The town of Orrington has honored its oldest resident with a presentation of the Boston Post Cane.

Who Was the Cane Given To?

History is a big part of the town culture in Orrington. Each summer, the community celebrates Old Home Week, which includes Civil War Encampments and other events focused on the history of the area. The Orrington Historical Society is very active, with a beautifully restored grange hall as its headquarters.

So, it makes sense that the town would honor its oldest citizen and recognize their long time residency. That's what happened on Thursday, June 8th, 2023, when town officials gathered at the bedside of Erma Adams, to recognize her 103rd birthday, which was on May 4th, 2023. Imagine all the changes and developments Erma must have seen. I mean, she was born in 1920, just two years after the end of World War I.

How Was the Cane Presented?

Orrington Town Manager Chris Backman and the entire Town Council went to Erma's home to award her with the Boston Post Cane and a plaque, with her name engraved on it, that declares her Orrington's oldest citizen. Backman says a keepsake cane is being engraved to be presented to Erma and her family, and her name will be added to a plaque in the town office, where the original cane is displayed.

What is the Boston Post Cane?

According to the Boston Post Cane website, the tradition started in 1909 as a publicity stunt for the now-defunct Boston Post newspaper. Publisher Edwin A. Grozier had the canes created out of ebony imported from Africa, with a 14K gold cap. The canes were then sent out to 700 New England towns, on the condition that they be presented to each town's oldest resident, courtesy of the Boston Post. The agreement was that each cane would be 'on loan' to the resident for the rest of their life, and then turned back over to the town after they passed away.

Congratulations, Erma, and Happy Belated Birthday!

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