Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Photograph of Irene Marion Powers, graduated Maine Central Institute, Pittsfield, Maine, 1901

Photograph of a young woman identified on reverse as "Irene Marion Powers, M. C. I. 1901".  The photograph was taken by a Pittsfield, Maine studio.  Maine Central Institute, a secondary and postgraduate institution, is located in Pittsfield.

I've not had much luck researching Irene Marion Powers online.   I found in the Maine Marriages Online Database that an Irene M. Powers of Newport, Maine [very close to Pittsfield] married a Matthew A. Seavey, also of Newport, on 5 February 1908.

I found the couple in the 1910 Census of Corinna, Maine, living as boarders in the household of Seth and Ida Causley [or Carsley].  Irene Marion (Powers) Seavey's birth year is given as [about] 1884, and her state of birth is indexed as Colorado, but it plainly shows as California on the actual image.  She indicated that her father was born in Maine, and her mother in New York.  Matthew Adam Seavey indicated he was born in Maine, about 1872, and that both of his parents were born in Ireland.  The occupation line on the 1910 Census is blank for both of them.

I found a listing for an Adam Seavey living in Vassalboro, Maine, an "operative", in an Augusta, Maine Register from the 1890s.

Other than that, I can't find anything about either person before or after their marriage.

This is particularly frustrating because Powers is a fairly common name in the Pittsfield, Maine, area, and I have a feeling that Irene Marion Powers fits in somehow.  Perhaps her father left the area to seek his fortune out west, but she was sent back to Pittsfield for her education, as was the custom with many families.

If you have any insights into the lives of Irene Marion Powers and her husband Matthew Adam Seavey, please leave a comment in the comments box or contact me directly.

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. Fascinating! I just purchased this photograph (minus the spotting) at a flea market in Oxford County, Maine yesterday. I sometimes pick up lovely photos adding to my instant relative collection. Goodness knows, I have enough of my own, but this was so nicely labeled and dated. The embossed photographer's label is marked on the front. I think it says "How, Pittsfield, Me." Anyway, I shall add the information that you have gathered here with a link back to this site. Thank you!

  2. Wow - what a coincidence! But not all that surprising, I guess, since she would have sent out multiples of these. Thanks for deciphering the photographer's name. If you check the archives of this blog (search box near top at right edge), you'll find some autograph albums and other items from the Oxford County area. Thanks for taking the time to comment.

  3. Because there is always a story...I tried to look her up on the genealogy site and found the marriage record which stated that he was a hotel proprietor and she was a teacher.
    And then, I found a death record for him - 29 Jan, 1916, Ea. Newport, Maine, apoplexy was the cause of death. No spouse was written in although it did indicate that he was married.
    Irene was a young woman at the time of his death and could well have been married again by the 1920 census.