For over 164 years, Chalmers Insurance has been a small-town, family owned business that strives to make a positive difference in the lives of others.
In 1857, George G. Wight started writing fire policies for farms and companies on Main Street in picturesque Bridgton, Maine. He was known for being an honest and trustworthy man who always looked out for his neighbors.
To this day, Chalmers Insurance has maintained a reputation for always doing the right thing.
"What makes Chalmers successful is the heritage of high standards passed down from generation to generation." - Jim Chalmers
When George Wight's health began to decline in 1893, he called his long-time friend, Horace B. Libby, to his bedside in order to execute partnership papers. The agency was renamed, "Wight and Libby," but because Wight was incapacitated by age and illness, Libby was catapulted into the insurance business.
Horace's son, Norman H. Libby, stepped in to help his father run the business. When Wight passed away in 1900, the agency was renamed to H.B. Libby & Son, and the agency invested in their first Remington typewriter as well as moving into a new building across the street.
Community involvement became a natural outgrowth of being in the insurance business in the early 1900s. H.B. Libby & Son was located over the old post office, and it became a popular place for locals to chat about town news while waiting for their mail.
Harold Braithwaite and Winnie Plummer, who was paid $18 a week to perform secretarial duties, including handling the crank telephone
Decades flew by, and Horace's son, Norman H. Libby, eventually sold the business to Harold G. Braithwaite. Harold Braithwaite's daughter, Margaret (Marney) married Herb Chalmers in 1935, and Herb decided to work with his father-in-law. Thus, the agency was renamed "Braithwaite-Chalmers Insurance Agency" in 1948.
Marney and Herb Chalmers
After some training and licensing, Herb tackled his new career with his customary perseverance and style. In particular, he saw a future in insuring boys' and girls' summer camps, which were abundant in the area.
In 1960, Herb's oldest son, Bruce Chalmers, joined the agency, to be followed by Herb's youngest son, William (Bill) Chalmers in 1973.
"I believe that a business is no better than its employees. Our people are our strength." - Bruce Chalmers
Bill Chalmers (left) and Bruce Chalmers (right)
Bill and Bruce expanded the client base, brought in tremendous levels of new business, and stayed unusually close throughout the process. They expanded by purchasing new offices and acquiring other local agencies. In 1991, they also co-founded Chalmers' sister agency, NAHGA Claim Services, processing claims for schools, colleges and private camps.
2014 marked the beginning of the perpetuation of Chalmers to the next generation, with the addition of a new president, Steve Cote. Bill's daughter, Dottie Chalmers Cutter and Bruce's son, Jim Chalmers, became owners and Vice Presidents. The fourth generation is currently putting their own mark on the agency and taking the business to new heights.
"My father, Bill, and my uncle, Bruce, followed the lead of generations before. They contributed to the community, developed and maintained wonderfully unique relationships, and trusted each other completely. As Jim and I have assumed the responsibility of the company, we hope to embody the same." - Dottie Chalmers Cutter
To learn more about the current leadership, visit our Leadership page.
Years of Commitment to Our Clients
Convenient Locations in Maine and New Hampshire