Exactly 107 years ago today, ten young people graduated from Robbinston Grammar School in Robbinston, Washington, Maine.
Robbinston is very close to Calais, Maine and I have many maternal roots in this area, including to robbinston itself as my 2X gret grandmother, Nellie Tarbox Adams, was born there on 28 June 1856.
While searching online for orphaned family mementos to return to descendants, I came across a unique find – this graduation program for the Class of 1916:
Class of 1916
I wasn’t able to find out much about Robbinston Grammar School, except that, as of the 2013-2014 school year, it was still open. I couldn’t find any information about when it first opened, but I doubt that it was a new school in the early 1900s. Just over 500 people live in Robbinston today.
Grammar school, at the time, had the meaning of a school that went to the eighth grade, but it seems that Robbinston provided a bit more than that, given that most of the graduates were around 16 years old.. In the Class of 1916, there were ten students plus the name of one young lady, Alice Poor, who did the Reading.
Who were these young Robbinston students?
Let’s begin with Alice Mildred Poor. She was a Robbinston resident, but was born 30 August 1892, the daughter of Henry and Emma (Bates) Poor. She was also a college student at the University of Maine, Orono, and likely was home on summer vacation.
Alice married Kenneth Albert Rollins on 30 August 1919 in Robbinston and the couple moved to Farmington, Franklin, Maine, where they spent the rest of their lives. Alice, astonishingly, lived almost to her 103rd birthday, passing away on 18 February 1995 in Farmington. They were the parents of three children.
Now for the graduates:
Gertrude Lincoln Cox was born 30 September 1903, the daughter of Stephen and Saide (Lincoln) Cox. She married George L. Campbell, 31 August 1935 in Lewiston, Androscoggin, Maine. She died on 3 August 1989. This couple had no children.
Mary Anna Diffin was born 15 December 1901, the daughter of Wesley and Edith (Pottle) Diffin. She married Gardner Parmenter, 6 July 1920 and they spent their lives close to home. Mary Anna died 30 December 1971 in Calais, Washington, Maine. They had one son.
Franklin Housman Leonard was born 2 June 1901 in Somerville, Middlesex, Massachusetts, the son of Henry A. and Emma (Housman) Leonard. He is the only student who didn’t have Robbinston roots and, although he was a veteran of World War I, he died unmarried at the young age of 22 on 5 June 1923. How he came to attend school in Robbinston is not known.
Lionel Edward Morrison was born 23 September 1903, the son of Edward and Carrie May (Hersey) Morrison. He married Kathleen Morrison. He died in Boston, Massachusetts on 17 March 1973. They were the parents of nine children.
Florence Belle Morrison was the older sister of Lionel, born 21 April 1902. She married Harold Beach, 18 June 1936. They were the parents of one son. Florence died in 1946.
Edith Gertrude Robinson was born 29 August 1900, the daughter of Charles and Mary E. (Welt) Robinson. She married Waldron Johnson, 30 October 1926. Edith died on 28 July 1976. They were the parents of three sons.
Richard Billings Robinson was born 14 December 1901, the son of George and Gertrude (Agnew) Robinson. He married Eva Bourdeau, c1926. He died about 20 December 1951 in Chicago, Illinois. They were the parents of three children.
Roscoe Burleigh Sweeney was born 22 February 1900, the son of Lewis W. and Mary E. (McGraw) Sweeney. He died in 1938, unmarried.
Grace Amelia Spearin was born 19 July 1899, the daughter of Oliver W. and Nellie Addie (O’Grady) Spearin. She married Ernest S. Morrell, 22 June 1920. She died January 1969. they were the parents of three sons.
Idella Suddy was born 20 April 1900, the daughter of Charles and Susan B. (Lyons) Suddy. she married (1) Mr. McCullough and (2) Wilmer A. Kierstad, 19 April 1942, Portland, Cumberland, Maine. She died 14 June 1970 in Portland. Wilmer had children by a previous marriage, but he and Idella also had one daughter.
If you are descended from any of these young graduates and would like a digital copy of the program, please leave a comment.
The original has been donated to the Calais Free Library in Calais, Washington, Maine.