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For the Study of the American Revolution in Maine

The name of Colonel John Allan, the Scottish-born Nova Scotian expatriate, whose daring exploits in the service of the American Revolution secured our nothern border and ensured the cooperation of the Wabanaki First Nations, has never been widely known, let alone celebrated, outside of eastern Washington County in "Down East", Maine.  One of the reasons Colonel Allan's name and consequently his legacy remain largely unknown to the American public, besides the omission of his patriotic deeds from history books, lies in the fact that no public or private entity or institution, including the island in Passamaquoddy Bay where he is buried, still bears his name.  While his memory is kept alive by a small but devoted group of descendants and local historians in the Cobscook Bay and Machias areas, and by occasional commemorative proclamations from the State of Maine, their stalwart efforts would be greatly enhanced by the creation of an organization bearing his name dedicated to the preservation and promotion of his memory and to the inspirational legacy that he and his revolutionary compatriots fought long and hard to establish on our behalf.

To this end we propose the creation of the John Allan Center for the Study of the American Revolution in Maine (JACSARM), to bring together the various human and institutional resources with the interest and dedication to accomplish the work of developing an organization worthy of John Allan's name.  A website is currently under development that will create a virtual library collection and map of such documents and artifacts related to his legacy.

As an ititial consciousness and fundraising project for the John Allan Center, we propose the production of a film project based on his story with the working title of "True White Brother: The Revoltionary Life and Times of John Allan", to be produced by New Eagleland Productions, Christopher Groden, Executive Director.  The film will be produced, to the extent possible, in Washington County, Maine, employing, whenever possible, actors and technicians from Maine.

Since much of John Allan's life and the story of his endeavors is related to boats and ships on the ocean, lakes, ponds, rivers and streams of coastal Maine and colonial Nova Scotia, it follows that a true representation of this story will require the building of a significant number of recreations of ships, boats, and canoes employing the skills of Maine's wooden boat builders.  These vessels, along with the ocean, waterways, and landscapes of Washington County, will be some of the defining elements of this production; ie: 128 canoes for the re-enactmentof the 1777 St. John's River Expedition led by Colonel Allan.  Once these vessels have served their cinematic purpose, we further propose that they be maintained and utilized in the context of a "living history museum" similar to Plimoth Plantation in Massachusetts, operating between Machias and Cobscook and Passamaquoddy Bay, and administered by the John Allan Center, working in conjunction with existing educational and commemorative entities such as the Denny's River Historical Society, the Borders Historical Society in Eastport, the University of Maine/Machias, the Daughters of the American Revolution/Machias, Fort Jeremiah O'Brien, etc., as the Maine Maritime Museum of the American Revolution.

Christopher Groden, Executive Director
57 Blueberry Hill Road
Winterport, Maine 04496
[email protected]

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