Author Topic: Am I a Maine Native?  (Read 5641 times)

Russ Nelson

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Am I a Maine Native?
« on: May 02, 2023, 09:44:05 AM »
I was adopted. My birth mother was born and raised in Madison ME. I have Maine relatives in Madison going back four generations, where my great-great-grandfather moved from Denmark.

My question is whether "Maineness" penetrates the adoption process? Am I a Maine Native by birth?

Ed Lecuyer

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2023, 09:59:51 AM »
Maine-ness is determined by two factors:
1. Use of the 207 area code (and more importantly, always omitting the area code when transcribing a phone number of a Mainer.)
2. Being able to comprehend and properly utilize Maine style wit, wordplay, and humor; while distinguishing it from outright sarcasm.
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James Patten

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2023, 11:00:31 AM »
One of humorist (and Maine native) Tim Sample's monologs addresses this: basically, if you were born in Maine, you are a Mainer.  Doesn't matter if you were born in Maine and then left the state after 1 day never to return, you would be considered a Mainer.  On the flip side, if you were NOT born in Maine, but spent the remainder of your life here, you are "from away". 

By Tim's reckoning, Harry Percival Jr. (who was actually born in Florida) was not a Mainer.  But you would never have been able to tell.

Benjamin Richards

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2023, 01:35:04 PM »
On a slightly tangent topic, I have just recently read a transcription of a fascinating lecture regarding the construction of the "Downeast" persona over the past 2 centuries by folks "from away", how that persona essentially does not exist in reality, and how "Bert and I" is mostly nothing but slightly Maine-colored "just-so" stories. When I get home I will edit this with the name of the lecturer's name and the title of the lecture.
1. Use of the 207 area code (and more importantly, always omitting the area code when transcribing a phone number of a Mainer.)
We are really in for it, then, as 207 is approaching full capacity. Mandatory 10-digit overlay dialing is not gonna go over well. I've been through it once already in PA.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2023, 01:37:11 PM by Benjamin Richards »

Bill Piche

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2023, 02:26:31 PM »
My favorite tall tale for this one was this one:

A man whose family was from Fryeburg, ME was born over in North Conway, NH. He lived his whole life (90+ years) in Maine, never once setting foot in another state. When he died his obituary stated "He was almost a Mainer."
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James Patten

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2023, 05:12:09 PM »
1. Use of the 207 area code (and more importantly, always omitting the area code when transcribing a phone number of a Mainer.)

I have to actively remember to include "207" on my phone number when I call businesses that are out of state.  They should just know!

James Patten

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2023, 05:13:57 PM »
Interestingly enough, I found there's a neighborhood of Chicago, Maine township.  Their school system number is 207.

Pete "Cosmo" Barrington

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2023, 09:10:53 PM »
Tim Sample ALSO said:
"If my cat gave birth in the oven, I wouldn't call them "biscuits"!  ;)

John Kokas

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2023, 09:44:48 PM »
I only lived up in Maine for a little over a year, but folks here at home called me a Mainer for a couple of years after because I still talked funny according to them.  ;D
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Stephen Piwowarski

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2023, 08:24:16 PM »
Both my boys were born in Maine, and I had assumed that made them Mainers.
However, it was just around the time of Johnny’s birth that I first heard the adage ‘just because a cat has kittens in an oven, it doesn’t make them biscuits’.


Mike Fox

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2023, 08:35:23 AM »
If that is the case Steve, none of us "Mainers" are Mainers. I was born here but my mom wasn't. Joe was born out of state while his sister was born here but their mom wasn't..
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Dana Deering

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #11 on: May 22, 2023, 05:14:34 AM »
I have always been told that to qualify as a “native Mainer” you had to be born in Maine and have “three generations in the cemetery”.   Nowadays the definition of Mainer vs. Native Mainer has become so watered down that I’m not sure what a Mainer is. I do know that my family came to Maine in the mid 1600s from England and with 10 generations having been born here I feel safe to call myself a native Mainer.  The trouble with that is that the family tree doesn’t have many branches! ;)

John Kokas

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #12 on: May 22, 2023, 08:11:20 AM »
Gee Dana,

I thought that to be called a "native Mainer" that you had to have a "Moose Calleur" in your family tree somewhere.  ;D 8)
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James Patten

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #13 on: May 22, 2023, 09:01:25 AM »
I have far more than 3 generations in the cemetery on my father's side, and only 1 on my mother's side (Mom).  Does that make me a half Mainer?

John Kokas

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Re: Am I a Maine Native?
« Reply #14 on: May 22, 2023, 10:07:52 AM »
James,

Not to be stickler for math, but here is your math problem.  Native Mainer = 3 generations in the ground 

That means 3 gen. from Dad and 3 gen. from Mom = 6 generations total

So for you,   3 gen. from Dad and 1 gen. from Mom = 4 generations total 

So you are 4 gen family / 6 Native Mainer = 4/6 = 2/3 Native Mainer

Hope you got that ......................  There will be a quiz at the end of the day  :o ;D 8)
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