Phineas Parkhurst Quimby

Phineas Parkhurst Quimby

Dedication Ceremony


September 22, 2016

Belfast Common Park
Belfast, Maine


Welcome and Opening Remarks
Carol Good, President
Friends of Belfast Parks

What Is A Labyrinth?
Rev. Dr. Duncan Newcomer
Labyrinth Consultant

Phineas Parkhurst Quimby —
A Remarkable Citizen of Belfast

Megan Pinette, President
Belfast Historical Society & Museum

“Carpenter's Wheel” Quilt Raffle Drawing
Eileen Kirby, Quiltmaker
will draw the winning ticket

Ribbon Cutting
Norm Poirier, Director
Belfast Parks & Recreation Department

The Honorable Walter Ash, Mayor
City of Belfast

Labyrinth Walking by Candlelight
Labyrinth Plaque

The Project

On February 2, 2016 the Belfast City Council unanimously approved the establishment of a 30-foot diameter, ADA-accessible paved labyrinth on Belfast Common, the park overlooking Belfast Harbor and Penobscot Bay, a project that was proposed by the Friends of Belfast Parks.

Fund raising began in March 2016. FOBP made a lead gift of $10,000. Waldo County General Hospital contributed $2,500 to the project, and a $2,000 grant from the Waldo County Fund of the Maine Community Foundation provided additional funding. Generous donations from other businesses, organizations, and individuals from the local area and throughout the US allowed us to raise the $30,000 needed and complete the project in only eight months ... with no tax dollars being used. A remarkable achievement!

Belfast's community labyrinth is the first on publicly-owned land in Maine, and only the fourth on publicly-owned land in the New England region!

What Is A Labyrinth?

A labyrinth is a walking path that includes one continuous pathway within a defined space, with no choices or decisions required of the user. It can be enjoyed by both children and adults as a simple, but fun way to follow a winding path. But a labyrinth can also offer "a quiet oasis where a person can pause, step out of the frenetic pace of life, and take time for rest, quiet contemplation, and rejuvenation."

In addition to allowing for re-creation of the mind/body connection, labyrinth walking also provides significant long term health benefits. It reduces anxiety, lowers blood pressure and breathing rates, relieves chronic pain, and enhances powers of concentration and a greater sense of self-control. Labyrinth walking also stimulates right brain activity (the root of emotions, intuition and visualization). Because of that, labyrinths are often used by groups for teambuilding activities and problem-solving exercises.

Phineas Parkhurst Quimby (1802-1866)

Phineas Parkhurst Quimby was born in Lebanon, New Hampshire on February 16, 1802, and moved with his family to Belfast at two years of age. His childhood home was located on High Street, at the current site of the Belfast Free Library Annex. He was known to friends and neighbors as "Park."

As a young adult, Quimby was an accomplished clockmaker, goldsmith, inventor, and daguerreotyper. In 1836, Phineas and Major Timothy Chase designed and constructed the clockworks for the tower clock at First Church in Belfast, the fourth oldest tower clock in Maine and the oldest one built by Maine clockmakers.

While he had almost no formal education, Phineas possessed an inquisitive, perceptive and inventive mind and a keen interest in mechanics, philosophy, and scientific subjects. He educated himself by focused observation and reading. Quimby is credited as the "Father of the New Thought Movement," and his philosophy and writings significantly influenced the development of the positive thinking movement in America. Phineas Quimby became a metaphysical teacher and healer in his later years. From 1847 until his death in 1866, he devoted his life to healing the sick and was often referred to as Dr. Quimby.

Phineas Parkhurst Quimby died in Belfast on January 16, 1866, and is buried in Grove Cemetery.

Thanks to all who generously donated to this project ...

Friends of Belfast Parks
Waldo County General Hospital
Maine Community Foundation, Waldo County Fund
Belfast Historical Society & Museum
Consumers Fuel
Coyote Moon Boutique
Dish Hair Salon
Front Street Shipyard
The Green Store
Grace Chiropractic
Holmes Greenhouse & Florist
Home Supply Hardware
Windsor Chairmakers
89 individual and family donors
Eileen Kirby, Quiltmaker
and all those who purchased Quilt Raffle tickets

Labyrinth Design

... and heartfelt gratitude to those who worked to create the labyrinth

Friends of Belfast Parks Labyrinth Committee
Charlotte Peters  Ann Mullen  Kathy Muzzy  Debbie Hockensmith

Les Morse, Contractor
Labyrinth Installation Contractor

Jared Grant, Shangri-La Stoneworks
DSWA (Dry Stone Walling Association of Great Britain) Certified Professional Dry Stone Waller

Landscape Services LLC
Site Preparation Contractor

Carol Yee, Carol's Collectibles Nursery
Plant Vendor & Horticultural Consultant

Belfast Parks & Recreation Department
Park Maintenance, Soil Spreading, Seeding

Rev. Dr. Duncan Newcomer
Consultant & Labyrinth Walking Facilitator

Dee Clark
Labyrinth Consultant

Volunteer Laborers

Carol Bauss Debbie Hockensmith Kathy Muzzy
Rafe Blood Dale Kuhnert Dick Pickering
Bob Boulier Ned Lightner Roy Rodgers
David Carlson Micaela Lothrop Mike Skaling
Liz Bowen Chase Nell Moore Pat Skaling
Carol Good Janie Morrison Sheldon Snell
Linda Garson Smith Ann Mullen Lucinda Talbot

Labyrinth Images

Phineas Parkhurst Quimby Labyrinth Belfast Common Park dedication plaque September 22, 2016. Phineas Parkhurst Quimby Labyrinth dedication plaque close up. Path leading to the Labyrinth. Entering the Labyrinth. The Phineas Parkhurst Quimby Labyrinth. Looking up hill to Union Street Phineas Parkhurst Quimby Labyrinth. Second plaque at Phineas Parkhurst Quimby Labyrinth. Close up of second plaque.

You may click on the thumbnail images for a larger view and slideshow. The Dedication Program above for the Phineas Parkhurst Quimby Labyrinth and these images were provided to the PPQ Resource Center by the Belfast Historical Society and Museum, Belfast, Maine.
—Ron Hughes