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Gold LEAF Institute Course Catalogue

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Visit Maine's Paper & Heritage Museum


with Greg Bizier

Calendar Oct 2, 2023 at 10 am


Maine's Paper & Heritage Museum is housed in the historic home of Judson Record which he built in 1906 for his family.  The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and has always been associated with the paper industry. In the museum, you will find an extensive collection of artifacts and interactive displays from the paper industry along with local history from the Jay, Livermore Livermore Falls, Rumford, and other papermaking communities in Maine.  With advanced requests, we can give demonstrations on how to make handmade paper.

October 2, 2023

Car-pooling:  Meet a the Park N Ride lot next to Walgreens, Farmington, ME at 9:15 am.  Lv at 9:25 a.m.  The tour is at 10 am.

Drive Direct:  22 Church St, Livermore Falls, ME

Host:  Mark Stofan

Greg worked for 31 years in various positions in the paper industry and grew up in Jay, Maine just up the hill from the Otis Paper Mill.

Will run

Mercer, Maine Historical Society, Talk & Museum Tour


with Butch Tracy

Calendar Oct 12, 2023 at 10 am


The first part of this event will take place on the UMF campus and will include a PowerPoint presentation on Mercer history and architecture.  On the second date, participants will tour the Mercer Museum

October 12, 2023, 10:00 am-11:30 am

North Dining Hall Middle Section B  

October 20th at 1:30 PM.  Mercer Museum Tour,  77 Main Street, Mercer, Maine

Butch Tracy is a local historian and genealogist, President of the Mercer Historical Society, and a member of several historical, genealogical societies, and veteran organizations.  Research projects include Quakers in Franklin County, Indians in the Sandy River Valley, Black Pioneers in Maine, and histories of Brighton, Mayfield, and Osborn, Maine.

Historical Tour of Belgrade, Maine


with Eric Hooglund

Calendar Oct 23, 2023 at 10:30 am


This trip will include a tour of the 1814 Belgrade Town Meeting House, one of the oldest in Maine, which, from 2019-2023, underwent extensive renovations to restore its interior to what it looked like 1814-1832. It now houses an amazing collection of artifacts related to Belgrade's history as a farming, mills, and ice harvesting town and since 1874, a summer resort for family camps, youth camps, inns, and hotels from the modest to the most expensive, as well as boat building shops and health spas. We will start at the Belgrade Historical Society's History Room for a half-hour presentation, then spend about 1.5 hours in the old Town House for curated talks on the diverse exhibits. There will be an optional group lunch for all who would like to do this.

October 23, 2023

10:30 am - 1 pm

Belgrade Town Meeting House

990 Augusta Rd, Belgrade, ME

Eric Hooglund has been a Gold Leaf member since 2014 and a presenter of several Gold Leaf classes since 2014. He is a retired college professor and still an active editor of the scholarly journal MIDDLE EAST CRITIQUE and the Belgrade Historical Society Newsletter.

Talk and Tour of Margaret Chase Smith House and Library


with Nicole Potter

Calendar Nov 7, 2023 at 11 am


Margaret Chase Smith had a 32-year congressional career. The library houses numerous papers, documents, and photos from her time in Congress.  The house and library are at 56 Norridgewock Avenue in Skowhegan.  The program will start at 11 a.m.  We can meet at the UMF Facilities lot at 10 a.m. for carpooling.

November 7, 2023

11 am - 12:30 pm

Address: 56 Norridgewock Ave, Skowhegan, ME 04976

Nicole Potter curator, joined the staff in 2021. She earned her B.A. in English Literature and Religious Studies from St. Lawrence University and her M.S. in Library and Information Science from Syracuse University School of Information Studies. Nicole’s specialization is cultural heritage preservation.

Becoming a Worker for Civil Rights


with John Rosenwald

Calendar Nov 9, 2023 at 10 am


One might have suspected that John Rosenwald, as a privileged white male growing up during the 1950s in a comfortable Chicago suburb, would not have headed in the direction of becoming a civil rights worker. What he will share in this session is the background that led him to become and remain a political activist: an integrated high school, employment in a multi-racial restaurant, the coming of the 60s on late-night radio, the decision to attend the University of Illinois instead of Williams College, life in a multi-cultural residence hall, the war in Viet-Nam, the opportunity to live and study in Germany, graduate school in North Carolina as Martin Luther King, Jr., is killed, the aftermath of that murder, and all the changes both personally and culturally that made him the person he became. His intent is to discuss civil rights, how he as one person became involved, and to initiate conversation, public and/or private, about what that commitment still means today both for himself and for others.

November 9, 2023

10 am - 11:30 am

Ed Ctr, Rm 107

John Rosenwald lives in Farmington, Maine. Until his retirement in 2010, he was Professor of English for 34 years at Beloit College in Wisconsin. He served as senior editor of the Beloit Poetry Journal and president of the Beloit Poetry Journal Foundation. As a Fulbright Professor of American Culture and Literature, he has taught in China at Fudan, Nankai, and Zhejiang Universities; from 2012 to 2014 he was invited with his wife, Ann Arbor, to create at Hangzhou Normal University a pilot program in Transdisciplinary Education. Other recent work involves the organization of exhibitions of Chinese peasant artists and collaborative translation of contemporary Chinese poets. Harvest, his selected poems, and a novel, The Feast of Steven, appeared in 2016. His translation of Rilke’s The Sonnets to Orpheus appeared in 2022, the centenary year of the poems’ creation; it won the 2023 Maine Writers & Publishers Award for Excellence in Publication. With his wife, he has been a frequent participant since its creation in 1975 at Robert Bly's Annual Conference on the Great Mother and the New Father, for which he was commissioned by the University of Minnesota Library to write the history. Other honors include the 1996 Underkofler Outstanding Teacher Award, the 2003 Zhejiang Province West Lake Friendship Award, and an Honorary Doctorate in 2009 from the University of Maine Farmington. He was a civil rights worker in the South in the 1960s and remains a political activist, involved in many ways within his local and state communities.

Will run

A Story of Maine in 112 Objects


with Bernard Fishman

Calendar Dec 4, 2023 at 10 am


The Maine State Museum is the state's chief repository and interpreter of  Maine's cultural and environmental history. Based on his earlier book of the same title, Museum Director Bernard Fishman will describe selected objects from the museum's vast collections which offer a dramatic survey of key points in Maine's history. This is a single presentation.

Note: The Maine State Museum is temporarily closed for renovations. This presentation will be held on the UMF campus.

December 4, 2023, 10 am

Education Center 107

Bernard Fishman has directed the Maine State Museum for eleven years. Prior to that, over a period of nearly 30 years, he directed four other history museums in as many states. Trained as an Egyptologist and educated at Columbia University and the University of Pennsylvania, he worked in Egypt for three years as an archaeologist for the University of Chicago. He also has strong connections to Maine, where his family operated four small department stores (M.H. Fishman Co.), and he spent eleven childhood summers as a camper or counselor at Maine summer camps.

Samantha Smith: America's Youngest Ambasador


with Doug Rawlings

Calendar Jan 24, 2024 at 10 am



January 24, 2024

10 am-12 pm

North Dining Hall West End A

As a member of Veterans For Peace, Doug was involved in the June 2023 dedication of a South Portland Highway in Samantha Smith's honor. During that process, he became aware of the power of Samantha's words and short life. This book is written from the perspective of one of Samantha Smith's peers -- she was a fourth grader in 1985 when Samantha died. She was a resident of the Soviet Union. She has dedicated much of her life to re-creating Samantha's message of peace activism.


The Golden Rule Comes to Maine


with Doug Rawlings

Calendar Feb 7, 2024 at 1 pm


The Golden Rule is Veteran For Peace's official "peace boat."  It originally sailed into the Marshall Islands in 1958 to stop nuclear bomb testing. It was resurrected by VFP's Northern California chapter in 2010 and has since sailed up and down the west coast, to Hawaii, down the Mississippi River, up and down the Florida coast, to Cuba, and in the summer of 2023 to Portland, Maine. Its mission is to educate people about the horrors of nuclear war and to advocate for eliminating nuclear weapons. This class will focus on the five days the boat and its crew spent in Portland, South Portland, and Bath.

February 7, 2024

10 am-12 pm

North Dining Hall West End A

Doug is a Co-founder of Veterans For Peace. Drafted in 1968 and sent to Vietnam from July 1969 to August 1970. Much of his poetry is political in nature and much of it comes from his experience as a soldier and veteran.

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