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Lillian Huntley

The oral history interview with Lillian Huntley, conducted by the Jonesport Historical Society, provides a comprehensive account of her family history and upbringing on Beals Island, Maine. The interview is a valuable resource for understanding the social, economic, and cultural aspects of life in a coastal Maine community during the early to mid-20th century. Lillian Huntley's narrative begins with a detailed account of her family lineage, tracing back to her parents, Ewart and Mineola Beal Lenfesty, and her maternal grandfather, Tall Barney Beal. She shares insights into her family's livelihood, including her grandfather's occupation as a farmer. The interview also delves into the financial challenges her family faced, shedding light on their struggles with poverty and the impact it had on their daily lives. Huntley's recollections provide a poignant portrayal of the resilience and resourcefulness exhibited by her family in the face of economic hardship. The interview also offers a glimpse into Huntley's educational experiences, including her attendance at Beals Elementary School and her academic achievements, such as being valedictorian and excelling in standardized tests. Her memories of childhood activities, such as ice skating, provide a vivid depiction of the simple pleasures and challenges of growing up in a rural, economically disadvantaged community. Furthermore, the interview touches upon Huntley's professional life, including her tenure as an administrator for a nursing home and her teaching career, highlighting her determination to pursue education and contribute to her community. Additionally, Huntley's entrepreneurial endeavors, such as running a restaurant and making donuts and May baskets, underscore her multifaceted contributions to the local economy and her commitment to her religious community. Overall, the interview with Lillian Huntley provides a multifaceted and rich account of Lillian Huntley's life, offering valuable insights into the socio-economic landscape of Beals Island, Maine, and the resilience of its inhabitants.





Gwendolyn Elkin

project facilitator.

Not defined

Suggested citation: Huntley, Lillian, The Jonesport Historical Society Oral History Interview, Transcribed by Mapping Oceans Stories 2020 class in collaboration with The First Coast, (March 1st, 2006), by Charlie Alley and Bill Plaskon, 27 pages, Maine Sound and Story. Online: Insert URL (Last Accessed: Insert Date).


Oral histories are personal first-hand narratives of the past, and rely on the memories, interpretations, and opinions of the narrator. As such, they may contain offensive language, differing viewpoints, and/or negative stereotypes. The opinions expressed in the accounts here reflect those of the narrator, and not the positions of Maine Sound & Story.

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