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Wendell Shaw Collection on Walter Arnold

Identifier: SpC MS 1776

Scope and Contents

This collection includes many letters written between Wendell Shaw and Walter Arnold (SpC MS 0023). Also included are a few newspaper clippings from the 1850s through the 1960s. There are some articles included written about Walter Arnold ranging from 1976 through 1981. Trapping and hunting books, military history pamphlets and animal magazines that belonged to Wendell Shaw and Walter Arnold are in the collection. Some of Walter Arnold's belongings including one of his books "Arnold's Professional Fox Trapping" are included along with some of Wendell Shaw's belongings including a diary, glasses, negatives and other correstpondence.


  • Creation: 1800-1981


Conditions Governing Access

Kept at Fogler Library's offsite storage facility. One week's notice required for retrieval.

Conditions Governing Use

Rights assessmet remains the responsibility of the researcher.

Biographical Note

Wendell Shaw was born in 1926 and worked at Westboork Animal Hospital for most of his life. He and Walter Arnold were good friends and hunting buddies for over twenty years. They wrote letters to each other frequently from 1959-1980 discussing their day-to-day life and any hunting or trapping adventures they went on. They were good companions and visited with each other many times through the years and leased a camp site located on the northwest shore of Indain Pond near Piscataquis County, ME in July of 1965. Wendell has a wife named Marion Shaw, whom he has had four children with together. He moved to Newburyport, MA and lived there for most of his life. Still alive in 2018 today at the age of 92 years old, Shaw lives in Cumberland Center, ME.

Biographical Note

Walter Arnold was born in 1894 in Willimantic, Maine, the son of Alonzo and Alice Arnold. His father was a market hunter in the 1870s, and as a young man Walter hunted, trapped and guided with his father. After service in World War I, he started a mail order business, selling trapping supplies and animal trapping scents and lures nation-wide. In the late 1930s, he also worked for Campbell-Fairbanks Expositions, installing trapping exhibits for sportsmen's shows in New York and Boston. He was one of the original founders of the Maine Trappers Association and served as its president, secretary, and treasurer, as well as the editor of its newsletter, Maine Trapper. He was the author of several books about trapping and preparing scents as well as numerous articles published in trapping and hunting magazines and newspapers. His book, "Professional Trapping," which appeared in four editions between 1935 and 1947, was widely used by state and federal officials to train trappers to handle troublesome wild animals.

In 1959 he sold his business to Oscar Cronk of Wiscasset and went back to the woods, living by himself until 1980 in one of the northern townships of Maine, a place accessible only by snowmobile or airplane. His life became the subject of many articles in various magazines and newspapers, and the book, "Goodbye Mountain Man," by Donald Anderson featured him and his life style.

Walter Arnold remained active until his death in 1980. As he put it in a letter to the Fogler Library Special Collections Department in 1971, "I am not like all these woods hermits you hear about that sit around, grow fat and pass on. I am 78 and still do probably more hard work summer and winter than nearly all the men in the state do at the age of 45."


1 linear foot (1 box)

Language of Materials


Guide to the Wendell Shaw Collection on Walter Arnold
Box And Folder List Available
Elizabeth Russell
August 2018
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Raymond H. Fogler Library Special Collections Repository

5729 Raymond H. Fogler Library
University of Maine
Orono ME 04469-5729 United States