The Olive Tree
Earth Day Dinner:
In Celebration of the Life and Legacy of Dr. Edith Marion Patch
The Fogler Library Friends joined with the Friends of Edith Patch for a very special Earth Day event. On Sunday, April 23rd a buffet dinner was held in the University Club to celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Edith Marion Patch.
Mary Bird, a member of the Patch Friends group and expert on Patch’s work, gave a brief presentation about the fascinating legacy of this entomologist and writer.
Patch attended the University of Minnesota where she studied English and won prizes for her sonnets. After graduating from college in 1901, she worked for two years as an English teacher but began looking for jobs in entomology (the study of insects). She was told repeatedly that entomology was no field for a woman until she was, finally, hired by Charles D. Woods at the University of Maine. He offered her no salary for a year until she could prove herself capable. Patch accepted the offer.
She quickly showed herself a very capable entomologist and Woods awarded her a salary and a teaching position. In 1904, despite protests from sexist colleagues, he made her the head of the department. She remained in that position for the remainder of her professional life.
While working at the university, Patch earned a master's degree from Maine in 1910. Subsequently, she earned a Ph.D. degree from Columbia University in New York as a student of J.H. Comstock who regarded her very highly. He used part of her thesis for his Introduction to Entomology. The presentation was followed by a buffet dinner featuring recipes from the Friends of Dr. Edith Marion Patch Cookbook. The selections included: Artichoke Turnovers, Onion Soufflé, Chicken Mushroom Bake, Vegetable Pie, Zucchini Soup, Wild Rice Pilaf, Crunchy Romaine Toss, Winter Salad, Stephen King's Basic Bread and a scrumptious selection of Brownie Schrumpf's Best Dessert Recipes. Copies of the cookbook were on sale at the dinner.
Lovers of words, language, and good stories enjoyed a very special afternoon with award winning poet Wesley McNair on April 20th.
McNair has received fellowships from the Fulbright and Guggenheim foundations, an NEH Fellowship in literature, and two NEA fellowships. Other honors include the Jane Kenyon Award, the Robert Frost Award, the Theodore Roethke Prize, the Eunice Tietjens Prize from Poetry magazine, the Sarah Josepha Hale Medal, an Emmy Award, and two honorary degrees for literary distinction. He has twice served on the jury for the Pulitzer Prize in poetry, and has received two Rockefeller Fellowships for creative work at the Bellagio Center on Lake Como in Italy. Featured on Garrison Keillor's Writer's Almanac several times and on NPR's Weekend Edition (Saturday and Sunday programs), his work has appeared in the Pushcart Prize annual, two editions of The Best American Poetry, over fifty anthologies, and fourteen books, including volumes of poetry and essays and three anthologies.
McNair delighted the audience, not only with readings from his many poems, but also with the many stories that served as inspiration to his work.
Maureen Elgersman Lee visited Fogler Library on March 23rd. Lee is the author of Black Bangor: African Americans in a Maine Community, 1880-1950. Lee’s presentation was co-sponsored by Multicultural Programs, Women in the Curriculum and the Women’s Studies Program.
In its review of the book, the Bangor Daily News said, “ An important addition to our understanding of minorities in Maine and how they fared. Blacks...have been nearly invisible in recountings of the state's past...Lee has brought this small group to the fore in one city, showing how its members participated in economic life while preserving a sense of their own community.”
The book focuses on the African American community in Bangor from 1880–1950, the period that saw an unprecedented migration of Blacks to that city. Blacks migrated to Bangor not just from other New England states, but from the Caribbean and Canadian Maritime Provinces as well, creating a heterogeneous community with roots in two hemispheres. Still very much a minority, (Blacks numbered around 300 during this period), this diverse community came together to establish an impressive range of institutions, including local chapters of the NAACP and Odd Fellows, as well as of Mothers and Junior Mothers Clubs. Concentrated in an area known as the Parker Street neighborhood, Black women in Bangor became domestics and cooks, caterers and beauticians, clerks and stenographers. Men worked as loggers, teamsters, porters, chefs, and barbers; a few owned businesses. Lee’s presentation was accompanied by a slide show of photographs from the book.
an exploration of disability writing and culture
Tony Brinkley, Liz Depoy, and Stephen Gilson joined Friends coordinator Gretchen Gfeller for an afternoon of readings and discussion around the theme of atypical bodies. The event, held in Special Collections on February 22nd, was part of the Works in Progress series, organized by Kathleen Ellis, Gretchen Gfeller, and Tina Passman and was co-Sponsored by the Fogler Library Friends, the Interdisciplinary Disability Studies Academic Committee and the Center for Community Inclusion.
Tony Brinkley teaches poetry and poetics in the English Department at the University of Maine. He is the author of two books of poetry, Stalin's Eyes (2002, Puckerbrush Press) and Gomorrah (forthcoming, Puckerbrush Press). He is also Faculty Associate in the Franco-American Centre and a Board Member for the Maine Center for Economic Policy.
Liz Depoy is professor and Coordinator for Interdisciplinary Disability Education at the Center for Community Inclusion and Disability Studies and teaches research and evaluation methods and disability as diversity.Her scholarly interests include theory development focusing on disability as human diversity, universal access as social justice and the atypical body.
Stephen Gilson is Professor of Interdisciplinary Disability Studies and Social Work where he teaches disability as diversity, policy, and human behavior from a legitimacy perspective. His research interests and publications have focused on disability theory, disability as diversity, universal access, social justice, and the atypical body.
Home | Olive Tree