100 Years Ago: 1923

Last Saturday evening, Mrs. O. E. Bryant delightfully entertained a group of girls at a Japanese party at her home. The house was decorated with cut flowers. When the refreshments were served the girls all seated themselves on the floor around a low table. The room was darkened a little, making the effect very pretty. While the girls were enjoying themselves, a fortune teller arrived, who was bound for the Oxford County fair, and told the girls’ fortune. They were much surprised at the conclusion of the party to learn that the fortune teller was none other than Miss Smithie Ray.

50 Years Ago: 1973

From now through the fall visitors to the State House can add art to their itinerary. In Governor Curtis’s executive offices hangs a selection of work by Maine artists. This is the second in what is hoped will be a series of shows. When he moved to his new suite in the State House this spring, Governor Curtis asked the Maine State Commission on the Arts and Humanities if they would come up with a loan collection of paintings. The object? To improve the executive suite’s otherwise bare walls and at the same time provide a showcase for Maine artists and additional interest for the thousands of people both Mainers and out of state guests who visit the State House each year.

25 Years Ago: 1998

The 153rd Oxford County Fair begins its four-day run Wednesday.


The 1998 fair is dedicated to Emily Stacy, who is in her 50th year of feeding fair folks. Stacy started her restaurant business in 1948 when she was laid off from a woolen mill. She bought an old army bus and built a tagalong trailer with seats along the sides. Her parents made pies and donuts then and her niece and husband, Starr and Lonnie Jones, help now.

Stacy included the “Norway Fair” as she calls it, in her very first year of feeding farmers, cattlemen and fair-goers home-cooked meals.

All new this year are several features that will take place all four days.

The pace car and pace truck from Oxford Plains Speedway will be on display, and race cars and drivers will be on hand evenings and Saturday for photos and autographs.

Kids will be able to climb on a rock climbing wall that simulates real rock climbing. There will be three pig scrambles for kids, one each on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

On Thursday, free coffee and donut holes will be served to everyone over 60 past the Fair Food Booth in the yellow building. And representatives from the Maine Veterans Home and Androscoggin Health will be there all day to answer questions about the facilities.

On Saturday, a kids’ fun tent from 10a.m. to 4 p.m. will offer activities including a coloring contest, a race with pedal tractors, a three-legged race and a sack race. When they pass through the entrance gate, kids will be given a form to fill out for the drawing of at least four bicycles that will take place at 4 p.m.

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

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