100 Years Ago: 1918

(Lost watch ad): On Sunday, July 21, between Poland Spring and Rockland, a very small oval-shaped wristwatch, with a border of diamonds. Wristband consists of a small black ribbon. Initials E. P. C. on back of case. Finder return to Mrs. M.R. Gano, Poland Spring House, South Poland, Me. Very liberal award.

50 Years Ago: 1968

The Jaycee Riverbank Clean-Up plan got strong support when Lewiston Mayor Willlam Rocheleau Jr. and Auburn Mayor Clyde E. Goudey gave their wholehearted support on the “Cleanup the Bank” project, being promoted by the Lewiston-Auburn Jaycees. The support was given at a 90-minute meeting attended by some 20 city officials and Jaycees. A highlight of Wednesday’s meeting of the evening was the acceptance of Mayors Goudy and Rocheleau as co-chairmen of the project.

25 Years Ago: 1993

Ramon Buds Villani got more than a mouthful of dust when he tore down a drafty, aging wall inside the dining room of his North River Road farmhouse in Auburn. The 34-year-old Bath Iron Works laborer got a glimpse into a woman’s life on a rural Auburn homestead in the year 1855. Amidst the rubble of horsehair plaster and pinewood laths, Villani discovered a dusty leatherbound diary dating back to the Civil War. Villani and his wife, Judy, suspect the 3-inch-by-5-inch journal, which is crumpled and water-stained, was stored beneath an attic floorboard and over time slipped through a crack into the wall space below. “I’m hoping to find some gold coins,” Villani said, adding that he plans to probe under the finished attic floor in search of a possible cache of artifacts. The book, printed by Boston publisher William H. Hill Jr. Co., is prefaced with an 1865 almanac featuring postage rates and moon phases in New York, St. Louis and San Francisco, as well as tides in the West Coast city. Its owner left little trace of her identity on the diary’s white, blue-lined pages, but her penciled entries depict a life punctuated by frequent boredom and marked by church activities.

The material in the Looking Back is reproduced exactly as it originally appeared, although misspellings and errors may be corrected.

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