It seems there are never enough rainy days to complete home chores so when today dawned as such I thought that all the contents I’d been sorting from a closet would finally make their way to new homes like the dump store or community clothing closet or back into containers to be stored for another rainy day.
Apparently, I thought wrong for the Cardinal beckoned and we answered the call to head out the door.
When I mentioned a location for today’s hike to My Guy, he agreed that it sounded good, though come to find out, in reality he thought we were going someplace else and even when we arrived at Great Brook, he couldn’t recall our last visit, which was in 2016. Fair enough. I’ve been there many more times.
It soon became apparent that we were in Moose territory and our excitement rose. Actually, on another trail in this same neck of the woods we once spotted a Moose, so all we could do was hope that today we’d receive the same honor.
But first, there were other honors to receive, such as this bouquet of flowering Red Maple.
And the first of the season for us, maple leaves bursting forth in all their spring glory of color.
Onward we hiked deeper into the woods where a place one might think of as no place was once some place. This particular foundation has long been a favorite of mine because within is a root cellar.
It’s one I can’t resist stepping into because you never know what tidbit might have been left behind.
Porcupine scat! Rather old, but still.
My friend, Jinny Mae (RIP), was a talented techie and though the red line isn’t the entire route we followed today, it’s one she and I explored back in 2016. The map is from a section of the 1858 map of Stoneham. And we were at E. Durgin’s old homestead.
Knowing that there were some gravestones in the woods behind the house, we once again followed the Moose who led us directly to the family cemetery. Someone has cleared the site a bit, so it was easy to spot, especially since the trees haven’t fully leafed out.
Sarah, daughter of Anna and Ephraim Durgin, is the first tombstone. She died in 1858 at age 22.
Beside her is the stone for Mary, wife of Sumner Dergin, who died before Sarah–in 1856. She, too, was 22 years old. As best I can tell, Sarah and Sumner were siblings.
And Ephraim, Sarah’s father, died in 1873 at age 81. Notice the difference in stone from the two girls to Ephraim? Slate to cement. And the name spelling–Dergin and Durgin. As genealogy hobbiests, we’ve become accustomed to variations in spelling.
I found the following on RootsWeb:
8. ANNA3 FURLONG (PATRICK2, JOHN1) was born 1791 in Limerick, Maine, and died 1873 in Stoneham, Maine. She married EPHRAIM DURGIN June 18, 1817 in Limerick, Maine14. He was born April 13, 1790 in Limerick, Maine, and died in Stoneham.
Children of ANNA FURLONG and EPHRAIM DURGIN are:
i.OLIVE4 DURGIN, b. 1811, Stoneham, Maine; m. DUNCAN M. ROSS, April 11, 1860, Portland, Maine.
ii.SALOMA DURGIN, b. 1813.
iii.ELIZABETH DURGIN, b. 1815.
iv.SALLY DURGIN, b. 1817.
v.SUMNER F. DURGIN, b. 1819, Of Stoneham, Massachusettes; m. MARY ANN DURGAN, July 11, 1853, York County, Maine; b. Of Parsonsfield, Maine.
vi.CASANDIA DURGIN, b. 1821.
vii.EPHRAIM DURGIN, b. 1823.
viii.FANNY DURGIN, b. 1825.
Sarah isn’t listed above. But . . . Sally and Sarah were often interchangeable.
By 1880, there had been a change in ownership of the neighborhood homes and the Rowlands had moved into the Durgin house.
Again, we followed the moose, this time in the form of a Striped Maple browsed upon, curious to see what might be ahead.
A chuckle. Yes, a mailbox in the middle of nowhere, this spot being a place where someone once had a camp. Our Moose tried to send a letter, but missed by a couple of feet.
Willard Brook was our next stop and I was reminded that when I first started wondermyway.com, a post about this brook initiated some discussion about the Indigenous stonework found throughout the area. I’ve explored it looking for such and convinced myself in the past that I saw the turtles in most of the stonewalls. In fact, I see them everywhere, but today I was looking at different subjects.
Beside the brook, lots of Hobblebush looked ready to burst into life and we thought how fortunate that the moose hadn’t decided to dine. Yet.
There were even tiny Hobblebush leaves to celebrate for their accordion style.
And Broad-leaved Dock looking quite happy and healthy.
Back to Great Brook we eventually wandered, still with no actual Moose in sight.
But beside the brook I did spot some Trailing Arbutus buds preparing for their grand opening.
As we walked back on the dirt road we’d walked in on, we paused beside a beaver pond where Spring Peepers sang their high-pitched love songs. I made My Guy scan the area with me because just maybe . . .
or maybe not. We did spot a Mallard couple. Oh well, We still had fun discovering everything else where the Moose led us on this rainy day.
And when we arrived home I had an email from an acquaintance double-checking with me that the print he found on his shore front of Kezar Lake was a moose print. Indeed it was!
(And now it’s time to prepare for Big Night. Finally. The temperature is in the 40˚s; it’s been raining all day and will continue tonight; and though lots of amphibians have moved to their native vernal pools, I think there will be some action tonight and we’ll be able to help them cross the road safely.)
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