Franco-Americans brought their proud cultural legacy to Lewiston-Auburn beginning in the mid-nineteenth century. As their population grew, religious leaders became community leaders, building an independent parish and a support system, as well as providing child care. The Sisters of Charity cared for the sick and orphaned and ran the first bilingual school in Maine. Franco-Americans grappled with their own questions of patriotism, identity and culture, assimilating as Americans while preserving both their French and French Canadian backgrounds. Authors Mary Rice-DeFosse and James Myall explore the challenges, accomplishments and enduring bonds of the Franco-Americans in Lewiston-Auburn.
About the Author
Mary Rice-DeFosse is a professor of French and Francophone studies at Bates College. She and her students have collected oral histories from local residents as part of the department's Franco-American Oral History Project. She serves on the boards of Lewiston-Auburn's Franco Center for heritage and culture and the Franco-American Collection at the University of Southern Maine's Lewiston-Auburn College. She holds a PhD from Yale University.
James Myall is a former coordinator of the Franco-American Collection at the University of Southern Maine's Lewiston-Auburn College and is currently executive director of the Freeport Historical Society. He holds an MA in ancient history and archaeology from the University of St. Andrews. During his time at the Franco-American Collection, he was responsible for preserving and promoting the Franco-American heritage of Maine and New England in a variety of ways. In 2012, he served as a consultant for the State of Maine's Taskforce on Franco-Americans.
Table of Contents
1 New Arrivals from the North (1860-1890) 9
2 A Franco-American Belle Époquc (1890-1914) 37
3 Hard Times (1914-1941) 73
4 New Horizons: Acculturation, Negotiation, Affirmation (1941 1970) 103
5 Renaissance and Reinvention (1970-2014) 127
About the Authors 175