In partnership with the Maine Memory Network Maine Memory Network

Marion Sanborn

Three 10th grade students interviewed Thomaston resident Marion Sanborn, age 85, in the home of one of the students, on November 31st, 2008. She discussed her upbringing on a farm with her grandparents, and her responsibilities there.

Transcription of Interview clip one

Anna: So you said you had a barn, did you have any animals or anything?

Marion: Yes, yes we raised cows and chickens.

- Pause -

Marion: Like I said cows and chickens.

Anna: Cows and chickens, so you used them for food?

Marion: Yes.

Kristin: Did you have any like special responsibilities with the animals?

Marion: Well, I would help take them down of the pasture and take them out of the pasture. But I always told my grandmother, “I don’t wanna marry a farmer, I don’t want to be a farmers wife.” I, you know I loved the horses, looking at them and all, but I was afraid. I used to give them hay, I tramped in hay and all and these were great big horses and I was scared to death they were gonna kick me or something. And the cows, I’ll remember them to this day, and they’re all standing there with these great big eyes and beautiful faces and I’m scared to death of them because they’re mooing and flashing their tails.

Anna: So you never had to…

Marion: And chickens, we had the chicken house when they first came, because we don’t have heating like now, they’d have to stay in the kitchen for a few days so they’d get a little bit bigger and they’d jump out of the boxes. Chickens, you know how adorable they are? Well, they’re not adorable when you’ve got to pick them up and put them in the box because they’re all skin and bones. So I didn’t like that either.

Anna: So did you end up marrying a farmer?

Marion: No, no I didn’t.

Interview Clip 2

There is currently no audio file available for Clip 2


Marion: and that was one of my chores and it was a chore that I had to do but I wanted to do it because I loved my grandfather and he was very very good to me and he had to have help pitching that hay. So they used the pitchfork is what they pitched it up into this hay rack with and he always id that and I would tramp it down because if you didn’t tramp it down it would fill up too quickly, so you had to keep it tramped down so the load would hold a lot of hay. And then it would go back to the barn. And my grandfather I asked him this one particular day I asked him if I could drive the horses and he said yes I could and I did, but I don’t know…whatever way I was supposed to steer, I went the opposite way. And upset the haystack and of course it scared the horses and they started trying to pull it on its side. Well it scared me to death but it was fine, my grandfather got it to stop. And you know like some would be so cross at you for doing something stupid like that and he wasn’t at all.

Anna: so your grandparents are more like parents to you?

Marion: Well they were very close to me, like my parents but really close. But my grandfather, like I said, my two grandfathers…I’ve never seen more patient people in my life. I’ve known a lot of wonderful men, I have one as a husband. But they were very, very patient, you know, they were so patient, and here I am tipping over the hayrack, and they’re very kind.