DEAR SUN SPOTS: I was driving by the Auburn City Hall and noticed a stone logo. Could you please find out the meaning and when it originated?
Thank you for your help in defining the historical meaning. — Bea, firstname.lastname@example.org
ANSWER: Sun Spots wasn’t sure what Bea was referring to, so she turned to Tracy Pinkham, information assistant at Auburn Public Works, who said:
“I believe they are referring to the city seal. I was able to find some historical information on the city’s website, auburnmaine.org, at http://tinyurl.com/c52a6ex.”
Sun Spots checked the Web page out and found a possible explanation for the city seal, as well as much other interesting information, which she has presented below.
"Auburn was first settled in 1786. Prior to that, it constituted a part of the town of Minot from which it separated and incorporated on Feb. 24, 1842. The town of Danville was annexed to Auburn on Feb. 26, 1867, and the area became the city of Auburn on Feb. 22, 1869, at which time the charter was adopted.
"As long ago as 1835, the factory system of making shoes was originated in Auburn. Shortly thereafter — 1839, the preparation of the development of water power on the Lewiston side of the Androscoggin River had a great effect on Auburn and the phenomenal growth that made industrial history for the state of Maine began in both the Twin Cities.
"It is speculated that the spindles and shoes in Auburn’s city seal were chosen because Auburn was thought of as 'the shoe manufacturing center of Maine.' Another likelihood was the advent of the machine era, which was transforming the shoe industry by improving production speed. The early machinery was foot powered.
"Auburn has always been a leader in promoting and accepting new ideas. The first railroad was built in 1849; street railways transportation began in the early 1870s, and the first airport was established in 1928. Clarence Rand invented the first steam automobile just across the river at the turn of the century. This was improved upon by the famous Stanley brothers who built the highly regarded Stanley Steamer. In addition, Auburn was the first city in New England to install fluorescent streetlights in the downtown area.
"Auburn was the first city in Maine, the second in New England to adopt the council-manager form of government. Under the council–manager form of government adopted in 1917, the manager is the full-time administrative head of the city. The nonpartisan council is composed of seven members elected for a two-year term.
"As early as 1919 the Planning Board had developed a master plan for the orderly growth of the city. From the time when it became a town, it has had six different 'seats of government,' or headquarters for the conduct of municipal business. Its current home at 60 Court St. is its second occupation in the building."
Tracy also said the Latin phrase “vestigia nulla retrorsum” on the seal can be translated to read “no steps back.”
DEAR SUN SPOTS: Gee, Sun Spots, your reply to the lady from Buckfield (July 9) about having all the numbers for the Shaw's $1,000,000 prize except No. 4 was so good that you shine without spots.
I have all the numbers except No. 4 as well, and I will do better than the lady from Buckfield. If one of your readers has No. 4 and is willing to send it to me, I will split the $1,000,000 in half or even give that person three-quarters of the prize.
In fact, I have more numbers for the $1,000,000 prize than I do for the $2 prize. There really is a better way for supermarkets to get customers to enter their doors than giving away prizes. Lowering their prices will draw in more people than anything else. — W.L. Bowling, Portland, WBowling@maine.rr.com
ANSWER: Low prices are certainly a plus. On the other hand, you and Rosita from Buckfield have certainly proven to be loyal customers in your quest for prizes.
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