Penobscot Marine Museum-sponsored film screens at the Colonial Theatre Nov. 13

Traveling back to 1845 in the film ‘The Home Road’

Mon, 11/13/2017 - 10:15am

    BELFAST—The Penobscot Marine Museum boasts a collection of nearly 100,000 databased images online of Maine, the state's largest, going back to the 1860s.

    And some will be revealed in a new documentary ‘The Home Road' that screens tonight, November 13 at the Colonial Theatre in Belfast. The film tells the story of a 74-year-old Maine man, Shevenell’s great-great-great-grandfather Israel Shevenell, who left his home in Canada in 1845 at the age of 19 to travel to Maine to find work in the mills the spring of 1845.  The astounding hook to this documentary is that he walked all the way from Quebec, Canada to Biddeford, Maine just to find a job.

    “Last year when we screened The Northeast By Eastern about the Maine postcard industry as a fundraiser, I met filmmaker Tonya Shevenell, who was a promoter for that film,” said PMM’s Photo Archivist Kevin Johnson. “She just happened to be making her own documentary at the time and asked for the permission to use some of the photos in our collection for it, so it seemed the perfect opportunity to screen her film as this year’s fundraiser to raise money for our extensive photography archives. We’re starting to get the next wave of more contemporary collections.”

    PMM’s photography archives are a portal back in time. “The photos that we collect and share are stories of our communities,” said Johnson. “By making them publicly available, we make sure they get seen and used, but more importantly, put to work.” Since they began putting our photos online, they have been used in 44 articles, 67 books, 17 TV/Film projects, 31 exhibits, and 22 websites. They are used monthly in Discover Maine Magazine, Maine Boats Homes & Harbors and Fisherman's Voice.  PMM regularly provides photos to Bangor Daily News, the Ellsworth American, the Republican Journal and Penobscot Bay Pilot. Two of their photos were used by DownEast Magazine in their issue featuring Maine's top 10 most iconic photos.

    The film is sponsored by the Coastal Healthcare Alliance as many of PMM’s photographs decorate the hallways of both Waldo County General Hospital and Penobscot Bay Medical Center.

    Tonya and her film's star, Ray Shevenell, will be on hand for the screening. Tickets are $12 for members and $15 for members. Free beer will be offered by Marshall Wharf Brewing Co. Seating is limited. Tickets: Call (207) 548-2529 or

    Related story: Ever wonder where vintage postcards of Maine came from?

    Kay Stephens can be reached at