100 years ago, 1918
The Auburn City Council will, at its meeting Monday night, consider the purchase of the “Penley lot,” so-called, which adjoins the Chamberlain school on High street. The lot is owned by E. W. Penley, and contains the house occupied by him some years ago. It can be purchased for $5,000, and it is probable that the money will be paid in five equal yearly installments, to avoid the outlay of the whole amount this year. It is understood that Mr. Penley is agreeable to this plan. It is a good-sized lot and it is extremely desirable for future playground purposes. It is felt that the price is very reasonable at present prices of real estate.
50 years ago, 1968
Lewiston’s application for a federal grant under the Model Cities program is rapidly taking shape with many Lewiston organizations and individuals actively participating, Development Director Louis C. Sarelas said today. In a progress report on the city’s effort, Sarelas, who is also coordinator of government programs for the city. said he was optimistic that t h e application would be submitted before the deadline, April 15. He also said he was optimistic about Lewiston’s chances of receiving a grant. 
25 years ago, 1993
In its heyday, Bates Mill was the city’s biggest property taxpayer, biggest employer and biggest manufacturing complex. Today the mill is city property. It provides fewer than two percent of the jobs it offered at its peak. It’s still big, however — eight buildings with 1.2 million square feet of floor space on 8.7 acres off Canal Street — and in serious need of repair. Engineering studies indicate it will cost about $5 million to replace Bates’ badly deteriorated roofs and antiquated, inefficient heating and process steam system, and remove asbestos pipe insulation. Those renovations are vital if the 1850s-era mill is to be put to adaptive reuse and thus bring jobs and tax funds back to Lewiston. 
The material in Looking Back is reproduced exactly as it originally appeared, although misspellings and errors made at that time may be corrected.

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