Maine: An Encyclopedia
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Lebanon

Location Map for Lebanon

Location Map for Lebanon

Year Population
1970 1,983
1980 3,234
1990 4,263
2000 5,083
2010 6,031
Geographic Data
N. Latitude 43:06:04
W. Latitude 70:54:35
Maine House District 20
Maine Senate District 34
Congress District 1
Area sq. mi. (total) 55.8
Area sq. mi. (land) 54.7
Population/sqmi (land) 110.3
County: York

Total=land+water; Land=land only

[LEHB-uh-nun] is a town in York County, settled in 1743 and was known as “Towow” or “Towwoh.” It was incorporated on June 17, 1767 from Lebanon Plantation as Maine’s twenty-third town. A meeting house was erected in 1753, two garrison houses were built in 1755, and a parsonage in 1759.

It annexed unincorporated land in 1785 and some from Sanford in 1787. Later it swapped land with Shapleigh, giving some in 1793 and annexing some in 1825.

The Gazetteer of the State of Maine in 1881 included this anecdote:

The chief natural curiosity of the town is “Gully Oven,” situated in a deep ravine. It is on the road from West Lebanon Village to Acton, and one and one-half miles northerly of the former. Six miles south of the cavern, during the old French war, the Indians captured a boy of eleven years of age named Phillip Door; and they spent the succeeding night in the Oven. He was detained many years, but finally returned and became one of the first settlers of Lebanon. He said that he was captured by the Indians in the forenoon as he sat astride of a fence singing a popular song of the period, -

“As sure as eggs are bacon,
I’ll go to Canada and wont return,
Till Canada is taken,”

– which came true, sure enough.

- – - – -

Lebanon is the birthplace in 1851 of U.S. Congress member, Maine legislator, and Maine Attorney General, Charles Edgar Littlefield.

This western-most town borders New Hampshire on the Salmon Falls River.  A rapidly growing rural commuter community, Lebanon tripled its population between 1970 and 2010, adding 20% between 2000 and 2010.

Form of Government: Town Meeting-Select Board.

Additional resources

Chamberlain, George Walter. The Beginnings of Lebanon, Maine. West Lebanon, Me. G.W. Chamberlain. 1936.

Chamberlain, George Walter. Soldiers of the American Revolution, of Lebanon, Maine. Weymouth, Mass. Weymouth and Braintree Publishing Co. 1897.

Jones, Samuel Wingate. A History of the Town of Lebanon, Maine: with a short biographical sketch of some of its first settlers. Lebanon, Me. Lebanon Historical Society, 1992.

Pray, Alicia. Where to Find Records of Lebanon, Maine: the new town lately granted by the General Court at the Head of Berwick, on the easterly side of Salmon Falls River. Lebanon, Me.? A. Pray. 1985.

Sinnett, Charles N. Historic Lebanon: Lebanon, Maine, and the grand work of its Congregational Church in one hundred and thirty-eight years. Haverhill, Mass. C.C. Morse & Son. 1903.

Varney, George J. A Gazetteer of the State of Maine. 1886. pp. 312-313.

National Register of Historic Places – Listings

Grist Mill Bridge, Little River Road across the Little River

Old Grist Mill, Little River Road East Lebanon

West Lebanon Historic District, irregular pattern along West Lebanon, Rochester, Milton, Shapleigh and Meeting House Roads.

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