Maine: An Encyclopedia
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Acton

Location Map for Action

is a town in York County, incorporated on March 6, 1830; it ceded land to Shapleigh in 1831. It was part of a much larger tract of land in purchased in 1661 by Francis Small from Chief Sunday of the Newichawannock Tribe. Settled in 1776, the town’s first mill, a grist mill, was built on the Salmon Falls River in 1779 by Joseph Parsons. Continue reading

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Andover

Location Map for Andover

The Appalachian Trail crosses B Hill Road in nearby Andover North Surplus. AT&T built the Telstar satellite station here in the 1960s. Community photos. Native American Molly Ockett was buried in an unmarked grave in Andover’s Woodlawn Cemetery in 1816. Continue reading

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Ashland

Location Map for Ashland

Frenchville and Sheridan are villages north of the village of Ashland. Lumbering, once the major industry, is recalled in Ashland’s Logging Museum. Continue reading

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Auburn

Location Map for Auburn

home to two U.S. Senators: William D. Hathaway and Olympia J. Snowe; 5th largest city by population; Androscoggin County seat; 20+ National Historic Register places. It also hosts Central Maine Community College. Continue reading

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Bailey Island

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

3 [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 … 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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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Calais

Location Map for Calais

in eastern, coastal Washington County and named for the French port, was briefly settled in 1604 when a French expedition arrived on St. Croix Island. Today it features late 19th century historic brick structures, modern state and federal buildings, and a visitor center. Home to Washington County Community College. See video and photos. Continue reading

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Camden

Location Map for Camden

The village, at the foot of Mt. Battie, is at Camden Harbor on Penobscot Bay and U.S. Route 1. In 1880 the first summer cottages were built and and a flood of seasonal and semi-permanent residents began. The Opera House hosts many cultural events, including the Camden Conference and the Camden Film Festival. Edna St. Vincent Millay graduated from high school here. See video and photos. Continue reading

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Caribou

Location Map For Caribou

in Aroostook County incorporated in 1859. European settlers awaited the conclusion of the northern boundary dispute with Canada before arriving in force in 1843. Home to the Nylander Museum of Natural History, Caribou’s depends significantly on the potato industry. See photos. Continue reading

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Carmel

Location Map for Carmel

near Interstate 95 and an easy commute to Bangor, Carmel sustained substantial population growth of 19 percent in the 1990-2000 decade, and nearly 16 percent in the ten years ending in 2010. First settled in 1798, it incorporated in1811. See photos. Continue reading

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China

Location Map For China

in Kennebec County near Augusta, incorporated 1818, is the birthplace of a member of Congress and a Quaker educator-author. China Lake, around which Quakers and Baptists settled in the early 19th century, dominates the community and its history as a recreational center. See photos. Continue reading

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Clinton

Location Map For Clinton

is a town in Kennebec County, incorporated under the name Maine in 1848. The following year, the confusing address “Maine, Maine” was changed. Across the Kennebec River from Hinckley lies the Pishon Ferry area, now served by a modern bridge. A small white church overlooks the river. See photos. Continue reading

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Corinna

Location Map for Corinna

in Penobscot County, incorporated 1818. See photos. From the mid-1930s to 1996 the Eastland Woolen Mill provided employment. It discharged contaminated water into the East Branch of the Sebasticook River and became a Superfund Site. Corinna is the birthplace of Gilbert Patten (1866) who wrote the Frank Merriwell series of boys books under the name Bert L. Standish. Continue reading

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Cornish

Location Map for Cornish

in York County, incorporated 1794, probably named for settlers from Cornwall, England. The main street features tourist attractions such as lodging, eating, and antiques. Cornish village is located where the Ossipee River feeds into the Saco River. Little River enters the Ossipee just before its link to the Saco. See photos. Continue reading

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Cultural Resources

Pejepscot Historical Society on Park Row in Brunswick (2002)

Cultural resources in Maine range from the many community institutions to larger institutions with statewide or broader significance. This page contains a brief summary. Acton Shapleigh HS Albany Township History Allagash HS Alexander – Crawford HS Andover HS Androscoggin HS … Continue reading

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Cundys Harbor

Cundys Harbor Village (2014)

Cundys Harbor is a village within the town of Harpswell, in the area known as East Harpswell. It is located in the southeastern portion of this sprawling coastal town, on Sebascodegan Island. In 1985 the Maine Historic Preservation Commission described … Continue reading

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Damariscotta

Location Map for Damariscotta

in Lincoln County, contains Native American shell middens (heaps), built 8 clipper ships, and borders the Great Salt Bay nature preserve. Walt Disney’s Bambi was “born” here. See photos. Continue reading

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Danforth

Location Map for Danforth

in the Baskahegan valley, is the northernmost town in Washington County, The village is at U.S. Route 1 and Maine Route 169 at the end of Crooked Brook Flowage. The majestic, historic 1888 Union Hall clock tower dominates the village. See photos. Continue reading

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Deer Isle

Location Map for Deer Isle

John Steinbeck on Deer Isle: “There is something about it that opens no door to words.” Deer Isle-Sedgwick Bridge links the island to the mainland. See photos. The town, in Hancock County and incorporated 1789, includes nature preserves and 77 coastal islands. .
Continue reading

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Denmark

Location Map for Denmark

Pleasant Mountain rises 2,006 feet among adjoining ridges and peaks. See photos. A hiking trail offers access and views of the surrounding countryside and of Moose Pond. Settled 1788 and incorporated 1807 in Oxford County, the town’s western line is the Saco River. Continue reading

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Detroit

Location Map for Detroit

The East Branch of the Sebasticook River flows through the village on its way to Sebasticook Lake in Newport. See photos. Several mills used it water power in the 19th century. Incorporated 1828 in Somerset County as Chandlerville, the name was changed to Detroit in 1841. Continue reading

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Dexter

Location Map for Dexter

A woolen mill, erected in 1835, started an industry that lasted for over 150 years. See photos. Recent manufacturing firm closings contributed to the decline in population in the 1990-2000 decade. Settled 1800, incorporated 1816 in Penobscot County, it is the birthplace in 1888 of legislator, congressman, governor, and U.S. Senator Ralph Owen Brewster. Continue reading

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Dixfield

Location Map for Dixfield

Dr. Elijah Dix bought the town (and Dixmont); his granddaughter was social reformer Dorothy Dix. See video and photos. Inventor Leonard Norcross was a resident in the early 19th century. The town town in Oxford County incorporated in 1803. Continue reading

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Dover-Foxcroft

Location Map for Dover-Foxcroft

the county seat of Piscataquis County, born of the union of Dover and Foxcroft in 1922, and home to Foxcroft Academy and three members of Congress, is the commercial center of the area. See photos. Continue reading

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Dresden

Location Map for Dresden

is site of the 1761 Pownalborough Courthouse, the first built in Maine, visited by future President John Adams, Daniel Webster, and Benedict Arnold on his way to Quebec. The Earle R. Kelley Wildlife Management Area and the Dresden Bog are here in the area first settled in 1752. Continue reading

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Eastbrook

Sign: Town Line, Entering Eastbrook from Waltham (2003)

in Hancock County, incorporated 1837, Settled in 1800, an early settler built the first house and established its first mill. In 1886 Eastbrook had four mills – two sawmills, one producing staves, and one manufacturing shingles. It still has several historically significant buildings. See photos. Lyle Frost Wildlife Management Area offers canoeing; wildlife to be seen: eagles, deer and water birds. Continue reading

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Easton

Location Map for Easton

In the 1970s Easton was the site of a failed attempt to establish a sugar beet refinery to diversify dependence on the potato economy. The McCain Foods, U.S.A. facility and the J. M. Huber Corporation’s Engineered Woods plant provide local employment. Easton, in Aroostook County, incorporated in 1865. Continue reading

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Eliot

Location Map for Eliot

in York County, settled in the 1630s, on the east side of the Piscataqua River dividing Maine from New Hampshire, is a growing residential community serving Kittery and Portsmouth. See photos. Its population expanded by almost 12% in the 1990-2000 decade. Eliot was home to Maine’s first Quaker Meetinghouse built in 1776. Continue reading

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Enfield

Location Map for Enfield

Henry David Thoreau traveled through the town in 1846 on his way to Mount Katahdin. Enfield is the birthplace of Arthur R. MacDougall, Jr., author of the Dud Dean stories of a fictional Maine Guide. Along with other communities in the area, people in Enfield are heavily involved in forest management and logging. Continue reading

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Fairfield

Location Map for Fairfield

Fairfield Center, with its impressive church and grange hall, is at the crossroads of routes 23 & 104. The old Lawrence High School is near the veterans park with its gazebo and shade trees. See photos. In the fall, a popular destination for apples and pumpkins is The Apple Farm. Fairfield, incorporated in 1788 in Somerset County, now hosts Kennebec Valley Community College. Continue reading

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Farmington

Location Map for Farmington

From a trading center in the late 18th century, it saw rapid growth through the Civil War, largely with designation as the shire town of Franklin County, arrival of a few manufacturers, and founding of several educational institutions. It boasts a highly rated small college: the University of Maine at Farmington, near downtown. Originally the Farmington State Normal School, it was established in 1864. The town is the birthplace of renowned vocalist Lillian Nordica; the home of inventor Chester Greenwood and U.S. Representative Robert Goodenow. Continue reading

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Fort Fairfield

Location Map for Fort Fairfield

Fort Fairfield, established during the Aroostook War, took its name from Governor John Fairfield. The original fort (1839-1843), a duplicate of Fort Kent, was dismantled in 1862. A replica was built in 1976. The 1875 Canadian-Pacific Railroad station is part of the Railroad Museum at the old Bangor & Aroostook rail yard. The town, in the heart of potato country, hosts the Potato Blossom Festival in July. Continue reading

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Fort Kent

Location Map for Fort Kent

A fort, named for Governor Edward Kent, was constructed between 1838 and 1840 to assert Maine’s authority and protect settlers during the bloodless Aroostook War. Populated largely by descendents of Acadians fleeing British persecution, French is frequently the language of choice. Continue reading

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Franklin

Location Map for Franklin

Blueberries and Christmas trees are major crops in this still growing rural community. The Taunton Bay Islands nature preserve consists of two small islands. Named for Benjamin Franklin, the town lies east of Ellsworth. Continue reading

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Friendship

Location Map for Friendship

Settled in 1750, its boat building heritage began soon after and became best known for its specialty – the Friendship Sloop. See photos. The town, whose islands extend far out into Muscongus Bay, hosts the Friendship Sloop Races each summer, organized by the Friendship Sloop Society. The harbor, with its wharfs, moorings, and public landing, is a central economic and social focal point for the community. Continue reading

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Fryeburg

Location Map for Fryeburg

a town in Oxford County, incorporated in 1777 on the site of an Indian settlement known as Pequawket. See photos. Daniel Webster was a teacher at Fryeburg Academy in 1802. Native American Molly Ockett was born about 1740 into the Pigwacket tribe. The Battle of Lovewell’s Pond was one long day in 1725, during which the leader of the white volunteers, Captain Lovewell, was slain along with the Indian leader Pangus. Continue reading

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Glenburn

Location Map for Glenburn

The town is becoming a major suburb of the Bangor area with population expanding nearly four-fold in the 40 years 1970-2010, and growing 16 percent 2000-2010. Glenburn’s school contains the public library. See photos. In Penobscot County, it was incorporated in 1822 under the name of Dutton, changed to Glenburn in 1837. Dutton held a major interest in the original township, became a Judge of Probate and a founder of Bangor Theological Seminary. Continue reading

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Gouldsboro

Location Map for Gouldsboro

First inhabited by Europeans in 1700, the town occupies the upper portion of a peninsular stretching from Frenchman’s Bay on the west to West Bay and Gouldsboro Bay on the east. a town of working fishermen and summer visitors, its harbors, such as Birch, Prospect and tiny Corea, offer welcome protection to coastal vessels. Continue reading

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Gray

Location Map for Gray

While Gray has a storied history, the center of Gray village is a busy contemporary place, the crossroads of 5 highways. See video and photos. In the 1770s it was attacked by Indians, destroying cattle, the meetinghouse and all houses. Home to the historic Pennell Institute and a suburb of the Portland area, Gray includes most of Little Sebago Lake and Crystal Lake. Continue reading

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Guilford

Location Map for Guilford

The Piscataquis River flows through the main village with neighboring Sangerville, formed with some land from Guilford, on the southern shore. The town was long a center for textile production. The late 20th century was marked by fires, floods, and economic instability, but the early 21st century opened with efforts at renewal with a river festival and downtown revtlalization. Continue reading

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Hallowell

Location Map for Hallowell

Early in the 19th century, Hallowell on the Kennebec has become an important commercial center in the District of Maine. River ice and shipbuilding were staple industries. Granite quarries were active and productive in the 19th century, with one on “Granite Hill.” Maine’s smallest city in area has a vital downtown with antique and book shops, along with restaurants. See photos. The first settler arrived in 1762; surveyor Ephraim Ballard, in 1776; his wife Martha, the next year. Maine’s first Anti-Slavery Society was founded here in 1833. Continue reading

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Harrington

Location Map for Harrington

In 1858 the Jefferson Davis trail was cut to haul supplies and instruments to the top of Humpback Mountain for the U.S. Coast Survey. An elegant old church, adjoins the Gallison Memorial Library on U.S. 1. See photos. The town has sustained its population base when others in Washington County have declined. From 2000 to 2010 the number of residents expanded by nearly 14%. Continue reading

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Harrison

Location Map for Harrison

A growing community, its population has consistently expanded over the past forty years. From 2000 to 2010 alone it grew by nearly 18%. See photos and video. By 1847 a wood products mill, known as Scribner’s Mill, was in operation. An effort to restore it is underway. Just north of Naples, Harrison has substantial frontage on Long Lake, which it shares with Bridgton. Continue reading

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Hiram

Location Map for Hiram

The villages of Hiram and East Hiram are divided by the Saco River. Nearby Mount Cutler sports a hiking trail; a chain of ponds hugs the western border above South Hiram. Raymond Cotton, a storekeeper and author, made many home movies. See photos & 1938 video on blueberry farming. The community buildings (churches, library, grange, museum) are within walking distance in Hiram village. Continue reading

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Holden

Location Map for Holden

The town has substantial frontage on Brewer Lake, which is shared with neighboring Orrington. At East Holden, where Maine Route 46 crosses 1A, a commercial area has blossomed in recent years. See photos. Administrative offices, library, and museum of the Grand Lodge of Maine Masons are located at the crossroads. Continue reading

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Hollis

Location Map for Hollis

Just 10 miles northwest of Biddeford-Saco, the town was the summer home of Kate Douglas Wiggin, author of Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm among others. See photos. Her house is now the library. Wildfires of 1947 wiped out many historic homes, so only about 20% of all houses are older 50 years. The village with most commercial development is Hollis Center, with restaurants, gasoline stations, a food market and other service businesses. Poland Spring bottling plant was the only substantial industrial use in Hollis as of 2004. Continue reading

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Houlton

Location Map for Houlton

In 1828 a military post was established and the military road to supply the post was completed in 1832. The garrison stayed until the Webster-Ashburton treaty was completed in 1842. See photos. Served by the New Brunswick and Canada Railway as late as 1886. By 1894 the new Bangor and Aroostook Railroad connected the town to central Maine. The “Houlton Band” of the Maliseet Indians has its tribal offices near the Canadian border. Continue reading

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Islesboro

Location Map for Deer Isle

is the marker for dividing East Penobscot Bay from West Penobscot Bay. It includes North and South Islesboro connected by a narrow segment of land, See chart and photo. Seven Hundred Acre Island, Job Island. The 129 acres of forested Warren Island hosts a state park with a dock and moorings. Grindel Point Light Station in Gilkey Harbor on Islesboro was established in 1850. Continue reading

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Jackman

Location Map for Jackman

James Jackman, was usually called “Captain Jackman.” He was contracted by the State to build the Canada Road from the Forks to the Canadian border. See photos. The village is on the shore of Wood Pond in Attean Township. Attean Pond and Attean Mountain are southwest of the village in an area designated as one of Maine’s “public reserved lands.” The area provides attractive fishing and hunting opportunities, canoe trips on the Moose River, and jobs for workers in the logging industry. Continue reading

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Jay

Location Map for Jay

Both Jay and Livermore Falls, have been paper mill towns on the River since the 19th century. See photos. Jay’s town line cuts through Livermore Falls village with little obvious effect. The VFW Post is just a few hundred feet north of Livermore Falls. Jay was the scene of an extended and bitter strike of workers against the International Paper Androscoggin mill in 18987-1988. The white granite for President Ulysses S. Grant’s tomb came from North Jay Continue reading

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Jonesport

Map of Maine showing the location of Jonesport. Green areas are unorganized territories.

The town hosts a U.S. Coast Guard station, headquartered at the entrance to the Jonesport-Beals Bridge. See video and photos. The main village, a lobster fishing center, is located on Moosabec Reach and the Indian River. Two nature preserves are in the town, both on islands. A bridge across the Reach leads to the island community of Beals. Continue reading

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Kenduskeag

Location Map for Kenduskeag

Although its population is relatively stable, its character is slowly becoming more of a suburb of Bangor than the rural community of earlier times. See photos. The municipal building houses the post office, the town office, and the fire department. Kenduskeag Stream passes through the town. Continue reading

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Kennebunk

Location Map for Kennebunk

The name means “the long cut bank” for a land formation near the sea. Shipbuilding and shipping were once staples of the economy, now oriented to tourism and light manufacturing. See photos. The conversion of historic buildings for contemporary use and the historic districts have enhanced Kennebunk’s attraction for visitors and new residents. Continue reading

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King, Stephen

King House in Bangor (2003)

The Novels Carrie (1974) Salem’s Lot (1975) The Shining (1977) The Stand (1978) The Dead Zone (1979) Firestarter (1980) Cujo (1981) Christine (1983) Pet Sematary (1983) Cycle of the Werewolf (1983) The Talisman (with Peter Straub, 1984) It (1986) The … Continue reading

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Kittery

Location Map for Kittery

in York County serves as the gateway to Maine from points south with its old and more modern bridges spanning the Piscataqua River. See video & photos. The federal government established the Navy Yard in 1806. The 74-gun ship Washington was the first vessel built there in 1815. The town’s long history is partially illustrated by the substantial list of historic sites. Continue reading

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Lewiston

Location Map for Lewiston

Lewiston Falls, on the Androscoggin River between downtown Lewiston and neighboring Auburn, its “twin” city, was a fishing source for Native Americans. Recently, a park has been developed at the site of the falls, known as Great Falls, and one of the old mills, now a housing complex, that once thrived on its power. The great demand for manufacturing labor in the 19th century drew large numbers of French speaking people from Canada and northern Maine. From 1970 to 2000 the city’s population was again in decline. In 2010 it grew by about 1,000. This time another ethnic group, Somali refugees, were instrumental in the recent growth. Continue reading

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Lewiston Historic Register

Androscoggin Mill Block (2016)

National Register of Historic Places – Listings – Lewiston Androscoggin Mill Block [269-271 Park Street] Due primarily to demands for an increasing labor force required to operate the many large-scale mills opening, the population of Lewiston grew from just under … Continue reading

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Liberty

Location Map for Liberty

Lake St. George and its associated State Park, are in the north-central portion of the Town on Route 3. Liberty Village is on the east shore of the Lake and Route 173 is the main street. This scenic rural community is about a twenty-one mile and about a half-hour drive to Camden; and less than twenty miles and less than a half-hour drive to Belfast. In the 1880’s Liberty was know for its many apple orchards and fertile farmland. Continue reading

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Limestone

Location Map for Limestone

The town is a port of entry into the United States from Limestone, New Brunswick, Canada. In the north of the town, the Aroostook National Wildlife Refuge straddles the town line with Caswell. The disastrous impact on the community of the demise of Loring Air Force Base in the 1990’s may be told by Limestone’s sharp population decline. The School of Mathematics and Science, a high school for top students from across the state, is now located on the former military facility. Continue reading

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Lincoln

Location Map for Lincoln

In 1846, Henry David Thoreau noted that his group “came into the Houlton road again, here called the military road, at Lincoln where there is quite a village for this country.” See photos. It has been a manufacturing center for pulp and paper, shoes and textiles. Recent years have seen a declining population as those sectors have faded. A 40 turbine wind will benefit the town budget. Continue reading

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Livermore

Livermore, the main village, fronts on Brettuns Pond. A boat launch is located off Route 4. Near Livermore village several old community buildings suggest an earlier location for the village center. North Livermore village is centered on twin water bodies, Round Pond and Long Pond. North Livermore Baptist Church graces the community, just north of “The Norlands” a living history center. Continue reading

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Lyman

Location Map for Lyman

Earlier called Swansfield, it was named after Theodore Lyman of York, a successful businessman and Boston merchant. Goodwins Mills is a village straddling the town lines of Lyman and Dayton. The first saw and grist mills were located there in 1782. Lyman’s United Methodist Church was established in 1840. Dotted with ponds, the area is a rural commuter community with easy access to Sanford and the Biddeford-Saco areas.. Continue reading

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Madison

The site of many mills in its history, its largest has been a paper mill at the dam where U.S. Route 201 crosses the Kennebec River from Anson. Until the end of the log drives in 1976, the river was often choked with pulp logs destined for this mill and others. The Lakewood Summer Theater, opened in 1901 in East Madison. Benedick Arnold passed through on his way to Quebec. Continue reading

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Mercer

Location Map for Mercer

With forty-one residents in 1800, Mercer exploded to a population of 1,432 (its peak) by 1840. Soon thereafter, Maine’s first starch factory was established. The library and the Grange are two surviving organizations formed in the late 19th century as the population continued to decline. See photos. The town lies on U.S. Route 2 just west of Norridgewock with frontage on North Pond at its southeast corner. Continue reading

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Mexico

Location Map for Mexico

The town, across the Swift River and the Androscoggin River from Rumford, is home to many workers in the Rumford paper mill. See photos. In the 1960’s, the mill employed over 3,000 people; by 2009 it employed less than 600. The crash in this and other manufacturing has contributed to the sharp population decline Mexico has experienced since 1970. Continue reading

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Milo

Location Map for Milo

Milo village lies just north of the junction of the Sebec and Piscataquis Rivers. The Pleasant River flows south through the town from Brownville to join the Piscataquis. Derby, on the east side of the Sebec River, is a service area for the Bangor and Aroostook Railroad. Continue reading

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Naples

Location Map for Naples

Blessed with ample access to Long Lake, Sebago Lake at the intersection of U.S. Route 302 and Maine Routes 11, 35 and 114, Naples has long been a vacation resort community. See photos. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Nathaniel Hawthorne have sung its praises. The Songo Lock, built about 1830 and now shared with the town of Casco, linked Long Pond and Brandy Pond with Sebago Lake Continue reading

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New Gloucester

Location Map for New Gloucester

home for Pineland Center from 1908 to 1996, that facility for the mentally retarded was known as the “Maine School for the Feeble-Minded” and later as the Pownal State School. See photos. It has been redeveloped as an office park. The multiple-use campus hosts professional, educational, and civic organizations, along with a conference facility. Pineland Farms and its Equestrian Center are major facilities nearby. Continue reading

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New Portland

Location Map for New Portland

North New Portland hosts Morton’s Country Store, the Community Church, and Chase Memorial Hall. This village lies at the junction of routes 146 and 16, with Gilman Stream, and its Dam, flowing through it. See photos. The Carrabassett River, with its spectacular rocky bed, passes through East New Portland Village and under an arch bridge. Continue reading

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New Sharon

Location Map for new Sharon

just east of Farmington, has been growing consistently in population over the past four decades. New Sharon village straddles the Sandy River, which winds through from Farmington on its way to Starks and then Norridgewock where it enters the Kennebec River. The 1916 steel bridge, now retired from service, crosses the river at the end of the main street. Continue reading

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New Vineyard

Location Map for New Vineyard

Framed by the Carrabassett and Sandy Rivers, this irregularly shaped town’s main village lies on Maine Route 27 between New Portland and Farmington. See photos. The Maine Wood Turning company is on Route 27 in the village. Nearby Bauds, Mill, and Lily ponds, and frontage on Porter Lake, provide wide fishing and recreational opportunities. Continue reading

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Newfield

Location Map for Newfield

The old center of Newfield village was destroyed by the great forest fire of 1947. See photos. The Willowbrook Historic District covers this area and the buildings that survived the fire. In 1984 the application to establish the historic district reported “Very little change in the buildings or landscape has occurred in the last one-hundred years so that the sense of time and place of a remote southwestern Maine rural community of the 19th century remains strongly present.” At the source of the Little Ossipee River, and dotted with ponds and streams, Newfield is a rapidly growing community about twenty miles northwest of Sanford Continue reading

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Norlands

Washburn Norlands Livng History Center (2003)

The Norlands Living History Center in Livermore provides a live-in opportunity to those who want to experience life as early Maine settlers did. Unfortunately, the great barn burned to the ground on April 28, 2008, damaging the adjoining mansion. A … Continue reading

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Norridgewock

Location Map for Norridgewock

The village straddles a bend in the Kennebec River at the junction of Maine Routes 8 and 139, and U.S. Routes 2 and 201A. See photos. The Sandy River empties into the Kennebec in the town. Benedict Arnold’s expedition passed through in 1775. Norridgewock was the home of author Rebecca “Sophie May” Clark, and U.S.Representatives Cullen Sawtelle and Stephen D. Lindsey. Continue reading

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North Berwick

Location Map for North Berwick

The North Berwick Woolen Mill is a historic landmark on the banks of the Great Works River that passes through the main village. See photos. More than a dozen National Register historic places testify to the town’s significant role in Maine’s early history.It is home to the historic Hussey Plow Company and a Pratt & Whitney defense plant. Continue reading

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North Haven

Location of North Haven Island

Located in Penobscot Bay, it is accessible via the State Ferry Service from Rockland, with connections to Vinalhaven. See video and photos. Fishing was the major industry on the island for many years, with a brief venture into canning. Boat building emerged as a major economic activity producing both fishing vessels and yachts for summer people. Long a resort community, it has few permanent residents. The “Turner Farm Site,” on the National Register, is a treasure of artifacts from Maine pre-history. Calderwood Island nature preserve is here. Continue reading

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Oakland

Location Map of Oakland

Waterville’s commercial strip that is Kennedy Memorial Drive continues into Oakland for about a mile before becoming a more scenic road. See photos. Here the village emerges as it sits at Messalonskee Stream. Long the home of the New England Music Camp, recreational opportunities include access to several of the Belgrade lakes. Continue reading

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Ogunquit

Location Map for Ogunquit

Ogunquit, before 1980, was a village corporation and functioned for the most part as a town of its own, supporting its own police, fire, highway and sewer departments. The town is a well known actors and artists colony, featuring the historic Ogunquit Playhouse and beautiful beaches. Perkins Cove, south of the main village on Shore Road, combines a working waterfront, a restaurant, an art museum, and fine cottages. Continue reading

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Palermo

Location Map for Palermo

The town has three villages. Palermo, at the south end of Branch Pond, spills over into China and was once known as Branch Mills. Greely Corner is on Route 3 just west of Sheepscot Pond. East Palermo is on the same highway just east of Sheepscot Pond. Palermo is dotted with numerous ponds and streams, providing an attractive escape from business life in the Augusta and Belfast areas. Continue reading

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Paris

Location Map for Paris

The Paris Hill neighborhood has several architecturally interesting old homes, while South Paris has been the industrial and manufacturing center. See photos. On the Stearns Hill Road the old Hungry Hollow schoolhouse sits on a small plot. South Paris village, split by the Little Androscoggin River, is the main population center and is half of the Norway-South Paris community. Continue reading

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Parsonsfield

Location Map for Parsonsfield

Kezar Falls, a village on the Ossipee River named for George Kezar, is the largest in the area at the junction of Maine Routes 25 and 160. The community is split between Parsonsfield and Porter across the river, and is governed and taxed separately by the two towns. An early 20th century sanatorium, Maple Crest, was “located among the beautiful Limerick hills, the wild and picturesque outlines of which may be seen in every direction from the building. The view is in itself enough to stimulate the interest and mental activity so important to the cure of all diseases. Continue reading

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Patten

The Village from Route 11 Looking North (2006)

has continued its focus on lumbering since early settlement, including its informative Lumberman’s Museum on the Shin Pond Road. The Stetson Memorial United Methodist Church anchors the southern end of the main street. See photos. The small community has witnessed a dwindling population over the past several decades with the loss of jobs in farming, lumbering, and the paper industry. Patten is the northern gateway from Interstate 95 to Baxter State Park. Continue reading

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Peaks Island

Approaching the Island (2014)

The Island is a City of Portland neighborhood in Casco Bay, accessible by ferry from the terminal on Portland’s waterfront.  The brief trip carries freight, vehicles, bicycles and tourists. While the population is about 900, the number of people on … Continue reading

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Phillips

Location Map for Phillips

The Sandy River-Rangeley Lakes Railroad, which transported people and forest products to and from the north woods, was once headquartered in the town. See photos. As the Sandy River passes through the village, the river bed appears as frozen sand, almost bone-like in its strange shapes. A canoe trip from here to Farmington begins well below the bridge. Outdoors woman, columnist, and promoter of outdoor sports in Maine, Cornelia “Fly Rod” Crosby was born here. Continue reading

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Phippsburg

Location Map for Phippsburg

Even before it was incorporated, the community had its church (see photos), which was organized in 1765 and built in 1802. The tip of Phippsburg at the mouth of the Kennebec River is the site of the first English attempt at settling New England: the Popham Colony of 1607-1608. Fort Popham and Fort Baldwin, rise as a guardians of land upriver. Coxes Head, which juts out into the Kennebec River. Continue reading

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Pittsfield

Location Map for Pittsfield

Maine Central Institute, founded in 1866 as a preparatory school for Bates College, is one of the “Big 10” private secondary schools in Maine that still serves the public school population as well. See photos. Downtown Pittsfield, on the Sebasticook River, was wiped out by a fire in 1881 and rebuilt immediately. As did many Maine communities, Pittsfield’s woolen mills provided steady employment during the first half of the 20th century, then literally “went South,” finding cheaper labor in the 1950’s. Continue reading

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Poland

Location Map for Poland

The Poland Spring Bottling Plant and Spring House are local landmarks. See photos. The town, just west of Auburn, has two other large lakefront areas and is served by Maine Routes 11, 26, and 122. One of water bodies is home to Range Pond State Park. The town, just west of Auburn, has two other large lakefront areas. One of water bodies is home to Range Pond State Park. The Maine State Building was built to represent the state at the Chicago World’s Fair, known as the Colombian Exposition, in 1893. Continue reading

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Rangeley

Rangely Lake (2001)

The town is at the center of the Rangeley Lakes Region with many hotels, campsites, boat launching facilities and recreational opportunities. See photos. The region was the setting for Louise Dickenson Rich’s 1942 book We Took to the Woods. It hosts Hunter Cove nature preserve and Bald Mountain public reserved land. Continue reading

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Raymond

Location Map for Raymond

The main village is located at the head of the large, well protected, Jordan Bay on the shore of Sebago Lake. Adjacent Raymond Neck extends over four miles into the Lake to form the Bay. Raymond’s “welcome” sign entices fishing enthusiasts to the “Home of the Landlocked Salmon,” which inhabit the lake. Nathaniel Hawthorne spent summers at his mother’s home. Continue reading

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Readfield

Lake and Mountains in Readfield (2002)

Kents Hill School was established here initially as the Maine Wesleyan Seminary in 1824. See photos. Readfield is the birthplace of two governors: Jonathan G. Hunton and Dr. John Hubbard. Another governor and member of Congress, Anson P. Morrill, lived at Readfield Corners. Its Kennebec County Fair has been held annually since 1856. Meeting House Common was the site of militia musters in the 1800’s. Continue reading

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Rockland

The Farnsworth Museum (2005)

a city in, and the county seat of, Knox County, it is the home to the Farnsworth Art Museum, the Maine Seafood Festival, a historic working waterfront, historic structures, and birthplace of notable cultural and political figures. Located on U.S. Route 1, the city is a regional service and retail center. Continue reading

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Saco

View of Saco Bay, from A Gazetteer of the State of Maine, 1886

One half of the Biddeford-Saco metropolitan area, the city has its own extensive beach and Ferry Beach State Park. See photos. It is one stop on AMTRAK’s Downeaster rail service. Occupying the east side of the Saco River as it enters Saco Bay, the city is the eleventh largest community in Maine. Continue reading

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Searsmont

Location Map for Searsmont

The main village is located on the St. George River and is adjacent to Quantabacook Lake. See photos. The town is served by Maine Routes 3, 131 and 173 and lies about ten miles southwest of Belfast. In 1925 the first international radio broadcast was relayed from Belfast through Searsmont and on to New York City. Continue reading

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Searsport

Location Map for Searsport

The town has two areas with industrial potential on Penobscot Bay. See photos. In addition to substantial resources of the Penobscot Marine Museum, Searsport has recreational opportunities at Moose Point State Park on Penobscot Bay, and frontage on Swan Lake inland at the northwest corner of the town. Continue reading

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Sebago

Location Map for Sebago

Several villages dot the towns landscape: North, East, and West Sebago; and Sebago Center; among others. See photos. The village of East Sebago hosts the town’s elementary school, veterans memorial park, and public library. Along with its substantial shoreline on the Lake, the town has a hiking trail to the summit of the 1392 foot Douglas Mountain, with a nature preserve overlooking the Lake. Continue reading

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Sherman

Sunset over Mount Katahdin from the Scudder Road in Sherman (2012)

Potatoes and strawberries are components of its agricultural economy, and Mount Katahdin is an every day presence. See photos. The town, formed during the Civil War, was named for John Sherman, a prominent abolitionist U.S. Senator. Continue reading

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Skowhegan

Location Map for Skowhegan

Recorded as Skwahegan in early reports, the name means “watching place for fish,” drawn from the falls in the Kennebec River that harbored salmon. See photos. Local Indians speared them as they attempted to scale the falls. Textile and shoe manufacturing were major employment options for local residents during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Once home to Camp Modin, a camp for Jewish boys and girls until 1992, Lake George Regional Park is split between Skowhegan and Canaan. Continue reading

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Solon

Location Map for Solon

Solon, Maine is a town in Somerset County, incorporated on February 23, 1809 from the township T1 R2 EKR. Settled in 1782 by William Hilton of Wiscasset, it was named for one of the great sages of Ancient Greece, in keeping with its neighboring town of Athens. Continue reading

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Sorrento

Location Map for Sorrento

Sorrento sits on Waukeag Neck, on Maine Route 185 south of Sullivan. See photos. The neck juts into Frenchman’s Bay with spectacular views of the mountains in Acadia National Park. Sorrento Harbor is a centerpiece of the community, especially when the “summer people” return and the water fills with pleasure boats. The town hosts two nature preserves in Sorrento Harbor, both maintained by the Nature Conservancy: Dram Island, is home to nesting osprey; Preble Island is densely forested with eagles roosting. Continue reading

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South Thomaston

Location Map for South Thomaston

The town lies on the Weskeag River, which broadens into several large coves before emptying into the Muscle Ridge Channel. In addition to the main village, Pleasant Beach, Waterman Beach, and Spruce Head villages hug the shore on Penobscot Bay. Spruce Head Island, connected to the mainland by a bridge, juts into Muscle Ridge Channel, a favorite passage for boaters seeking the protection of the outlying islands. Continue reading

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Southport Island

Map of Maine Showing the location of Southport. Green areas are unorganized territories.

Located between Sheepscot Bay and Booth Bay, it is connected by a swing bridge to the town of Boothbay Harbor, and the casual visitor might not assume the town with two lighthouses was on an island. See photos. At the height of the summer, traffic is often backed up at the bridge as boats pass. Townsend Gut is the narrow waterway that separates the two towns. It is a shortcut from Boothbay Harbor to the Sheepscot River. The general store in West Southport village has been an institution for over a century. Continue reading

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Standish

Location Map for Standish

Named in honor of Captain Miles Standish, the military leader of the Plymouth Colony, the town has a very long shoreline on Sebago Lake in its southwest corner, including its Lower Bay. See photos. In the 19th century, the Oxford-Cumberland Canal allowed passage of boats from Harrison to Portland. Steep Falls was a thriving village historically, with its excellent water power on the Saco River and the railroad station in its midst. Both a recreational area and suburb of Portland, the town is served by six Maine highway routes. Continue reading

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Stetson

Location Map for Stetson

Just 20 miles northwest of Bangor and adjacent to Newport, the town is a growing, but still rural community. Settled in 1800, it was soon organized as a plantation for election purposes. The post office opened in 1829. In the 1880’s Stetson was home to three sawmills, a grist mill, Stetson Cheese Factory, and a carriage factory. Continue reading

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Steuben

Location Map for Steuben

This Washington County fishing and summer residential community projects two peninsulas (Dyer Neck and Petit Manan Point) divided by Dyer Bay into coastal waters. See photos. A small section of Penobscot Indian Territory is located at Dyer Harbor on Dyer Neck. The main village lies at the head of Gouldsboro Bay on U.S. Route 1. Continue reading

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Stratton

Location Map for Stratton

Stratton is a village in the town of Eustis. It is the main village with a small commercial area and civic facilities, including the town office, fire department, library, and post office. The Oramendal Blanchard House, home to the local sawmill owner in the late 19th century, is on the National Register of Historic Places. Continue reading

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Sumner

Location Map for Sumner

East-west Maine Route 219 serves Pleasant Pond and the villages of West Sumner and East Sumner on its way from West Paris to North Turner. See photos. After booming for decades, the town was crippled by the Great Depression and eventually by the loss of the railroad in 1952. From Buckfield to Turner, the river is a corridor for canoe trips. Continue reading

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Waldoboro

Location Map for Waldoboro

is home to six nature preserves, an old German church and a traditional downtown. See photos. However, most people know Waldoboro by its location on U.S. Route 1, where convenience stores populate the commercial strip. Continue reading

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Warren

Farm on Route 235 on the shore of Seven Tree Pond (2003)

The village lies off the heavily traveled highways: U.S. Route 1 and Maine Routes 90, 131, and 235. See photos. Adjacent to Thomaston, long a synonym for “State Prison,” Warren is now the site of its replacement. Meadow Mountain is a 259 acre town forest that serves as a nature preserve. Continue reading

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Washburn

Location Map for Washburn

Long a potato growing and processing area, it lies northwest of Presque Isle on Route 164, which curves through the town and links it with Caribou to the northeast. See photos. Washburn’s main village is in the southwest near the Aroostook River, which crosses its southern portion. The villages of Bugbee, Crouseville, and Adeline are along the river on Route 164. Continue reading

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Washington

Location Map for Washington

The 550-acre, four mile long Washington Pond is a major attraction for summer recreation. Also known as Medomak Lake, it is home to the Madomak Family Camp, started in 1904 as a boys camp. See amateur film. Razorville is a village on the southwest end of Washington Pond. The main village is near the eastern shore of the lake. Continue reading

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Weld

Location Map for Weld

Webb Lake is the main attraction to this recreational area, with Mount Blue State Park located on both sides of the lake. The main village is located on the eastern shore of the lake, at the junction of Maine Routes 142 and 156. Weld is the gateway to Tumbledown Mountain and Little Jackson Mountain, both popular hiking destinations in Township 6 North of Weld. Continue reading

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West Paris

Location Map for West Paris

The community, north and west of Paris, though small, has experienced consistent population growth over the past thirty years. Its stone construction library is on the National Register of Historic Places. See photos. Snow Falls, a 40 foot waterfall, drops into a gorge created by the Little Androscoggin River about two mile south of the main village. Continue reading

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Whitneyville

Location Map for Whitneyville

On the west bank of the Machias River, it was the site where the vessel Margaretta was hidden from the British after her capture in 1775. Lumbering and blueberry growing have been the mainstays of the local economy over the years. See photos. The town is a long, narrow north-south mile-wide strip of land on U.S. Route 1A between Jonesboro and Machias. Continue reading

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Wilton

Location Map for Wilton

Located on the shore of Wilson Pond, the main village lies at the intersection of U.S. Route 2 and Maine Routes 4 and 156.. See photos. George H. Bass began making boots for farmers in 1876. For more than 100 years, the G. H. Bass company made footwear in Wilton. Continue reading

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Winter Harbor

Winter Harbor (2004)

Winter Harbor lies south of U.S. Route 1 through Gouldsboro on Route 186. See photos. It hosts two nature preserves, Schoodic Island and Turtle Island. The town’s recent population decline is due is large part to the closing of the U.S. Navy base. Continue reading

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Winterport

Marsh Bay on the Penobscot River just South of Winterport Village (2003)

Winterport is primarily a rural community with its land area extending ten miles westward from the river. See photos. An attraction along Route 139 among the farms and woods is the Winterport Dragway, featuring auto drag races with specialty vehicles and “street” vehicles. In recent years a marina has expanded and an export business has been established on the river. A dockside freezer operation enabled the storage and shipping of commodities such as fish and chicken. Continue reading

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Winthrop

Maranacook Lake in Winthrop (2013)

n addition to its recreational attractions, the town is a suburban community serving both the Augusta and Lewiston-Auburn areas. See photos. Winthrop is the birthplace in 1899 of Delphia Louis “Del” Bissonette, who played for the Brooklyn Dodgers. Continue reading

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Woodstock

Location Map for Woodstock

Not the site of the 1960’s rock concert (that was New York), Woodstock’s major village is Bryant Pond, named from the adjacent water body. The Pond outlet is the source of the Little Androscoggin River. See photos. South Woodstock is home to the small South Woodstock Meetinghouse and is the site of an old mill pond and mill on Andrews Brook. Continue reading

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York

Loaction Map for York

Most of the town’s inhabitants are located between U.S. Route 1 (inland) and U.S. Route 1A which runs along the coast. Its population has more than doubled in the past thirty years, and grew by nearly 31 percent between 1990 and 2000. Beaches and cottages characterize the coast. Continue reading

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