About

Niel Rolde photo by Ramona du HouxNeil Rolde is a Maine renowned historian, former politician and, philanthropist. As a youth he attended Phillips Academy in Andover where instructors encouraged his writing talents. He went on to Yale University and earned a Bachelor in Arts before attending Columbia University where he received a Masters in Journalism.

Rolde grew up in Brookline, Massachusetts. He worked as a film writer before moving to Maine with his wife of fifty-two years, Carlotta Florsheim, to raise their family. In York they brought up four wonderful children and now enjoy family visits with their eight grandchildren.

Mr. Rolde’s many years of public service include being an assistant to Governor Kenneth M. Curtis of Maine for six years and 16 years as an elected Representative in the Maine Legislature. He represented his district of York, Maine and became Majority Leader of the Maine House during the 107th legislature from 1975-77. He became the Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate in 1990 in an election bid against Bill Cohen.

Most of Mr. Rolde’s books involve the history of Maine and its people. The plight of Native Americans has been a reoccurring theme in Rolde’s life since his childhood and he helped Maine’s tribes while he worked in the Curtis administration. His experiences led his to write one of Maine’s definitive historic books: Unsettled Past, Unsettled Future: The Story of Maine Indians.

The author has won awards for his books from the Maine Historical Society, the Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance, and the Maine Humanities Council. Neil is very involved in his York community and remains politically active. He continues to serve as Chairman of the board of the Save our Shipyard nonprofit that successfully fought the potential cuts to the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard proposed by the BRAC federal commission, twice.

Mr. Rolde has served on many State boards and commissions a few are: the Maine Health Care Reform Commission, the Maine Historic Preservation, and the Maine Arts and Humanities Commission. His expertise led him to sit on many private non-profit boards as well, and he became Chairman, Maine Public Broadcasting Corporation, Vice-Chairman, University of New England Board of Trustees, Chairman, Board of Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, Chairman, Seacoast Shipyard Association Executive Board, Trustee, and the Maine Health Care Access Foundation.

A list of Neil Rolde’s books:

  1. Breckenridge Long: An American: An American Eichmann??? An Enquiry into the Character of the Man who Denied Visas to the Jews
  2. Continental Liar from the State of Maine: James G. Blaine
  3. Unsettled Past, Unsettled Future: The Story of Maine Indians
  4. The Interrupted Forest A History of Maine’s Wildlands
  5. Maine A Narrative History
  6. Maine Downeast and Different an Illustrated History
  7. An illustrated history of Maine
  8. Your Money or Your Health: America’s Cruel, Bureaucratic, and Horrendously Expensive Health Care System How It Got That Way and What to Do About
  9. Rio Grande Do Norte: The Story of Maine’s Partner State in Brazil What It’s Like, What Its past Has Been, and What Are Its Ties to Maine
  10. The Baxters of Maine: Downeast Visionaries
  11. So You Think You Know Maine
  12.  Maine in the World: Stories of Some of Those from Here Who Went Away
  13.  O. Murray Carr: A Novel
  14. Sir William Pepperrell of Colonial New England

Contributor as a historian and writer to:

  • To Katahdin: The 1876 Adventures of Four Young Men and a Boat
  •  Greatest Mountain: Katahdin’s Wilderness