History & Staff
We have years of experience caring for families, from all walks of life. Each family comes to us because they know we are leaders in our profession, dedicated to excellence in service, and have the highest integrity.
When we sit down with a family, we have just one goal: to create a fitting, memorable and affordable service for their loved one. Together, we explore the wide variety of services and products available, as well as a wealth of creative ideas and suggestions.
Together, we'll design a memorial or funeral service that suits their needs now, and in the future. Families who come to us know that years from now, they will have deep peace-of-mind because in coming to us, they've done their best to honor their loved one.
The Roberts Family History
Our heritage dates back to the mid-1800's when William Harrison Roberts was a cabinet maker and undertaker in Wayne in 1840, he probably could not have believed that his great-great-great-grandchildren would carry on the family name and tradition right into the 21st century.
William H. Roberts had four sons; Frank, Will, Wendall, and Nathan. All were cabinet makers and undertakers, as it was the cabinet makers who made the caskets and did undertaking in those days. Frank later moved to Vienna, Maine and then to Georgetown, Mass., where to this day the Roberts family continues the funeral business. Will, Wendall, and Nathan went to Readfield where Nathan's son, Leon Roberts', elected to carry on the business after his father died. After a devastating fire in Readfield Village, Leon lost everything. Known for his determination, Leon purchased the Bowdoin Street house in 1923 and renovated it into the first funeral parlor in the area. Leon Roberts played an instrumental role in requiring licensing for morticians in the 1920's. By the time his two sons, Carleton and Douglass, were of age to take over the business, six months of schooling and licensing were required.
Continuing with tradition...
Terry Roberts, son of Carleton and Lucille Roberts, attended mortuary school in Boston where he met his wife, Janice, whom he married in 1960. Terry and Janice had three children; Lynn, Leon, and Valerie. Lynn Roberts Reed and Leon Roberts are currently carrying out the family tradition. Lynn is President of Knowlton & Hewins and Roberts Funeral Homes and a Bereavement Facilitator, and Leon is Vice-President and a Licensed Funeral Service Practitioner. Their father, Terry, was a Licensed Funeral Service Practitioner. Their mother, Janice, was a National Certified Bereavement Facilitator. Both Terry and Janice retired in December of 2003. In 1994 Janice co-authored with Joy Johnson "Thank You For Coming To Say Good-bye", a book written for families, funeral directors, and other care-giving professionals, and dedicated to children of all ages who need to understand what has happened, to be allowed to grieve, and to pay tribute to the person who no longer lives.
The Hewins Family History
Knowlton & Hewins is one of the oldest businesses in Augusta, tracing its beginnings back to 1822 when David Knowlton started in business as a manufacturer of furniture, coffins, and caskets at the "Old Stand", on the corner of Oak and Flagg streets. His son, Charles, entered into business with him and subsequently succeeded him. Charles also did "Embalming of the bodies of deceased persons, when desired." Charles' daughter, Alice, married Frank Hewins in 1900 and joined the two families. Frank became a member of the firm and the name was changed to Knowlton & Hewins.
Frank and Alice Hewins had three children, Charles Knowlton Hewins, Frank Hewins, Jr. (Binks), and Beverly Hewins. All three children were active in the business until their deaths.
Charles Knowlton Hewins married Margaret Powel and they had two children, Charles Knowlton Hewins, Jr. and Gail Hewins. Charles, Jr. entered into the business in 1959 and was active in the business along with his wife, Alice, until her death in 1985 and his retirement in 1987.
Charles Knowlton and Frank Hewins, Sr. were instrumental in founding the Maine Funeral Directors Association in the early 1920's.
Back in 1920, Frank Hewins, Sr. bought the property in Augusta where the present funeral home is located. Over the next two years he built the present building. It became the first building in the state built for the specific purpose of serving as a funeral home. Previously it had been the custom of families to keep the bodies of the deceased in their home.
The building has been added to and rebuilt several times. In 1966, there was a major expansion and redecoration of the interior. In 1975, a 22' x 50' extension of the building was added, along with soundproof partitions and central air conditioning.
In 1938, the firm opened the Hallowell funeral home and "Binks" Hewins managed this location until shortly before his death in 1955.
In 2004, the Hallowell Funeral Home, located ony two miles from the Augusta funeral home, was closed and sold to a local Hallowell couple, who plan to rennovate it into a bed & breakfast..
In late 2004 and early 2005, the Augusta and Winthrop locations have undergone renovations. The style of the "home" is Craftsman, built in the late 20's. In the recent renovations we used colors that reflected the light at the end of the day, "A golden afternoon". With new furnishings, carpets, and lighting it is a delightful, yet quiet and meditative space. We have also installed Craftsman Style Gardens, with flowers and evergreens of a bygone era. The new parking lot completes the look. Knowlton Hewins Roberts Funeral Homes and Cremation Service has updated, by going back into the history of the home and creating a quiet and beautiful place to celebrate a life.
The Joining Together of Two Families
By the 1980's, Terry Roberts knew that changes had to be made in the business. His father, Carleton Roberts, and uncle, Douglass Roberts, had retired, leaving him to run the business alone. Charles Hewins, Jr., owner of Knowlton & Hewins Funeral Homes, had no children to carry on the family tradition. The Roberts family of Winthrop and the Hewins family of Augusta had been friends and associates for many years. The two decided to merge in 1984. This merger incorporated the fifth generation of the Hewins family and the sixth generation of the Roberts family, together serving approximately 260 families a year in the Augusta, Hallowell, and Winthrop, Maine and the surrounding communities.
On December 31, 2003, both Terry and Janice retired, passing the family business on to their daughter and son, Lynn and Leon.
Our Valued Staff
Lynn Roberts Reed, President & Co-Owner, Licensed Funeral Service Practitioner
Lynn graduated from Winthrop High School in 1978, the University of Maine at Augusta in 1984, and FINE Mortuary School in 2007. She is Co-owner and President of Knowlton Hewins Roberts Funeral Homes and Cremation Service. Lynn is a Bereavement Facilitator, providing guidance to help children of all ages and their families understand death and the grieving process. Lynn and her brother, Leon, are the sixth generation in the family funeral service. She is active in the community and local schools and, upon request, offers workshops to local schools and organizations. She lives in Winthrop with her husband, Steve. In her free time she enjoys a variety of outdoor activities and spending time with her family.
Leon C. Roberts, Vice-President & Co-Owner, Licensed Funeral Service Practitioner
Leon graduated from Winthrop High School in 1981, Arizona State University in 1985, and Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service in Atlanta in 1997. He is is Co-owner and Vice-President of Knowlton Hewins Roberts Funeral Homes and Cremation Service as well as a Licensed Funeral Service Practitioner. He is a member of the Maine Funeral Directors Association. Leon and his sister, Lynn, are the sixth generation in the family funeral service.
David H. Kahl, Licensed Funeral Service Practitioner
David Kahl has been a licensed funeral director since 1985. He is a graduate of Garrett College and the Pittsburgh Institute of Mortuary Science. He joined Knowlton Hewins Roberts Funeral Homes and Cremation Service in 1994, relocating from Maryland. He is active in the Augusta Rotary Club, participates in cycling events and supports the American Lung Association by riding in the Trek Across Maine and enjoys a variety of outdoor activities.
David A. Uhouse, Licensed Funeral Service Practitioner
David has been a Licensed Funeral Practitioner since 1974. A graduate of Simmons Mortuary College in Syracuse N.Y., he is a licensed funeral director in both Maine and New York. He joined Knowlton Hewins Roberts Funeral Homes and Cremation Service in 1989. He is an active member of the Winthrop Lions Club and is also active in the community.
Hugh H. LeMaster, Licensed Funeral Service Practitioner
Hugh H. LeMaster is a 1978 graduate of Monmouth Academy and a 1989 Magna Cum Laude graduate of The New England Institute of Applied Arts and Science where he received an Associates Degree in Mortuary Science. Hugh is a Licensed Funeral Director and has been a member of the Knowton Hewins Roberts Staff since 2005. He is a member of the Maine Funeral Directors Assoc. and a member of the board of directors of the Maine Cemetery Association, a Capt. with the Monmouth Fire Dept. where he has served for over 35 years, and president of the Monmouth cemetery association along with many other community involvements. Hugh's activities include, fishing, snowmobiling, and ATV riding.
Hugh and his wife Doris (Boisvert) LeMaster reside in Monmouth on the old LeMaster 1790's ancestral farm. They have a son, U.S. Marine SSGT Joseph R.P. LeMaster and a grandson, Joseph C.H.LeMaster
Brock M. Thomas, Licensed Funeral Service Practioner Trainee
Brock M. Thomas graduated from Gardiner Area High School in 1996. Brock joined the Knowlton Hewins and Roberts staff in 2006 as a Licensed Funeral Attendant. Brock lives in Gardiner and is active in the community; he’s also a Firefighter for the Town of Farmingdale.
Steve Reed, Licensed Funeral Attendant
Steve graduated from Winthrop High School in 1972 and joined Knowlton Hewins Roberts Funeral Homes and Cremation Service in 2002. Steve lives in Winthrop with his wife, Lynn Roberts Reed. In his free time he enjoys a variety of outdoor activities and spending time with his family.