No bookshop? Let's open one.
I have spent over twenty years as a graphic designer/marketing consultant. Although I have always loved that work, I recently felt a pull to try something new. It was driving back from a client trip to Presque Isle, Maine, an hour and fifteen minutes south of Fort Kent, that I just plainly said with conviction, "I am going to open a bookshop."
I have always loved traveling and sought out bookstores all over the U.S., Canada, and Europe. I found myself always wishing that there was a bookshop in my little hometown of Fort Kent, Maine. On that drive from Presque Isle, it seemed like I suddenly found myself at the time of my life to make my small dream a reality.
WHAT'S IN A NAME?
It wasn't easy naming the bookshop. I spent months deciding. I kept coming back to the idea of using local vernacular. After all, I wanted this bookshop to feel like it belonged to the community.
Further up the St. John River resides a small town at the end of the Allagash Waterway, named after the river of its people. Allagash was home to my ancestors and I continue to have some distant relations that live there. It is a place that exists for the river and the woodlands that help support its inhabitants. These are kind, generous, people — many of Scottish and Irish decent. There are generations of Maine Guides that find their roots in Allagash and the rhythms of the community find their pace with the waters of the rivers.
There are places along the rivers where the water slows down and is rich with wildlife. Fish, frogs, ducks, beavers, herons, and many other animals find sanctuary in these places. There is a name for this type of place that the Allagash people use... BOGAN.
The summer of 2018 was a good summer. It was the first summer in years where my father was able to feel more like himself. He had been battling lymphoma for a number of years and in the winter months was able to participate in a ground-breaking treatment that allowed him to live cancer free. I took a day with my parents and my daughter and we took a drive to Finely Bogan, located on the Allagash River above Michaud Farm, where we enjoyed a beautiful picnic.
At the end of that day, I realized that I named the bookshop. I named it Bogan Books to always remember the beautiful day with my family, the ancestors that allowed river water to run in my veins, and to provide sanctuary to the people of Fort Kent and her visitors. After all, the bookshop is located between two rivers: The glorious St. John and the spunky Fish.
The Bogan Books Stamp
We offer to stamp our books with the Bogan Books logo. Not only does it show our beautiful heron rising out of a book, it also depicts Mile Zero of U.S. Route 1. Bogan Books is situated on America's First Mile, the first mile of U.S Route 1 — ending in Key West, Florida.