READFIELD — This year’s final Readfield History Walk will take place rain or shine Friday, Nov. 13, at Readfield Corner. Walkers should meet at Gile Hall, 8 Old Kents Hill Road, by 10 a.m. From there walkers will continue to the Readfield Community Library to begin phase one of a three-part tour.

Readfield Community Library is housed in the historic Dr. Samuel Currier homestead. Currier was the first doctor at Readfield Corner and his son, George, who also lived at this homestead, followed in his father’s footsteps. Together they served as town physicians for 75 years, according to a news release from organizers.

The circa 1800 building was donated to the town of Readfield in 1945 by their granddaughter Alice Eaton, for use as a community gathering place. For many years it was known as the Currier-Eaton House and also called “The Community House.” Activities and meetings were held at The Community House such as Lions Club, Boy and Girl Scouts, Little Town Club, dancing classes, Rifle Club and more. Readfield Community Library has been housed here for the greater part of the past 70 years.

Following a tour of the library walkers will proceed to the second floor of the Masonic Block where John Lord will show the Lafayette Masonic Lodge. The Readfield Masons was founded in 1826 and met for several years on the second floor of a store across the street, until they constructed their own building at the present site. That burned in the June 11, 1921, fire when nearly all of Readfield Corner was destroyed. By that fall the Masons laid the cornerstone in a ground-breaking ceremony and the Masonic Block was rebuilt within months of the fire.

Walkers will then continued to the old Readfield Grange for a tour. Readfield Grange 217 was organized March 24, 1876, with 38 charter members, three years after the first chapters were organized in Maine. For 21 years their meetings were held in private homes until this Grange was built in 1897. The organization was an integral part of life in Readfield. It was here where farmers and others gathered to socialize, learn new farming methods, and share political and local concerns.

Among the benefits were cooperative buying of insurance, seeds and agricultural supplies. Readfield Grange remained active until about a decade ago, and was then owned by Golden Guys and Gals Senior Citizens for several years.

In 2014, Nicole Danielson opened Maple Tree Community School for K-8 here. The building has been adapted to include a science lab, art room, library, dining room and a performing arts space, but the hardwood floors and other original features have been retained. Walkers are invited to bring a sandwich and eat at the old Grange following the tour.

Readfield History Walks are a collaborative effort between members of the Readfield Historical Society and Readfield Trails Committee. Plans are already in the making for history walks next spring.

For more information, visit www.readfieldhistorywalks.blogspot.com. To request that email reminders be sent, send name and email address to [email protected].

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