Pat was born Patricia Harvell on August 24th 1918 in Calais, Maine. She was delivered by Dr. Marion at Dr. Myra’s Hospital on Main St. in Calais. Her father was Ernest C. Brown. Her mother was Leonora Balkam Harvell.
When Pat was ready to start school the children were ill with whopping cough. So when the family went to Boston to teach, grandmother Harvell stayed home with Patricia. She taught Pat to read the story “The hand that Carried the Bag of Flour” from the book The Progressive Road to Reading. Pat really started school when she was six years old.
When Pat graduated from the fourth grade she moved to the “Big Room” of the school which had just added the ninth grade. The new young teacher couldn’t manage the class so the fifth grade was moved back to the room Pat had been in. Pat’s mother was the teacher there. Pat had her mother as a teacher all of her schooling through the fifth grade. Pat attended sixth and seventh grade with Carolyn Dwelley who she dearly loved.
While in the seventh grade Pat’s family decided she should move to Boston for school. This was because Pat’s mother didn’t drive (due to a deformity to her right hand) and there were no buses to the high school. Pat lived with her grandmother, aunts and cousins in Allston, MA. She attended the William Howard Taft Junior High School in Brighton MA. In the eighth grade Pat took Conversational French. However, because she had transferred from a school in Maine she was behind. Pat felt lost in this class. She never did become very good at French even though she took it again in high school. Pat graduated Taft Jr. High in 1933. She chose not to go to Brighton High School. She went to Girls High School in Boston instead. She graduated in 1936.
Pats aunt died that summer in 1936. Pat rushed back to the family home in Robbinston, ME. She wrote “soft” letters to Gorham Normal School where she was accepted for teacher’s training. Seven of her aunts had attended Gorham. She graduated from Gorham in June, 1939.
Pat then furiously wrote letters looking for a job. She didn’t get one so she attended the Castine Convention. There she was interviewed by a dozen superintendents mostly from Aroostock County where they were paying teachers with “script” and potatoes. She declined several positions because of the method of payment. She persuaded the principal and a teacher at the Mckinley School to hire her. Mckinley is now Bass Harbor, ME. Pat taught for thirty-two years. Twenty-four of those years in Ellsworth, ME. She retired in 1979. Pat was an avid historian.
Pat married a Bass Harbor store keeper in 1940. They were married 60 years until his death in 2001. She had one son, four grandchildren and four great grandchildren.
Pat is also survived by one half sister, Barbara Barnes of Robbinston, ME and a half brother Phillip Brown of Hermon, ME. Pat had twenty-four first cousins. Only one survives today. She is Ellen Harvell of California.
All her cousins had children who Pat called first cousins once removed. James Russell’s children were Jimmy and Martha. Martha is a teacher. Jimmy is in insurance. Martin’s children are Charles who designed bridges is Massachusetts, Jimmy who is retired, and Mary Ellen. Charles Howe had two girls they are both retired. Betty Howe had two children, and John Harvell. There are six generations of Johns in the Harvell family. Pat is also survived by many friends, former students and colleagues. She lived her last years at Courtland Rehabilitation & Living Center where she became the favorite of many staff and volunteers. She will be greatly missed.
Memorial services will be held 11:00AM, Wednesday, May 2, 2012 at Jordan-Fernald, 1139 Main St., Mt. Desert. Interment will be at Head of Harbor Cemetery, Bass Harbor.
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