Category Archives: Franco-American News and Culture

Noël- Franco-American music and Christmas traditions

Noël

This is the season to enjoy Christmas music concerts, when Franco-Americans enjoy singing the Chansons de Noël (Christmas songs) and especially Cantiques de Noël (religious Christmas carols). Christmas is when I enjoy reporting about the memories of binding traditions shared by Franco-Americans during Les Fêtes, including the beautiful custom of singing Cantiques de Noël.  There’s […]

Franco-American stories in anthologies

Goose River Anthology 2017

Goose River Anthology 2018, published in Waldorboro Maine, by Deborah J. Benner, is in print and includes excellent articles from Maine authors, including one from “yours truly”. It’s becoming increasingly difficult for writers to find publishers who will put our work into print. Which is why I continue to compliment the commendable support from Deborah […]

Joyeuse Action de Grâce! Thanksgiving memoirs

My Familes My life by Ruth Grondin

Many “merci beaucoup” to Maureen Perry, She taught me how to say “Happy Thanksgiving” en francais!  Perry is the librarian at the University of Southern Maine Lewiston Auburn College (USM LAC) and a colleague on the Board of the Franco-American Collection. Over the years, I’ve heard a few variations about how to say “Happy Thanksgiving” […]

“Messiah” performed in the St. John’s Franco-American sanctuary

Ortorio Chorale program

It’s rare to hear the entirety of George Frideric Handel’s magnificent oratorio “Messiah”, performed with an orchestra, at a local venue, like the beautiful and inspirational sanctuary at Brunswick’s Saint John the Baptist Church. On Sunday November 5th, Maine’s Oratorio Chorale, led by Director Emily Isaacson, performed the entire oratorio with professional soloists, and they […]

Growing Up Franco-American with no patent leather shoes

Growing Up Franco-American by Lorraine Dutile Masure

“We kept such a low profile that it was only in 1977 that Maine recognized Franco-Americans as an ethnic group, even though we had been here for scores of years”, wrote Lorraine Dutile Masure, in her autobiographical memoir.  Writing personal and often comical short narratives, Masure has given readers personal insight to the Franco-American experience. […]

Professor Mary Rice-DeFosse: Teaching French and Francophone Studies

Community Engaged Learning

LEWISTON, Me– It’s been my pleasure to work collaboratively with Professor Mary Rice-DeFosse, at Bates College, through our participation on the Franco-American Collection’s board, at the University of Southern Maine Lewiston Auburn College (USM LAC). Her expertise about the Franco-American language and culture are helping to inspire students and others to learn more about Maine’s […]

Boisvert and Franco-American “dit” names

L'Heureux is a "dit" name. The family's English name was translated to Happy but then legally changed to L'Heureux

Learning about “topographic monikers”. Many years after graduating from high school in Dundalk, Maryland, I had the opportunity to discuss the origins of the “Greenwood” surname with our class sponsor.  Mr. David Greenwood was a quiet man with an effervescent smile.  His participation in our class didn’t end on graduation day.  In fact, he attended […]

Rebuilding France 1917-1924: Lewiston exhibit

Women Rebuilding France 1917-1924 This historic exhibit is currently featured in the USM LAC Atrium Gallery, on Westminister Street, in Lewiston. It’s a Centennial Exhibition to remember World War I, from the Franco-American Museum Château de Blérancourt, in Picardy, France. An overview about how Anne Morgan, the youngest daughter of financier J.P. Morgan, led a […]

Heroic Cajuns! La marine Cajun

Cajun Country book jacket

Several hundred years of colonial era French and Franco-Americans are living among the affected populations, located along the Gulf Coast of Louisiana and Texas. Our hearts go out to these flood devastated people. Of course, our hearts and sympathies extend to all those who are suffering as a result of the Hurricane Harvey’s horrific damage […]