Pittsfield Historical Society’s
History of Pittsfield

Pittsfield Grange

From the Pittsfield Town Register, 1904:

“Pittsfield Grange was organized in 1876, but its charter afterwards given up. It was reorganized about sixteen years ago [~1887]. The present membership is about 200 of the most intelligent citizens. Officers: J. D. M. Foster, master; E. E. Libby, overseer; Mrs. Edith Phinney, secretary. New hall dedication February 2, 1903. It is 38 by 70 feet and cost about $5000.”

From The Waterville Morning Sentinel supplement, “Pittsfield, A Great Place to Live, Work and Shop”,
Saturday April 3, 1948:

Grange Exerts Powerful Influence On Social, Economic Life of Town

In the above picture are officials of Pittsfield Grange, No. 102, with the state master, E. Carroll Bean of Augusta, and Mrs. Bean. Seated, left to right, are Raynor Crosman, Mrs. Raynor Crosman, Mrs. Grace Bean, state juvenile chairman; E. Carroll Bean, state master. Standing are, left to right, Roland Wiles, George Richie, Harry Dunton, Katheryn McLeod, Melvina Durand, Maryan Wiles, Lillian Goodrich, Dorothy Withee, Helen Shorey, Sadie Oliver, Grange Master Leigh T. Shorey, Ethel Davis, Dana Withee, Elizabeth Sobie, Hartlow McLeod, Olive Wright, Denzel Davis, Harry Wright, Vernon Shorey, Gladys Shorey. (Photo by Wakefield)

Click on photo to enlarge.

 A powerful influence in the social and economic life of Pittsfield is the Grange. Pittsfield Grange, Patrons of Husbandry, No. 102, received its charter on Feb. 20, 1875. As far as can be learned from the records Alonzo Patton was its first master.

Early meetings were held in hired halls where the rent amounted to a dollar a month. Sometimes meetings were held in the home of a member.

Members followed this course for 20 years and then decided to build a hall of their own. This was constructed on Easy Street and is still in use. It was built in 1904 and is a well constructed edifice and on a fine foundation.

There were times when the pioneer groups found it difficult to complete the building, but they finally did so and the present members are grateful for their efforts.

The Grange is an organization where men and women have equal voice. All work for a higher standard of living for the farmer and his family and members seek to do all they can to help each other.

Grangers are ready to help on community projects which may be helpful to the non-Grangers as well as the member and his family.

Leigh T. Shorey, whose home, Twin Elms Farm, is on the Hartland Road, is the present master of Pittsfield Grange. Mr. Shorey points out that the members of the Grange have diversified interests and raise poultry, dairy products, potatoes and canning crops. He feels that their farms are the equal of any in the state, and that their successful operation has been advanced much through the efforts of the Grange.

Master Shorey says there are several things that Pittsfield should have within its borders, one of which is a vocational agricultural course at the Maine Central Institute, which is the high school for the town.

Many boys from Pittsfield farms attend classes there, he states and many of them never go farther in their school work. A course in agriculture would be very helpful to them for their future work, he claims.

Another need for Pittsfield, according to Mr. Shorey, is a veterinary surgeon established in town, who would take care of the needs in the growing livestock industry in this and surrounding communities.

Pittsfield Grange has a membership of 246 at this time, the ages being from 14 years and up. Meetings are carried on with the idea of making life more cheerful for the young and old, especially for the younger groups, who will be the future farmers and home makers of America. The lecturer’s hour at Grange meetings is one that is anticipated with pleasure by all members and is planned to be both social and educational. This is usually followed by an hour for recreation which includes games and dancing.

Pittsfield Grange has four members who have been paying their dues and taken part in activities for over 50 years. They are Charles Ames, Mrs. Etta Libby, Mrs. Mary Willis and Myra Dyer.

Original Version: 13-Feb-2006

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