Looking Back

106
This 1900s photo shows Main Street looking east from the Saco Street. Trolley tracks that turned into the old Trolley Car Barn located at Main and Saco streets are visible. The buildings on the right are long gone, replaced by newer buildings. The building in the left foreground was originally built in 1840 as a Universalist Church and has since been demolished. The next two buildings are 907 Main St. and the Armory Apartments at 901 Main St., which are still standing. The large building in the distance is the Warren Block, also known as the Vallee Block, on Main Street at Bridge Street. This building is now a one-story commercial block, the upper 2½ stories were destroyed in a fire on February 14, 1942. The other buildings in the photo are also long gone. 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.

Jan. 13, 1993

The Westbrook School Committee will deal tonight with two proposals for new offices for School Superintendent Edward Connolly and his staff. The two plans suggested are a new wing on The Castle at the high school, or a new building between the high school and Canal School. Either would have to be approved by voters in a referendum. Mayor Fred Wescott expressed reservations about the idea after it was first made public last month. “Westbrook has enough empty public buildings that we should utilize as much as possible before we consider building new,” he wrote in raising several questions.

James O. Born has declined a new term on the Westbrook Planning Board. He was first appointed 30 years ago and has served 26 years – all but one four-year term. For many years, he was vice chairman. He has agreed to continue to serve until a new Ward 5 member can be selected by the mayor. Over the years, Born has spent some 650 Tuesday evenings in Planning Board meetings.

Two Gorham sisters were elected to state All-Star field hockey teams recently. Kristin Frazier, 17, a Gorham High School junior, attended an invitational banquet last month that recognized the best field hockey players in Maine. While there, she was elected to the Class B All-State team. Eighteen players are chosen each year by coaches and referees to make up the best team in the state. Kelly Frazier, 21, a senior at Bates College, was elected by college coaches and referees to the All-Star college team. They are the daughters of Susan and Robert Frazier, 5 Teran St. Both play the defensive back position and are honor students at their respective schools.

Sheila and Philip Levine, Flaggy Meadow Road in Gorham, enjoyed the holidays with their sons, Mark and Eric. Eric will return to Middlebury College for his January term and spend a winter break at Vail, Colorado, before returning to college for the spring semester. Mark will return to his Hollywood Hill residence in California, where he works in production for the new Fox network series, “The Ben Stiller Show.”

The Westbrook School Committee will be asked this week to hire a person to take charge of students who disrupt classes at Westbrook Junior High School. Such students, about 10 a week, are sent to the principal’s office or assistant principal’s office, but neither man has the time to supervise them. Assistant Principal Robert C. Welch estimated the cost for the rest of the school year at $8,875.

Westbrook’s former Forest Street School will now house the offices of the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency. The Planning Board approved the use last week. It did require that the parking lot be redesigned to accommodate 37 vehicles.

Jan. 15, 2003

New housing starts in Gorham appear to have finally reached the point where people are not only starting to take notice, but also want something done to slow growth that many believe has become unmanageable. During the Jan. 7 Town Council meeting, residents from Morrill Avenue and Green Trees Drive asked that steps be taken to halt subdivisions that would add 27 condominiums to Morrill Avenue and 40 new single-family homes off Fort Hill Road. “I think the larger issue is whether the town and the people entrusted with managing and balancing the needs of a growing town are doing it property,” said John Hebert, a Green Trees Drive resident.

The image of Jeff Gorman still haunts Tim Bryant. He still remembers the day he turned on the radio and heard that Gorman was the lead suspect in the disappearance of Amy St. Laurent, a mystery that had plagued police and the media for weeks. A couple years ago, Gorman worked for Bryant, the service manager at Bill Dodge in Westbrook. Gorman reconditioned cars there until they caught him stealing stereos. Gorman is on trial this week for St. Laurent’s murder. Those who knew him in Westbrook, where Gorman spent much of his time, will be watching. He worked for a while at Pizza Time on Main Street, and hung out at the Game Room, a pool hall on Main Street.

Westbrook students have achieved honors in their college studies their first semester. Byron Philbrook, son of Sumner and Glenys Philbrook, is on the dean’s list at Coastal Carolina University, Conway, South Carolina. He is a junior majoring in graphic design. Christopher Chapman, son of Jeff and Roxanne Chapman, made the dean’s list at Southern Maine Technical College in the computer technology program. Amanda I. Cuddy is on the dean’s list at Northern Maine Technical College in Presque Isle.

From the Gorham Police Notes: An Ossipee Trail caller reported that her neighbor has rabbits and they have been there three weeks without food. She said she had not seen the resident for three weeks. Officer Wayne Coffin checked the address and said the yard had been plowed out and there was a cat in the window. He met with the reported owner, who said the rabbits are being fed daily and that people should mind their own business.

Workers for Westbrook’s Department of Public Works have been discovering a lot of snow caves built by children at the sides of roads, something they believe could be hazardous or even deadly to the children who play in them. The unusually heavy snowfall has left kids with huge mounds of snow on the sides of roads. Public works employees worry that their plows and graters could bury or strike an unseen child playing in the snow.

This 1900s photo shows Main Street looking east from the Saco Street. Trolley tracks that turned into the old Trolley Car Barn located at Main and Saco streets are visible. The buildings on the right are long gone, replaced by newer buildings. The building in the left foreground was originally built in 1840 as a Universalist Church and has since been demolished. The next two buildings are 907 Main St. and the Armory Apartments at 901 Main St., which are still standing. The large building in the distance is the Warren Block, also known as the Vallee Block, on Main Street at Bridge Street. This building is now a one-story commercial block, the upper 2½ stories were destroyed in a fire on February 14, 1942. The other buildings in the photo are also long gone. 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.