Artist Ron Kullaway Exhibits at Mast Cove Gallery
Broken Arm Delays Painting For Eight Weeks
by Steve Hrehovcik
When artist Ronald Kullaway moves his left arm he winches in
pain – for two reasons. One reason is the physical pain caused
by the fall that broke a bone in his upper arm. Kullaway’s
accident occurred last week in Seattle where he and his wife
Penelope were attending the wedding of their son Maxwell.
The second reason for Kullaway’s pain is more emotional. Since
he paints with his left hand he cannot do any work for at least
eight weeks. His doctor tells him it will take at least that
long before his arm will be recovered enough for him to pick up
a paint brush.
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Harding Books & Maps
Celebrate 45 Years In Business
So Many Books…So Little Time
By Steve Hrehovcik
soon as Hollywood decides to make a movie that features a
bookstore in the plot, the perfect model for the lead role would
be Douglas Harding, owner of Harding Books & Maps store in
has the looks and demeanor you’d expect for a book store owner.
Earnest, with a no-nonsense approach to his vast collection of
more than 200,000 volumes, Harding makes the point that he runs
a difficult business. Yet, he is ready to flash a grin when
amused and eager to offer an astute observation on all manner of
topics – many he gleaned from the books that surround him and
the customers he has helped over the years.
Harding in a film about books should come as no surprise. In a
labor of love, he has devoted a colorful life to the collection,
displaying and sale of books, maps and prints for 45 years.
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chapter to this distinguished career began when he bought a book
collection at an auction in 1962. With this inventory he opened
his first book store near his home in Nashua, New Hampshire. A
short time later he acquired 50,000 more volumes from the Roger
Babson Institute, the noted Massachusetts business school.
describes his first experiences as learning from many mistakes.
He said, “It takes 10 years just to find out what to do. The
romantic notion that many people have about books doesn’t really
work when it comes to running the business. Like any
business, it requires some tough decisions and hard work. I had
to learn as I went along”.
years it is obvious Harding has learned a lot about books and
the people who buy them. He said, “People’s tastes change over
the years and we have to be diligent and change our approach
One of the
major changes he made was to move the business to its present
location on Route 1, Wells in 1980. The building Harding
purchased served as an antique shop. But, from the distinctive
architectural design, it is clear that the building had a former
life as a railroad station.
many books it houses, the station had an illustrious history of
its own. George C. Lord, the owner of the Boston & Maine
Railroad, and son of the ship builder George Lord of Kennebunk,
constructed the station in 1888. It served as Lord’s private
rail stop when he vacationed on the property he purchased in
what is today the Laudholm Trust. The location was called “Elms
Farm” after the many trees that dotted the property. Its
apparent influence persists to this day, since “Elms” continues
to appear on Maine maps, even though no such town exists.
the years, Harding expanded on to the station building as his
collection of books and maps grew to meet customer’s demands.
Today there are 14 rooms packed from floor to ceiling and rows
upon rows of books of every description. The largest of these
rooms encompasses 8,000 square feet. Book lovers can find
subjects that range from art to zoology, and every category in
between. Harding boasts that a particular strength of the books
he offers cover Americana, maritime, New England town histories,
genealogy, arts and antiques.
also carries an impressive selection of United States and world
maps and prints, some dating from the 16th through 19th
centuries. Another important feature of the store is the
noteworthy collection of rare and out of print classics.
him keep track of the vast collection Harding relies on the help
of his daughter, Cheryl, and son, Kevin and a total of six
employees. Cheryl has been with the book store for 21 years and
can pin point any subject and most specific books with ease.
Kevin has a 17 year history with the book store and is most
often found entering and searching for books at the computer.
the ambiance of the building and books suggest an easy-going
by-gone era, Harding uses the latest technology to help his
customers find books they want. As a member of the Antiquarian
Booksellers' Association of America and the Maine Antiquarian
Booksellers' Association, Harding has the resources to locate
almost any book in and out of print.
Books can also be
ordered on line by going to the website,
www.hardingsbooks.com. The store is open year round, seven
days a week, 9 AM to 5 PM.
So far, no
Hollywood producer has invited Harding to “do lunch”. But film
buffs can rummage through the shop’s impressive movie section to
get a sense of the quantity and quality of books offered on the
subject. It’s just one of the topics that keep customers coming
back. To find more about how Harding plans to celebrate his 45th
Anniversary in business, or if there might be a movie deal
pending, call 646-8785.
- May 8, 2007
Star Gazing – A Universal Attraction
Summer Nights Offer Spectacular Cosmic Views
by Steve Hrehovcik
Back in the glory years of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, studio chief
Louis B. Mayer boasted that M-G-M had more stars under contract
than there were stars in the heavens. While Mayer’s claim made
excellent publicity it was a trifle off the mark.
The latest estimate fills our heavens with billions of galaxies,
each filled with millions, perhaps trillions, of celestial
bodies. So to enjoy star gazing it isn’t necessary to go to a
movie theater. Just go outside after dark and look up.
The celestial view provides several options for enjoying the
evening. It could make a magnificent backdrop for a romantic
rendezvous. Or, it might inspire lofty questions of time, space
For some, it offers an opportunity to learn more about our
heavenly neighbors by recognizing them and appreciating their
scientific, historical and mythological significance.
The warm summer nights ahead provide a comfortable way to
experience some exciting stellar viewing. And one of the best
places to view “the window on the Universe” is at the Starlight
Observatory in Kennebunk.
New and seasoned amateur astronomers gather at the observatory
for the enjoyment and challenge of watching the cosmos. The
Starlight Observatory, located on Route 35, West Kennebunk, has
been in operation since 2001. It is the creation of the
Astronomical Society of Northern New England (ASNNE), an all
volunteer, non-profit educational organization.
Visitors to the society can use telescopes to learn how to
identify constellations, stars, planets and other interstellar
matter. The society also presents monthly discussions on
astronomical topics and organizes outings to observe special
Bernie Reim, of Newfield, has been associated with ASNNE since
it opened in 1982. The visit of Halley’s Comet in 1986 inspired
Reim to become a star gazer. Since then he has immersed himself
in the study of astronomy, writing articles and teaching classes
on the stars and the related subjects.
He said, “This is great time to see the comet called Schwassmann/Wachmann
3, named after the two men who first discovered it in 1930.”
The comet makes a visit to our planet every 5.4 years. The sight
of a comet on its pilgrimage through our night sky can be an
Reim had several other suggestions for summer night viewing. The
planet Jupiter, the largest planet in our solar system, is most
spectacular at this time of year. It appears in the eastern sky
just after sunset.
On June 17 Mars, called the “Red Planet” and Saturn, with its
famous rings, appear less than one degree apart. Look for them
in the constellation Cancer in the western sky.
In July and August our planet witnesses the annual visit of the
Perseid Meteor Shower. Sky watchers can see colorful fireballs
plus long graceful streaking meteors that pierce the Earth’s
atmosphere at 132,000 mph. The meteors are bits of dust from
another comet called Swift-Tuttle. Although far from Earth the
comet’s wide tail intersects with the Earth’s orbit creating the
spectacular view. The shower streaks through the constellation
Perseus, which gives the shower its name. Best viewing will be
just before sunrise on August 12.
To learn more about summer star gazing visit the next public
session at the Starlight Observatory, May 26 at dusk. For more
information about ASNNE and the Starlight Observatory check
May 5, 2006
Smith: A Maine Legend
by Steve Hrehovcik
One of Maine’s most prominent and beloved citizens was Margaret
She was born in Skowhegan on December 14, 1897 and passed away
May 29, 1995.
In her 97 years she achieved many “firsts”, both as a woman and
politician. She was the first woman to serve in both the House
of Representatives (1940 – 1949) and the Senate (1949 - 1973).
She also was the first woman from Maine to be elected to both
chambers of Congress.
Adding to her list of firsts, she was first woman to have her
name placed in nomination for President of a major political
party. This occurred at the Republican convention in 1964. Her
colleague Senator Barry Goldwater received the nomination that
A serious worker, Senator Smith always maintained her Downeast
sense of humor. When asked by a political interviewer what she
would do if she woke up one morning in the White House, she
said, “I’d go straight to Mrs. Truman and apologize. Then I’d go
Known for her strong character and passionate independent
streak, she spoke her mind and would take a courageous stand
when she believed she was right. She became a cherished
personality in the state as well as a respected legend across
the nation. She wore a red rose whenever in public. It became
her trade mark, along with her strength of will and firm
As a young woman in Skowhegan Margaret Chase was the “school
marm” of a one-room schoolhouse, worked as a telephone operator,
newspaper circulation manager and executive with a local textile
mill. She became active in local women’s groups and helped start
the Skowhegan Business and Professional Women’s Club. She never
attended college. She married Clyde Smith, a prominent political
leader in central Maine in 1930.
While many regarded Senator Smith as a champion of women’s
rights she never thought of herself as a feminist. In a 1975
interview she said, "I was treated fairly in the Senate, not
because of equal rights but because of seniority.
When she left office in 1973 she held the record as the longest
serving woman Senator in U.S. history.
Her political career began when her husband Clyde Smith was
elected to the House of Representatives in 1936. She served as
his secretary. When Clyde suffered a fatal heart attack in 1940
Maine voters sent Margaret to Washington to fill out his term.
During World War II she served on the House Naval Affairs
committee. As co-chair of the committee she helped resolve
disputes between the military, state and local jurisdictions
where military bases were being constructed across the nation.
Although a staunch Republican, she often voted against her
party’s wishes. 1n 1950, at the height of the hysteria brought
on by Senator Joseph McCarthy’s anticommunist crusade, Senator
Smith denounced McCarthy’s harsh tactics. In her speech on the
Senate floor called the “Declaration of Conscience” she stated,
“Moral cowardice that keeps us from speaking our minds is as
dangerous to this country as irresponsible talk. The right way
is not always the popular and easy way. Standing for right when
it is unpopular is a true test of moral character.”
These comments brought her national attention. Some speculated
that she would become a candidate for Vice-President in the 1952
election. Over the years her strong stands won her many
supporting friends as well as severe foes. One of her
adversaries was Nikita S. Khrushchev, the leader of the Soviet
Union. He called her “the devil in the disguise of a woman.”
In 1972 Senator Smith lost the election to William Hathaway. She
returned to her home in Skowhegan and started plans for the
Margaret Chase Smith Library at Northwood University. The
library opened in 1982 located on fifteen acres overlooking the
Kennebec River. Senator Smith was active in its operation for a
dozen years. The library houses political documents,
photographs, honors and memorabilia that covered her thirty-two
years in Congress. It also serves as a museum, educational
facility and public policy center to promote research into
Senator Smith considered politics as her only life. "I have no
family, no time-consuming hobbies," she said after many years in
the Senate. "I have only myself and my job as United States
- March 21, 2008