Bridges
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An online exhibition celebrating and analyzing a long-time football rivalry between neighboring communities and their respective high schools.

An online exhibition celebrating and analyzing a long-time football rivalry between neighboring communities and their respective high schools.

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Bridges Bridges Presentation Transcript

  • Bridges A Retrospective on aCentury Old Tradition and Rivalry
  • Bridging Communities Alternate views on either side of the Saco River from the Elm Street Bridge.
  • Bridging Communities Alternate views on either side of the Saco River from the Main Street Bridge. View slide
  • Bridging Generations Interviews with multiple generations of participants in the battle. QuickTime™ an d a H.264 de compress or ar e need ed to s ee this p icture . Ron Ouellette: Biddeford View slide
  • Bridging Generations Interviews with multiple generations of participants in the battle. QuickTime™ an d a H.264 de compress or ar e need ed to s ee this p icture . Mike Redmond: Biddeford
  • Bridging Generations Interviews with multiple generations of participants in the battle. QuickTime™ an d a H.264 de compress or ar e need ed to s ee this p icture . Brian Curit: Biddeford
  • Bridging Generations Interviews with multiple generations of participants in the battle. QuickTime™ an d a H.264 de compress or ar e need ed to s ee this p icture . Chuck Cote: Thornton Academy
  • Bridging Generations Interviews with multiple generations of participants in the battle. QuickTime™ an d a H.264 de compress or ar e need ed to s ee this p icture . Nick Leblond: Biddeford
  • Bridging Generations Interviews with multiple generations of participants in the battle. QuickTime™ an d a H.264 de compress or ar e need ed to s ee this p icture . Scott Descoteaux: Biddeford
  • Bridging Generations Interviews with multiple generations of participants in the battle. QuickTime™ an d a H.264 de compress or ar e need ed to s ee this p icture . Jack Morrison: Thornton Academy
  • Bridging Time The first Biddeford-Thornton Academy football contest was played in 1893. The Biddeford-Thornton Academy Rivalry did not become an annual event on the school’s athletic calendars until 1963. Since that year, the school’s have staged their annual rivalry game without a break. The following slides display the trends of results throughout the decades contextualized with world, national, and local events.
  • Bridging Time: The Early Years 1893: Thornton Academy 12, Biddeford 0 1893 Thornton Academy 4, Biddeford 0 1901 Thornton Academy 4, Biddeford 0 1908 Thornton Academy 22, Biddeford 6 1909 Thornton Academy 2, Biddeford 0 1910 Biddeford 13, Thornton Academy 5 1910 Thornton Academy 13, Biddeford 5 1912 Thornton Academy 12, Biddeford 0 President Taft at Biddeford PoolPanama Canal Constructed Pepperell Mills Weave Room Troops at Boxer Rebellion
  • Bridging Time: The “Roaring” 1921: Thornton Academy 2, Biddeford 0 Years 1922: Biddeford 10, Thornton Academy 0 1923: Thornton Academy 19, Biddeford 7 1927: Thornton Academy 0, Biddeford 0 (Tie) 1928: Thornton Academy 2, Biddeford 0 1929: Biddeford 6, Thornton Academy 0 1929: Thornton Academy 0, Biddeford 0 1930: Biddeford 7, Thornton Academy 0 Bibeau Bros. Groceries in Biddeford 1930: Biddeford 9, Thornton Academy 0 Pepperell Square in Saco Beer Hall Putsch Defendants Flappers
  • Bridging Time: The Depression 1931: Thornton Academy 14, Biddeford 6 Years 1932: Thornton Academy 13, Biddeford 4 1933: Thornton Academy 18, Biddeford 0 1934: Thornton Academy 31, Biddeford 0 1935: Thornton Academy 41, Biddeford 0 1936: Thornton Academy 7, Biddeford 0 1937: Thornton Academy 6, Biddeford 6 1938: Thornton Academy 26, Biddeford 6 1939: Thornton Academy 19, Biddeford 0 CCC Sidewalk Repair in Biddeford 1940: Thornton Academy 39, Biddeford 0 Gone With The Wind released 1930s T. A. postcard The Rape of Nanking
  • Bridging Time: The War Years 1941: Thornton Academy 25, Biddeford 0 1942: Thornton Academy 35, Biddeford 0 1943: Thornton Academy 6, Biddeford 0 1944: Thornton Academy 6, Biddeford 0 1945: Thornton Academy 6, Biddeford 6 (Tie) 1946: Thornton Academy 0, Biddeford 0 (Tie) 1947: Biddeford 33, Thornton Academy 0 1948: Biddeford 6, Thornton Academy 0 1949 Chinese revolution 1949: Biddeford 7, Thornton Academy 0 1950: Thornton Academy 28, Biddeford 0 Ration Coupon Book Civil Defense helmet 1940s Ferry beach postcard
  • Bridging Time: The Crisis & Recovery Years 1951: Thornton Academy 37, Biddeford 13 1952: Thornton Academy 53, Biddeford 7 1953: Thornton Academy 13, Biddeford 7 1954: Thornton Academy 40, Biddeford 0 1963: Thornton Academy 20, Biddeford 0 1964: Thornton Academy 13, Biddeford 7 1965: Thornton Academy 7, Biddeford 7 (Tie) 1966: Biddeford 18, Thornton Academy 12 1967: Biddeford 12, Thornton Academy 6 1968: Thornton Academy 32, Biddeford 0 1968 Paris Revolution Little Rock Nine 1958 Biddeford Breadline Saco’s Cascade Lounge
  • Bridging Time: The Gas Line Years 1969: Thornton Academy 35, Biddeford 16 1970: Biddeford 44, Thornton Academy 19 1971: Thornton Academy 14, Biddeford 14 (Tie) 1972: Biddeford 12, Thornton Academy 0 1973: Biddeford 19, Thornton Academy 13 1973: Thornton Academy 37, Biddeford 13 1974: Thornton Academy 16, Biddeford 13 1974: Thornton Academy 22, Biddeford 5 1975: Thornton Academy 21, Biddeford 0 1976: Thornton Academy 25, Biddeford 8 1977: Biddeford 8, Thornton Academy 7 Mid 1970s Gas Lines 1978: Thornton Academy 14, Biddeford 0 1979: Biddeford 28, Thornton Academy 7 Biddeford Celebrates Bicentennial The Iranian Revolution Vic & Whit’s Opens in Saco
  • Bridging Time: The Supply-Side Years 1980: Biddeford 50, Thornton Academy 18 1980: Biddeford 7, Thornton Academy 0 1981: Biddeford 20, Thornton Academy 14 1982: Thornton Academy 18, Biddeford 14 1983: Thornton Academy 7, Biddeford 0 1984: Biddeford 15, Thornton Academy 6 1985: Biddeford 41, Thornton Academy 19 1986: Thornton Academy 45, Biddeford 20 1987: Biddeford 15, Thornton Academy 14 1988: Biddeford 19, Thornton Academy 14 1989: Biddeford 35, Thornton Academy 0 Challenger Tragedy Fall of Berlin Wall MERC Opens Ray’s becomes Permanent
  • Bridging Time: The Networking Years 1990: Biddeford 41, Thornton Academy 13 1990: Biddeford 31, Thornton Academy 19 1991: Thornton Academy 27, Biddeford 21 1991: Biddeford 29, Thornton Academy 28 1992: Biddeford 22, Thornton Academy 21 1993: Biddeford 28, Thornton Academy 13 1994: Biddeford 10, Thornton Academy 0 1995: Biddeford 27, Thornton Academy 21 1996: Biddeford 21, Thornton Academy 14 1997: Biddeford 41, Thornton Academy 7 MacArthur Library Renovated 1998: Biddeford 43, Thornton Academy 21 1999: Biddeford 7, Thornton Academy 0 Funtown Updated Attractions Rabin Assassinated Jerry Garcia Passed Away
  • Bridging Time: The Recent Years 2000: Thornton Academy 28, Biddeford 19 2001: Thornton Academy 32, Biddeford 3 2002: Thornton Academy 20, Biddeford 12 2003: Biddeford 47, Thornton Academy 8 2004: Thornton Academy 7, Biddeford 6 2005: Biddeford 30, Thornton Academy 7 2006: Thornton Academy 21, Biddeford 14 2007: Thornton Academy 20, Biddeford 14 (OT) 2007: Thornton Academy 28, Biddeford 6 Passenger Trains Return 2008: Thornton Academy 23, Biddeford 6 2009: Thornton Academy 42, Biddeford 7 2010: Biddeford 27, Thornton Academy 22 2011: Thornton Academy 34, Biddeford 0 2012: Thornton Academy 42, Biddeford 14Biddeford High School Renovates An Historic Election The Advent of Social Media
  • Bridging Places  A look at the venues where the game is played and their feeling/atmosphere as a cultural reflection of the neighboring communities.Waterhouse Field in Biddeford Hill Stadium in Saco
  • Waterhouse Field Located off campus on the corner of West Street and Wendall Ave. Waterhouse Field was constructed in 1929 with the help of Alfred L. Waterhouse and other local investors, who purchased land off West Street and built a playing field under the name of the Biddeford High School Alumni Association. During the Great Depression, it was Waterhouse, a local hardware store worker, who provided the funds to keep the field going, including paying for lighting for night football games and for installing fencing.
  • Hill Stadium Located on campus on Route 1/ Main St in Saco. Opened in the early 1980s. Named for one-time Saco physician and TA trustee… Dr. Paul S. Hill Jr.
  • Bridging the Social Divide A look at the perspective of each community’s students as they project on their neighbors the prevailing attitude they have toward the other.How is this attitude manifested through the performance of the “battle”? In asking current and former students to share their perspective of their rivals across the river, the following is a sampling of quotes.
  • Bridging the Social Divide “They’re snobs! They think they are better than us and consider us scum” Biddeford Cheerleader. “I sense that they struggle over there, with the economy, with reputation, it seems like its always been that way, going back to the mill days.” Saco Banker
  • Bridging the Social Divide “I don’t know, sometimes the whole thing was so ridiculous. Why couldn’t these people get themselves a life.” Thornton Parent “Nothing was more important than beating them, than giving this community something to hang their hat on.” Biddeford Teacher
  • Bridging the Social Divide “Back then, the noise, the uproar, I hated it. I was in school to work toward getting out of school, getting out of Saco, so I wasn’t about to concern myself with how the Golden Trojans were doing. It’s funny that I ended up right back here and now take some pride in our recent state title.” Thornton Teacher “Growing up in this town, football was everything. Game days against TA were more nerve racking than state title games.” Biddeford Teacher
  • Bridging Attitudes A look at the battle through the eyes of the “other” participants, the fans, parents, students, etc. QuickTime™ an d a H.264 de compress or ar e need ed to s ee this p icture . Cathy Baillargeon TA Parent
  • Bridging Attitudes A look at the battle through the eyes of the “other” participants, the fans, parents, students, etc. QuickTime™ an d a H.264 de compress or ar e need ed to s ee this p icture . Keegan Moody TA Graduate
  • Bridging Attitudes A look at the battle through the eyes of the “other” participants, the fans, parents, students, etc. QuickTime™ an d a H.264 de compress or ar e need ed to s ee this p icture . Cady Toussaint: Biddeford Cheerleader
  • Bridging Attitudes A look at the battle through the eyes of the “other” participants, the fans, parents, students, etc. QuickTime™ an d a H.264 de compress or ar e need ed to s ee this p icture . Pat Bolin: Biddeford Band Teacher
  • Bridging Performance  A look at parades, floats, bridge decorating, pre-game ritual from both sides of the river. QuickTime™ and a QuickTime™ an d a decompressor decompressor are neede d to see this picture.are need ed to see this picture.
  • Bridging Performance QuickTime™ and a decompressor are neede d to see this picture. Qui ckTi me™ and a QuickTime™ and a decompresso r decompressor are ne eded to see thi s pi cture. are needed to se e this picture. QuickTime™ and a decompressorare neede d to se e this picture.
  • Bridging Performance Quic kTime™ and a Qui ckT i m e™ and a dec om press roare ne eded t o see t his pi ct ure. decompressor are needed to see this picture.
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  • Bridging History A look at the (in)famous battle that took place without football. The thwarted Labor Day KKK march from Saco into Biddeford, stopped by local bands of Irish/French immigrants at either bridge.
  • Bridging History September 1. 1924: The “Battle of the Bridge” takes place as Saco Klansmen intend to march into Biddeford. The objects of their derision were both the French and Irish Catholic immigrant communities. Although the Klan’s intentions proved a depolarizing event for their divergent enclaves, both Biddeford’s French and Irish stayed with their own and defended separate bridges.
  • Bridging History As increasing numbers of knife-wielding Francos who had been covering the Main Street bridge began to arrive, the Klansmen lost their enthusiasm and the parade melted away, ending the “Battle.” One common story-the so-called “Battle of the Bridge”-holds that the Klan got as far as the middle of the Elm Street bridge to Biddeford’s Spring’s Island when it halted upon seeing the Irish with piles of “Irish confetti”. (A euphemism for bricks and stones).
  • Bridging History Although the following images do not directly originate from Saco, or its Klansmen of the 1920s, they do confirm the existence of the Klan in Maine and its strong hold on the imagination of members of the dominant culture threatened by the emergence of an immigrant labor force. As an aside, the images from the program are an heirloom belonging to a Biddeford resident, believed to have once belonged to an ancestor who resided down east.
  • Bridging HistoryMore images reinforcing the presence of the Klan in Maine in the1920s.
  • Bridging History Images from a program for a “Women of the Ku Klux Klan” rally in Portland on July 25, 1925. This reinforces the existence of the Klan locally in Maine, not far from the Biddeford/Saco area.
  • Contested Adversaries The opinion of opposing players toward one another. Both at the time of engagement and through the lens of reflection.
  • Contested Adversaries “It was a battle of the haves and the have- nots. We’re the poor guys and we beat those guys and it was a tremendous feeling.” “I remember my senior year. We gathered at Deering Ice Cream, they gathered at a Saco establishment. There was a radio station at both facilities and we were sort of, in a polite way, sort of jabbing back and forth at each other.”
  • Contested Adversaries “Just this past year on my team, I had three players whose Dads played against me either as a players or a coach and they are now playing at Thornton Academy, so there is a mixture of the communities. There always has been.” TA is the largest school, population wise, in the state of Maine. So, because of that you can always expect a battle from those guys. We’ve been competing with them since as early as third grade, the beginning of Peewees and have always respected their many athletes.
  • Contested Adversaries “There was a general superiority kind of thing where Thornton Academy people were considered back then as sort of economically superior and more educated and there may have been some truth to that.” “Even when I was at Thornton Academy, I think the community of Biddeford had a greater support for their team. We all know that parents and student bodies go out to these games, but I felt even playing at Thornton that Biddeford had a greater community sense.” “We had great respect for our opponents. No doubt Thornton Academy was a team that we did not want to lose to but at the same time we certainly respected them. Back in the day, the schools were very, very similar. Since then, TA has gone the private route and the rivalry has changed.”
  • Bridging Battles Placing meaning on the conflict. The performance of the battle simultaneously divides and binds the two communities of Biddeford and Saco. It is a profoundly meaningful identity marker for both communities and their schools that participate in it. Students from both schools and citizens of the towns acquire a strengthened sense of place through performance of the battle. A recent USA Today poll resulted in the Battle of the Bridge being named as the top high school rivalry in the state of Maine. Regardless of the differences between the divergent towns, regardless of their real or perceived notions of one another, and regardless of the projections foisted across their divide, the communities now collectively enjoy the ownership of their shared experience.
  • Image Citations Slide 2: Author’s personal collection Slide 3: Author’s personal collection Slide 12: President Taft-http://www.mainememory.net Panama Canal-http://supplychainalmanac.com Pepperell Mills- http://www.mainememory.net Boxer Rebellion-http://en.wikipedia.org Slide 13: Bilbeau Bros.-http://www.mainememory.net Pepperrell Square-http://www.mainememory.net Beer Hall Putsch-http://en.wikipedia.org Flappers-http://hemingwaysparis.blogspot.com Slide 14: CCC Repair-http://www.mainememory.net Nanking-http://movies.nytimes.com Gone with the Wind-http://www.leninimports.com TA Postcard-http://www.ebay.com Slide 15: Chinese Revolution-http://www.japanfocus.org Civil Defense Helmut, Ration Coupon Book-author’s collection. Ferry Beach Postcard-http://www.ebay.com
  • Image Citations Slide 16: Paris Revolution-http://www.onthisdeity.com/13th-may-1968-–-paris- revolts Little Rock Nine-http://imagine-yesterday.blogspot.com Biddeford Bread Line-http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm Boxer Rebellion-http://en.wikipedia.org Slide 17: Bilbeau Bros.-http://www.mainememory.net Pepperrell Square-http://www.mainememory.net Beer Hall Putsch-http://en.wikipedia.org Flappers-http://hemingwaysparis.blogspot.com Slide 18: CCC Repair-http://www.mainememory.net Nanking-http://movies.nytimes.com Gone with the Wind-http://www.leninimports.com TA Postcard-http://www.ebay.com Slide 19: Chinese Revolution-http://www.japanfocus.org Civil Defense Helmut, Ration Coupon Book-author’s collection. Ferry Beach Postcard-http://www.ebay.com Slide 20: Amtrak-http://www.city-data.com BHS Rennovation-http://www.keepmecurrent.com Obama/McCain-http://www.votetruth08.com Social Media-http://www.ideaover10.com
  • Image Citations Slide 21: Waterhouse Field-http://www.leaguelineup.com/ Hill Stadium-http://www.leaguelineup.com Slide 22: Tiger Pride-http://www.johnpineauphotography.com Text from-http://www.keepmecurrent.com Slide 23: Hill Stadium Sign-http://www.nevco.com Slides 34-36: Excerpts takes from Downs, Cities on the Saco Slide 37: All images- www.mainememory.net Slide 38: All images-author’s personal collection.