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Old 10-09-2012, 09:35 AM
 
Location: Florida (SW)
38,422 posts, read 18,177,990 times
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I have a friend who is a photographer of Maine themes. I am setting up my new office after moving and in my framed art.....I have a photo she did of canned sardines in 1991. She had gone into a general store in her travels and saw that the storekeeper had an unusual number of canned sardine brands and the cans and the labels were really quite interesting and beautiful. She asked permission to make an arrangement and take a picture.

I wonder if any of you remember these brands from the hey-day of the Maine sardine industry.

Leader Brand; Daisy Brand--American Sardines in Mustard Sauce; Seiner Brand; Stag Brand
Bayshore Brand; Atlantic Canning Co of Eastport Maine; Lawrence Sardine Co. of Rockland and Stockton Springs Me; Maine Coast Brand; Olive Brand, Union Brand; E.A. Holmes Brand; and two labels I can only partially visualize Trenc---Brand; Booth Co and --RIST Brand and ---AS Brand of Eastport Me. plus two other Sardine cans from Eastport maine.

I have a fondness for tins of sardines.....I like the fish....but I also have very fond childhood memories. My father was a minister and when I was small and he was just starting his ministry.....he often had little churches that couldnt afford a liveable salary....and parishiners supplemented his wages with "in kind" contributions of cord wood, canned goods, second hand clothing, services to keep up the parsonage etc.

My folks rec'd in kind....a cardboard box full of cans of sardines.....in my mind there were hundreds and perhaps there were. Mom put them in the playroom and they became our building blocks to construct towns, towers, bridges, forts and ships at sea.

Last edited by elston; 10-09-2012 at 10:27 AM..
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Old 10-09-2012, 01:37 PM
 
Location: 3.5 sq mile island ant nest next to Canada
3,015 posts, read 4,870,300 times
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The first sardine factory in the US opened in Eastport in 1875. At one point we had 13 or so factories lining downtown. There were some others in other parts of town. I'll have to do some looking to find out the brand names. I remember Holmes Sardines (only because I worked there) and Cap'n Benny. I remember my father talking about walking from pier to boat to pier and not touching land for the majority of the shoreline. At one point Lewis Hine took photos of the child labor:

Lewis Hine Gallery, Page One
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Old 10-09-2012, 04:01 PM
 
17,158 posts, read 22,161,261 times
Reputation: 31223
Quote:
Originally Posted by elston View Post
I have a friend who is a photographer of Maine themes. I am setting up my new office after moving and in my framed art.....I have a photo she did of canned sardines in 1991. She had gone into a general store in her travels and saw that the storekeeper had an unusual number of canned sardine brands and the cans and the labels were really quite interesting and beautiful. She asked permission to make an arrangement and take a picture.

I wonder if any of you remember these brands from the hey-day of the Maine sardine industry.

Leader Brand; Daisy Brand--American Sardines in Mustard Sauce; Seiner Brand; Stag Brand
Bayshore Brand; Atlantic Canning Co of Eastport Maine; Lawrence Sardine Co. of Rockland and Stockton Springs Me; Maine Coast Brand; Olive Brand, Union Brand; E.A. Holmes Brand; and two labels I can only partially visualize Trenc---Brand; Booth Co and --RIST Brand and ---AS Brand of Eastport Me. plus two other Sardine cans from Eastport maine.

I have a fondness for tins of sardines.....I like the fish....but I also have very fond childhood memories. My father was a minister and when I was small and he was just starting his ministry.....he often had little churches that couldnt afford a liveable salary....and parishiners supplemented his wages with "in kind" contributions of cord wood, canned goods, second hand clothing, services to keep up the parsonage etc.

My folks rec'd in kind....a cardboard box full of cans of sardines.....in my mind there were hundreds and perhaps there were. Mom put them in the playroom and they became our building blocks to construct towns, towers, bridges, forts and ships at sea.
Elston,,,forgive me for prying, but you are now in fla?????

gorham lost a great resident, if thats the case!
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Old 10-09-2012, 04:54 PM
 
Location: Florida (SW)
38,422 posts, read 18,177,990 times
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Thanks MBM.....I sent you a DM explaining our decision to move. Let me assure you it was not a rejection of Maine. I loved it there and felt I really belonged!

I dont want to drag this thread off topic so......back to the sardines.
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Old 10-10-2012, 06:03 AM
 
Location: Mid atlantic too far from the caribbean
157 posts, read 272,316 times
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Elston,
What a coincidence!

DH and I have just returned from Jonesport after our seasonal home hunt last week.
In the process of researching every little bit of info and history of Jonesport last night I did a Dogpile search for Jonesport Maine, on the first page of links low and behold what do I find is a link to eBay items all vintage sardine tins and labels etc haling from and labeled with "Jonesport Sardines"!

This might be a good resource for you, happy hunting!

By the way I fell in love with the small town community feel of genuine care and kindness from the folks of Jonesport, even given its relative remoteness and travel time from the Portland and Bangor airports. During my entire stay in Jonesport that theme song from the old TV show Cheers kept singing in my mind, the words,
"...where everybody knows your name".
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Old 10-10-2012, 12:38 PM
 
1,594 posts, read 3,404,013 times
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Whenever we had our family clam and lobster bakes on the shore at Bayside or over in Stockton Springs, sardines were a necessary and much appreciated appetizer. We'd usually sort of semi-mash a piece of sardine on a cracker (some liked a drop of hot sauce on the top). Boy, did that go good with a cold beer as we sat around the fire waiting for the lobsters, clams, crabs, corn on the cob, onions, mussels, eggs and other goodies to cook under their blanket of seaweed.

Really miss those days.

BTW, I learned only recently that one reason sardines fell out of favor was the decline of the blue-collar lunch-bucket worker. It seems that a tin of sardines was a favorite lunch for many of the men who worked in the mills and factories and construction sites around the Northeast.
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Old 10-10-2012, 12:52 PM
 
Location: Florida (SW)
38,422 posts, read 18,177,990 times
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We were disappointed that fresh sardines weren't readily available at the fish store.....in Japan they are a favorite.
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Old 10-10-2012, 01:06 PM
 
1,594 posts, read 3,404,013 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elston View Post
We were disappointed that fresh sardines weren't readily available at the fish store.....in Japan they are a favorite.
You're right, I can't recall seeing fresh sardines/herring in my local fish market lately either. But then, Maine doesn't have any operating sardine canneries anymore, so perhaps sardines aren't being brought ashore here anymore? For that matter, I read recently that the United States doesn't have any fulltime sardine canneries left. The one in Gouldsboro was the last in the nation.

The fishery has been so badly depleted in recent decades, I guess we shouldn't be surprised.
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Old 10-10-2012, 03:40 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
29,721 posts, read 47,472,880 times
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At Ray's Mustard mill and museum they say that at it's peak Maine had over 200 sardine canneries.
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Old 10-10-2012, 10:22 PM
 
Location: Lebanon, OH
5,681 posts, read 5,882,145 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by retiredtinbender View Post
I remember Holmes Sardines (only because I worked there)
My great aunt Lorraine Malloch worked for Holmes sardines she gave me two of the can lids which I can't find, but if I ever do I am going to donate them as a historical relic. I miss the old Eastport.
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