SOLON & BEYOND: Forty is the old age of youth…

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percyby Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
Solon, Maine 04979

I’m going to lighten up this morning after putting in so much about all the heartache and sadness of the flooding of Flagstaff. I’ll start with this little saying I found; “Forty is the old age of youth; Fifty is the youth of old age. As you slide down the banister of life, may the splinters never point the wrong way.”

I am taking it from a yellowed old age clipping I found. It doesn’t have a year when it was printed, and it doesn’t tell what paper I was writing for at the time (but it certainly wasn’t The Town Line.) It starts out with these words: “I am going back in time again but only 62 years this time. Mary has been cleaning in her nursery school getting ready to open it again and when she took up an old linoleum in a closet, underneath was an old Independent Reporter, dated July 21, 1921. On the front page was the headline, “Old French Farm had Bridal Party. Earle Spaulding Wedding to Miss Esther French, Great-Granddaughter of Pioneer.” Couldn’t find any other Solon news, the closest being South Bingham and vicinity. Under the heading it said, Mr. and Mrs. Harry French are parents of a baby son, Carlton, born July 8. Albert Gehrker Sr, and family are enjoying a nice overland car. Albert Gehrke Jr. has bought the place where Harold York formerly lived and has moved his family there.

There was quite a bit of Stratton news and items from such places as Mainstream, Larone and Quinnebasset and with over 30 towns having columns. There was one article entitled, “We All Have It ” (this was 62 years ago!) Wish I could print it all but it is rather lengthy, written by an editor who took a drive of 180 miles to observe the speed mania on the highways. It starts out like this

“We all have it! We mean, of course, the public highways without being impressed that every man and woman and many of the children are afflicted with speed mania. It is a dire and dangerous disease. It is just as sure to lead to death as a cannon ball. This speeding is a disease just as truly as small pox is an affliction.” It ends with: “What’s the remedy? There is but one! That is for a law prohibiting the manufacture of cars beyond a medium speed limit. The ordinary car one meets on a highway has a speed limit of 30 to 40 miles and many of them can tear along at the death-inviting rate of 60-70 miles per hour! We hold life so cheaply that unless these high speed cars are prohibited by law, not only hundreds but thousands of our people will die upon the public highways. And what an awful death! Mangled and bleeding amidst the sand an dirt of the earth without an oportunity to arrange one’s business or say goodbye!”

There was a headline that said “Officers Capture Alleged Moonshiners I. Woods, South of Madison.” The paper then was the size of the daily paper now but with much smaller print. This issue had 14 pages and on the front it claims to be Maine’s Best County Weekly, Cost was 5 cents per copy or $1.50 a year. The correspondents didn’t get their names put in under their towns except Athens, and it said Bunker Hill-Athens. Does anyone know if that was a person’s name or a place there? Guess I’ll go put last week’s The Town Line under a linoleum someplace and in 50 or 60 years someone will find it and they’ll say, “Who was the nut writing Solon news way back then?

Hope all of you in Solon received 2020 Annual Report last week telling about the annual Solon Town Meeting, on Saturday, March 6, 2021, at Solon Elementary School. Election of town officials; 8 a.m. to noon. Town meeting is at 1:30 p.m.

Perhaps I’ve been back in the dark ages too long with what I’ve been writing about lately, because I haven’t had very much recent news sent to me, what do you think? Anyway, I came across a poem I had written back in 1943. On the outside it says Marilyn Houston English 1, Oct 4, 1943. The name of it was Saving Gas:

Some people go to the movies in cars, and that is luck,
But we have to go in a breezy old truck.
What do we care, if we only get there,
With many a song, our singing is rare.
We don’t have much style, But we have lots of fun,
The people of Stratton always know when we’ve come.

I got an A- for the above poem. But I can’t begin to tell you about all the fun we had going to the movies in my Uncle Perley’s BIG Old Truck; on cold winter times or the hottest of summer days! Flagstaff truly was a wonderful place to grow up, and to have lived in for a few years after I was married.

And now for Percy’s memoir in these difficult days: When things seem hopeless, trust God and do what’s right. First think: God is on my side! He wants to help me. Second say: I will rejoice and be patient through this hopeless situation. Next pray: ask God to help you trust in him. Finally obey patiently, wait, for God always keeps his promise, so you can depend on him to help you.


Responsible journalism is hard work!
It is also expensive!

If you enjoy reading The Town Line and the good news we bring you each week, would you consider a donation to help us continue the work we’re doing?

The Town Line is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit private foundation, and all donations are tax deductible under the Internal Revenue Service code.

To help, please visit our online donation page or mail a check payable to The Town Line, PO Box 89, South China, ME 04358. Your contribution is appreciated!

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *