7:30 pm (Berwick Academy)
Weaving the history of Eliot, Maine and some of its prominent families with the experiences of newcomers to that town, author Helen Goransson describes the experiences that led to the writing of her book. She will share photos and stories about the Bartlett family who inhabited her home, and, in particular, Ralph Bartlett, prominent Eliot citizen and world traveler, the ghost who made her write the book.
This lecture will be held Thursday evening, March 24, starting at 7:30 pm. Sponsored by the Old Berwick Historical Society, the program will be held at Berwick Academy's Jeppesen Science Center on Academy Street, and the public is invited. Refreshments will be served by volunteers.
"The book is a history, mystery, ghost story and love story all rolled into one," Goransson said. The story parallels the life of Ralph Bartlett, an attorney in the early 1800s, and a modern day couple, Emily and Niel, who move into Bartlett's home and have encounters with his ghost. Ralph was one of four Bartlett children who grew up in the farmhouse where the Goransson's live.
Twenty-five years ago Goransson and her husband, Paul, chose their Depot Road farmhouse as the ideal place to start a farm and raise a family. It wasn't long before they started noticing strange unexplainable things happening that they tried to rationalize as odd coincidences. Eventually they came to realize there was a "presence" in the house leading Goransson to begin her research on the Bartlett Family. Her research led her to Dartmouth College, where Bartlett was educated, as well at the Eliot Library. Of particular interest was Bartlett's travel diary, which revealed connections that Bartlett had to her family and many other well-known Maine families.
Helen Goransson, a native of Canton, Massachusetts, was also published in 1990 when she helped her father, George Gerzon, A Holocaust survivor, write his memoirs called "The Hand of Fate.