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The Seven Seals, Quincy Adams and classic cars
PARIS – Glenn Davis was born in Brookline, MA and moved to Maine in the late '80s. He’s lived a fascinating life between teaching, owning a bed and breakfast and digging ruins in Israel.
He recently took time to tell us about his life.
Q: When were you born and where were you brought up?
A: I was born on February 28, 1946 in Kennedy Country. It was Brookline Massachusetts.
I grew up on the south shore halfway between Boston and the Cape in Hanover.
Q: Did you have many siblings?
A: I have one sister, Jean who has passed away and one brother, Ron in Richmond.
Ron is actually a mechanical genius and has parts on the moon.
Q: What did your parents do?
A: My dad was an executive for Mobil Oil in Boston and he worked in Kenmore Square. My mom was a lunchroom supervisor and head cook for a number of elementary schools.
Q: What was it like growing up?
A: We had a good family. My sister was 10 years older and my brother was eight years older, so I pretty much grew up as an only child. We did a lot around the Boston area and Quincy. My sister was in the Cape and we went there a lot too.
My parents had a camp here in Sweden on Stearns Pond. It was just a little pond nestled in the woods and it was nice and quiet. I did a lot of swimming and boating and fishing. There was a big music camp there and we could hear the music. Many evenings, people on the pond would take their boats down and listen to their concerts, but it was a small enough pond that you could hear them anyway.
We eventually built a bigger camp on the land and Maine was always my favorite place on earth.
In the Boston area, I always lived in a neighborhood with lots of kids. Once we lived in Braintree for a while and we lived near Quincy Adam’s home. There was a reservoir there that we played around and now it is a mall.
We played baseball in the street and anything else that kids would do. It was a nice neighborhood.
My parents were busy in the church and many of the families lived in the neighborhood and it didn’t matter which house you were in; it was home.
We had all the electricity and comforts of home, but I do remember having a party line and milk was delivered to the door.
Q: Was there anything you wanted to be when you grew up?
A: I was interested in art and really wanted to be an artist ... painting with oils.
Q: Where did you go to school?
A: Local public schools in Braintree and I graduated from Hanover High.
Q: Did you get into mischief or play pranks?
A: My parents were great parents and my sister and brother were pretty mischievous so I always felt bad for my parents so I never got into any trouble.
Q: What have you had for jobs?
A: Like every kid, I had odd jobs such as a busboy. My father loved to build things and we spent a lot of time building stone walls, a garage and the new camp on the pond.
Q: Did you go to college?
A: I went to an old business school in Boston for two years and took an accounting class. After that I went to Tampa University to be where it was warmer and graduated there in 1969.
Q: When and how did you meet your spouse?
A: I knew Janice and actually she dated a friend of mine. We even went on double dates together. She lived in Florida and was a freshman and we had our first date on the last day of school. I came home for the summer and we had contact throughout the summer.
During the summer I worked for a furniture factory and she worked in her family’s pharmacy. When I got back, we dated steady and married on January 3, 1970.
Q: Join the service?
A: Yes. After I graduated, I went into the Air Force in the fall of ’69. I did my basic in San Antonio and then to Denver to a tech school. I ended up back at MacDill in Tampa and that’s when Janice and I married.
I could have gone to officer’s school because I had a degree, but at that time all they wanted was helicopter pilots in Nam. I was just getting married and decided to go to the business end of the air force.
Later I got transferred to Michigan – Janice had one more semester so she stayed and finished and came to Michigan and got a teaching job. It was in Sioux St. Marie and it was a wonderful place. I did record keeping in supplies. It was a strategic air command base and it was key that they got their supplies.
I got out after four years in 1973.
We had our first daughter there; she cost us $8! Not that it cost to have her delivered, it was for phone calls.
Before I got out, they offered a masters program that I enlisted in. It was Central Michigan University and they actually came to the base to teach it. I got my masters in business administration and I was the first one to graduate from the program.
Q: Where did you go from there?
A: We moved to Effingham, New Hampshire to where my parents had retired. I took training with Investors Diversified Services in Portland. While in training I got the opportunity to buy a motel in Carrabelle Florida on the water, in a beautiful spot where Janice’s parents had a drug store.
We ran that motel for five years – then we moved to California and I became a principal for a private school. Janice taught at the same school. That lasted for four years and then we moved to Rhode Island and taught there for another three years. That brought us up to 1985.
Q: When did you come to Maine?
A: I applied for a job as the CFO for the Bangor Baptist Church, got the job and accepted. We moved to Herman and lived there. We were there for 13 years.
By then we had four children and when they finished high school we looked around for a historic bed and breakfast and found King's Hill.
We bought it in 1998 and moved here in 1999. It was a big farm house and the owners were in the process of renovating. We took over and turned it into a B and B.
Q: What do you do now?
A: This is pretty much a job 24-7. There are six acres of land and many gardens and buildings to upkeep.
Q: Did you do much traveling?
A: Traveled all over the world; toured Russia, Scandinavia, the Middle East, Jordan, Italy Rome. ... We’ve been all over.
Q: Which place was the most fascinating and why?
A: Israel and the things you find and touch – they are 3,000 years-old – it was amazing to me. Petra is a stone city in Jordan and the buildings are all carved out of rock – In fact the last Indiana Jones movie was filmed at the face of the city.
Q: Did you ever get to dig?
A: Yes. I taught ancient and biblical history so our first trip was going to Israel for a tour. We could see people digging and they love to have you come and watch and/or dig. When I got back I applied to go back and dig and got accepted.
Q: Where did you go?
A: Dug at Megiddo, which was one of the most important, ancient cities. It had been destroyed 22 times. It was on a trade route and Solomon had his stables there.
Once it was destroyed, instead of clearing everything out, they just covered everything and built on top of it. By the time it had been destroyed 22 times, it was up 150 feet. I dug next to world-famous archaeologists and that was unbelievable.
After a while you got to know when the item was used. Pottery had changed over the years, and you could tell a lot by its color. When the kilns weren’t hot enough, the center of the clay would be black, so you knew it was 1800BC; if there were signs of lime on the walls, it was 700BC.
It was amazing to find a piece of pottery or something that had been written on.
If a body was found, we would classify it as a pot because of respect to the Orthodox Jews – they would have made you stop the dig. Once the “pot” was checked over, it was given a proper burial.
Q: Find anything of value?
A: Anything you find is the property of the archaeologist. But I dug in an ancient city about a half-hour from Jerusalem and a lady and I found something.
There had been these Seven Seals and they were used by the king for supplies to different cities, and they would know where to send them back. In the 1930s, six and one-half of the seals were found. The lady and I found that last, half seal. We took it to the archaeologist and the look on his face was priceless. We had no idea what it was, but he certainly did.
I also found a huge piece of pottery that was at the entrance to a home. It was quite tall and had two handles at the top and was pointed at the bottom.
I also have a person’s hand print. The hand had swiped the lime and it was amazing to physically touch humanity and history; the oldest history known. I hope to get a chance to go back at least one more time.
Q: Hobbies or organizations?
A: I have antique cars and I am secretary of the Classic Car Club of New England. I have one classic car and three antiques; a ’33 Lincoln, which is a three-time national winner; a ’28 Model A; a ’56 Caddy; and a ’66 Chrysler convertible.
I am the chapter chair for SCORE and a volunteer with the Paris Cape Historical Society.
Q: What is the last book you read?
A: The World of Josephus – he was a tremendous historian and the book is all his writings of the early history of Israel. The timeline is boggling.
Q: What is the one thing you could not give up?
A: Being able to give back. It’s not necessary to accomplish things, but it is necessary to volunteer and help others. It can be helping many; it can be one.
Q: What is the one thing you would happily do over again?
A: It would be that Seventh Seal – but seeing the archeologist's face.... He took the book out and showed us the other seals.
A: Chrystal lives in York, Pennsylvania; Stephanie lives in Norway; Sharon lives in Virginia Beach; and Aaron lives in New Jersey.
Q: What would you like people to know about you?
A: I think that I want to be known for being a giving person – I want to help others – I am a charitable person. ... that's important to me – not just to the community, but to humanity.
Q: If anyone could walk in right now, who would you most want to see?
A: My mother ... she's been gone two years and I would tell her I love her. She was a wonderful, wonderful woman. That's where my love of people came from. She was the one that instilled us to live the right way and she didn’t even have to tell me; it was just the way to be. There could not have been kinder and gentler people on earth.