St. Francis

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Seventy-five year old John Connors is a master boat builder from St. Francis, Maine. His specialty is the bateau, a wooden river boat.

Seventeen year old Chase Jackson, from Allagash, Maine received a Traditional Arts Apprenticeship award from the Maine Arts Commission and is studying bateau building with John. Chase is learning the intricacies of a unique craft.

John agreed to be interviewed by Chase for Story Bank under one condition — they not talk about boat building!  Instead, John, motivated by the economic difficulties facing Maine and the nation, wanted to pass on stories to Chase about the Depression and the impact of WWII on northern Maine. We feature their chat on this edition of Story Bank Maine. Chase and John recorded this interview in the Story Bank Maine recording booth at the 2008 American Folk Festival.

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