Farming, Humor, Loring Air Force Base, Maine Democratic Party, Maine politics, Muskie, Edmund S.
Floyd L. Harding was born on August, 26, 1923, in Albion, Maine. His father was a rural mail carrier and his family lived and ran a small family farm. He is one of twelve children (10 boys and 2 girls). He attended Bessey High School in Albion and Colby College. He served in the Army for three years, where he was taken prisoner-of-war. In 1949, he received his law degree from Boston University; he then moved to Presque Isle, Maine, and has practiced law there ever since. He worked for the Maine Potato Growers as assistant general counselor from 1950-1954 and established his own practice in 1954. He served three terms on the Maine state Senate (his wife ran one of his campaigns). He and his wife raised nine children.
Interview includes discussions of: parental political leanings and the naming of their son Warren; Harding’s experience as a prisoner-of-war in Dresden during World War II; his work for the Potato Board; family law in Presque Isle; the Democratic Party’s development in Maine; serving as a state senator and as majority leader; the “car beside the road” analogy for progressive policy; Mitchell’s cow joke; the contrast between Mitchell and Muskie; Loring Air Force Base closure and its transition to various civilian uses; the founding of Northern Maine Community College; taking issue positions during a campaign and how Mitchell learned from Harding; and Mitchell as an advocate for Maine.
This recording and transcription are © 2011 Bowdoin College and are presented for private study, scholarship, or research only. For all other uses, including publication, reproduction, and quotation beyond “fair use” (Title 17, United States Code) permission must be obtained in writing from the George J. Mitchell Dept. of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, 3000 College Station, Brunswick, Maine 04011-8421, USA.