Rachel Carson Scholar and Artwork to Appear in Damariscotta

Rachel Carson first visited Maine’s mid-coast almost 60 years ago, and the influence of the region’s sea and shore had profound and lasting impact on her writings, which launched the modern American environmental movement.

Now, in their first appearance in Maine, the original artwork that accompanied Rachel Carson’s first book, Under the Sea-Wind, comes to Damariscotta on Tuesday September 27, 2005, in a presentation about the famed author’s love for the Maine coast by Carson scholar Dr. John Juriga.  The evening event will be held between 7 and 9 p.m. in the Skidompha Public Library auditorium, 184 Main Street in Damariscotta.

This month’s presentation is a public “thank you” to Lincoln County and the communities of the Damariscotta-Newcastle area by the “Friends of Hog Island” and the Maine Audubon Society’s Hog Island Audubon Camp, in appreciation for their support for the venerable Hog Island institution, now in its 69th year as America’s oldest continually-operating environmental summer camp for adults, families, and youth.

“I checked out my first book at the Skidompha Public Library in the summer 1972, when I worked in the kitchen of the Hog Island Audubon Camp,” says David Klinger, president of the “Friends of Hog Island.”  “Since then, I’ve returned many summers, and this marvelous library has grown, as has the Audubon Camp.  We’ve had great support from the Damariscotta community through many years, and this event is just one small way we wish to express our collective thanks to our local neighbors for their continued goodwill.”

“Rachel Carson, Howard Frech, and Under the Sea-Wind” will offer a glimpse into Carson’s long and abiding relationship with the Maine coast, to which she journeyed in 1946 and returned, after building her cottage on Southport Island, every summer until her death in 1964.  The lecture will feature the original pencil drawings that famed Baltimore artist Howard Frech contributed to Carson’s first work of literature — art that has seldom been displayed since Under the Sea-Wind was first published in 1941.

Dr. Juriga, a Salisbury, Maryland, pediatrician who is associated with the Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art in that state, will offer a compelling and insightful look into the influence of the Maine seacoast on Carson, her writings, and her outlook on the natural world.  Dr. Juriga has served as guest curator for two major exhibits at the Salisbury art museum — “Witness for Nature:  The World of Rachel Carson” in 1999 and “Bob Hines:  National Wildlife Artist” in 2003.

The September 27 presentation will be held from 7-9 p.m. at the Skidompha Public Library in Damariscotta.  Admission is free, and a public reception and Rachel Carson book sale by Damariscotta’s Maine Coast Book Shop will follow the talk.

The “Friends of Hog Island” is a national support group for the Hog Island Audubon Camp, made up of former staff, alumni, and friends of the camp, which is located off Keene Neck Road in Bremen.  Members contribute their volunteer labor to the maintenance of the camp every June, raise funds to support its educational programs and growth, help preserve the Hog Island camp’s history, and maintain a Web site at www.fohi.org.  FOHI’s president, David Klinger, and Hog Island Audubon Camp director Seth Benz will welcome the audience during the September 27 evening talk.

Rachel Carson Comes Alive for Hog Island Audience (7/04)

By Nancy Wilson, The Lincoln County News

“The Maine Audubon camp on Hog Island, Bremen, was busy last week.  For one thing, the Friends of Hog Island (FOHI) were there for the week, tending to their annual chores of post-winter cleanup; clearing trails, repairing and readying cabins for occupancy, and whatever else needed to be done. …”

NEW-CUE Writers Conference Scheduled for June 2004

Complement your Hog Island experience in 2004 by attending the Third Writers’ Conference and Workshop in honor of Rachel Carson, June 15-18 in nearby Boothbay Harbor, Maine, sponsored by NEW-CUE, a non-profit organization of writers and college educators keeping the legacy of Rachel Carson alive.

About the Conference

Nature and Environmental Writers/College and University Educators (NEW-CUE), a non-profit, environmental education organization based in Washington, D.C., will offer its Third Writers’ Conference and Workshop in honor of Rachel Carson at The Spruce Point Inn in Boothbay Harbor, Maine, from June 15-18, 2004. Writers, educators and the interested public are invited to attend.

The theme of the 2004 Conference/Workshop will be “Living Waters,” and the event will be held at one of New England’s finest waterfront resorts in an area that is well-known for tidal pools, coves and salt marshes. The Keynote Address will be delivered by ocean conservationist, Carl Safina, author of Song for the Blue Ocean, Eye of the Albatross: Visions of Hope and Survival, and the Seafood Lover’s Almanac. Safina’s work has been profiled in The New York Times and on the Bill Moyers television special, “Earth on Edge.” He is currently president of the Blue Ocean Institute.

Other featured speakers and presenters will include Cape Cod essayist Robert Finch; Newbery Medal-winning author Jean Craighead George who will be joined by her daughter, author Twig George, a former Director of Education for the Center for Marine Conservation in Washington, D.C.; and poet Andrea Cohen who is the director of the Blacksmith House Reading Series in Cambridge, MA. In addition, there will be a performance of a one-woman play, A Sense of Wonder, based on the life and work of Rachel Carson with author/actress Kaiulani Lee. The program of events will also include a marine-life workshop offered by The Chewonki Foundation, presentations and guided activities including hikes led by guides from the Boothbay Region Land Trust, tide pool explorations with a marine biologist from the Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, and a trip to the Burnt Island Lighthouse.

For further details, information and photos from the 2002 Conference/Workshop, please visit our website at http://www.new-cue.org, or send an e-mail message to info@new-cue.org, or telephone (845) 398-4147.