Edmund S. Muskie Oral History Collection

Document Type

Oral History

Publication Date


Interview Number

MOH 338


Fern Pontbriand was born August 2, 1928 in Auburn, Maine. He attended the University of Maine at Orono, graduating in 1950 with a degree in business. He returned to Auburn to work in the family hardware store and gas station, then spent two years in the service from 1951 to 1953 as an office personnel clerk for the Corps of Engineers. He again returned to Auburn to the family business. He ran for the State Legislature in 1960 and won. In 1967, he began working at Lost Valley Ski Area in Auburn and became a partner in 1975 and then the owner in 1988. Pontbriand was also involved in various civic activities around the Lewiston and Auburn areas, such as the Chamber of Commerce and the Rotary Club. He passed away in 2003.

Scope and Content Note

Interview includes discussions of: Pontbriand family history; religion in Lewiston-Auburn; the French Language in Lewiston-Auburn; Lewiston French media in the 1940s; Louis-Philippe Gagne; the Couture family; Franco-American attitudes toward marrying other groups; University of Maine, 1946-1950; getting out of the family business; getting into the ski business; Lost Valley Ski Area history; politics growing up in New Auburn; Louis Jalbert; political make-up of Auburn; trolley transportation in Lewiston-Auburn; and Pontbriand hardware store.

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.