Kathryn Graham Lamontagne has packed a lot into her first 28 years on the planet and shows no signs of slowing down. Between wanderlust and a hunger for knowledge, she’s traveled around three continents and worked at an intriguing assortment of jobs.
Sky miles aside, Ms. Lamontagne’s roots are planted firmly in North Westport. Her late grandfather George Graham developed the Holly Hill Campground and Christopher Circle with his late wife Mary, who drove the dump truck and dug the drainage ditches there. Ms. Lamontagne’s Boston-based younger brother Robert works at the Department of Workforce and Labor at the State House and is a speechwriter for Governor Patrick. She resides on Watuppa Road with her parents Norman and Mary Ann.
Ms. Lamontagne’s educational pedigree includes a bachelor’s degree from Providence College, master’s degrees from Providence College (Modern European History) and the University of London (Cultural Memory). During her college career, she studied in Quebec and Newfoundland and journeyed to Fiji, New Zealand, Australia, Spain, and Portugal. Ms. Lamontagne is currently in a Ph.D. program in British History at Boston University.
NORTH WESTPORT ROOTS
“My mother’s family has been summering or living year round on Watuppa Pond since 1901. My father grew up on the reservation in Fall River at the end of Blossom Road. His father was from Westport Factory. My father’s side were all mill people so we’ve been North Westporters forever.”
MELTING POT HERITAGE
“I’m English, Irish, and French-Canadian. My father was French-Canadian, and my grandfather only spoke French. My mom’s maiden name is Graham, her mother’s maiden name was Pelletier but her mother was born in Ireland…it gets confusing!”
A BUSY SCHEDULE TO JUGGLE
“I’ve been a reference librarian at the Barrington Public Library for the past 5 years. I work at White’s and Rachel’s Lakeside. I answer phones, manage rooms, bus tables, hostess in the dining room and even made drinks. I’m also a grader of exams at
Boston University and will begin a teaching fellowship there next spring.”
“We love doing beach stuff. We go to Gooseberry and collect sea-glass, And I’ve always done quahogging with my father, that’s our daddy-daughter thing that we do together.”
FAVORITE WESTPORT ACTIVITY
“My absolute favorite thing to do is get a book and go to East Beach, that’s where everybody finds me all summer. It’s quiet, you don’t have to walk far, the rocks get all warm and you can lay on them, and the water is so much cleaner there.”
VISITS TO LONDON
“I go over about every two months which is why I work so much so I can afford the travel. I visit my boyfriend and do research at the British Library in London."
WHAT DRIVES YOU
“I used to be really competitive and wanted to make everyone proud of me. Over the years it changed. Now what drives me is more about providing for the family that I’ll have and making sure that I’m best prepared for that.”
WHO INSPIRED YOU
“My grandmother and my mom. My grandmother was proponent of women’s rights, she dug all those ditches at Christopher Circle herself, and was a voracious reader. My mother’s a voracious reader, too. My mom took me to the library to borrow books about famous black women, Native Americans, and presidents. She made every effort to let me know about the world outside.”
“My mom and I like to go antiquing in New Bedford. I love to cook. I’m a voracious reader. And I collect cook books, a perfect merge for me of food and books.”
AN AMERICAN DREAM STORY
“My great-grandmother was an immigrant from Ireland. She worked in the cafeteria at Boston University. There’s something that resonates with me so much that she worked in the cafeteria and now here I have the opportunity to get my doctorate there. It feels like an American Dream story.”
“When I enrolled in Bishop Connolly in eighth grade I was the only student from public school who got placed in advanced classes. I attribute that to Mrs. Finnuci, my first grade teacher, Mrs. Croft, my 4th grade teacher, and Mr. Holt at the middle school. Mrs. Croft had me dress up as a Pilgrim and walk around the school when it was Westport’s bicentennial. I think I was officially a history person from then on. I got a really good education in Westport.”
MEETING ROSA PARKS
“When I was in fourth grade my mom took me to see Rosa Parks at the Congregational Church in Fall River and that changed my life. Rosa Parks was such a little woman on that big, big altar and she’d done some big, big things. I’ve carried that with me my whole life.”
COMING FULL CIRCLE
“I’m studying labor leaders from Lancashire England who immigrated to Fall River in the 19th century which is when my mother’s family came over to work in the mills here.”