Sunday, November 22, 2015

Libb(e)y Family Connection to Narcissus becomes Personal

First Congregational Church in Black Point, Scarborough, Maine.
The Black Point area of Scarborough is where John Libby established his
home in the 1630s. W. S. Libbey, the founder of the Portland-Lewiston
Interurban, is a descendant of John Libby. And, "Surprise", so is this
writer! - image February 22, 1952. PWM

     This blog was created in April 2015 to introduce readers to the Narcissus 1912 Project. The project features the restoration of this National Register of Historic Places vintage electric interurban railway vehicle at Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, Maine. The blog posts speak to the restoration of 1912, high speed, luxury interurban, its history, and connections to its most famous passenger, Theodore Roosevelt.

This post introduces a connection to the Narcissus that is quite personal to this writer.

     The Narcissus was built in 1912 in Laconia, NH, at the Laconia Car Company Works, for the Portland, Gray, and Lewiston Railroad. The PGLRR would later become known as the Portland-Lewiston Interurban, and serve communities of, and between, Portland and Lewiston, Maine, from 1914 into 1933. The man behind the construction of the interurban line between the two prominent cities in Maine was W. S. Libbey.

      Early in the month of August 2015, I had the pleasure of meeting family members descended from W. S. Libbey. A copy of a family-produced biography of W. S. Libbey was shared with me. I found his biography fascinating. In his biography, his family wrote of W. S. Libbey, "With the same care and precision he had devoted to all his affairs, Libbey conceived of the Interurban as the fastest, quietest, most luxurious transportation yet available.....Each richly furnished car was given the name of a flower." We are restoring his Narcissus.

     Early in September (2015), I was encouraged to contact the John Libby Family Association (JLFA). W. S. Libbey is a descendant of John Libby (Many Libbys, regardless of whether the name is Libby or Libbey, are descended from John Libby of the Black Point area of Scarborough, ME). The 111th JLFA reunion would be taking place later in September. Perhaps I could attend the reunion and have a table with materials explaining the Narcissus project?  I did make contact with reunion coordinators and received an invitation to attend the reunion. The flyer that explained the reunion details included directions to the meeting house at the First Congregational Church in the Black Point area of Scarborough, ME.

     Hmmm....that church? Seems like I know that church? My mother grew up in Scarborough. Sure enough, my parents were married in the First Congregational Church in Black Point!

This writer's parent's wedding at the First Congregational Church
in Black Point, Scarborough, Maine. L-R, Emily True Morse (groom's
mother), Warren O. Morse (groom), Nancy Hughes Morse (bride), and
Alphaetta Plummer Hughes (brides mother). The strong Libby connection
to this writer is via the Plummer-side of the bride's mother :)
image 2-22-1952 PWM

     Now that's a coincidence! That my parents were married in the church where the Libby reunion was taking place. I invited two students from the Residential Life program at Thornton Academy in Saco, ME,  to join me at the reunion.

L-R Bowen Yang, Phil Morse, and Linh Do with the Narcissus materials
at the 111th John Libby Family Association reunion at the meeting house
of the First Congregational Church in Black Point, Scarborough, Maine
image 9-26-2015 Allen Humphries (11th cousin to this writer :)

Narcissus materials on display at the 111th JLFA reunion
image 9-26-2015 Allen Humphries

Narcissus materials on display at the 111th JLFA reunion
image 9-26-2015 Allen Humphries

     Allen Humphries is a board member of the John Libby Family Association. Allen had introduced himself to me at the reunion and a few days later, was very kind to share some photographs with me that he had taken at the reunion. As it turns out, Allen had also done some genealogical research on me and my family. He informed me that through his research that through my father's side of the family that he (Allen) and I were 11th cousins! He went on to say that I was also 10th cousins with a couple of the reunion attendees. A week later, Allen had researched my mother's side of the family and found that through the Plummer-side of my maternal grandmother, Alphaetta, I was descended from John Libby, the Patriarch of the John Libby Family Association. So, I was related to one-third to one-half of all the attendees to the reunion!

No wonder I've been so drawn to the Narcissus :)

Here is the Libby Tree to this writer:

1)  John Libby - b: Abt. 1602 in Broadstairs, Isle of Thanet, Kent, England
2)  Matthew Libby - b: 1663 Scarborough, ME
3)  Matthew Libby - b: Abt. 1695
4)  Zebulon Libby - b: 1737
5)  Robert Libby - b: 1769
6)  Eliza Libby - b: 1804 (married Simeon Clay)
7)  Jonathan Clay - b: 1827
8)  Alphaetta Clay - b: 1854 (married William L. Plummer)
9)  Clifford L. Plummer - b: 1877
10) Alphaetta Plummer - b:1900 (married Dean Marcellus Hughes)
11) Nancy Hughes - b: 1932 (married Warren O. Morse)
12) Philip W. Morse

I have sent in membership dues to join the John Libby Family Association. I look forward to learning more about my cousins and in particular, where the W. S. Libbey branch of the family is in relationship to me?

Restoration work continues on the Narcissus. The Narcissus is more than 100 years old now and has so many incredible stories to share. The restoration is but one.

     The Narcissus is featured in the national Gold Award-winning novel, Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride. The "Elegant Ride" is the Narcissus. Theodore Roosevelt was a passenger on the Narcissus on August 18, 1914, between Lewiston and Portland, Maine, during campaigning for the Progressive Party candidates. June 2020

Independent book publisher, Phil Morse, holding
the Gold Book Award Winner plaque for
 the Middle Reader category for The Eric
Hoffer Book Award. Congratulations to
award-winning Maine author,
Jean M. Flahive

     The paperback edition of Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride can be purchased online through the Seashore Trolley Museum's store website. Books purchased through the Museum's website directly benefit the Museum and the Narcissus project. Amazon book purchases also benefit the Museum and the Narcissus.

Click Here to go to the Museum Store webpage to order online

Click Here to go to the Amazon page to order the book online

Click Here to go to the ebook page

Books are available at these local bookstores in Maine:
The Book Review, Falmouth
The Bookworm, Gorham
Letterpress Books, Portland
Nonesuch Books and More, South Portland
Sherman's Maine Coast Book Shops - All locations

Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride
by Jean M. Flahive
Illustrations by Amy J. Gagnon

     Millie Thayer is a headstrong farmer's daughter who chases her dreams in a way you would expect a little girl nicknamed "Spitfire" would-running full tilt and with her eyes on the stars. Dreaming of leaving the farm life, working in the city, and fighting for women's right to vote, Millie imagines flying away on a magic carpet. One day, that flying carpet shows up in the form of an electric trolley that cuts across her farm. A fortune-teller predicts that Millie's path will cross that of someone famous. Suddenly, she finds herself caught up in events that shake the nation, Maine, and her family. Despairing that her dreams may be shattered, Millie learns, in an unexpected way, that dreams can be shared.
A resource for teachers 
Maine Historical Society has created companion lesson plans inspired by Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride - These State-standard-based lesson plans for classroom use in grades 6, 7, and 8 are now completed. They will be uploaded to the Maine Memory Network and will be included with the other statewide lesson plans K-12. Once a link is available, it will be posted here. The lesson plans will also be uploaded and available through the Seashore Trolley Museum's website later in July 2020. Go to the Teacher Resource Page in the pulldown for more details.

The ebook is available through Amazon Kindle Click HERE

The audiobook is now available Click HERE to go to the Audible page.

2-minute, 30-second, Retail Audio Sample of the Audiobook 

Award-winning author, Jean M. Flahive


Click Here to read the post - Coveted Blueink Starred Review  - Notable Book - January 20, 2020

Click Here to read the post - Three 5-Star Reviews from Readers' Favorite posted on January 6, 2020

Click Here to read January 24, 2020 - Four-Star Clarion Review

Click Here to read January 19, 2020 - Theodore Roosevelt Center Blog Post Review

Click Here to read the December 25, 2019 4-Stars out of 4-Stars Review through OnlineBookClub

Please Consider a Donation to the Narcissus Project to help us tell the incredible story of the Narcissus through the interpretation portion of the Narcissus Project.

     Here is an example of how donations to the Narcissus Project now will help with the interpretation portion of the project. The interpretation programming will include exhibits, displays, education programming. During 2019, through generous donations to the Narcissus Project, we were able to conserve, replicate, and have high resolutions digital image files made of the original, 1910, 25.5-foot long, surveyor map of the elevation and grade of the 30-mile private right-of-way of the Portland, Gray, and Lewiston Railroad (Portland-Lewiston Interurban)
Thank You!

MUST-READ! - Click Here 

   Inside the Donald G. Curry Town House Restoration Shop, the Narcissus is in the midst of major work as we strive to complete its restoration. We are now planning the interpretation portion of the Narcissus Project. Donations to the Narcissus Project may be used in the future to help tell the incredible 100-plus-year-old story of the Narcissus. Your donation to the Narcissus is helping to make the dream of the project's success, a reality.

See below for Donation options -
It starts with YOU
Your Donation Matters
Make a Donation TODAY

Please Help the Narcissus. 
Donation Options to Help the Narcissus Project:

The New England Electric Railway Historical Society (NEERHS)
is the 501c3 organization that owns and operates the Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, ME and the National Streetcar
The NEERHS is registered with the IRS (EIN# 01-0244457) and was incorporated in Maine in 1941.

Check or Money Order ***** should be made payable to:
New England Electric Railway Historical Society (NEERHS)
In the memo please write: Narcissus Fund 816-A
Mail to: Seashore Trolley Museum
              P. O. Box A
              Kennebunkport, ME 04046

Credit Card ***** donations can be a one-time donation or you
may choose to have a specific amount charged to your card
automatically on a monthly basis. Please contact the Museum bookkeeper, Connie, via email at or by phone, 207-967-2712 ext. 5.

Online Donations - may be made by using a Credit Card: 
Click Here to make an online donation through the Museum's website - When at the Donation page: Fill in donor info, etc., when at "To which fund are you donating? Scroll down to "Other" and type in: 816-A Narcissus, then continue on filling in the required information.

Click Here for PayPal - to make an online donation: you can use email: and in the message box write:
For Narcissus fund 816-A

Donation of Securities ***** We also accept donations of
securities. You can contact the Museum bookkeeper, Connie, via email at or by phone, 207-967-2712 ext. 5,
for brokerage account information for accepting donated securities.

BONUS ***** If you work for a company/corporation that will
"match" an employee's donation to an approved 501c3 non-profit
educational organization, please be sure to complete the necessary paperwork with your employer so that your donation is matched :)

Questions? ***** Please contact Narcissus project manager:
Phil Morse, or call 207-985-9723 - cell.

Thank You :)

Thank You for our Current Funding Partners
20th Century Electric Railway Foundation - 2018 - Major Gift, 2017/2014 Matching Grants
Renaissance Charitable Foundation (LPCT) by Fiduciary Trust Charitable Giving Fund
Mass Bay RRE - 2018 Railroad Preservation Grant 
Thornton Academy (Saco, ME) - Staff & Alumni - Matching Grant Challenge 2014
New England Electric Railway Historical Society (Kennebunkport, ME) - Member Donations
Amherst Railway Society - 2015 Heritage Grant
National Railway Historical Society - 2016 & 2015 Heritage Preservation Grants
Enterprise Holding Foundation - 2015 Community Grant
Theodore Roosevelt Association - Member Donations
John Libby Family Association and Member Donations
* The Conley Family - In Memory of Scott Libbey 2018/2017/2016/2015
* The W. S. Libbey Family - Awalt, Conley, Graf, Holman, Libbey, McAvoy, McLaughlin, Meldrum, O'Halloran, Salto, - 2018/2017
* The Hughes Family 2017/2016/2010
New Gloucester Historical Society and Member Donations
Gray Historical Society and Member Donations
Gray Public Library Association - Pat Barter Speaker Series
* LogMein - Matching Employee Donation
* IBM - Matching Employee/Retiree Donations
* Fidelity Charitable Grant - Matching Employee Donations
* Richard E. Erwin Grant - 2017/2016

The Narcissus, with interior back-lit, stained glass windows are majestic.
Make a donation today to help restore the interior of this Maine gem.
Help Theodore Roosevelt's Maine Ride get back on track! Once restored,
you will be able to ride in luxury on this National Register Treasure at
Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, Maine.
PWM photo

Please Consider Making a Donation to the project of the National Register of Historic Places member, Narcissus. We are currently raising funds to tell the incredible story of this Maine gem.

Various News stories during the summer of 2015 about the
Narcissus and its connection to Theodore Roosevelt. TR
was a passenger on the Narcissus on August 18, 1914.

Click Here to See the list of All Previous Blog Posts - Index

The Narcissus - July 31, 2015. Make a donation today.
Help Theodore Roosevelt's Maine Ride get back on track!
Once restored, you will be able to ride in luxury on this
Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, Maine.

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