Audio is available for this interview:
Interview with Joan Arnold by Marisa Burnham-Bestor
Summary Sheet and Transcript


Interviewee
Arnold, Joan

Interviewer
Burnham-Bestor, Marisa

Date
November 20, 1998

Place
Belgrade, Maine

ID Number
MOH 060

Use Restrictions
? 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.


Biographical Note

Joan (Williams) Arnold was born in Augusta, Maine on January 1, 1932. Her parents were
Marie (Simpson), a housewife and Joseph P. Williams, a contractor. Joan¡¯s childhood was fairly
political, her father being an active Democrat in the Augusta area. After graduating from Cony
High School, Joan went on to LaSalle Junior College in Newton, Massachusetts, graduating in
1951. She worked for General Motors as a secretary for a few years, and then found herself back
in Augusta in 1954 as a secretary in Governor Ed Muskie¡¯s office. She left the Capitol in 1957
when she married Bill Arnold and moved to Waterville. She filled in occasionally in Muskie¡¯s
Waterville Senate offices when he became Senator. She returned to Augusta in the early 1980s
as a legislative staffer before retiring.


Scope and Content Note

Interview includes discussions of: Augusta in the 1930s and 1940s; financial situations around
World War II; Arnold aspiring to be a secretary; getting involved with the Democratic Party;
getting hired to work for Governor Muskie; Muskie¡¯s Gubernatorial offices; issues in Augusta
from 1954-1957; Muskie¡¯s temper; scheduling appointments with the Governor; Marjorie
Hutchinson; Muskie¡¯s relationship with Maury Williams; Muskie¡¯s relationship with the rest of
his staff; Floyd Nute; Muskie requesting Dave Stevens and Dick McMahon in his office on a

regular basis; State House atmosphere, 1954-1957; Ed Muskie¡¯s temperament before and after
Executive Council meetings; Muskie¡¯s re-election in 1956; Muskie¡¯s campaign against Bill
Trafton; Maine Legislature in the 1980s; comparison between the 1950s and the 1980s; personal
relationship with the Muskie family; Humphrey-Muskie; and sitting in the Waterville hotel room
waiting for Vice-Presidential returns to come in.


Indexed Names

Arnold, Joan
Bernier, Al
Bowen, Elsie
Brennan, Joseph E.
Bustin-Hatheway, Beverly
Chassee, Richard L., Dr.
Coffin, Frank Morey
Cross, Burton
Delahanty, John
Donovan, John C.
Dubord, Dick
Fullam, Paul
Hazelton, Paul
Hill, Nancy
Humphrey, Hubert H. (Hubert Horatio), 1911-1978
Hutchinson, Marjorie
Mahany, Luman P.
McKernan, John
McMahon, Dick
Muskie, Edmund S., 1914-1996
Muskie, Jane Gray
Nicoll, Don
Nute, Floyd
Pert, Edwin H.
Stevens, Dave
Trafton, Willis
Williams, Maurice


Transcript

Marisa Burnham-Bestor: Here we are in Belgrade, Maine in the home of Joan Arnold, talking
with her. Present is Marisa Burnham-Bestor and Joan Arnold. Could you please state your
name and spell it, please.

Joan Arnold: My name is Joan Arnold; J-O-A-N, A-R-N-O-L-D.


MB: Where and when were you born and raised?

JA: I was born January 1st, 1932 in Augusta, Maine, and I was raised in Augusta.

MB: What was Augusta like as a town at that time?

JA: It, I think, revolved around the legislature, the state capitol, the Blaine House. Politics was
a big issue in the city of Augusta. What else? In the ¡®40s of course we were in World War II.
My father was in the contracting business, ran a construction company in Augusta. So some of
that business of WWII had some bearing on us as a family because he was in the business of
building parts of the Brunswick Naval Air Station. That went up I think probably in about 1940,
so WWII. Other than that, I think it was no different than any other community in the state of
Maine, except for the legislative part as I mentioned.

MB: Did you feel any of the political issues impacting you as a child?

JA: I don¡¯t recall too much. I do recall that my father ran for mayor of Augusta. I can¡¯t tell you
what year that was, but I remember. I don¡¯t remember when he ran but I remember hearing
stories about it years afterwards. He, my father, was new to the area. My mother came from
Augusta, grew up there. And my father settled in Augusta. And I can remember him saying, he
was a Democrat, that he ran for mayor knowing full well that he would never win. Everything
was held by Republicans. All offices were held by Republicans, I think all over the state of
Maine pretty much in those days, perhaps with the exception of Lewiston and Biddeford areas.
But I can remember him telling stories about being talked into running for mayor as the
Democratic nominee. And he said it really didn¡¯t take too much talking because he was new to
the area and he was starting a new business and he was dying to get his name out there and be
known by the community. So that¡¯s one of the main reasons he ran for mayor. And needless to
say, he did not win.

MB: What were your father and your mother¡¯s full names?

JA: My father¡¯s name was Joseph P. Williams. My mother¡¯s name was Marie Williams.

MB: What was her maiden name?

JA: Simpson.

MB: What did your mother do? Was she a . . . ?

JA: She was a housewife, at home. I had one sister. I¡¯m the only surviving one of my family,
but there were two of us children, daughters. So my mother stayed home, took care of the two
daughters.

MB: During the time before WWII and then during WWII and after WWII, how was your
family¡¯s financial situation changing?


JA: It changed, I think probably quite a bit, because of these defense-type contracts my father
was able to obtain. He did work in Limestone. That was a military contract that he had there.
And as I mentioned, Brunswick, he had some housing jobs in Bath, which was because of the
Brunswick Naval Air Station as well. So I¡¯m sure his business grew tremendously because of
WWII.

MB: Did it then drop off after the war, or did it stay high?

JA: It stayed high. He died at a very young age. My father died in 1945 at the age of forty-two.
But through those years, those ¡®40s to ¡®45, until he died, (he died in January of ¡®45) the
construction company did very well.

MB: Had he remained politically involved after his run for mayor?

JA: I don¡¯t recall that he did particularly, locally. I do remember him talking about who was
running for major offices, that sort of thing. But I don¡¯t recall that he took a real personal part in
that. He may have and I just don¡¯t remember it.

MB: Was he always a strong Democrat, always supporting the Democratic candidate?

JA: Yes, yes, he was.

MB: How were your parents religiously involved in the community?

JA: They were Catholic and they were active in their Catholic church. They went to St. Mary¡¯s
church in Augusta.

MB: Did either their political views or their religious affiliation affect you and how you grew
up and what you believe?

JA: My mother really down deep in her heart was a Republican. I¡¯m sure she was enrolled as a
Democrat, but she I think thought as a Republican, because I think probably her family before
her have been Republican. Because I do remember after my father died, sometime after he died,
she commented about the fact that she thought she might go down and change her enrollment,
become a Republican again. But she took no real major active role politically. Both of them
were active in the church and we were brought up as Catholics, yes.

MB: When you were growing up, you spoke about how the war had a major effect on you.
Were there any other political events going on in the Maine community that had an impact on
you that you really were aware of as a child?

JA: I don¡¯t remember any.

MB: What high school did you attend?

JA: I went to Cony High School in Augusta.


MB: It¡¯s a public high school?

JA: Yes, that¡¯s the high school.

MB: What were your interests when you were a high school student?

JA: I loved sports. I was on the student government, I liked that. We had a radio club I can
remember. We used to have a little, probably was fifteen-minute, I think it was fifteen-minute
weekly radio show, and I used to cover the sports, what had happened that particular week. And
I was also active in the drama club, too.

MB: What sports did you play? Did you play any yourself?

JA: Yeah, I played basketball, softball, field hockey.

MB: Did you have any idea what you wanted to do with the rest of your life when you were in
high school?

JA: I think that I always wanted to be a secretary. I always wanted to do secretarial work. And
I, looking back I know exactly why I felt that way is because on Sundays, Sunday mornings, I
used to go with my father, we used to go to church first. But then after church I used to go with
my father down to Water Street, which was the main street in Augusta at that time, to the post
office. And we would go to the post office box and pick up his mail, and we¡¯d go from there to
his office, which was also on Water Street, on the second floor. And I would be his secretary for
the rest of the morning until it was time to go home to eat, which was usually around one o¡¯clock
in the afternoon. And I was the secretary; he used to give me little chores to do. I can¡¯t imagine
what he gave me, I figure I probably must have colored pictures. I don¡¯t really know, but he
gave me little assignments to do. So I was his secretary and that¡¯s all I ever wanted to do, and
that¡¯s what I did do when I left Cony. I went to a junior college in Newton, Mass.. It was
LaSalle Junior College; it now is LaSalle College I believe.

MB: What was that like?

JA: It was fun, I enjoyed it. It was the first time of course I¡¯d been away. And it was a nice
area in Newton, area of Massachusetts. And it was fun living in dormitories and living with so
many other women my own age.

MB: What year did you graduate high school?

JA: I graduated ¡®49, graduated from LaSalle Junior College in ¡®51, and I never went on for any
other education after that.

MB: Was there a reason that you chose LaSalle Junior College?

JA: A friend of mine from Augusta had gone there.


MB: Did you specify your studies into secretarial work and organizational sorts of studies?

JA: Yes. It was a regular secretarial, executive secretarial course, two-year course.

MB: And did you have any lasting friendships that you developed during those times?

JA: Oh, let me think. Yes, certainly. I still swap Christmas cards with a few people.

MB: What did you decide to do after college, after junior college?

JA: I stayed in Boston for a while, for a few years, and worked for General Motors in Park
Square. If you know Boston at all, it¡¯s in town. I worked there and I eventually came back
home to Augusta. In fact, I was in sort of a transitional mode when I had the offer to go work for
Governor Muskie in the executive office. I had made the switch from Boston back to Augusta,
and I had been working sort of part-time for the Internal Revenue Service. And when this job
with Gov. Muskie presented itself, I in fact was not in Augusta. I was down in Cape Cod with a
group of people. And I was contacted, and so I came home and had an interview and then got
the job.

(Telephone interruption - pause)

MB: ... transitional time in your life, what made you decide to come back to Augusta?

JA: I think my mother perhaps influenced me somewhat. She was in Augusta, living alone, and
I think that her health was not real good. And so I decided that I¡¯d come home.

MB: Did you know Governor Muskie at that time?

JA: No, I didn¡¯t, no, I didn¡¯t. I had come home and taken up residency there at my family
home, where my mother lived, and I had decided to become involved politically. (Telephone
interruption.
) So, I had come back home, and I had decided to become involved in politics. It
kind of fascinated me, and I think the reason was because I thought, and I think I thought
correctly, that almost all major offices were held by Republicans. And so when I enrolled,
registered and then enrolled as a Democrat, I decided I¡¯d really do something. I don¡¯t think I
was going to go out and save the world, but I think that I had decided that would be a good thing
to become involved with.

MB: How did Muskie approach you and ask you to work for him?

JA: Oh, he in fact had nothing to do with it really. He had had an appointment secretary, and
for some reason was leaving. So the office staff, the executive office staff, I don¡¯t know really if
[it] was Maury Williams who was the administrative assistant to the governor, or exactly who it
was. I think it was Maury, turned to the local Democratic city committee in Augusta and said,
called them and said, ¡°We have a vacancy up here, we¡¯re looking for somebody.¡± And, ¡°Do
you know of anybody that is an active Democrat perhaps that you could recommend, that might

be interested?¡± So that call was made to the Democratic city committee in Augusta. And they in
turn got in touch with me and said, ¡°Would you be interested?¡± And I said, ¡°Certainly would
be.¡± So I had an interview and got the job.

MB: What had made you decide to be a Democrat, other than your parents¡¯ influence, your
father¡¯s influence?

JA: I think strictly because I became aware that the Republican Party just held all positions.
And I just, I don¡¯t think it was any real burning desire to be a Democrat, I think it was, the
burning desire was, it¡¯s just not right that we should have just one party. And I think that¡¯s why
I became a Democrat and that¡¯s why I decided to become active.

MB: What year was it that you joined Muskie¡¯s staff?

JA: I think that it was in the summer of ¡®54. I¡¯m not positive of the date, but I think it was in
the summer of ¡®54.

MB: Was Muskie governor at that point?

JA: Yes, yes. He had won his first election, he was governor. I do recall, I¡¯m not sure of these
dates, these years. But I know that I was on the staff when he ran against Willis Trafton. That
would have been Muskie¡¯s second run for governor.

MB: What were the controversial issues at the time that were going on the State House?

JA: I remember sales tax being an issue, but I really don¡¯t recall, you know, who was behind
any of it, who did the speaking on the issue, I can¡¯t help you out on that. My mind is a blank as
far as major issues are concerned.

MB: What was your experience when you went to meet Muskie for the first time? Did you
have a preconceived image of what he would be like and anything like that?

JA: I¡¯m not sure that I had a preconceived image, but I remember I was very nervous. I
remember I was really scared. And Maury Williams took me in to meet him and, I¡¯m not sure
even that Gov. Muskie had any say about it. Maybe that day that I met him, it was going to be
what impressed him about me whether or not I¡¯d get the job. But my recollection is that I had
been hired, and now that I was hired it was time that I could meet the governor, that¡¯s how I
remember it. And I remember being very nervous and very scared. And I can remember just
before going into his office turning to Maury and saying, ¡°What do I call him? Do I say
Governor Muskie, or do I say Mr. Muskie, or, you know, what¡¯s the proper title?¡± And Maury
just saying, ¡°Well, why don¡¯t you just stick with governor? I think that will do it.¡±

MB: What was it like meeting him face-to-face; your first impression?

JA: I liked him right off, you know. He was very warm, had a twinkle in his eye. And very
upbeat, very easy.


MB: What was it like to work for him? Was that consistent?

JA: I knew you were going to ask that question.

MB: Did he get stressed at all?

JA: It wasn¡¯t always real twinkle in the eye and warm and upbeat after you worked for him for
a while. He was known to have quite a temper, and never a personal thing, you know. He would
never say anything unkind to you, but he certainly had a temper. You know, like, for instance,
¡°How could you possibly have thought,¡± you know, ¡°I was going to be able to see twenty
different people today and give them any real decent quality time, and be able to think and sort
out my thoughts and decide issues,¡± you know? ¡°This is impossible; this schedule is just
impossible.¡±

MB: Were there any people that he really would not want to see versus want to see and want to
spend more time with? How did he ask you to lay it out as the appointment secretary?

JA: I really think that very quickly he just let me decide, or let anybody on the staff decide. I
think you learned, kind of quickly you learned from reading the correspondence that was coming
in. If somebody was writing for an appointment to see the governor, they obviously would say
in the letter why they wanted to see the governor, and you could figure it out for yourself. If it
was some minor issue, you knew very well that the governor didn¡¯t, number one, really want to
see them, but number two, if he was going to see them, it was going to be a five-minute quick
¡°hello¡± and ¡°goodbye¡±. If you got a letter from, oh, for instance, a department head or one of the
legislators, or a very loyal Democrat that had been very active in the campaign, you knew very
well that he wanted to give them time and was anxious to see them. So I think he, I really do, I
think he kind of left it up to me. And I don¡¯t mean just me as the appointment secretary, but the
others nearby.

I worked very closely with Floyd Nute, who was the press secretary, and much of my work
revolved around working with Floyd. And then also I considered my immediate boss really,
Marge Hutchinson, who was Governor Muskie¡¯s personal secretary from the law office in
Waterville. When Muskie came as governor, he brought his secretary, Marge, with him. And I
considered Marge really my immediate boss, although I really worked with Floyd Nute. And of
course Maury Williams was the administrative secretary. Is that what you call him?
Administrative, executive; and [he] really was in charge of everything. But, to answer your
question, going back to your question, I think basically I could pretty much decide who was
going to see him and who wasn¡¯t. And also I could make up my own mind as to how much time
they would be allotted.

MB: You said that Maury Williams was the first person you met in the office. How did you
perceive his relationship with Muskie?

JA: I thought they were very close. Maury Williams had been in state government before as a
finance person. I don¡¯t remember exactly, I don¡¯t know if he was the commissioner of finance

and administration for the state of Maine before. He might have been, I¡¯m not positive of that.
If not the commissioner, he was next in line, or a division head or something. And Maury also
was a Republican when he was hired by Muskie. I don¡¯t know if Maury changed his affiliation
or not. He might well have, but I never knew that.

But Maury was hired by Muskie when Muskie was elected governor because Muskie knew he
needed somebody that knew finances for the state. So how did I perceive their relationship? I
perceived it as being very close. I think the governor was very lucky to get Maury Williams
right off quick after he won his election, because Maury really knew the numbers in the state
government and helped him tremendously. The governor knew that, and I think, Maury on the
other hand of course was thrilled to be asked to work for a governor. He had not been in that
role before, and I think that he thoroughly enjoyed working with Muskie.

MB: Was there ever a problem because he was a Republican? Like, did they seem to have any
conflicting opinions about things?

JA: I don¡¯t think so. I think that the governor would come up with the ideas of what he wanted
to do. But he needed the technician, Maury, to tell him how they could raise those funds, how
they could shift funds around in the state, move things around. I don¡¯t think it ever bothered
Maury as to where those funds were going to be directed. I never saw any of that at all. I do
recall, and I can¡¯t tell you any specifics, but I think that there perhaps was some feeling among
Republicans in the State House when Ed Muskie asked Maury Williams to take that spot in his
administration. I think that Maury Williams probably had been being elevated in the budget
office or the finance office for some years by Republican office holders. And so I think initially
there was some feeling on the part of some of those Republicans who were in the finance
administration office when Maury was tapped and left to work for Muskie. Never was a major
problem to my recollection, though.

MB: You mentioned working closely with his press secretary, Floyd Nute. What do you
remember of him?

JA: Being a press secretary is a very, very difficult thing. And I think, Floyd I think had a hard
time with that job. He had evidently worked, I think he worked for UPI, I¡¯m not positive of that,
before he went with the governor. And when you¡¯re one of the press trying to pick up news and
quotes, is a field unto itself. And then when you suddenly become the press secretary for the
governor and you¡¯re dealing with all those buddies of yours and you¡¯re having to shield your
governor and not give out as much information as the press want, I think that¡¯s hard. And I think
Floyd at times found that difficult.

MB: How was his relationship with Muskie? How did you perceive that relationship?

JA: I think they got along quite well.

MB: Would Floyd become very stressed by these situations?

JA: Yes, he did.


MB: How did Muskie handle his stress?

JA: Well, I can think of one particular time when Floyd was quite stressed, and when that
happened, he frequently would take time off. He would stay away from the office. And I can
distinctly remember one particular day that the governor became aware of the fact that Floyd had
been away from his desk for a number of days. And the work was piling up and I suspect, I
don¡¯t remember what the incident was, but I think maybe there was something that was due that
had to be done on a particular date. And I had gone in and said, ¡°It¡¯s not done. It¡¯s sitting on the
desk out here and it¡¯s not done.¡± And he said, ¡°Bring me in everything that is on his desk.¡± And
I did that, and the governor proceeded to take care of all that correspondence and do all that
work that had been accumulating. And I¡¯m really not sure whether the governor ever spoke to
Floyd about it. You know, it¡¯s almost my impression that when Floyd reappeared that there was
just nothing said about what had happened, or the governor had cleaned up the desk for him.

MB: Do you think that¡¯s one of the reasons that maybe Floyd didn¡¯t remain on as press
secretary when governor Muskie went to Washington? It was too much for him?

JA: It might be, it might be one of the reasons why he didn¡¯t go. I don¡¯t know whether he was
offered the opportunity to go or not, but he might not have felt that he could take that kind of
stress. Also, it could be that he just didn¡¯t want to move from the state of Maine; maybe his wife
didn¡¯t want to move. I don¡¯t know.

MB: You spoke also of Margery Hutchinson, who you said was your immediate boss. What
was she like?

JA: She was a wonderful, wonderful lady. She just was charming and she knew all of Muskie¡¯s
friends from way back when Muskie came and settled in Waterville, Maine and practiced law
here. Marge came from Waterville, that was her home, and grew up in Waterville. So she knew
everybody that the governor knew in Waterville. So that when she came to the State House she,
you were asking about how do you know when to let people get an appointment with the
governor. Margery knew. If a person called on the phone and said, you know, ¡°I¡¯m a friend of
the governor¡¯s and I want to stop in and see him,¡± I could say, just a minute please, and just say
to Margery, ¡°have you ever heard of so-and-so?¡± And she¡¯d say, ¡°Absolutely, let him in.¡± You
know? And she, everybody loved her. She was very attractive, had a lot of style, smiled easily
and very efficient. She was just a very, very bright woman.

I can¡¯t tell you what the differences in age were between Marge and the governor. The governor
certainly, you know, being younger, I don¡¯t really know by how many years. But she not only
was a, the perfect secretary and very bright and charming and capable, she also had a little
motherly touch with him, too. And he, I don¡¯t think people would think of him as being
receptive to a woman in his office being motherly to him, but he certainly was with Marge. I
mean, he would never back away from Marge. I can remember when photographers were
getting ready to go into his office to take pictures for whatever reason, Margery was always,
always in that office at the very last minute. Before that door was finally opened for the
photographers to come in, Marge was in there. And she was in there with a little hair brush,

calming the curls down. He had very curly hair, and she would be in there taking a hairbrush
and getting the hair just so, so he wouldn¡¯t have curls flying all over his head.

And I remember another instance when he did not feel well, and I always suspected it was a case
of, a little case of nerves with him. One of his appointments for commissioner of economic
development, I think is the terms we used to use, one of his appointments as commissioner died
very suddenly at a very young age. He was here in the state of Maine as I recall, some
community here in Maine when he got the telephone call that Carl Broge had just dropped dead.
And I think it really affected the governor; it frightened him and was very upsetting. And it was
either that day or the next day, he called Margery in the office. And when she came out she said,
¡°Get Dr. Chassee on the telephone for me, please.¡± And the governor I think was having some
chest pain, a little, probably indigestion or something, but I always felt it was related to the
sudden death of Carl Broge. So that was the sort of relationship he had with Marge. That¡¯s the
point I was making, that he would call Marge in, you know, and say, ¡°Ooh, lord, I don¡¯t feel
well, what should I do?¡± Or, she calmed him down and said, ¡°I¡¯ll get the doctor on the phone
and we¡¯ll discuss it.¡± That was the kind of relationship they had.

MB: Had she worked with him in Waterville, or had they just both lived there?

JA: No, she worked for him.

MB: Oh, that whole time.

JA: Yeah, she was his personal secretary in his law office.

MB: Did she go with him to Washington as well?

JA: She did, I think. She went down, but I don¡¯t think she stayed. I think perhaps she went
down and set up the office for him. I wasn¡¯t working for him when he went to Washington, I
had already left. But I do believe that she went with him and got the office started, organized
and probably hired help, and then she came back to Waterville actually, and ran his field office
in Waterville. So she was still working for him, but not in Washington.

MB: You didn¡¯t mention Elsie Bowen. Did you know her?

JA: Yes, I did. And the reason I didn¡¯t mention Elsie, and there was another woman whose
name was Marion, I can¡¯t think of Marion¡¯s last name, I can¡¯t remember her last name. But the
reason I didn¡¯t mention them in this conversation is they had a very integral part of the operation,
but they were not located in the same office as we were. We were near the governor¡¯s office in a
separate area. These two women that you speak of, or one, Elsie you mentioned, worked in an
office down the hall, down the corridor, so we didn¡¯t see them constantly.

MB: Did you know anything about them?

JA: Elsie I know took care of the bookkeeping, I recall that. She had a very important function
on the staff of keeping the books for the office, and I think that she might well have kept the

books for the Blaine House, too. I¡¯m not positive of that, but I think she did. And I think she
also did some typing of maybe special projects or something out back. The other woman I
mentioned, Marion, whose last name I can¡¯t recall, was strictly a typist. She transcribed out
back.

MB: Did you know, did you ever see them interact with Muskie at all, or was that separate
from you?

JA: No, I really didn¡¯t see them interact with Muskie.

MB: Over all in your opinion, did the people in the office get along really well with him? And,
you know, did they ever have any political differences with him, or any personal differences?

JA: No, I don¡¯t. I think they all got along very well. , I think that it was a smooth -running
office;, I don¡¯t think anybody had any great fault with him. I will tell you about a little incident.
I referred earlier in this interview about the fact that he did have quite a temper, and everybody
knows that, that is no secret. And behind his back, I used to refer to him as ¡°Ugly Ed¡±. And
Maury Williams knew this, as well as Marge and Floyd. And, but never in my wildest dreams
would I ever say that in front of him. But quite frequently, if he were having an off day, I would
refer to him as ¡°Ugly Ed¡±.

And one particular day, he was in a storm and it was about there just weren¡¯t enough minutes in
the day to do everything that he was supposed to be doing. And in the middle of the afternoon,
he came out and, my desk was immediately outside the door to his office, and he opened the
door to his office and he swung around at me at the, standing face-to-face with me at my desk,
and he had a list of things he wanted me to do, and he whipped them off very fast, like, ¡°Get
Dave Stevens on the phone, I¡¯ve got to talk to him immediately. Call Dick McMahon and tell
him I want to see him at such and such a time. Get me the file on such and such. Where¡¯s
Floyd? Gotta see him.¡± And, ¡°Why aren¡¯t those letters on my desk yet that I want to get out of
here today?¡± And he just very quickly had all these directives, and then he turned on his heel
and went back through his door and slammed the door. And then he opened the door very
slowly and stuck his head out around the corner and said, ¡°And when you get all these people,
tell them ugly Ed wants to see them.¡± And that was the first time that I realized that Maury had
obviously told him that that was my nickname for him, so it was a surprise to me. And it was his
way of apologizing. That was his apology to me, that he was just giving me such a hard time
and being so mean I guess.

MB: Was this, would you consider this something that frequently happened, his like pressure
outburst, or were they pretty infrequent?

JA: Oh, they were infrequent, but they, it was pressure. In my instance, when he would explode
with me, it was strictly pressure. There aren¡¯t enough hours in the day to do everything he had to
do. I do think undoubtedly that those outbursts of his, temper tantrums or whatever you want to
call them, at times were for another purpose. With me it was just a case of frustration, real
frustration, but I think there were times when he did that as a show. I think sometimes it was to
get somebody a little confused, or sometimes it might be to, I was going to say the word threaten,

but that¡¯s not the right word, but to let them know that he didn¡¯t appreciate their views, and I
think it was to test people sometimes. He might fly off the handle when he was trying to decide
an issue, which way to go on an issue. And he could do this sort of thing with a close advisor
like Maury Williams or any other number of people that he confided in. He might go through a
routine of screaming and yelling and, you know, slamming a book down or whatever. And I
think he was testing them, and he was trying to get them to defend what they wanted, defend
their side of the issue they were trying to make a decision on. So I think he used it in different
ways, that temper.

End of Side One
Side Two


MB: You said that he would sometimes come out and ask for appointments. You mentioned
Dave Stevens and Dick McMahon. What were the relationship of the people that he would ask
for appointments with?

JA: This Dave Stevens that I mentioned was the commissioner of the Department of
Transportation in those days, and I¡¯m not sure of the titles of those departments now, they¡¯ve
changed. It might have been called the highway commissioner, commissioner of highways or
something, but he, at the time that I refer to, one of the big issues was the extension of I-95
coming to the Waterville area, going north to Bangor. And the plan was for that artery to go
through the Colby campus and, needless to say, Colby was very upset with those plans, and
because Muskie, he wasn¡¯t born in Waterville but had practiced law there, most recently had
come from Waterville, the Colby administration as well as all alumni, were writing to the
governor and calling him about the problem of that artery going through that campus. And so,
Dave Stevens was the commissioner. And so the governor, I don¡¯t think probably could tell Dave
Stevens, you know, ¡°You can¡¯t do that.¡±, I don¡¯t think state government works quite that way,
but Muskie of course was always noted for his debating abilities and he, over a period of time,
convinced the Highway Department not to put the road where they had initially intended for it to
go. And so there was a long period of time when the governor was meeting with Dave Stevens
and talking to him on the phone, and usually preferred to talk to him face -to- face rather than on
the phone, and so frequently he would say, get Dave Stevens overface rather than on the phone.
And so frequently he would say, ¡°Get Dave Stevens over here, I want to talk to him.¡± So that¡¯s
what that reference was about.

MB: Was there anyone else that he frequently asked for? Dick McMahon, or ...?

JA: He was very close to Dick McMahon. , Dick McMahon was from Waterville and traveled
with the governor when he first was elected. He was his, I guess he was his campaign manager.
And he was very, very fond of Dick McMahon and leaned on him and his judgment about many
things, so he frequently would ask. Dick Dubord also was a very close confidant. Dick I believe
at the time was mayor of Waterville. He was a gentleman who practiced law in Waterville, also
had been attorney general. I think he had already been when Muskie was governor, that may
have come after; I¡¯m not positive of that. But a very close friend of Muskie¡¯s, he also, along
with Dick McMahon, had helped him campaign and did, throughout his life was always one that
Muskie wanted with him when he traveled the country. So he asked for Dick quite frequently.


MB: You said that you stopped working for him before he went to Washington. When did you
stop working for him?

JA: I stopped working for him in 1957 because I got married. I married Bill Arnold from
Waterville, and so I stopped working. , I didn¡¯t want to move to Waterville and commute and,
the hours were varied. I¡¯m not saying that I worked around the clock, I never did, but if the
legislative session was in, you know, you frequently were working until eight or nine o¡¯clock at
night at times, and I just didn¡¯t want to do that. So I left when I got married.

MB: What was the over all atmosphere of the State House when Muskie was governor?
Republicans and Democrats alike, did they seem to like him or was there any tension?

JA: I can¡¯t talk about specific issues, because I really cannot remember that part, but as far as
general atmosphere is concerned, I think that, I think the Republicans could see very clearly that
he was a very, very bright, bright young man. He had done the impossible, you know, he had
beaten and incumbent Republican governor, and he was very young. He was being asked to
speak across the country. He was a phenomenon, and I think that was very scary to the
Republicans in the State House. They had been going along their merry way for a number of
years and suddenly this young whippersnapper had come along. And it wasn¡¯t just a fluke; it
wasn¡¯t just a case of that Republican governor stubbing his toe. He did, that Republican
governor did stub his toe, that¡¯s true, but Muskie just jumped on it, jumped at the opportunity
and made the most of it.

He could debate beautifully. TV was new at that time; he did very well on TV. He had some, a
few influential friends, especially on the campuses of the colleges. He was a graduate of Bates,
so he had a good following at Bates. He grew to be very close with a gentleman by the name of
Paul Hazelton at Bowdoin College, and Paul helped him a great deal. He was very close to
Professor Fullam at Colby College. So he had those people in his background and he was very
bright, and I think he really frightened those Republicans; as it turns out they had every right to
be frightened because he just created a Democratic Party here in the state, that lasted for a
number of years. And I think the atmosphere was fright on the part of the Republicans.

I think, as far as the governor was concerned and the Democrats that he surrounded himself with,
I think it was a case of being very cautious. Frank Coffin, Don Nicoll, John Delahanty to name
some of them, quickly, quickly started doing surveys and research on what should the issues be
and what are people interested in, what do people want changed, and they quickly went out and
got those facts. It wasn¡¯t just something they sat and decided themselves;, they sent out all kinds
of letters and forms to people across the state. So that was what the atmosphere was like. The
Republicans were scared to death and the Democrats were a little cautious and doing their
homework very carefully. It was like that.

But I think in those days we had a Republican, all-Republican as I recall, executive council,
which was a board that was elected through the legislature as I recall. And that group kind of
took care of business during legislative sessions, and I think they met like every two weeks, and
the governor of course met with them. And whatever the issues were that had to be addressed

when the legislature was not in, was addressed at those meetings. I think probably those meeting
days were the only really, as I recall, the only time that I saw Ed Muskie really nervous. He was
really nervous at those days. He wanted to be very well prepared because these gentlemen were
people who had already established themselves as leaders in the Republican Party; most all of
them I think had been former members of the house or the senate, were looked upon as the
¡°cream of the crop¡± as far as the Republican Party was concerned. And I think Ed Muskie was
really quite frightened each time he had to face those men, and argue the issues and try to win
some of those battles. I can still see him now --, I can see his hands shaking as he would go into
that council room, council chamber, to start the meetings. His mind was always preoccupied
before those meetings began. , I mean, he was like in another world. You just didn¡¯t talk to him
those mornings because he was trying to get his thoughts together. He was nervous, but he did a
super job.

MB: What was he like after the meeting?

JA: Relaxed, happy it¡¯s over with. Big relief. They¡¯d really, every time that they ended, he
was, he would breathe a sigh of relief, ¡°That¡¯s over with and we survived it again.¡±

MB: You mentioned that the first election the Republicans messed up, ¡°stubbed their toe¡± is
what you said. What did you mean by that? What happened?

JA: The governor was a gentleman by the name of Burton Cross, and he had served one term.
And there were some economic problems Downeast, and, I¡¯m trying to think what. , I believe it
was Washington County., And even today Washington County is a very poor, poor county. And
there had been a problem. As I recall it was with the blueberry industry down there, and the
laborers had some sort of an issue, I guess, about wages. I really cannot tell you the particulars
of the issue except the governor, Cross, went down and made an appearance in that county. He
was there in his flesh, and said to them something to the effect that they ought to pull themselves
up from their boot straps, and Muskie just jumped on that, and that was his opening. And that
really, really made a big, big difference in that election. Quickly, Republican, little pockets of
unhappy Republicans were quickly organized by the Democrats and became Republican for
Muskie organizations. And I think that had a big, big bearing on that election, that first election.

MB: You also said, spoke about the surveys that Don Nicoll and Frank Coffin compiled and
would ship out to all the people. Do you think the people of Maine appreciated the surveys and
felt like they were, like, getting a say and, how do you think they responded?

JA: Yes, I think they did. I think it was done mostly through the Democratic State Committee,
or the Democratic, it must have been state committee. There was an office that they rented in
Lewiston and I think all those mailings went out from that office. And I think that that office
was maintained by the Democratic State Committee as I recall. And, yes, I think the people,
they, these surveys were not just sent out without some fanfare; they weren¡¯t sent out quietly.
As I recall, it was put out to the press, everyone was told that these issues were debatable, you
know, what did people think about this? So, that there was a lot of conversation about it, which
is what the campaign wanted, and I think that the people did respond, I think they got a very high
response. I think it worked very well.


MB: You mentioned his friend from Bowdoin, Paul Hazelton. Did you know about their
relationship at all?

JA: I can remember Paul Hazelton once served as his campaign manager. I suspect it was that
campaign against Bill Trafton, which was his first reelection campaign when he was running for
governor. Paul used to come up and spend some time. As I recall, he worked out of the Blaine
House, it was not, you know, he wasn¡¯t hired to work in the State House. It was, everything was
kept separate, you know, campaign committee and so forth, and occasionally he would go over
to the Blaine House and meet with Ed maybe at lunch time, have lunch over there and discuss
the issues. I think the governor was very fond of Paul and I know Paul was very fond of the
governor. Paul was in, I believe, the government department at Bowdoin. I¡¯m trying to think of
the other person¡¯s name . . . . , Donovan. There was a Donovan, too, that was, I think he was
Bowdoin, was either Bowdoin or Bates, that worked a lot on campaigns. They enjoyed each
other¡¯s company and I think that they, the professors, admired Muskie and were anxious to help
him; knew that there were a lot of places where he would need help, and they were very willing
to give the help.

MB: What was the campaign against Bill Trafton like?

JA: I can¡¯t even remember the issues, to be honest with you. This is a silly thing for me to
remember, but the thing I remember, the one thing that I remember about that issue was that Bill
Trafton was a young married man from Lewiston-Auburn and he had, I don¡¯t know, two or three
or four children, one of whom was a little boy who had a bicycle, and the little boy supported Ed
Muskie for governor. He had a little sign on his bicycle and somebody had gotten a picture of
that. For whatever reason, I don¡¯t know what the little boy¡¯s reason was, probably he didn¡¯t
want to move to Augusta; probably he was very happy with his friends in Auburn and didn¡¯t
really want to move to Augusta. But that¡¯s one thing I remember about that campaign. I really
can¡¯t tell you what the issues were, I don¡¯t remember.

MB: What was he like as a person? What did people think of Bill Trafton? How did the public
respond to him?

JA: Not too well, he lost. I think that by that time the people in Maine realized that Ed Muskie
was for real, that he really did have a lot to offer, that the whole state of Maine had not collapsed
when a Democrat lived in the Blaine House. I¡¯m sure that the Republicans thought that was
going to happen. Some of those Republicans that I just mentioned that had organized as
Republicans for Muskie held true, they continued to be kind and impressed to Muskie, with
Muskie. And things were going well. I wish I could remember some of the issues, but I can¡¯t, I
don¡¯t know what they were. But I do know that Muskie won, not in a landslide, not to that
extent, but he won fairly easily.

MB: Did anyone, you said that you left the staff before he went to Washington because you got
married. Did anyone of the staff members leave before you did?

JA: No, I don¡¯t believe so, no. , I think they were all still there. I don¡¯t think that, I¡¯m trying to

think, with the women, Margery as we said went down and got things organized, came back. I
don¡¯t think Elsie Bowen went, and I don¡¯t think Marion went either. Floyd did not go, Maury
Williams did go. No, I don¡¯t think anyone left that staff.

MB: So there were no . . . .were any of the relationships ended on a bad note, or was it all ...?

JA: Not to my knowledge.

MB: When you, where did you and your husband decide to settle?

JA: In Waterville. My husband was in business with a family business; they ran a hardware
store in Waterville.

MB: Did you continue to have a profession?

JA: No, I didn¡¯t. I did a lot of volunteer work, became very involved with the Waterville, what
at that time was the Waterville Boys Club. And a group of us women in Waterville formed a
mothers club, that was our foot in the door, and changed the world. We finally got girls admitted
to the Waterville Boys Club, so it¡¯s now the Waterville Boys and Girls Club. I spent a lot of
time on that. But the usual things, you know, being active in the school organizations, and I did
continue to be active politically to a certain extent in Waterville. Hospital work, a lot of
different volunteer work., I did that until my youngest one was in high school, and then I went
back. When I finally wanted to go back to work, I quite naturally went to Augusta to the State
House, and worked on staff for the legislature for a couple of sessions.

MB: When you went back, who did you work for? Who did you work with?

JA: I worked for the Clerk of the House, Ed Pert. He had me come in and, I guess the first job I
had, it was through Ed Pert. Ed Pert made the call to me and asked if I would come down, that
he wanted to introduce me to somebody down there. And what I did was end up working for one
of the legislative committees, the Agriculture Committee. The person, the house chair of the
Agriculture Committee at that time was the oldest member of the house of representatives, and a
Democrat, he was from the County, and he kind of needed some help. And, so, Ed Pert, the
Clerk of the House, called and asked me to come down and I ultimately worked for Luman
Mahany1 for a couple of sessions.

MB: How was the State House different when you went back after Muskie was no longer
governor?

JA: Oh, it had grown so much. Many, many offices, all legislative committees had their own
hearing rooms, had their own secretaries. The legislature itself had a whole office of legal
specialists, research people; the majority and minority parties had substantial staffs. The

1 Luman P. Mahany, born January 28, 1901, died July 18, 1983. He served in the Maine House of Representatives from
1971-1983. He represented Easton and Fort Fairfield, and served on the Agriculture Committee.

executive department had grown, you know. There were a lot of changes when I went back.

MB: Who was governor at the time that you went back?

JA: I¡¯m trying to think if it was before Jock McKernan, Joe Brennan, that¡¯s who it was.

MB: Democrat or Republican?

JA: Democrat.

MB: Did people seem to respond to him similarly as they had to Muskie, the positive attitudes?

JA: I think so, I think they were very happy with Joe Brennan as governor. I did notice that it
was the same kind of flurry when he walked through the corridors. When the governor walks in
and out of the State House, those people who pass him in the corridor are ooh-ing and ahh-ing,
that same atmosphere.

MB: When Muskie went to Washington, did you continue to support him and follow what was
going on with him?

JA: On a personal level we did. I wasn¡¯t involved politically with him or working for him in
any sense, you know, on any committees or anything like that, but we were personal friends. I
was quite friendly with Jane Muskie because when he came, when Ed and Jane came to Augusta,
Jane was very, I mean, the governor was young to be governor, but Jane was a great deal
younger than any first lady; she was in her twenties. I think that, I think Jane was probably, I¡¯m
going to guess, twenty -six years old, twenty -seven years old maybe, in that area, range,
anyway. And needless to say, she was alone a lot because, as I said, he was a phenomenon. He
was just out speaking not only in the state of Maine but across the country. And he was just very
busy planning his legislatures, you know, bills and so forth. So Jane was by herself a lot.

They had two children to begin with when they first arrived, so Jane used to call and I used to go
over there and we got to know each other quite well. So over the years we always were close
friends. Occasionally when Ed came to the area, to Waterville, he sometimes stayed with us,
stayed in our home. Bill and I and our children at one time rented a cottage down in Goose
Rocks Beach, which is near York, Ogunquit, that area on the coast near Kennebunk where the
Muskies were, and we always got together. We always saw them down there, had them over for
dinner or we¡¯d go to their house for dinner. So we were always close.

MB: How was he different socially versus in the office?

JA: I don¡¯t think he was a different person from in the office. , I think he was pretty much the
same person whether he was in the office or at home having dinner with you. Certainly a little
bit more relaxed, when you¡¯re with a group of friends, a few more laughs and so forth, a lot of
kidding back and forth. But he basically was the same person.

MB: Did you stay in contact with Marjorie or any of the other people from the office?


JA: Yes, I did [with] Marjorie, because of course she lived here in Waterville, and I used to see
her. And at the end she was in a nursing home, she had cancer and had some other medical
problems, and so I used to visit her and send her cards. And before that stage of her life,
actually, she was running his field office and I would always stop in and see her. , I was quite
friendly with her there. And then after she left, running that field office in Waterville, another
woman that I knew from Augusta, Senator Beverly Bustin [Beverly Bustin-Hathaway] ran the
field office in Waterville for quite a long time, and actually asked me to work for her. I don¡¯t
mean steady employment, but whenever they took vacation, it wasn¡¯t a big staff, I think it was
just Bev and one other person as I recall ran that office. And at one time the two of them had to
be out of the office at the same time, that happened a couple of times, and Bev called me and I
kept the office open, so to say. I can¡¯t say that I accomplished wonders stepping in, not having
worked for a while, but at least I was able to keep things going. I think I did it one time for eight
weeks and survived okay. So, you know, I was still friendly with them, knew what was kind of
going on and I was, I saw a lot of them.

MB: What did you think of the job he did as a senator in Washington?

JA: I thought he did a fantastic job, because he had that quality of debate. He could always get
a compromise together from opposing forces, and he was, of course at that stage, into the
environmental works and cleaning up the rivers, the waterways. And I was always proud of him,
always, always proud of him. Remember quickly sending him a telegram when he was chosen to
run with Hubert Humphrey, and I was always proud to say that I worked for him when he was
governor, and that he was a friend.

MB: Did you support the Humphrey-Muskie ticket in ¡®68?

JA: Oh yes, indeed. Muskie was back in Waterville for the election returns and I was with him
at the motel in Waterville.

MB: The atmosphere was certainly different with the Humphrey-Muskie ticket. A lot of
Democrats even didn¡¯t support that ticket. How did you feel about that? How did you perceive
what was going on?

JA: Well, of course I felt the ticket was reversed, that Muskie should have been running for
president and Humphrey could have been the vice president. I was just so loyal, you know, to
Ed Muskie that I was very loyal to Humphrey as well. , I could see nothing wrong with that
ticket except, as I say, I think it should have been reversed. And at the end of that campaign as it
dwindled down to the precious few days, the last week, I think that Muskie was winning over a
great many people. He had an incident where he challenged a college student on a campus and
handled it all very diplomatically; it worked out very well and the press was happy with the
results. And I think there was a lot of conversation about, you know, if they only had another
week, maybe they could have made it.

MB: You said you were in the motel with him? What was that for?


JA: He came back to Waterville to listen to the returns come in.

MB: What was that like, sitting with him?

JA: Oh, it was fun. It was very exciting, bedlam, you know, a lot of people rushing in and out,
and it was fun seeing people that you hadn¡¯t seen that had been active in the party a long, long
time, and yet just hadn¡¯t seen them for a long time, that was fun.

MB: Was he nervous, or was he kind of . . . ?

JA: It didn¡¯t show, he didn¡¯t show any nerves really. I think, yeah, I think he probably knew
just exactly how it was going to end. He didn¡¯t appear to be too nervous.

MB: When did you end up retiring after you had gone back to the State House? When did you
decide?

JA: The reason I retired, I don¡¯t even remember, I couldn¡¯t tell you what year it was. , I
probably stayed there, oh, for the sessions I¡¯m going to say two sessions maybe, so it was
probably four years that I did that. I finally left because I just found it too hard. I was, you
know, getting up very early in the morning and driving to Augusta. And, probably because I¡¯m
not a very organized person, I was leaving the State House at like six o¡¯clock at night and
thinking to myself, ¡°Well, what am I going to cook for dinner this evening?¡±, and having to go
get some groceries, and it, I just, I was worn out, so I stopped.

MB: Did you stay involved in local politics in this area?

JA: I did for a while in Waterville, yeah. I was on the Democratic City Committee and the
County Committee, and, I was treasurer. , I was treasurer of the City Committee in Waterville
for years and years and years, which meant fund-raising pretty much. And I did that for a long,
long time. And I was very, very active in Nancy Hill¡¯s campaigns. Nancy Hill is a former
mayor of Waterville and she was a, is a close friend, and was a neighbor when we lived in
Waterville. Our children are close in ages and we lived around the corner from each other. And
so I was very, very involved when she was mayor and the two terms she ran for election.

MB: When did you move to this house?

JA: About five years ago.

MB: Oh, so recently.

JA: Yeah, yeah, we lived in Waterville in, for, probably in one location for thirty-five years I
guess it was, thirty, thirty-five years. And we have three children, and once the children left
home the house was really quite large for just two people. And we had been coming out to this
location where we are now, on Snow Pond, this is one of the Belgrade Lakes, it¡¯s a chain of
lakes, and we had been coming out here as a family every summer for about twenty years. So
my husband and I finally decided that we would sell our home and convert this to year-round.


MB: In your opinion, what was one goal or change that Muskie most wanted to make through
politics?

JA: I think probably as the years went on, the cleaning up of the waterways was his biggest
issue.

MB: Did he succeed?

JA: Yes, he did.

MB: How do you feel he did that? Through his debate skills, or ...?

JA: Yes, from debating. I suspect probably a lot of compromise with the members in the Senate
and the House in Washington. , I think he probably, in committee work, probably brought
opposing forces together. And I¡¯m sure that¡¯s why he ended up being secretary of state, because
of that.

MB: Do you think that was a good thing for him to focus on, or do you think that there should
have been something more in the forefront of his mind?

JA: No. , I was always very happy that he made that choice.

MB: Is there anything else that you could add or want to touch on that we didn¡¯t cover that you
can think of?

JA: I can¡¯t think of anything.

End of interview.