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Historic Leeds Day 2007  

On Sept 1st, Saturday, the residents of Leeds had their first ever Historic Leeds Day.  Free maps and information about the more than a dozen sites were available at the old Town House. A homemade delicious lunch was available at the Leeds Community Church on Church Hill Rd. Fun was had by all that came and we're sure to make this an annual event.

Native American tribes that lived on the upper Androscoggin River wanted to share in the abundance of the Atlantic Ocean. Traveling from Livermore down the Androscoggin River to Merrymeeting Bay is approximately 45 miles. The native Americans found it shorter to travel down the Dead River to Androscoggin Lake, to Wilson Pond, Annabesacook Lake, Cobbosseecontee Stream to the Kennebec River.  Traveling the Dead River in the spring they could paddle right over a narrow portion of the Cape. During the summer and low water periods they portaged the narrow section of the Cape which is now known as the Indian Carry.         (There is Roadside Parking)

Located on Rt. 219, near Leeds-Wayne town line, was organized in 1865.  The hall was relocated 15 years ago from its previous location in downtown Wayne, behind the General Store, next to the Mill Stream Dam. The Masons are considered the oldest world-wide fraternal organization.          (Open 1 – 4 pm  ONLY)

It was built with the hand-hewn beams from the dairy barn built in 1802 by Levi Foss & his wife Bets(e)y (Millet) Foss.  In 1786, Levi’s parents, Uriah & Sarah (Goodridge) Foss, came to the part of Livermore that became Leeds in 1802.  He worked as a ship-carpenter in Bath and commuted on foot to pay for his land.  Levi’s brother Daniel was a carpenter who built many homes in Leeds and surrounding area.  Alphonso T. Barker bought the farm in the ‘30’s and moved the family and grandson there, where they kept milking cows.  Levi had a son, Uriah who married Mary Leadbetter, who is the Great-grandmother of Glenice Pulsifer.          (Open 1 – 4 pm ONLY)

Built in 1802, this post and beam constructed house is oldest house left on Rt.106 north of Rt.219.   Its entryway and stairwell have beautiful  Rufus Porter-type wall murals painted somewhere between 1820 and 1835.                               (Open 1 – 4 pm ONLY)

Located at 260 Knapp Road, in Leeds, this farm on both the Androscoggin and Dead Rivers, was then Livermore, Massachusetts when it was settled by Increase Leadbetter, the 3rd, a Revolutionary War soldier.  He lived in Camden until 1785, when he settled this farm with his wife, Elizabeth McCurdy (Calderwood) Leadbetter and their first 6 children.  They had 7 more children by the time the land became part of the new state of Maine in 1801, and the town of Leeds in 1802.  (Until that time, Leeds was called Littleborough Plantation.)  The home has no dates when any of the buldings were built.  “What we believe to be their 2nd two room dwelling is still part of our home – some remodeled, some as it was.  We do know it was all here before 1900.”

Located at near the corner of Route 219 and 106, the Foss Corner Church was built in 1836 by Walter Foss.  Originally called the Union Chapel, the church still has the pews, pulpit, and organ that were used at that time.   There is an adjacent cemetery on one side and on the other is the 1786 Foss homestead which operated for a time as a stage couch stop known as the Temperance Hotel.          (Parking available at the home just east of the church)

The farmhouse at 90 Bryant Road is a shingled cape style with attached barn. Built about 1810, the house was the home for many years of Albert and Flora Bryant, the grandparents of Anna Smith, Katherine McNear and Nancy Trider.  Of interest are the wall murals in the living room, depicting Maine scenes and the family ammals. These were painted in 1910 by Charles Phillips.

The Peace Monument is a commemorative to the “sure peace” of the end of the Civil War and to the veterans of Leeds who participated in the fight.  The Monument was erected in 1895 by Major General Oliver Otis Howard and Brigadier General Charles Henry Howard at the suggestion of, and as a memorial to, their brother, Rev. Roland Bailey Howard, who was active in the American Peace Society.  The trail (¾ mile) leads to the monument, and the summit provides excellent views, particularly to the west. 

Founded in 1970 by an ecumenical group of ministers from 15 area churches (five MATE churches and ten others that extended beyond MATE's cooperative parish). These ministers had a vision:churches that work together can do far more to help rural Mainers than can one church working alone.  Servicing 13 towns of Androscoggin, Kennebec, and Oxford counties, RCAM works with and is financially supported by churches, other organizations, foundations, town, state and federal entities, and private individuals.  Current efforts include services for housing repair and rehabilitation, homelessness prevention services, faith in action services for rural elderly and/or disabled, rural youth services, gardening, food pantries, and assistance for shelter and other needs

The fire station, located on Ridge Road (formerly called the Dump Road) was built in the 1980’s.  It houses 6 fire trucks, a kitchen/meeting room, and utility room.  Operated by a volunteer group (who meet the 2nd and 4th Mondays of each month), their Annual Barn Sale, Spring & Fall Breakfasts, and the Bingo game at the Monmouth Fair all help raise money for specialized fire equipment.

The site of the first public high school in the town of Leeds which was established in the early 1920’s by money left for that purpose by Volney Deane.  The high school was in one half of the West Leeds school house, while the other half housed grades one through eight.  This high school offered a two year program comprised of English, Latin, French, business, arithmetic, ancient and medieval history, community civics, biology, and general science.

The Leeds Community Church was organized on Jan 3, 1953 as Presbyterian Church (in the USA) by the Presbytery of Newburyport.  This was funded by the National Missions.  Carl Geores was the organizing minister which had fifty-three members at its organizational meeting.  Meet Carl today and have a first-hand tour with lost of information about the years between 1953 and now.

Coffin’s Mill was the second mill to be built in the Town of Leeds.  The mill was originally erected on land owned by Thomas Mitchell.  The mill ran successfully until 1812, when an embargo was placed upon shipping from U.S. ports.  This proved disasterous to Maine’s lumber trade and Thomas Mitchell, whose plan was to transport lumber to Hallowell and loaded aboard schooners, was forced to sell his property.

The club was organized on Oct. 29, 1949, with the first meeting held at the home of Marshall Pratt on the Leeds Jct. Road in Wales.  The ballfield was given to the club by Mr. & Mrs. A.W. Phinney.  On Memorial Day, 1950, the field was dedicated in memory of Randall Phinney by Rev. Lemasters.  Meetings were held in the Old Plains Meetinghouse Road Church which is now part of the cemetery.  This new clubhouse, on Rt. 106, was erected in 1957-8.  The social function of the club was to support baseball and to help those in need at Christmas.