WW&F Railway Museum Discussion > Whimsical Weirdness and Foolery

Am I a Maine Native?

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Brian Whitney:
Now I have to chime in!  It is my opinion that anyone born in Maine is a native. What else can they be called?
Anyone hearing my normal Maine accent would not question that I am a native. But the fact is, I was born in Brockton, MA two months early as my parents were passing through on their way home to Maine! I have lived in Maine ever since. I still consider myself a native but officially I guess I am not. Close enough for me!

Brian W.

Dana Deering:
That three generation guideline only needs to apply to one side of the family. If you were born in Maine and your mother was not but your father’s family goes way back then you are a native Mainer.  This is all based on what I have heard over the years and it gets complicated and the rule book is almost as thick as a railroad’s.

Now I’ll really stick my foot in it. One way I evaluate  “native Maine-ness” (whatever that really is) is whether a person says “noth-eastah” or “nor’easter” when describing a northeast storm. I spent a lot
of time while growing up working with and listening to old time Maine folks and I never heard one use the latter term, always the former.  No Mainer worth his salt would ever pronounce a letter r if they can avoid it.  I also read a letter to the editor in Downeast magazine from the early 60’s in which an old fisherman said about the term “nor’easter”:  “there is no such quadrant, it is ‘noth-east’.”  So when I hear someone say “nor’easter” I always think they are likely “from away”.


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