100 Years Ago: 1923

Many of the leading men and women of Maine are registering for the special Portland to Portland trip in which the State Chamber of Commerce is to run in September. This trip, which covers practically all of that month and which takes in Canada and much of the United States from the Atlantic to the Pacific, is to be one of the most notable affairs of its kind ever held in the country. Already a dozen cities have announced that they will specially entertain the party with sightseeing trips, banquets, and other features free of charge. The special train will leave the Grand Trunk station, Portland, on Sunday, September 2, at 7:30 p.m. and will make brief stops at Montreal, Port Arthur, Winnipeg, and Vancouver and arriving at Portland Ore. Sept. 11th.

50 Years Ago: 1973

Newspapermen usually have brief fame and small monuments. One who deserves a more lasting memorial is Relman “Pat” Morin, one of the most brilliant reporters of our time, who died last week at 65. In a career lasting 45 years, most of it spent with The Associated Press, Morin’s byline became familiar to millions around the world. A tall spare man with blue eyes and graying hair, Pat strongly resembled one of his friends, Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, and sometimes was mistaken for Ike or one of his brothers. At home on four continents, he wrote dispatches from some 70 countries, covered two wars and most major domestic stories, including the Rosenberg executions. He also wrote five books and won two Pulitzer prizes. His outstanding achievements as a reporter were matched by a simple lyric writing skill that raised his prose from the sometimes fish-wrapping routine of daily journalism to the level of enduring literature.

25 Years Ago” 1998

As you pull into the Funtown parking lot in Saco, Excalibur lies before you, stretching out and covering 5 acres of ground. At first glance what’s so striking is its size: It’s huge. The new roller coaster dwarfs the flume ride sitting next to it. There are thrill rides in Maine, but none can compare to this one – a real wooden roller coaster, the first the state has seen since 1948 when the Cyclone at Old Orchard Beach burned down. “This is definitely one of the best coasters in the world that I’ve been on, and I’ve been on 100  coasters all over the world,” said Mike Thompson, of Augusta. Thompson ought to know, being a member of the American Coaster Enthusiasts, a  group whose members go all over the country riding amusement park rides. As Thompson spoke, the roar of the coaster car tearing down at 55 mph and screams of the riders inside filled the air.

The material used in Looking Back is produced exactly as it originally appeared although misspellings and errors may be corrected.

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