Thank you, Alison, for your insightful article on my retirement from the staff of the Bethel Historical Society. I thought you did a “yeowomanly” job of covering much “territory” and lots of time in limited space.
For a person who attended the American Historical Association annual meeting in the early 1970s and found that nationally there was about one college history teaching position for every hundred historians, I still managed to stay in history and enjoy a most interesting career. I did get one offer to teach in a Maine college in 1973, but would be preparing four courses a semester and required to have my Ph. D. dissertation completed by the end of the academic year. It sounded like too much to take on with considerable uncertainty, so I turned down the invitation. Of course I wondered for a time if I had made the right choice, but now, after all these years, I am certain I did. As your article stated, the job sought me, I never applied. Granted one seldom got rich monetarily in this field, but the rewards of working with so many wonderful people and experiencing the thrill of seeing countless younger faces light up as they developed a passion for the historical process cannot be valued high enough!
I expect to be involved as a volunteer at Bethel Historical Society for the foreseeable future. And once more, I would like to express my deepest appreciation to all those people who made my years at the Society such a memorable and rewarding experience. It has been an outstanding privilege to serve the cause of history in so many ways and with so many “kindred spirits.”