The Maine State Society for the Coverage of Animals has been a pastoral web page on River Highway for many years now, however the group’s roots return a lot additional than when it first got here to Windham. After the Civil Battle, an animal welfare motion started on this nation as other folks began seeing photographs of mistreated horses that served their nation right through the conflict between the Union and the Confederacy.
That motion made its method to Portland in 1872 when socialite Julia Clapp Carroll began a marketing campaign to assist the plight of the horses that pulled Portland’s streetcars and hearth engines. The daughter of actual property developer Charles Quincy Clapp and spouse of tobacco service provider John Bryce Carroll, Julia Clapp Carroll performed an influential position in Portland society on the time. She resided within the opulent Carroll Mansion on Park Side road and used her status locally to assist discovered the Portland Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals on Might 22 of that yr.
In 1891, the Portland group merged with the Maine State Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, and the MSSPA was once shaped. Within the early a part of the twentieth century, the MSSPA started lobbying for the humane remedy of animals that had been transported by the use of railroad vehicles. Additionally they labored against ensuring that sheep on Maine’s coastal islands had get entry to to correct nourishment and safe haven. With the assistance of the MSSPA, native faculty kids started finding out about compassion towards animals in Windham school rooms and school rooms around the state. Later within the century, the group helped go a invoice that averted other folks with roadside stands from retaining wild animals in inhumane cages.
The MSSPA made its transfer from Portland to Windham in 1978, but it surely in reality got here into its personal within the Eighties when Lawrence Keddy bought a 124-acre farm on River Highway and donated it to the society to assist supply a secure haven for mistreated or undesirable animals. The farm was once controlled through Keddy’s existence spouse, Marilyn Goodreau, who succeeded him because the society’s president. In 2007, she employed Meris Bickford to assist modernize the trade purposes of the farm. Meris advanced the Purchase-A-Bale fundraiser to lift cash for the horses residing on the safe haven. Purchase-A-Bale has transform a favourite with MSSPA donors and raises budget year-round.
The society’s volunteer program started in 2011 when Bickford was the primary CEO. It was once additionally at the moment that the society’s center of attention shifted to rescue, rehabilitation and rehoming of horses completely. In 2018, an indoor coaching facility and customer middle was once constructed. As well as, the society expanded its collaboration with the Southern Maine Girls’s Reentry Middle, which matches to transition prisoners from state correctional amenities into their house communities. Through the years, greater numbers of the ability’s citizens, positioned simply around the highway, started taking care of the horses as part of their rehabilitation. This a success endeavor continues nowadays and has confirmed to be extraordinarily recommended for each the inmates and the horses alike.
In July 2021, Maine legislation enforcement brokers seized a herd of abused horses from a farm in Springvale and recruited the MSSPA to move and take care of the animals. Many of the horses, referred to as “The Not noted 20,” had been followed, even supposing unfortunately, some needed to be euthanized. 3 of the herd had been wild mustangs that lately traveled to Sky Canine Ranch and Sanctuary in Oregon, the place they may be able to as soon as once more run loose on 9,000 acres with different wild horses. Consult with msspa.org to learn extra about this superb tale of compassion and love for our equine pals. There may be a video you’ll be able to watch that aired on WCSH’s “207” through reporter Peggy Keyser. It’s going to heat your middle and may smartly carry a tear for your eye.
This yr, the MSSPA turns 150 years previous and continues its ongoing venture of defending the well being and welfare of unnoticed animals. The society receives no govt budget and is continued through a mix of donations, bequests, non-public basis grants and fundraising. It does no longer rate for its safe haven products and services. Many of the animals that come to MSSPA had been abused one way or the other. The function for each and every horse is to be introduced again to well being and followed right into a loving house. If horses can’t be matched with an acceptable house, they continue to be on the River Highway farm and obtain lifetime sanctuary products and services.
If you want to be informed extra in regards to the society, make a donation, know about the best way to volunteer to paintings with the horses or file suspected abuse of an animal, touch the MSSPA through calling 892-3040 or emailing [email protected]
Haley Buddy is a Windham resident and an energetic member of the Windham Ancient Society. She may also be contacted at [email protected]