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Letters to the Editor — Issue 165

Way to go

I just read John K. Hanson Jr.’s editorial in the latest Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors and was transported back 50 years to a Church of England summer camp near Lymington on the south coast of England where, as a teenager, I got my first experience of sailing in a Wayfarer dinghy. I was hooked and have been hooked ever since. Unexpected experiences such as these can be so pivotal in life. I firmly believe the more we can introduce children to small boats the better off the world will be!

Nigel Calder

Via email

Greetings from some expats

We just wanted to say how sorry we were to hear that you had to cancel this year’s festival. I know that we aren’t there anymore, but we still feel connected to our friends and life in Camden.

I just finished reading the new issue—great as usual. John K. Hanson Jr.’s opening was perfect and I loved Cig Harvey’s short story about the pontoon boat. When we were in Cuba, I remember admiring (and Jack photographing) Pilar when we went to Hemingway’s home. It is sitting in a huge shed in back of the property. The new replica looks amazing.

Paul Cavalli and Jack McKenney

Via email

Practical pontoons

I have never been on a pontoon boat but having read Cig Harvey’s piece in the May/June 2020 issue, it sounds awfully nice (“there is no rush as you are already where you’re supposed to be”). I am sure it is an odd angle for most of your readers but I thought it was a great piece of practical philosophy.

Arthur R. G. Solmssen, Jr.

Salem, NH

Better days lie ahead

The notice of Maine Boat & Home Show’s event cancellation is a major surprise to us and is very upsetting. Just last night we were talking about our plans and activities for this summer in the Rockland, Camden, mid-state, and midcoast Maine areas.

We have been going up to this part of Maine to enjoy a range of activities, including the MB&H Show, for many, many years. We will likely miss a lot, including attending the show.  A heretofore enjoyable and rock-solid, and “look forward to” summer event, if you will.

It is more than sad that this terrific, well planned, and well attended event will be cancelled for 2020, but there is likely little to be said or done about it at this point. The issues of concern and risks, facing many people, could be significant.  So the old adage of, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” may be more to the point. It is likely this and related issues could potentially halt much of this year’s seasonal activities and could deeply devastate a range of the historical magnets of attraction, for us and many others, not to mention the potential negative impact on the great people within midcoast Maine.

So adopting a more positive outlook, such as, “Better Days Lie Ahead,” will now become our new focus. Hopefully better, safer, and greater days will indeed be ahead for all of us!

Bob and Ann Mayer

Greenland, NH


We agree with your comments and look forward to seeing you at the 2021 show.   —The editors

Photo lesson

I was enjoying a recent issue of MBH&H (March/April 2020) when I was struck with a bad case of daguerreotype envy! The fact that the plate is that large and a non-portrait is amazing. Just thought I would offer a clarification about the process. The daguerreotype as noted is made on highly polished metal, usually copper which has been coated with emulsion. The image made is a direct positive, a mirror image, which is why the writing is backward. Unlike images made using the negative process developed by William Henry Fox Talbot around the same time, daguerreotypes were one of a kind and not really made for reproduction. In a few cases, like one in the collection of the Penobscot Marine Museum’s collection of downtown Searsport, a daguerreotype of a daguerreotype was made to reverse the image.

Kevin Johnson, Photo Archivist

Penobscot Marine Museum

Searsport, ME

Reading suggestion

With regard to the rebirth of Ernest Hemingway’s fishing boat, Pilar (MBH&H May/June 2020), the book The Hemingway Patrols by Terry Mort (2009) offers considerable background on the original boat. It’s one of the better books on Hemingway. Its focus is on his search for German submarines during World War II; Mort ranges widely to take in many topics.

Bob Frost, San Francisco

A happy reader

This great magazine captures the soul of the Maine coast with well-written stories about boats, art, food, history, and natural science. It includes many different voices from along the saltwater coast, as well as the state’s many lakes and rivers. It’s a great magazine whether you live in Maine or have just visited and are fond of the state. It looks at life along the coast with a focus on boats but it’s not JUST about boating. Food, houses, nature, fine art are all covered—some good recipes! The writing is really good and kind of timeless.

We keep it at our summer place and guests pick up old issues and read them cover to cover—heck, we do too.

We love Maine and enjoy reading about it.

Keron Hall

Via email 

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