Maine: An Encyclopedia
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Entries listed under "B"

Bailey Island

Map of Maine Showing the Location of Harpswell, including Bailey Island. Green areas are unorganized territories.

[BAY-lee iland] is in the town of Harpswell on Casco Bay. For over two centuries of European settlement, Bailey Island was unconnected from the mainland. Though proposed as early as 1872, a bridge was not built until the twentieth century. … Continue reading

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Bailey, Jeremiah

U.S. Capitol with Snow

(1773-1853) a U.S. Representative was born in Little Compton, Rhode Island on May 1, 1773. He attended the common schools and was graduated from Brown University in 1794, studied law, was admitted to the bar, and began his practice in … Continue reading

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Baileyville

Location Map for Baileyville

Woodland, site of a paper mill since 1905, is Baileyville’s primary village. (Not the Town of Woodland in Aroostook County.) Baileyville’s eastern boundary is with Canada, defined by the St. Croix River and Woodland Lake. See photos. Continue reading

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Bald Mountain Township T2 R3 BKP EKR

Moxie Bog

is in northwestern Somerset County immediately west of Blanchard, host to the next northerly section of the Appalachian Trail. It should not be confused with Bald Mountain Township T4 R3 NBKP, in northeastern Somerset County north of Moose River. Access … Continue reading

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Bald Mountain Township T4 R3 NBKP

is north of Moose River in northwestern Somerset County. It should not be confused with Bald Mountain Township T2 R3 BKP EKR, in northeastern Somerset County east of Caratunk. The township apparently was once a Plantation. The U.S. Census reports … Continue reading

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Baldacci, John E.

Governor John E. Baldacci (2009)

(1955- ), a U.S. Representative was born in Bangor on January 30, 1955. He graduated Bangor High School, 1973 and received a B.A. from the University of Maine, Orono in 1986. A restaurant operator, he was a member of the … Continue reading

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Baldpate Mountain

Appalachian Trail Directional Sign (2010)

The trail to West Peak on Baldpate Mountain begins at the parking lot in Grafton Notch State Park.  Located in Grafton Township on Route 26 in Oxford County, this part of the Appalachian Trail resumes at a small kiosk. The … Continue reading

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Baldwin

Location Map for Baldwin

Baldwin is the only one of the towns surrounding Sebago Lake that has no frontage on that lake. East Baldwin village is located in the southeast corner of the town. West Baldwin village sits at the western edge of the Saddleback Hills, which span the width of the town. See photos. Continue reading

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Ballard, Ephraim

was born May 17, 1725 in Billerica, Massachusetts, then moved with his parents to Oxford the following year. In 1754 he married Martha Moore, better known today as Martha Ballard, who kept a diary of her life as a midwife … Continue reading

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Ballard, Martha

Martha Ballard

Born Martha Moore in 1735 Oxford, Massachusetts, she married Ephraim Ballard in 1754. In 1777 she joined her husband in Hallowell, to which he had traveled seeking land and work. The following year Ballard began her practice as a midwife. … Continue reading

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Bambi

Photo: Maine "Bambi" Model with Walt Disney (1930)

The Maine Department of Economic Development had a hand in delivering two white tail deer from Maine to the Disney studios in 1938, in response to a request for model photographs for the animation artists in the forthcoming movie Bambi. … Continue reading

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Bancroft

Location Map for Bancroft

The Baskenhegan Stream flows through this Aroostook County town, emptying into Baskenhegan Lake in Brookton Township. Rising from Mattawamkeag Lake the Mattawamkeag River flows through the town and the main village. Continue reading

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Bangor

Location map for Bangor

When Maine separated from Massachusetts in 1820, the vast Maine timberlands were put on the block for speculation, which drew investors and fortune hunters. By the 1830s, Bangor was building 500 structures annually. Dow Air Force Base provided an economic and civic boost during the Cold War until closing in 1968. The creation of Bangor International Airport turned the potential liability into an asset. Continue reading

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Bangor Historic Register

84-96 Hammond Street (2016)

National Register of Historic Places –Bangor Bangor’s architectural history is influenced by the great houses built in the boom years of the nineteenth century, with its resident lumber barons and its related commerce. The city’s role as a regional hub … Continue reading

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Bangs Island

East Shore of Bangs Island (2015)

On Casco Bay in the town of Chebeague Island, narrow Bangs Island is just short of a mile long. It is owned by the Maine Department of Conservation and was managed by the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife in … Continue reading

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Bar Harbor

Location Map for Bar Harbor

After Newport, Rhode Island, Bar Harbor was the resort of choice for wealthy eastern Americans until the great fire of 1947 destroyed many homes and forested areas. Acadia National Park dominates tourists’ itineraries when the town’s population swells each summer. The College of the Atlantic is located here. Continue reading

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Bar Mills

is a community on the Saco River in York County centered on the intersection of Maine routes 112 and 4A., otherwise known as Emory Corner. It actually includes parts of the two adjoining towns of Buxton and Hollis but is … Continue reading

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Baring

Location Map for Baring

As was the town of Alexander, it too was named for Alexander Baring, the British envoy who, with Daniel Webster, settled Maine’s northern boundary with the Webster-Ashburton Treaty ending the “Aroostook War.” The town hosts the Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge. See photos. Continue reading

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Barrows, Lewis O.

Lewis O. Barrows (courtesy Maine State Museum)

(1893-1967) born in Newport on June 7, 1893, attended local schools and the University of Maine.  He returned home to work in his father’s drug store, in the insurance business, and then as Newport’s Town Treasurer for twelve years. A … Continue reading

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Baseball

Mt. Ararat Hight School (2002)

HIGH SCHOOL BASEBALL Virtually every high school in Maine has a baseball team.  Some have produced strong players who have excelled in college and in the major leagues.  As with other sports, championship categories have evolved over the years, with … Continue reading

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Baseball, Maine in the Majors

High school baseball, batter swings away!

Players Born in Maine Cuke Barrows, Gray 1909-1912 Del Bissonette, Winthrop 1928-1933 Clarence Blethen, Dover-Foxcroft [P] 1923-1929 Ralph Botting, Houlton [P] 1979-1980 Don Brennan, Augusta [P] 1933-1937 Rip Cannell, South Bridgton 1904-1905 Bill Carrigan, Lewiston 1906-1916 Wally Clement, Auburn 1908-1909 … Continue reading

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Basketball Boys

Year Class L & A Class B Class M & C Class D 1922 South Portland 1923 Bangor 1924 Biddeford & Northeast Harbor* 1925 Westbrook 1926 South Portland & Bangor* 1927 Westbrook 1928 South Portland Boys Consecutive Wins; Final Year … Continue reading

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Basketball Girls

Girls Consecutive Wins ending in the year noted: School No. Year Camden 87 1954 Eliot 78 1962 Gorham 77 1981 Westbrook 76 1982 New Gloucester 76 1950 Sherman 75 1967   Girls Consecutive Championships School No. Years Westbrook 4 1978-1981 … Continue reading

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Batchelders Grant Township

Location Map for Batchelders Grant Township

This township in Oxford County was named for the original grantee, Josiah
Batchelder. It borders New Hampshire in the White Mountain National Forest.

Maine Route 113 runs north-south through the township. Portions of the road, also known as the Evans Notch Road, are closed during the winter. Access is then from Gilead in the north or from Stow in the south.

Evans Notch, in the southern portion of the township, is a deep cut among the White Mountains. It is a popular hiking location using the East Royce Mountain Trail to that mountain from two points on Route 113. Continue reading

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Bates College

Carnegie Science Building at Bates (2001)

was formerly the Maine State Seminary. It changed its identity and was incorporated in 1855. Located in Lewiston, it is recognized as one of the nation’s finest colleges of the liberal arts and sciences. In the U.S. News & World … Continue reading

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Bates, James

(1789-1882) a U.S. Representative, was born in Greene on September 24, 1789. He attended the common schools; studied medicine at Harvard Medical University. Bates served as a surgeon during the War of 1812 and was present at the surrender of … Continue reading

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Bath

Location Map for Bath

The city’s Customs House was an important center for revenue and recording the history of shipping in the area. The nearby elegant City Hall dominates the downtown. Home to Bath Iron Works on the Kennebec River, the city has had a long history of shipbuilding, including nine clipper ships during the 1850’s. Continue reading

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Bath Iron Works

Photo: Shipyard at Bath Iron Works (2000)

Shipbuilding has been a way of life along the Kennebec River in Bath since 1743 when Jonathan Philbrick launched a schooner with the help of his two sons. Smaller fishing and sailing craft had been built for years, but a … Continue reading

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Baxter State Park

Location Map for Baxter State Park

is a 202,733 acre area operated and maintained for the use and enjoyment of the people of Maine in accordance with the wishes of its donor Percival P. Baxter. It is the largest acreage east of the Mississippi River devoted … Continue reading

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Baxter, James Phinney

James Phinney Baxter, courtesy Maine State Museum

(1831-1921) moved to Portland from Massachusetts with his family when he was nine years old. He had a varied education in academies around Portland and Lynn, Massachusetts, including classical and legal training. Baxter, in partnership with William G. Davis, established … Continue reading

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Baxter, Percival P.

Percival P. Baxter (courtesy Maine State Museum)

(1876-1969) was Maine governor from 1921 to 1925, and donated the land for Baxter State Park beginning in 1931. Born on November 22, 1876, he was the son of James Phinney Baxter and Mehitable Proctor Cummings Baxter. He attended schools … Continue reading

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Beals Island

Location Map for Beals and Great Wass Islands

is a town in Washington County, located primarily on Beals and Great Wass Islands, along with more than a dozen others. The Great Wass Archipelago nature preserve, in Beals and Jonesport, is managed by The Nature Conservancy. Continue reading

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Bean, L. L.

Photo: Sculpture of L.L. Bean in Freeport, 2001

Leon Leonwood Bean (1872-1967) was born and raised in Greenwood in rural Maine. Orphaned at an early age, he worked at odd jobs, including a stint on a farm in Hebron, and did as much hunting and fishing that he … Continue reading

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Beaver Cove

Location Map for Beaver Cove

named for the cove in the southeastern corner of Moosehead Lake that cuts into it, is north of Greenville on the Lily Bay Road. Lily Bay State Park is nearby. It is an access point for Elephant Mountain and the site of a B-52 bomber crash in 1963. See photos. Continue reading

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Beavers

Beaver Dam at Dresden Bog (2010)

are the largest of rodents. They have flat, scaly tails, and large front teeth. Beavers use their teeth to cut down and dismember small trees to use in construction projects: their homes (lodges) and dams to surround their lodges with … Continue reading

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Beddington

Location Map for Beddington

Part of the Bingham Purchase, it was named after a borough near London, England. Fully 10 percent of the area is water, primarily in the form several lakes. Blueberries have been a staple crop for much of the town’s history. Continue reading

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Beedy, Carroll

(1880-1947) a U.S. Representative was born in Phillips on August 3, 1880. He attended the public schools of Lewiston, was graduated from Bates College in 1903, and from the law department of Yale University in 1906. Carroll Lynwood Beedy was … Continue reading

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Belcher, Hiram

(1790-1857) a U.S. Representative, was born in Hallowell on February 23, 1790, he attended the rural schools and the local academy at Hallowell from 1805 to 1807. He studied law, was admitted to the bar, and began his practice in … Continue reading

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Belfast

Location Map for Belfast

its historic district features a variety of architectural styles, primarily from the booming 19th century economy. Located on Penobscot Bay, its shipping and shipbuilding brought a population explosion between 1810 and 1850. In the mid-20th century, Belfast was home to the chicken broiler industry. It has transformed into a tourist destination, touting its historic structures. See video and photos. Continue reading

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Belgrade

Location Map for Belgrade

Named for Belgrade, Serbia, it is a center for the Belgrade Lakes Region that attracts summer visitors to enjoy fishing, boating and lakeside cottages. Great Pond dominates the town. Belgrade Lakes village at the north end of the pond stands between Great Pond on the east and Long Pond on the west. Belgrade’s population has showed continuous growth for the past several decades, slowly changing from a rural resort community to a residential suburb of Waterville and Augusta. See photos. Continue reading

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Belmont

Location Map for Belmont

is a town in Waldo County, incorporated in 1814. As is the case in many mid-coast communities, Belmont has a small but rapidly growing population, expanding by over 25% between 1990 and 2000, and again between 2000 and 2010. Continue reading

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Benedicta Township

Location Map for Benedicta

is located in southern Aroostook County. It was established as a plantation on February 1, 1873 with a population of about 400. Just over one-hundred years later, in 1987, it surrendered its plantation status and became an unorganized township administered … Continue reading

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Benson, Samuel Page

(1804-1876) a U.S. Representative, was born in Winthrop on November 28, 1804. He received instruction from private teachers and attended the Monmouth Academy, was graduated from Bowdoin College in 1825. Benson studied law, was admitted to the Kennebec County bar … Continue reading

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Benton

Location Map for Benton

a town in Kennebec County, was incorporated as Sebasticook in 1842. Its name was changed to Benton in 1850 in honor of Missouri Democratic U.S. Senator Thomas Hart Benton. Benton Station is a location near the Maine Central Railroad tracks and the Kennebec River. The Sunkhaze Meadows National Wildlife Refuge manages a refuge in Benton. See photos. Continue reading

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Berwick

Location Map for Berwick

a town in York County on the New Hampshire border, incorporated in 1713, named for an old English town in Dorsetshire. Settlements were made as early as 1624. In the mid-1600’s substantial lumbering began and a sawmill was built. In 1660 a group of Friends or “Quakers” sought refuge from persecution and settled here. Continue reading

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Best, Charles

(1899-1978) was born to Canadian parents who were living in West Pembroke, Maine at the time. He grew up there, graduated from the local high school, then attended the University of Toronto where he received his M.D. degree in 1925. … Continue reading

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Beston, Henry

Grave Markers for Elizabeth, left, and Henry, right (2008)

Publications A Volunteer Poilu (1916) Full Speed Ahead (1919) Firelight Fairy Book (1919) Starlight Wonder Book (1921) The Living Age (Editor, 1921) Book of Gallant Vagabonds (1925) The Sons of Kai (1926)The Outermost House (1928) Herbs and the Earth (1935) … Continue reading

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Bethel

Location Map for Bethel

one of the oldest villages in western Maine, incorporated in 1796 from Sudbury Canada Plantation. Its name signifies the “House of God,” possibly inspired by its location among the Oxford Hills. The Middle Intervale Meetinghouse was built in 1816. West Bethel village is along a canoe trip route on the Androscoggin River. See photos. Continue reading

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Biddeford

Location Map for Biddeford

Early settlers from Biddeford in England may have given the area its name. Biddeford was destroyed during Queen Anne’s War, but was resettled beginning in 1714. Lumbering was the major industry until the early 19th century; textiles dominated for 100 years from mid-century. First Irish, then French Canadians came to work in the mills. See photos. Continue reading

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Bingham

Location Map for Bingham

located on the Kennebec River, U.S. Route 201, its Main Street, carries visitors to and from Quebec City, and logging trucks bound for paper mills down the River. Until the 1970′s, the Kennebec and other rivers were clogged with logs floating to mills. A private lawsuit ended the practice, returning the resource to the public. Continue reading

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Bingham, William

(1752-1804) was a wealthy and influential Philadelphia banker and a financier during the Revolutionary War, a United States Senator, and an owner of great tracts of land in Maine, once totaling two million acres. He was also the founder of … Continue reading

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Bird List

Endangered, threatened, and other common birds in Maine. The same species may have variations of its sounds depending on the region in which it lives. All sounds in the Encyclopedia have been recorded in Maine. Continue reading

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Birds

Cardinal

Almost 400 different bird species have been recorded in Maine, of which approximately half are known to have bred here. With a little effort a birder should be able to see 200 species in the state during the course of a year. See Ecology>Nature Preserves for locations. Continue reading

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Black Bear

Bear feces on Lost Pond Trail in Baxter State Park (2005)

text by Craig McLaughlin Wildlife Biologist, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Bear Facts Physical Characteristics The black bear, featured above at the Maine Wildlife Park in Gray, is the smallest of the three species of bears inhabiting North … Continue reading

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Black Bridge

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The 1909, 318-foot long truss bridge was built by Pennsylvania Steel Company of Steelton, Pennsylvania, replacing an earlier double-decker bridge.  It spans the Androscoggin River between Brunswick and Topsham. According to the website HistoricBridges.org: This double deck bridge is one … Continue reading

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Blaine

Location Map for Blaine

named for Maine politician James G. Blaine, it is a “half-township” town, forming a rectangle only half the size of the typical 6-mile by 6-mile square township. In the heart of potato country, between Bridgewater and Mars Hill on Route 1, the town’s eastern boundary is shared with Canada. Continue reading

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Blaine House

Blaine House from State Street (2001)

The Blaine House is the official residence of Maine’s governors since 1919 and a National Historic Landmark, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Located on the corner of State and Capitol streets in Augusta, it was built in … Continue reading

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Blaine, James G.

James G. Blaine, courtesy Maine State Museum

James Gillespie Blaine (1830-1893) was a major political force in Maine and the U.S. Congress. A Representative and a Senator from Maine; he was born in West Brownsville, Washington County, Pa., January 31, 1830. He was graduated from Washington College, … Continue reading

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Blanchard Township

Location Map for Blanchard

In the northern portion, the Appalachian Trail crosses the township following Bald Mountain Stream and the Piscataquis River, passing just north of the village, which is near the river and is accessible on the Blanchard Road from Monson village. See maps and photos. Continue reading

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Blethen, Alden J.

(1845-1915) was born and raised in Waldo County and rose to become a media baron in the early years of the 20th century. His grandfather, Joseph Blethen, settled in what is now Thorndike and built his homestead in the 1810’s … Continue reading

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Bloodworm Harvests

Bloodworm Harvest 1950-2011

In the decade from 1964 through 1974, harvests were relatively high and total value was low.  Since then harvests had been lower and prices moderate until 2001 when values doubled and remained high through 2011. Bloodworms, often used as fish … Continue reading

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Blue Hill

Blue Hill Birdseye View 1896

Settled in 1762, its name derives from Blue Hill just north of the town’s main settlement. Blue Hill Falls and East Blue Hill are other settlements. Jonathan Fisher House, on the National Register of Historic Places, is one of the town’s major assets. Blue Hill was the original site in 1986 of Northeast Historic Film. Continue reading

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Blue Mussel Harvests

Blue Mussel Harvest 1950-2011

Prior to the mid-1970’s, blue mussel harvests in commercial fishing were relatively low.  Since then harvests appear to follow cycles, with higher yields in the late 1980’s, the mid-1990’s and the mid-2000’s.  Higher total values followed a similar trend.  “Whole … Continue reading

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Bodwell, Joseph R.

Joseph Bodwell, Jr. (courtesy Maine State Museum)

(1818-1887) was born in Methuen, Massachusetts on June 18, 1818. His family was poor and at age eight he went to live with a neighbor, working on his farm and receiving little education. At sixteen he was free to hire … Continue reading

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Bodwell, Joseph R.

Joseph R. Bodwell

(1818-1887) was born in Methuen, Massachusetts on June 18, 1818. His family was poor and at age eight he went to live with a neighbor, working on his farm and receiving little education. At sixteen he was free to hire … Continue reading

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Bomazeen

A sagamore of the Norridgewock Indians, killed in the English colonials’ raid on Norridgewock in August of 1724. He was shot fleeing the attackers in an attempt to warn others. Also, a Boy Scout camp by that name in the … Continue reading

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Boothbay

Location Map for Blue Hill

includes Damariscove Island, an early fishing outpost, providing critical food (fish) to the starving Pilgrims. Harvesting the sea is still a significant occupation. Now the Boothbay region is a center of summer tourist activity, with the Boothbay Playhouse and the Railroad Museum. See photos and video. Continue reading

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Boothbay Harbor

Location Map for Boothbay Harbor

in Lincoln County incorporated in 1889. It is a major attraction for summer visitors with shops, restaurants, art galleries, marinas, and recreational fishing opportunities. Tours to coastal islands, whale watching, and a safe, engaging harbor are some of the attractions. The Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences is here. See photos. Continue reading

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Boston Post Cane

On August 2, 1909,  Mr. Edwin A. Grozier, Publisher of the Boston Post, a newspaper, forwarded to the Board of Selectmen in 700 towns* (no cities included) in New England a gold-headed ebony cane with the request that it be … Continue reading

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Boutelle, Charles

Charles A. Boutelle

Charles Addison Boutelle (1839-1901), a U.S. Representative, was born in Damariscotta on February 9, 1839. He attended the public schools at Brunswick and the Yarmouth Academy. Boutelle adopted the profession of shipmaster. In the spring of 1862 he volunteered and … Continue reading

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Bowdoin

Location Map for Bowdoin

Settled before the Revolutionary War, it is named for James Bowdoin II, a governor of Massachusetts. Typical of early towns, Bowdoin had 15 school houses in 1870; by 2010 it, one elementary school. More than tripled in population since 1970,the still rural town is becoming a commuter community with easy access to Interstate 95. See photos and video. Continue reading

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Bowdoin College

Massachusetts Hall (2002)

is a liberal arts institution located in Brunswick. In June 1794 Massachusetts Governor Samuel Adams signed an act to establish Bowdoin College promoted by James Bowdoin III, who gave financial support to its formation and named it in honor of … Continue reading

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Bowdoin College Grant West TWP

sign: "Welcome to the North Maine Woods, . . . ." in T8 R10

is located immediately east of Greenville, accessible from that town’s  East Road, then the K1 Road which travels through the township to Gulf Hagas. The K1 road is private and travelers must stop at the North Maine Woods Hedgehog checkpoint … Continue reading

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Bowdoin, James II

(1726-1790) was an investor in the Kennebec Purchase Company, which owned substantial property in Maine. His son, James III, arranged for the establishment of Bowdoin College, naming it for his father, James II. He owned several thousand acres in Bowdoinham … Continue reading

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Bowdoinham

Bowdoinham Location Map

settled originally as early as 1623, but Indian raids precluded a permanent presence. Reportedly named for Dr. Peter Bowdoin, an early proprietor, it occupies the western shore of Merrymeeting Bay. The Cathance River runs through it and into the Bay. A fast growing community, Bowdoinham has attracted commuters and retirees to its still rural open spaces. See photos. Continue reading

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Bowerbank

Location Map for Bowerbank

Bowerbank village has substantial frontage on Sebec Lake. The Montreal, Maine, and Atlantic Railway tracks span the northern portion of the township, eventually arriving at Brownville Junction. The large Maine landowner Plum Creek has substantial ownership in Bowerbank. Harvesting the forests with modern machinery is a spectacular sight. See video and map. Continue reading

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Bowtown Township

Location Map Bowtown TWP

Bowtown Township is bound by the Kennebec River on the east for six miles, across the river from The Forks, and by the Dead River on the north. Dead River Mountain and Otter Pond Mountain reside within the township. Known … Continue reading

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Bradbury, James Ware

James Ware Bradbury

(1802-1901) a U. S. Senator from Maine was born in Parsonsfield, June 10, 1802, attended the common schools and Gorham Academy. He was graduated from Bowdoin College in 1825. Bradbury was principal of Hallowell Academy and founder of the first … Continue reading

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Bradford

Location map for Bradford

Bradford is a rural community with no lakes or mountains. In the early 20th century, Bradford Corner hosted an auto garage and wagon shop and Kingsbury’s Store, which housed a post office. A blacksmith had his shop where the library now sits. See photos. Continue reading

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Bradley

Location Map for Bradley

Named for an early, prominent settler Bradley Blackman, the town economy flourished in 1833 with the coming of the Great Works Milling and Manufacturing Company. Bradley is located on the east side of the Penobscot River, across from Orono and Old Town, just south of Milford. The paper mill in Old Town dominates the landscape. See photos. Continue reading

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Bradstreet Township

Location Map for Bradstreet Township

Attean Falls on the Moose River and the nearby Attean Falls Campground are probably the biggest features that draw visitors to the township. For those taking the Moose River Bow Canoe Trip, this is the last campsite before entering Attean … Continue reading

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Brann, Louis J.

Louis J. Brann (courtesy Maine State Museum)

(1876-1948) of Lewiston, born in Madison on July 6, 1876, was elected Maine’s first Democratic governor in two decades during depression era sweeps in 1932 and again in 1934. He defeated first Burleigh Martin of Augusta, then Alfred Ames of … Continue reading

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Bremen

Location Map for Bremen

Germans emigrated here in the mid-18th century misled into believing they would find a prosperous city in the wilderness. It has three nature preserves. Located on state Route 32 at the confluence of the Medomak River and Muscongus Bay, the main settlement is on Keene Neck. See photos. Continue reading

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Brennan, Joseph E.

Joseph E. Brennan

(1934- ) was a U.S. Representative born in Portland on November 2, 1934. He attended public schools, then received a B.S. from Boston College in 1958, and an LL.B. from the University of Maine Law School in 1963. State public … Continue reading

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Brewer

Brewer Along the Penobscot (2003)

has long been a paper making center, primarily based on the Eastern Manufacturing (later Eastern Fine Paper) Company in South Brewer on the banks of the Penobscot River. This area of town has historically been its industrial center. It is the birthplace of Civil War General and Governor Joshua L. Chamberlain. Continue reading

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Brewster, Ralph Owen

Ralph Owen Brewster (courtesy Maine State Museum)

(1888-1961) a U.S. Representative and a U.S. Senator from Maine was born in Dexter on February 22, 1888. He attended the public schools; was graduated from Bowdoin College in 1909, and from the law department of Harvard University 1913. He … Continue reading

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Bridges

Penobscot Narrows Bridge (2012)

Bridges may be classified by several factors: span, travel, form, and material. Five basic forms are arch, beam, cable-stayed, suspension, and truss. Of course, each form may serve several uses, including road vehicles, railroads, and pedestrians. Here are some examples … Continue reading

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Bridgewater

Location Map for Bridgewater

In this Aroostook County town, farming has been the major economic force since the nineteenth century. It is home to Wood Prairie Farm, an organic seed and food products source with catalog and online listings. Located on U.S. Route 1, just south of Mars Hill, it is bounded on the east by Canada and hosts a U.S. Customs station. See photos. Continue reading

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Bridgton

Location Map for Bridgton

in Cumberland County, incorporated in 1794. The village faces Highland (or Duck) Lake, inviting summer boating and camping. Shawnee Peak is a popular local skiing destination. Continue reading

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Brighton

Location Map for Brighton

is north of Athens on Route 151 at the junction with Route 154. A wind turbine developer is proceeding with a project in adjoining towns, creating concerns of its impact on Brighton. Continue reading

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Bristol

Going to Monhegan from New Harbor (2013)

Pemaquid Neck hosts the village of New Harbor, along with Pemaquid Beach and Pemaquid Light. The area, visited by Europeans by 1569, is said to be the home of the Indian Samoset, who greeted the Pilgrims in 1621 in English. New Harbor is a departure point for Monhegan Island. See video and photos. Continue reading

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Bronson, David

(1800-1863) a U.S. Representative was born in Suffield, Connecticut on February 8, 1800. He was graduated from Dartmouth College in 1819; studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1823, and began his practice in North Anson. A member of … Continue reading

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Brooklin

Location Map for Brooklin

Home of long time resident and author E. B. White, the Hancock County coastal town hosts a general store and library at the intersection of Route 175 and the road to Naskeag Point and Naskeag Harbor. It lies across Eggemoggin Reach from Little Deer Isle. Continue reading

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Brooks

Location Map for Brooks

Named for Governor John Brooks of Massachusetts, the town in Waldo County incorporated in 1816. Marsh Stream or Marsh River as it is also known, runs through the main village. A dam near an old mill site broadens the stream into a pleasant pond. See photos. Continue reading

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Brooksville

Location Map for Brooksville

in Hancock County, incorporated in 1817. Its Cape Rosier recalls James Rosier who accompanied George Weymouth in explorations of 1605. Brooksville boasts one of the best harbors for small boats: Bucks Harbor. Helen and Scott Nearing lived here. See photos. Continue reading

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Brookton Township

Location Map for Brookton

Brookton is an unorganized township just south of Danforth on U.S. Route 1, one of its only two improved roads. The other, Forest City Road in the southeastern corner, passes by Brook Lake, half of which is in Brookton. A … Continue reading

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Brown-headed Cowbird

Female Brown-headed Cowbird in Nobleboro (2015)

This Cowbird, 6 to eight inches beak to tail,  is a spring and summer visitor to Maine.  Once a follower of bison on the great plains, these birds now inhabit the edges of woods, roadsides, and towns across the United … Continue reading

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Brown, Harrison Bird

Harrison B. Brown House (2015)

Harrison Bird Brown was a widely recognized 19th century marine and landscape painter. Born in Portland in 1831 and orphaned at an early age, he was apprenticed to a house and ship painting firm. His best work dates from the … Continue reading

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Browne, Charles F.

Charles Farrar Browne born in Waterford on April 26, 1836. His father operated a store in Waterford, engaged in farming and did some surveying. Browne attended local schools and, though he did well, he was more likely to be a … Continue reading

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Brownfield

Location Map For Brownfield

Named for Captain Henry Y. Brown, who received a land grant for service in the French and Indian Wars, the town sits between the New Hampshire border and the Saco River. The Stone Mountain Arts Center, with excellent attractions and food, brings visitors from long distances. See photos. Continue reading

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Brownville

Location Map for Brownville

Famed for its slate, its quarry industry ended in 1917. It is the eastern gateway to The Hermitage, 35 acres of stately 150 year-old growth white pine overlooking the Pleasant River. Brownville Junction is so named for the railroad junction of Canadian and U.S. railroads. Continue reading

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Brunswick

Location Map For Brunswick

Since the demise of textile and shoe manufacturing, Brunswick has become a service center for the region and a residential community for commuters to the greater Portland area. With Bowdoin College, Maine State Music Theater, Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance, Pejepscot Historical Society, and many historic buildings, it is a powerful cultural magnet. AMTRAK service to Boston resumed in 2012. The town has a 66 mile ocean shoreline and 12 miles along the Androscoggin River. Continue reading

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Buckfield

Location Map For Buckfield

in Oxford County, incorporated in 1793. Buckfield village, within a few hundred yards has the public library, two veterans memorials, Masonic Temple, Odd Fellows Building, Post Office, and a general store. A short distance away is the Community Church, the Community Center and Town Offices, and the Fire Department. See photos. Continue reading

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Bucksport

Location Map For Bucksport

in Hancock County was settled in 1762. Jed Prouty’s Tavern and Inn, no longer operating, was a stop for the Bangor to Castine stage route. The paper mill (once St. Regis, then Champion, then Verso) dominates the north end of town and is across the Penobscot River from Fort Knox. Northeast Historic Film, a moving image archives, research and education center is located here. See photos. Continue reading

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Bunyan, Paul

Paul Bunyan (2001)

A mythical woodsman immortalized by a larger-than-life statue in Bangor, once the lumbering capital of the United States. This statue is located near the Bangor Auditorium on Main Street. Additional resources Felton, Harold W. Legends Of Paul Bunyan, Illustrated by … Continue reading

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Burleigh, Edwin C.

Edwin C. Burleigh (courtesy of Maine State Museum)

(1843-1916) a U.S. Representative and a U.S. Senator from Maine, was born in Linneus, November 27, 1843, attended the common schools and was graduated from the Houlton Academy. He taught school, was a clerk in the adjutant general’s office, a … Continue reading

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Burlington

Location Map For Burlington

in Penobscot County, incorporated in 1832. The township was first settled in 1824, probably by Tristam Hurd who donated the name “Hurd Ridge” to the area. Saponac Lake, in the south, is from the Indian word for “the big opening.” Lumbering and agriculture have been the main occupations, with little manufacturing. Continue reading

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Burnham

Location Map For Burnham

on the Sebasticook River, lies between Pittsfield and Clinton, is home to Pride Manufacturing, a wood products company. Burnham Junction marks the intersection of the Maine Central with the northern terminus of the Belfast and Moosehead Lake Railroad. See photos. Continue reading

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Butman, Samuel

Samuel Butman

(1788-1864) a U.S. Representative was born in Worcester, Worcester County, Massachusetts, in 1788. He moved to Maine in 1804, and settled in Dixmont where he engaged in agricultural pursuits. He served as a captain in the War of 1812, a … Continue reading

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Butterflies

Butterflies and Cone Flowers on Monhegan Island (2007)

Butterflies in Maine Monarchs The colorful and common Monarchs range throughout the United States, including all of Maine, especially in rural areas with fields thick with milkweed. Wingspan ranges from 3½ to 4 inches. As forests reclaim abandoned farms and … Continue reading

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Buxton

Location Map for Buxton

was settled by men who were survivors of King Philip’s War having been granted allotments of land in what was then Narragansett, Number One. The first permanent settlers arrived in 1750. Named for Buxton in Norfolk, England, it incorporated in 1762. The Buxton Powder House, one of only three War of 1812 powder houses to survive in Maine, was erected on a vote of local citizens. See photos. Continue reading

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Byron

Location Map for Byron

in Oxford County incorporated in 1833, the village is located on the Swift River nears Coos [CO-oss] Canyon, legendary source of gold and other minerals. This sparsely populated town is served by Maine Route 17 connecting it with the Rumford-Mexico area to the south. See photos. Continue reading

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