The Thistle Inn by Hilary Bartlett
You’ll be headed to Boothbay Harbor after reading this great book
Linda and I loved Boothbay Harbor, so I’ve got to thank Hilary Bartlett for writing a wonderful book about Boothbay’s historic Thistle Inn. Published by North Country Press, The Thistle Inn gives us great stories about the history of the inn and its owners and guests.
Hilary is from England, and was in Boothbay Harbor for a short time. But she fell in love with Boothbay Harbor and ended up moving there permanently. She worked for quite a while at Bigelow Labs, but after having children, she changed careers, opening an award-winning arts business out of her home.
For many years, Hilary lived across the road from the Thistle Inn, and spent lots of time at the Inn’s restaurant and bar, which were always jammed with customers, both locals and tourists.
In the book, many of Hilary’s stories about the inn’s owners and guests are very funny. A lot of them feature owner Leonie, who was a real character.
On the back cover of the book is a quote from me, saying “My wife and I wrote weekly travel columns for 7 years, and loved Boothbay Harbor, but I had no idea of the fascinating history of the Thistle Inn until I read the book. And you will love all the interesting stories of the inn’s owners and guests, especially the patrons in the bar.”
Even though I read the book before it was published, in order to write those comments for the cover, I just read it again, thoroughly enjoying it a second time.
There’s a lot to like in Boothbay Harbor, including boat rides to explore islands. Linda and I took a boat ride to the island which was the first island settled in Maine, and enjoyed a hike all around the island.
And we loved and often visited the Botanical Gardens, which are beautiful. If you’ve never been there, go now! And be sure to visit the Gardens during their spectacular Christmas lights. They’re really amazing.