Edmund S. Muskie Oral History Collection

Document Type

Oral History

Publication Date


Interview Number

MOH 307


Carmelle Paulson was born on April 14, 1957 in Rumford, Maine. Her parents were Adrian and Gertrude Boivin. Her father worked in the paper mill. They were a French-Canadian, Catholic, Democratic family. She attended New Hampshire College of Accounting in Manchester, New Hampshire. After college she worked at Fairchild Semiconductor in the cost accounting department, and then joined the Model Cities Project in Portland as an accountant, working with Jack Dexter. She also lived in a Model Cities neighborhood, so was very involved with its progress and development, and was later promoted to deputy director.

Richard Paulson, Jr. was born on September 29, 1948 in Portland, Maine and grew up in Cape Elizabeth. His mother, Kathleen Paulson, was a homemaker and his father, Richard Paulson, Sr., was a commercial fisherman. They were registered Republicans but were not politically active. Richard attended Cape Elizabeth High School, Bentley College for two years, and then transferred to Quinnipiac College (now Quinnipiac University) in Hamden, Connecticut. He worked for the Model Cities program as an accountant (replacing Carmelle when she was promoted). He ran for the Portland City Council, and served from 1991 to 1997 and as mayor from 1994 to 1995.

Scope and Content Note

Interview includes discussions of: Rumford, Maine community in the 1950s and 1960s; how Muskie helped Carmelle’s family; Oxford Paper Company; description of Cape Elizabeth in the 1950s and 1960s; Model Cities in Portland; City Council, Portland; Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in Portland; the Citizens Advisory Committee; West End Neighborhood Center; People’s Building; Youth in Action; Holy Innocence Homemaker Program; Twenty- four Hour Club; Serenity House for alcoholics; Our Place; Community Health Services; Jerry Conley Sr.; the impact of tourism on Portland; the impact of recent influx of immigrants on Portland; Catholic Charities Refugee Program; mill towns like Lewiston and Rumford; Bates College; mercury scare in fishing industry in the 1960s; and the fishing industry in Maine.

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.