Updated 11/13: Uncle Clayton hauling pulp near St. Francis

Phillip Thibodeau (left) and Clayton Jandreau.

Phillip Thibodeau (left) and Clayton Jandreau standing near a truck hauling pulp.

I knew this day would come – a correction. Mickey Thibodeau took the photo of my Uncle Clayton Jandreau next to his new truck, a 1960 model, in the winter of 1960-61 in the street in front of his family’s home not too far from where my Uncle Clayton, my Mom and their siblings grew up in St. Francis, Maine. Mr. Thibodeau’s father, Phillip, is standing with my uncle. Mr. Thibodeau did not receive the photo from my cousin.

[Posted November 12, 2009 (See correction above): I wanted to get this photo up. I will post more later on it. The photo was e-mailed to me from another Mainer “from away,” Mickey Thibodeau, who now lives in Lake County, California. Actually, the photo comes from Mr. Thibodeau who received it from my cousin Cindy Jandreau. (Yep, the moose hunter.) The photo, taken in St. Francis toward Allagash, shows Mr. Thibodeau’s father, Phillip, and Clayton Jandreau (nearest truck), an uncle to Cindy and me. I am not sure when the photo was taken, but I am guess it had to be in the 1950s or ’60s.]

As I recall from family tales, one of the things my Grandfather and uncles did to get by was cut pulp to be used in mills. They used horses to haul the pulp from the woods to sidings or the nearest road where it was loaded – I am assuming usually loaded by hand – onto a truck to be taken to the mills. Of course, pulp is used for paper and other products.

I seem to recall a story my mother told me once that one of the horses they used to haul the pulp broke loose and was racing toward my Mom, who was pretty young at the time. If I recall the story correctly, one of her brothers threw her behind a fallen tree and the horse leaped over them and the fallen tree. It must have been a pretty exciting time for a little kid.

Mr. Thibodeau also mentioned an old parish hall in St. Francis my Uncle Warren – Clayton and my Mom’s brother and Cindy the Moose Hunter’s father – own and subsequently tore down. He later built a home there for himself, his wife Monica and their children.

I seem to recall that for a time – perhaps between when the building was used as a parish hall and when my Uncle Warren tore it down – that he ran a couple of businesses, including a barbershop and a pool hall/pinball parlor. I recall seeing photos of my first haircut and I am pretty sure Uncle Warren handled the shears that day. If the photos are any indication, I was not particularly pleased to get my hair trimmed.

For those who are unfamiliar with where St. Francis is located, it is on the border with Canada near where the St. Francis and St. John rivers meet. If you look at a map of the state, St. Francis is in the large notch at the northern border. Allagash, where the Allagash Wilderness Waterway ends to the north, is east of St. Francis. Fort Kent, Maine, to the east is where I was born.

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