Willi Irish in character as Mercy Lovejoy, 19th Century town pauper will provide the program for the Readfield Historical Society annual meeting on March 18. Submitted photo

READFIELD — Readfield Historical Society (RHS) will hold its annual meeting and program on Saturday, March 18, 2023, 1:00 p.m. at Gile Hall, 8 Old Kents Hill Road.  Following the brief business meeting,  Willi Irish of Livermore will provide the program in character as Mercy Lovejoy, 19th century pauper.

Irish has decades of experience in historical interpretation as the widow Clara Howard, 1853 school teacher, among other 18th and 19th century women. Mercy’s life was a sad one in some respects but she tells her stories with a touch of humor while enlightening her listeners about a pauper’s experience in days of long ago.

“I feel confident in saying that anyone who has observed Willi Irish in her role as a historical interpreter, at Norlands Living History Center, can attest to her skill at making history come alive,” related Dale Potter-Clark, RHS board member. All ages are welcome including interested school-aged children with their adults.

Items from the RHS gift shop will be available to purchase including the book “The Paupers and the Poor Farms: Support and Care of the Poor in Readfield” by Potter-Clark. Refreshments will be served. There is no charge for this event, but donations made to the Norlands Living History Center would be appreciated. New and existing RHS members who wish to vote at the business meeting can pay or renew their dues at the door.

RHS was founded in 1985 to preserve the rich history of Readfield and its people. Their museum and archives at 759 Main Street are open through the summer months or during other seasons by appointment when weather and temperatures allow. Appointments can be made by contacting Bob Harris, RHS president at readfieldhistorical@gmail.com or (207) 377-2299.

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