March 29, 2020

I am disturbed to hear there is a movement in Grand Isle to strip the name from the village of Lille. I understand the residents of that community are much upset by this state of affairs. Of course they should be — the name of the place we come from is very important to all of us.

However, there is another aspect of this situation that should be considered, and that is what leads an outsider like me to be concerned. In losing the name, Lille would lose one of the very few names that reflects its large Franco-American heritage. This is a rich and proud heritage and one that all Mainers should feel strongly about. But there are few towns in Maine with French names and Lille is, I believe, one of only three communities named after a town in France itself, Calais and Paris being the others.

At a time when Maine is at last recognizing the great contribution to the state, past and present, of its Franco-American population, it would be ironic if we should lose this small but important bit of France.

I would urge people of Grand Isle to think again before they wipe Lille and what it stands for off the map. For more information on this matter write to Lester Dumond, P.O. Box 200, Lille 04746. William Carhart Farmington

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