“Amusing, evocative and poignant—Summer Restoration is filled with Thurberesque anecdotes that capture a time of change on the coast of Maine following World War II and tell the story of a woman liberated well ahead of her time . . . impossible to resist Rosie’s feisty, roll-up-her-sleeves charm . . . a wonderful book.”
Senior Vice President of CBS News
“Anyone interested in the interaction between local citizens and summer residents in a small seaside town—Somesville, Maine—a half-century ago will enjoy this unusual and fascinating book.”
—Don and Beth Straus
friends and Somesville neighbors of Rosie Dresser
“This is the life that Katherine Hepburn might have led if she had gone to Maine instead of Hollywood. After following Patton across Europe for three years, Rosie turned her forceful character into remaking an old house—with unexpected results for both. A rich slice of New England life—a fun and compelling story.”
Grammy and Emmy Award winning filmmaker
Published in: 2004
Hard Cover • 208 pages
(In Stock Now)
In 1947—having spent the better part of the war as a Red Cross volunteer with Patton’s Third Army in Europe—Rosie Dresser returned to the coastal village of Somesville, Maine where she had spent long and idyllic summers as a child. Unmarried, thirty-eight years old and a Vassar dropout, she bought a decaying house built in 1852 that she named The Cobbler’s and restored over the course of the summer with the active involvement of the community—summer and local.
Summer Restoration:Rosie Dresser and The Cobbler’s pivots around a series of fourteen letters she wrote home describing the restoration itself and the people—colorful, wry, prickly, resourceful, kind—who helped her. But resurrecting a nineteenth century house is only part of the story. Summer Restoration is about a quiet Maine village on the cusp of post-war change. And it is about Rosie Dresser, an uncommonly independent woman, whose life began in the privileged afterglow of New England’s “Indian Summer” and led unpredictably to one of hard-earned accomplishment. Actress, director, front-line Red Cross volunteer, teacher, civic activist, world traveler, beneficent aunt, humorist—Rosie Dresser was very much of her time. And ahead of it, too.