Bill White grew up on a farm in Ludlow, Maine in the 1940s and 50s. His grandfather, Nehemiah, lived in a cabin on the property. And Bill says Nehemiah was important to him for many reasons – two stand out.
First, he instilled in Bill a love for the outdoors. So much so that bill became an environmental scientist. And second, Nehemiah was exactly what a young boy needed growing up – even though it drove Bill’s mother crazy.
Maine has a small but long-standing Jewish population. There are significant Jewish communities in Portland, Waterville, Biddeford, Bangor, and Houlton.
Sam Small says you had to be a genius to survive and thrive as a Jew in a small town in rural Maine. Sam and his good friend Meredith Dondis grew up Jewish in the coastal town of Rockland. Now in their 80’s and 90’s, they both still live there. And, on this edition of Story Bank Maine, Sam and Meredith recount a few tales of early Jewish life. They were interviewed at Sam and Ruth Small’s home in 2007.