University of New England - Innovation for a Healthier Planet

Ina Ladd Brown collection, 1957-1984

Full finding aid (pdf)

Collection Scope and Content

This collection consists of typescripts of Brown’s poetry (some unpublished) and plays, as well as essays on the subject of writing. A small amount of correspondence and ephemera related to her writing is included. There are also clippings, student papers about Brown, and one folder of photographs from throughout Brown’s life. Audiocassette recordings of Brown’s poetry, read by her cousin Wayne McKusick, are also included in the collection.

Biographical/Historical Note

Ina Ladd was born in Sebec, Maine to Walter S. and Carolyn Loring Ladd. She was educated at Foxcroft Academy and Shaw Business College in Portland. She was secretary to three chief justices and one associate justice of the Supreme Judicial Court of Maine. In 1955, she became the personal secretary of John W. Ballou of the firm Mitchell-Ballou.

She was married to Harold P. Brown, and in the late 1940s co-founded the Bangor Civic Theater, of which she was a past president and active member. During this time she wrote four plays, including “Dear David,” “Peace and Quiet,” “The Grass is Always Greener,” and “Dark Music.” She also directed, produced, and acted in several productions and was awarded a distinguished service trophy. Brown served three terms as president of the Poetry Fellowship of Maine, twelve years as executive secretary, and two terms as member of Board of Review.

Her other positions include vice president of the National League of American Pen Women, Pine Tree Branch; member of Maine Writers Research Club; and member of Radio-TV Women. Brown published several volumes of poetry, including Leaves on the Wind, Merry-Go-Round, Just for Luck, More of the Same, As Time Goes By, and Homespun. Brown won many contest prizes at the Maine Writers Conference, including the judges’ First Prize and the Richard Recchia Award, for her contribution to poetry in Maine. She died in 1985.