jr. and critical injury of his friend and passenger David Ferris in a motorcycle accident Thursday. The 20-year-olds were riding Abbott’s just-purchased Kawasaki 1100-cc Ninja, an unusually speedy motorcycle. Scores of mourners gathered in the Westbrook-Warren Congregational Church Monday for Abbott’s funeral. Among them were virtually all of the off-duty members of the Westbrook Police Department. Abbott’s father is a retied Westbrook sergeant.

Advertisement: Opening soon – Springbrook Nursing Care Center, 300 Spring St., Westbrook. Something better in nursing home care.

The Westbrook City Council will be ready to choose a buyer Aug. 5 for the house at 160 Saco St. and an adjacent vacant lot that Joe Fluett left to Westbrook for the Walker Memorial Library. The council intends to sell the “the highest responsible bidder.” Meanwhile, the council voted 7-0 last week for a Fluett trust fund for the library that permits spending the income every year and all the trust fund itself if a future council feels it’s wise. The value of the trust now stands at $648,000.

The Gorham Arts Council, the moving force behind the annual Celebrate Gorham festival, will celebrate its own 10th anniversary this fall. Overseeing the development and continued success of the Arts Council has been its president and founder, Alberta Littlejohn, a former Gorham teacher who retired in 1981 after 35 years in the school system. The Gorham Arts Council was organized as a nonprofit with three goals: to assist the artists-in-residence program in the schools, to provide cultural entertainment in the schools and community and to encourage local talent.

Show Me Video owner Lionel Dumond has leased the former Maine Hardware location at 821 Main St., Westbrook, and will move his Westbrook store there from its present location at Main and Bridge streets. The move will double his floor space. He is aiming for a July 29 opening.

June 27, 2001

Timothy Flannery bought the longtime Sebago Inc. manufacturing buildings at 30 Lincoln St. on June 18, Sebago president Dan Wellehan said yesterday. He said his impression is that the building will be put in shape for office use. City Planner Matt Eddy said he’s heard that Flannery has a potential light manufacturing tenant. Flannery could not be reached before press time.

Members of the group pushing for choice B on July 17, saving the old Westbrook High School for municipal use, have given themselves a name, Save Our Public Property. The group is planning strategy to inform voters and encourage them to come out and vote. The referendum comes from a petition drive started after the City Council voted to sell the property to Westbrook Housing Authority for $1.

Advertisement: Say Goodbye to Ron: After 21 years of serving our customers, Ron Edwards is retiring. Come help us wish him the best on his last day, Friday, June 29. Don and Tracy Littlefield and all your friends at Sportsman’s True Value Hardware, 30 Central St., Westbrook.

A proposed Gorham bypass getting big trucks and rush-hour traffic out of Gorham Village would be for bikers and walkers, too. Maine Department of Transportation officials revealed in a Wednesday meeting what a Gorham bypass would look like to motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians. Engineer Joe Grilli said that it would have two 12-food travel lanes and two paved shoulders 8 feet wide, making a strip of pavement 40 feet wide. The centerline would be in the middle of a 100-foot wide clearing cut from a 200-foot right of way. It would be a “rural arterial” with a designed speed of 55 mph. Committee member Burleigh Loveitt said, “If we design it like a raceway, it will become a raceway.”

Benjamin P. Gilman, son of Carolyn and Bob Gilman of Westbrook, graduated with a law degree from University of Maine School of Law on May 26. He is a 1993 Westbrook High School graduate and a 1997 grad from the University of Maine. He is busy studying for the bar exam he will take in July.

Richard and Rita Casey, 137 Mosher Road, Gorham, have returned after spending 13 days in Hawaii and visiting four of the islands.

Two local bands, Casco Bay Concert Band and the Westbrook City Band, will be among 13 community bands playing Saturday, June 30, in a free concert at the Narragansett School in Gorham. It’s the state’s 21st annual remembrance of R.B. Hall, the Maine-born bandmaster. It’s the commemorative’s first time in Gorham.

The view of Bridge Street from Main Street was taken in the early 1970s. The building on the left was the Warren Furniture Store. The next building was an apartment house with a Salvation Army Thrift Store on the first floor. On the right is Paul’s Shoe Store (formerly Carr’s Shoe Store) and the Papermakers Union office. Coiffures by Irene occupied the next building, which was originally a New England Telephone Co. office, and the Bridge Bar was the building next to the bridge over the Presumpscot River. Stultz Electric Co. and the old Bean house can be seen on the other side of the bridge. Portland Pie occupies the building on the left, and the apartment house is gone. On the right, the Frog & Turtle Restaurant currently occupies the old shoe store and union office, the Arabic Market occupies the next building and the old bar is gone. The former RSM Disability riverfront office building occupies the land on the other side of the river, where Stultz Electric Co. once stood. To see more historical photos and artifacts, visit the Westbrook Historical Society at the Fred C. Wescott Building, 426 Bridge St. It is open Tuesdays and Saturdays, 9 a.m.-noon, and the first Wednesday of each month at 1:30 p.m., September-June. Inquiries can be emailed to westhistorical@myfairpoint.net. The website is www.westbrookhistoricalsociety.org. Photo and research courtesy of Mike Sanphy