Rangeley Logging Museum hosts annual Knit and Crafts Sale

Each year, the women of the Rangeley region show their knit, crochet, and craft talents for the Knit and Crafts Show and Sale at the Rangeley Lakes Region Logging Museum on Route 16, one mile east of Rangeley. Admission is free. Celebrating the creativity of Maine fiber artists, the show also introduces visitors to the history of knitting in the logging woods of the Rangeley region.
Offered are a variety of handmade items such as fanciful moose, Christmas items, sweaters and more. On display is the Museum’s exhibit on knitting in the timberwoods of Maine: “Hand in Hand: Logging and Knitting in Maine,” with gloves worn by local loggers as well as a pair of gray woolen double-thumb mittens from New Brunswick. Worn by woodsmen, these unique mittens made by thrifty women could be turned over and used on the other side once the palm-side had been worn out. Many of the Museum’s photography exhibits also show the sweaters and mittens made by women, and sometimes mended by men, that were used in the logging camps.
The Rangeley region also has a colorful knitting story to tell. Many of its native daughters, such as Lucille Haley Richard, Virginia Haley White, and Bertha Lamb Haines, began knitting as girls, and some cared for and dressed the dolls their mothers made for them. And, Rangeley’s hills were once dotted with sheep, since there were 12 to 15 sheep farms in the area.
Mrs. Lucille Haley Richard (1927-2006), is founder of this event. Long recognized as a very fine knitter, Mrs. Richard was especially fond of making sweaters for babies and young children.
With interest in knitting on the rise in Maine and throughout the country, the Museum invites any knitters, crocheters, embroiderers, and other crafters who would like to include their handiwork in the day’s activities to call Peggy Yocom at 864-3421.
The Logging Museum opens every Saturday and Sunday in July and August, and by appointment. Call the Richards at 864-5595.
Do you have knitted goods; patched clothing; or needles, thread, or wax used in the logging camps? Photographs of knitting or woolen goods in the camps? Memories of knitting in the camps? The Logging Museum would love to hear from you. Call Peggy at 864-3421.

–by Peggy Yocom, Folklorist at the Rangeley Lakes Region Logging Museum

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