Published: August 19, 2008
William G. “Bill” Holden, 60, died unexpectedly of natural causes at his home here on April 22. He dealt in scientific and nautical antiques.
Born in Mineola, N.Y., February 6, 1948, he was the son of Edward J. Jr and Marjorie Lounsbury Holden. After moving at a young age to Hyde Park, N.Y., he graduated from Franklin D. Roosevelt High School in 1965, and that fall he began his studies at the University of Maine, Orono, graduating in 1969 with a bachelor of science degree.
After several early teaching positions, he relocated to Owl’s Head and took a position with the Rockland District High School’s science department. Bill served as a physics and science teacher for more than 31 years, retiring in 2002.
He grew up in a family interested in antiques and collecting. While he was teaching, Bill spent his off time collecting, restoring and dealing in scientific and nautical antiques for more than 30 years. This was a natural extension of his education and professional career.
He operated a shop, Dockside Antiques, in Owl’s Head, where he sold to dealers and tourists alike, with many returning year after year to build their collections. He later joined the Pumpkin Patch Antique Center in Searsport, Maine, operated by Phyllis Sommer, to better display his growing inventory and to build his customer base. His work and selection of objects have been admired by collectors and dealers up and down the Atlantic Coast.
Following his retirement in 2002, Bill pursued this passion of dealing in and restoring scientific and nautical antiques full-time. Throughout his teaching career, he often used many of these antiques as props and aids for his students, who found the examples not only very relevant to their studies, but also to their everyday lives along the sea coast where they lived.
He was honored as a recipient of the Presidential Teacher’s Award in 1983 by President Ronald Reagan at a White House ceremony. He also received an honorary engineering degree from the UMO College of Engineering, Francis Crowe Society on June 11, 2002.
An ardent Corvette buff, Bill also enjoyed collecting and restoring these sports cars.
Other than his many friends and colleagues, Bill is survived by one daughter, Megan I. Holden, one granddaughter, Eleanor A. Szostalo, both of Rockland, Maine; one brother, Edward J. Holden III and his wife Anita of Naples, Fla., and Sherman, Conn., who are also in the antiques business.
Memorial donations may be made to the William G. Holden Memorial Scholarship Fund, Attn Paulette Sylvester, c/o Rockland District High School, 400 Broadway, Rockland ME 04841.
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