In partnership with the Maine Memory Network Maine Memory Network

Maine Memory Network

Jews as Mainers: Jewish Contributions to Maine's Culture

Text by Miles de Klerk

Images from Maine Historical Society, Colby College Special Collections

The culture of a place is not defined solely by one group of people. Every group that exists in a community, minority and majority alike, has an impact on that community's culture.

When a new group of people joins a community, it must attempt to fit into what already exists while maintaining the distinct identity that it already holds. The Jews of Maine entered into the state's already defined "work hard, play hard" culture, and like all other minorities their presence further molded Maine's identity.

Whether they were going to one of Maine's Jewish summer camps or helping to spread popular culture to young and old alike, Maine's Jews impacted the social landscape as their individual identities melded with the state's local culture in a variety of interesting and important ways.