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January 2013 MAINE COASTAL NEWS Page 5. REMEMBERING MOVING THE OLD SHOP By Lee S. Wilbur “Did you get the permit?”

“No,” I replied, “I thought you were supposed to take care of it.”

“No, I’m sure I told you to get it.” I shook my head again.

And we stood there going back and forth while the blue light on the State Police Cruiser was winging round and round while the State trooper’s head was going back and forth between Roland Bragg and myself. Traffi c was backed up for 30 to 50 yards going in either direction. A few remarks were beginning to fi ll the air.” I had started my fi rst, albeit short, career as a teaching principal in Lamoine. Drove over to open school that morning, then with the superintendent’s permission, drove back to Manset to watch Roland’s “Nobleboro Building Movers” company move a building we’d bought in Seawall be moved to our house in Manset, a distance of 2 miles. How much trouble could there be with a two mile move and a well experienced moving company? The answer was “Just enough.”

During and after University of Maine summers, wife Heidi and I had been building up a boat rental business on the Manset shore. We’d started with an inboard power boat, small sail boat, and assorted rowboats while we were managing the Moorings Restaurant. After graduating and moving back to Manset we’d purchased a four acre piece of land which had had virtually all the top soil scraped off, in fact ledge was showing in many places. Perfect place for a barn. We were storing the several boats by then in a fi eld in back of a rental house so when Jim Willis, who’d helped us a great

deal with the rental business, mentioned he’d like to sell the boat building shop beside his house in Seawall, our ears perked up. Just what we needed to work off-season on “the fl eet.” The price was the princely sum of $2500. Jim’s wife Martha, I think, wanted it gone in a big way.

Couple of problems. One, the building would, of course, have to be moved. Second, building had wings on either side which would have to be pulled off and moved separately. Third, building was too wide (28’) to come down our newly built driveway. Had only a 20’ strip. Asked around about building movers and Roland Bragg’s name came up several times. With Roland’s visit to look over the situation, the fi rst two problems were solved. Between our property and the main road our neighbors, the Dollivers had a semblance of lawn and fi eld. I asked Carl if he would mind us bringing the building across to our property. Carl was kind of a cagey character, but he pretended to think it over for a few long minutes, then agreed if we would make sure any damage was repaired, and, he’d like $50 for “the trouble.”

So what was the State trooper going to do. Roland couldn’t back this 50’ by 28’ building to its’ place of origin. An overhanging limb, along with the trooper, was making the situation even more interesting. We were soon able to get in touch with the tree’s owner and a few minutes more with a chain saw had that taken care of. By now traffi c was backed up both ways out of sight The town police, who’d preceded the Trooper were bent on keeping the situation (another story) in an uproar, and I was beginning to wonder if the Ellsworth jail

would be my accommodations that evening. Roland, was getting a real kick out it all. Kept giving me a wink whenever he’d score a round on the trooper. Finally, with the only solution possible, Roland motions the truck and building to the left as far as possible Creeps around what was left of the tree. Trooper tells the Police Chief in no uncertain terms what to do with the cars ahead, and the morning’s entertainment headed for the Dolliver lawn. Carl ‘s sitting on his porch enjoying the commotion as Roland directs the rig and motions for the driver to speed up. He’d no more than gotten the tail end of that building clear of the road than the rear four wheels of the I-beam “trailer” started sinking and fetched up solid. Roland allowed that was enough for one day and he’d be back the next with planking and blocks and move it the last few yards into place. Trooper had us sign some papers and he left. Police chief stuck around long enough to get in a few dirty looks and a comment or two. I went back to teach an afternoon class.

Roland got the building in place the

next day, brought the wings up and placed them—no permits again—I paid Carl, and fi lled in the ruts in his lawn. Few days later, after the story had made its’ rounds, another abutting neighbor, Roger Pinkham, came down to the house with a plot plan. Says to us, “You may not realize it, but where you brought the building across, and paid Carl for the privilege, was actually your land.” and pointed it out on the plot plan. All we’d seen was a deed when the land was purchased, and assumed the driveway was the only connection to the Seawall Road. We let Carl and Elsie enjoy the hard earned cash and never said a word.

Few weeks later in the Ellsworth court news “Nobleboro Building Movers owner Roland Bragg fi ned $75.00. Moving oversized load over a state road without a permit.” I offered to pay or split the fi ne with Roland, but he said no it wouldn’t be necessary, it was part and parcel of the business and allowed as well he’d gotten a good kick out of besting the trooper.


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