Franco-American Collection


James Myall in front of a picture of a nurse and a soldier in an infirmary.

Digitization Day to Take Place on Saturday, Oct. 22

Saturday, October 22, marks the final event in the Franco-American Collection’s program “Franco-Americans During Wartime: A Heritage of Service.” On that day, between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., people can bring in wartime-related materials to be digitized. They will leave with their original materials as well as a digital copy, and have the option of depositing a digital copy at the Collection to be preserved and used for research. In addition to the digitization activities, Jeannette Gregoire will be playing piano, and there will be light refreshments and exhibits.

James Myall to Speak at Franco-American Collection on October 4

James Myall's presentation “Sous les Drapeaux: Franco-American Voices from the Front Lines” will look at various unique aspects of the service of Franco-Americans in the armed services, including divided national identities, use of the French language, and questions of patriotism and discrimination before, during and after wartime. The talk will be at USM’s Lewiston-Auburn College, Room 170, at 7:00pm on Tuesday, October 4, with light refreshments and a chance to tour the Collection before the talk.

Franco-American Collection to Open Season with Reception and Talk

Join the Franco-American Collection (Lewiston-Auburn College) on Tuesday, September 20, at a 5:00 reception and a 6:00 talk “In and Out of War in Franco-American Communities: Soldiers, Veterans, and Their Families.” Susan Pinette and Lisa Michaud (Franco-American Centre, University of Maine at Orono) will speak on how military service is both a disruption to ethnic identity and a means to strengthen it. They will look at Franco-American literature and at real-world examples. At the end of the evening, audience members will be welcome to join in and discuss how their wartime experiences either drew them closer to their home community or separated them from it.


Tuesday night, May 17, the Franco-American Collection, located at USM’s Lewiston-Auburn College, held the kickoff for its project “Franco-Americans During Wartime: A Heritage of Service.” The Collection is focusing on the wartime experiences of Franco-Americans, whether in military service or on the homefront. At Tuesday’s talk, Mary Rice-DeFosse, Professor of French and Francophone Studies at Bates College, spoke of the experiences of several participants in WWI.

Franco-American Collection receives National Endowment for the Humanities Grant

The National Endowment for the Humanities has awarded a $10,477 Common Heritage Grant to the Franco-American Collection, located at USM's Lewiston-Auburn College. The focus of the grant will be a one-day digitization event targeted at preserving cultural heritage materials related to military experiences - at war and on the home front - of members of Maine's Franco-American population, the state's largest ethnic group. The grant will also support a speaker series addressing the history of Franco-American military service. The theme of military service will help the public explore questions of identity and loyalty, which attended Maine's Franco-American population from its early days.

Roberts named to lead Franco-American Collection at USM's Lewiston-Auburn College

Janet Roberts is the new Coordinator for the Franco-American Collection at USM's Lewiston-Auburn College.

Collection Coordinator Featured on Radio Canada Acadie's "Tout un Samedi"

Listen to the interview online, as well as interviews with the US organizers of the World Acadian Congress and mezzo soprano Mélanie Saucier of Fort Kent.

Collection Catalog Now Online!

The Collection's catalog is online! It is now possible to search the Collection at the item level for the first time. Visitors to the site, powered by the Past Perfect museum software, can choose to browse items in the Collection, bring up random records, or research the Collection's holdings through powerful search tools. Over 1500 records were added to the catalog for its initial launch, and more are being added on a regular basis. This is just a fraction of the many thousands of items in the Collection, but it allows researchers to access the Collection's holdings in unprecedented detail.

Semaine de la Francophonie 2014

The Semaine de la Francophonie ("Week of the Francophone Community") is an annual celebration of French-speaking cultures around the world. March 20th is the international day of the Francophonie.

Franco-American Collection Spring 2014 Lecture Series

The Collection's 2014 Spring lecture series, coordinated with USM faculty, links the Franco-American past and present. Events in the series examine Franco-American politics, labor history, and gender roles, as well as Franco-Somali relations in the 21st century. The series is made possible by the University of Maine System's Diversity Committee.