New Museum of Fossils, Minerals and Indian Artifacts opens in Piscataquis County

April 26, 2016 by Freedom House Bed and Breakfast 1 Comment

I am excited to announce the opening of The Harrigan Learning Center in Milo. What a wonderful addition to our county. It will provide an outstanding educational experience for our children, another option for family outings, school trips, and more. I am certain the museum will have a very positive impact on our tourism industry as well. Good things are happening! The article below will provide all the details you need, including date and time of grand opening.

New Museum of Fossils, Minerals and Indian Artifacts opens in Piscataquis County

On Thursday, May 12th, 2016, the town of Milo will have something new to boast about, and it’s called the Harrigan Learning Center & Museum. The grand opening ceremony will take place at 10am, followed by museum tours at 11:30am and a light lunch at 12:30pm (RSVPs appreciated). The HLC is located at 24 Gerrish Rd, on the site of the new Three Rivers Kiwanis building. The HLC is owned by the Three River’s Kiwanis Milo-Brownville Foundation and was made possible through a generous donation by Tom and Nancy Harrigan.

Tom retired from AT&T Bell Laboratories in 1987 after a long career in electrical engineering. Throughout his lifetime, Tom had an insatiable fascination with fossils, and traveled as often as he could to seek and collect them. Immediately upon his retirement, Tom and Nancy began traveling around the world on an archaeological adventure that would intrigue even Indiana Jones. Forty years later, Tom Harrigan had accumulated a collection of fossils, artifacts and minerals so large he could no longer house it all at his Milo residence. Because the collection was equally as impressive as its size, members of the community continually encouraged Tom to find a way to display it; it would be something students, families, and tourists alike would certainly appreciate.

Finding a location appropriately suited to display precious and often priceless items would be difficult, and obtaining funding for such an endeavor, even more so. But this did not discourage the Harrigans from making this dream a reality. History repeated itself; not long ago the Harrigans erected a building on Gerrish Road on a beautiful piece of land in Milo’s business park and donated it to Three Rivers Kiwanis (TRK), an organization of which Tom and Nancy are active members. The TRK building has been a wonderful asset to the region as well, as it is available to the public for events and private meetings. Now, two years later, on the same grounds as the TRK building, stands the breath-taking Harrigan Learning Center and Museum; the Harrigans’ newest labor of love. The center was built by Tom and Nancy, and carefully filled with the prized items they’ve collected over the years.

The display is more outstanding than one might think, and it is not only due to the collection. Walking through the museum is a feast for the eyes from floor to ceiling, thanks to hand-painted murals by local artist Suzette East, whose talent has captured scenes from the moments in history from which many of the artifacts and fossils are derived. The layout of the Museum is rectangular with a wall in the center. The entire space is graced with magnificent murals from corner to corner.

Tom and Nancy are deeply involved in the town of Milo and have an unusual sensitivity to the needs of the community and beyond. Even during the building process, they considered how local businesses could benefit from the project, making every effort to use only local contractors and distributors. Because of this, the county has already benefited from the building project, and the anticipated tourism traffic is sure to give the economy an additional boost. Finally, and most importantly, the educational, historical and cultural deposit the Harrigan Learning Center & Museum will make in this region is immeasurable.

About Author

Freedom House Bed and Breakfast is located in the town of Dover-Foxcroft, Maine. Freedom House Bed and Breakfast is an 1880′s farmhouse style home located on Main Street in the center of town. We are walking distance to restaurants and shops.

1 Comment

NANCY HARRIGAN April 13, 2017 at 6:15 am

The Museum will be open for regular hours on May 17, 2017:
Wednesdays and Sundays 10 – 4 and Sundays 1 – 4

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