Edmund S. Muskie Oral History Collection


Don Nicoll

Document Type

Oral History

Publication Date


Interview Number

MOH 189


Jane (Gray) Muskie was born on February 12, 1927 to Myrtie (Jackson) and Millage Guy Gray. She grew up in the Waterville, Maine area, graduating from Waterville High School. Her father died when she was about 10years old, so her mother supported the family. During the summers, Jane and her mother would travel to various resorts in Maine so her mother could cook. Jane’s first job was dishwashing at one of these resorts. After graduation from high school, Jane worked in downtown Waterville at clothing stores. At the age of eighteen, she met Ed Muskie, a Waterville lawyer. They dated for three years before marrying in 1948. In 1986, she and Abigail McCarthy wrote a book entitled One Woman Lost, which focused on being married to politicians. At the time of the interview, she lived in Bethesda, Maryland. Jane passed away on December 25, 2004.

Scope and Content Note

Interview includes discussions of: Gray family history; Jane’s early employment; classmates in the Waterville, Maine schools: Bob Marden, Cyril Joly, John Jabar; Bob and Scoop Marden; Waterville community; working at a clothing store for Alvina Lewia; meeting Ed Muskie at an AmVets meeting; age difference between Jane and Ed; engagement; converting to Catholicism; Ed Muskie’s religion; naming the Muskie children; Silver Mount house in Waterville; Ed Muskie’s back injury; Muskie’s fundraising for the Waterville hospital; meeting with Frank Coffin after the injury to plan the Democratic Party; Marjorie Hutchinson; keeping the law practice open during the back injury; Ed’s heart attack before Marjorie Hutchinson’s funeral; OPS—Office of Price Stabilization; Muskie’s “career plan”; 1954 campaign; Today Show appearance in 1954; Dick McMahon; and Dick Dubord.

Use Restrictions

Copyright Bates College. This transcript is provided for individual Research Purposes Only; for all other uses, including publication, reproduction and quotation beyond fair use, permission must be obtained in writing from: The Edmund S. Muskie Archives and Special Collections Library, Bates College, 70 Campus Avenue, Lewiston, Maine 04240-6018.