Barbara Trescott Hamlin
Barbara T. Hamlin died at age 95 on Friday, June 10, 2022 at Kaplan
Hospice House in Danvers after a several day stay. She was a talented
seamstress, a writer and author, a lively hostess, avid crossword puzzler
and Scrabble player, and the loving matriarch of her family. For the past
four years, she had lived in Ipswich with her son and daughter-in-law, Sam
and Eve Hamlin.
Born July 28, 1926, Barbara Trescott grew up in Hibbing, Minnesota, the
oldest of Reginald and Mabelle Trescott’s three children. Despite the
Depression and World War II, she had only happy memories of her youth and
was forever proud of her Iron Range roots. After high school, she moved
briefly to Bremerton, WA, to live with relatives and work in the Bremerton
Navy Yard. When Barbara, a sparkling redhead, came to work in a
kelly-green suit, she caught the eye of Ensign Norman Hamlin. They married
June 21, 1946, and moved east to start their life together. While Norman
pursued a career as a naval architect, Barbara raised their three
children, Rebecca (Becky), Jennifer, and Ronald (Sam) in Washington, DC,
Weymouth, MA, and Huntington, NY. In 1987, Barbara and Norman retired to
As a teenager, Barbara loved taking tickets (and watching the movies) at
the State Theater and working as an assistant to the hat-maker at a
Hibbing clothing store. As a newlywed in Washington, DC, she found work,
and friends, as a sales clerk at Woodward & Lothrop department store.
While her children were young, Barbara volunteered as a Camp Fire Girls
leader and Sunday School teacher. Later, she went to work full-time, first
as a kindergarten teacher, then as a school secretary for twenty years.
She also taught evening classes in quilting.
Barbara was a wizard with needle and thread, making custom clothing for
her children, from snowsuits to prom dresses to sport coats, as well as a
boat cover for Norman. A skillful and creative hand-quilter, she made
dozens of quilts for family and friends, including two “heritage” quilts
commemorating the history of the Hamlin cottage in Christmas Cove, ME. She
also made braided wool rugs, hand-pressed flower lampshades, and delicate
egg-shell ornaments that still adorn her children’s homes, sixty-and-more
years after their making.
Although she never earned a college degree, Barbara was an honorary
alumnus of Webb Institute of Naval Architecture, in Norman’s Class of
1944B. She also published a memoir (From
Minnesota to Maine and the Stops In Between) and was proud to have
served on the board of directors of the Oasis Free Health Network and the
board of deacons at First Parish Church, both in Brunswick, and the board
of directors of the Thompson Ice House in South Bristol, ME. She also was
a member of Union Church in South Bristol; a member of Friends of Bowdoin
(Brunswick); and a host for Bowdoin College international students and
winter sports teams. While in Brunswick, she participated in two sewing
groups, three book clubs, and the writers group at Thornton Oaks, where
she lived for nine years before moving to Ipswich.
Even as she began to forget her own accomplishments, and had to reread her
own book to remember her past, Barbara never lost her outgoing
personality, brightening up to greet family and friends and receiving her
nightly no-gin-and-tonic with a spirited, “Delicious!” And after hosting
so many parties through the years, she still tried to make visitors
welcome, regardless of whose house they were visiting.
The family extends special thanks to Joanne, Marcia, and Andrea, Barbara’s
special friends for the past several years; and to the staff of Kaplan
House for extraordinary care.
Barbara is survived by her sister, Jill Miel; her three children, Becky
Pine and her husband Bob, Jennifer Church, and Sam Hamlin and his wife
Eve; eight grandchildren, Shaaren Pine, Raji Pine, Marissa Yeakey and her
husband Chip, Nicholas Hamlin and his wife Lauren, Alison Hamlin and her
wife Natalie, Cynthia Birdwell and her husband John, Sarah Church and her
wife Laura Sharrai, and Michelle Church and her husband Eric Winbush; many
great-grandchildren, and a loving niece and nephews. She was preceded in
death by her husband Norman, her brother David Trescott, and her
son-in-law Tracy Church.
The family will host a celebration of Barbara’s life July 2 in Ipswich. A
second gathering is planned for July 30 in Christmas Cove.
Those hoping to attend either
event should contact the family directly for specific details. In lieu of
flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions to the Thompson Ice
House Museum, PO Box 216, South Bristol, ME 04568, or the Kaplan Hospice
House, 78 Liberty Street, Danvers, MA 01923.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Whittier-Porter Funeral Home
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