The recent article on the removal of the Masse mill dam in East Vassalboro describes the latest event in the alewife restoration project to China Lake (“Group removes dam to get alewives to China Lake,” Oct 8). We’re among those who regret the elimination of the mill pond, as well as the impoundment behind Lombard Dam downstream, which is the next one to go and is already being lowered. Fish passages will be provided for the outlet of China Lake, where one is essential, and for the mill dam in North Vassalboro, where Ray Breton has demonstrated its practical advantages.

The recent article gives a long list of donors to the Alewife Restoration Initiative, but the cost of the project has always been secret, and still is. For the past week, lots of heavy equipment was working on the Masse site across the road from us, and the article says it came all the way from Bethel. The mill yard is now graded and reseeded, and the surviving grist mill stands isolated beside the Outlet Stream.

Now that we’ve seen the process of dam removal, we can’t imagine it’s any less expensive than the fish passage we campaigned for, or restoring the dam and saving the mill pond we have lost.

Charles and Lore Ferguson

East Vassalboro

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