Dorothy Dunham Minott


On the evening of Feb. 18, Dorothy Dunham Minott passed away as quietly and peacefully as she lived her long life; she was several weeks shy of her 105th birthday.

Born on April 2, 1916, at the family farm in Charleston, she was the second of 11 children of Henry and Ruth (Lassell) Dunham. She always spoke fondly of her childhood fields, woods, skating pond, farm animals — much to do with so many siblings. The nature of living on a farm in rural Maine early in the 20th century instilled a solid work ethic in her. Social life revolved around the Grange; Dot (violin) and her sister Nat (piano) played duets at the gatherings. She enjoyed summers at Lake Onawa. Graduation from Higgins Classical Institute was followed by school at Eastern Academy of Beauty Culture. For several years she operated a beauty shop in Dover-Foxcroft. In 1943, she and Charles “Pete” Minott were married during a break from his service in the Army Air Corps. When the war was over, Pete returned from England and they bought a farm in Charleston. In 1955, the family moved to Ellsworth and that was where Dot spent the rest of her life.

Working at the Ellsworth Rexall Drug Store and Willey’s Style Center, she enjoyed meeting and helping people. When Pete retired, she decided to join him. During the time spent in retirement they enjoyed camping as well as visiting friends and family in New England and beyond. Trips with some of her siblings gave her great memories; her favorite place of all was Hawaii.

She loved being outdoors and enjoyed walking, The Ladies’ Bicycle Club (in her younger days), cross-country skiing, gardening and playing street hockey with her grandsons. Cribbage, reading, crossword puzzles, dancing (thrilled to foxtrot with nephew Brian at her 100th birthday celebration), Telephone Pioneers, spending time with her grandchildren, crossword puzzles, music, word games, cooking and knitting also filled her days. Fourth of July celebrations at Sebec Lake and the annual Dunham Family Thanksgiving dinner always found her present, with dozens of her famous yeast rolls and at least two desserts. She had the pleasure of meeting her first two-great grandchildren and would be delighted to know that there is now another on the way.

The bookends of her life were love and gratitude with the space in between full of family, faith and good friends. She was caring, thoughtful and kind, a woman of great strength and character. Her family will always be grateful for the wonderful life that she shared with them.

Special thanks go to Marie Pierson, caregiver extraordinaire. She was Little Miss Sunshine, the most reliable, loving and thoughtful caregiver anyone could have. She always brought joy to Dot. Gratitude also to Belinda Hodgdon for her support when life became more of a challenge for a centenarian.

Survivors include: son Robert of Ellsworth; daughter Jane (Sam) Nesbitt of Stow; daughter-in-law Susan Minott of Newburyport, Mass.; grandson Ethan D. Nesbitt of Portland, Maine; granddaughters Jenny M. Tooter (Adam) of Old Greenwich, Conn., and Laura M. Quigley (Mike) of Andover, Mass.; great-grandchildren Teddy and Lily Tooter of Old Greenwich, Conn.; sister-in-law Mary Ann Rolfe (Hollie) of Auburn, N.H. and many nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by all of her siblings; her husband, Pete; son Edward; granddaughter Grace R. Nesbitt and grandson John M. Nesbitt.

In the spring a service and burial will be at the Woodbine Cemetery, Ellsworth.

If one wishes, gifts in memory of Dot may be made to the Ellsworth Public Library, 20 State St., Ellsworth, ME 04605. Arrangements by Jordan-Fernald, 113 Franklin St., Ellsworth. Condolences may be expressed at

Know when to pay your respects.