Story by Allison Rogers, Connecticut Valley Spectator. Photos by Gary Dutton, Connecticut Valley Spectator
LEBANON – At more than 99 1/2 years old, Alice Elizabeth Banagan Sanborn was honored last week as Lebanon’s oldest citizen.
Lebanon Historical Society President Jay Collier and members Olive and Doug McGregor honored Alice last Friday, Feb. 11, with the famed Boston Post Cane and a plaque. Alice’s son Richard, granddaughter Allison and great-grandson Ried joined in the presentation.
Alice, who will turn 100 on June 7, was born in her parents≠ home on Eldridge Street in Lebanon and has lived in the city ever since. She graduated from Lebanon High School, then located in the junior high building on Bank Street, in 1923, and celebrates her 82nd high school reunion this year.
She spent two years at Keene State College in Keene, N.H., before returning to Lebanon to teach grades one through six in a one-room schoolhouse on School Street, she said.
Her late husband, Ed, owned the Sanborn Oil Company in White River Junction beginning in the 1940s. The family moved in 1957 to the Bank Street home, where Alice still lives. She worked at the company doing bookkeeping and customer service until she was 77.
Alice remembered going out for dinner every night at Landers Restaurant, which is now closed but used to be located on Route 120 where Miller Nissan, Jeep and Volvo is now.
“If she has to work hard all day, she’s not going to make dinner at night,” said Alice’s husband, according to granddaughter Allison.
Alice remembered spending summers at a family home on Mascoma Lake and vacationing at Wells Beach on the Maine coast.
While the nearly 100-year-old Alice said she’s not that happy about being Lebanon’s oldest-known citizen, she is in perfect health and on no medications, Allison said.
Perhaps the trick is that Alice drinks Manhattans or beer every night, Allison said, and eats ice cream after every meal.
Historical Society Press Release
Mrs. Alice Sanborn Honored as Oldest Living Citizen of Lebanon
Alice Elizabeth Banagan Sanborn, 99, received the Boston Post Cane from the Lebanon Historical Society at a ceremony held at her Bank Street home on February 11.
Four generations of her family, all Lebanon natives, were present at the ceremony: Alice Sanborn, son Richard, granddaughter Allison, and great-grandson Reid. The Society was represented by Jay Collier, and Olive and Doug MacGregor. Allison Rogers and Gary Dutton covered the event for the Connecticut Valley Spectator.
Mrs. Sanborn and her family recounted stories about her childhood on Eldridge Street in Lebanon, summers at the family camp on Mascoma Lake, and vacations to Wells Beach on the Maine coast. Mrs. Sanborn’s husband, Edward, now deceased, managed the Sanborn Oil Company for many years in White River Junction.
Awarding the Boston cane is an activity of the Lebanon Historical Society Honors Committee, which is chaired by Olive MacGregor. For more information about the Society, visitwww.lebanonnh.org.