300 Years on Hermit Island: 1650-1950
Fishermen, Farmers & Indians too

Christopher Sewall

Wednesday, December 9th, 2015, 7:00pm
Bath City Hall

Friends of Merrymeeting Bay’s (FOMB) third presentation of its 19th annual Winter Speaker Series: 300 Years of Hermit Island Fishermen, Farmers & Indians too; features Christopher Sewall, Hermit Island Historian. The event, taking place Wednesday, December 9th, 7:00pm at Bath City Hall, is free and open to the public.

This program focuses on the history of Hermit Island, a 250 acre peninsula located in Small Point on the southern tip of Phippsburg.  Culturally and biologically the Island has served as an important historical intersection and crossroads between the Kennebec estuary and Casco Bay. While currently known for its popular family campground, Hermit Island's story can be traced back to the 1600's with some surprising connections to the history of Merrymeeting Bay.

Christopher Sewall grew up in Bath, spending his first 20+ summers on Hermit Island.  He studied anthropology for 2 years at McGill University and finished his BA at Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington specializing in natural resource policy and contemporary Native American Issues.  In his final semester at Evergreen, Sewall did an internship/independent study with the Western Shoshone Defense Project, a tribally directed non-profit located in Crescent Valley Nevada.  He first volunteered and later worked for the Defense Project 12 years advocating for environmental justice and human rights for the Western Shoshone Nation, before returning home to Maine in 2005.  

Back in Maine, Sewall has lived on Hermit Island and participated in several family businesses including Hermit Island Campground and Small Point Lobster Pound. Since his return he has been researching the human and natural history of Hermit Island and Small Point harbor and has also started a small oyster farm. Sewall believes he is the first person to farm American oysters in Phippsburg.  For the past 2 years he has been a trustee on the board of the Phippsburg Historical Society.

FOMB hosts their Winter Speaker Series October-May on the second Wednesday of each month. The January 13th presentation Kelping the Earth with a Virtuous Vegetable features Paul Dobbins from Ocean Approved, Inc.and follows the FOMB Annual Meeting and Potluck beginning at 6pm and open to the public. Speaker Series presentations are always free and open to the public and supported by Patagonia, Inc. in Freeport. Visit www.fomb.org to see speaker biographies, full event schedules, become a member, and learn more about how you can help protect beautiful Merrymeeting Bay.

Call Kathleen McGee, 666-3598


Watercolors by
Sarah Stapler