was founded in 1865 as one of many land grant institutions, a direct outcome of the Morrill Act approved by President Lincoln, July 2, 1862. The legislature accepted the conditions of the Act in 1863 and in 1865 created a corporation to administer the affairs of the College, which opened in September, 1868 with twelve students and two faculty members.
By 1872 women were admitted to all areas of the curriculum. The original name was “The State College of Agriculture and the Mechanical Arts.” In 1897 the legislature changed the name to “The University of Maine.” The School of Education was established in 1930.
For many years its Orono location was the only campus, then it became the “jewel in the crown” of the “Super University System,” which integrated campuses around the state under a single chancellor, but each with its local president.
In 1986 The Maine Center for the Arts opened on the Orono Campus. It was renovated, expanded, and renamed the Collins Center for the Arts in 2007. The Center is home to the Bangor Symphony Orchestra, the Hudson Museum, is a performance space for visiting artists, and serves as a lecture/conference venue.
Since the 1970’s, the Orono campus has lost has lost status and financial resources to the University of Southern Maine, a fast growing urban campus in the Portland area. (See colleges for enrollment details.)
The University of Maine System is the overall administrative structure for Maine’s public universities. A Chancellor is the chief executive officer of the multi-campus system, and the Board of Trustees is its governing body. The Board members are appointed by the Governor, with the approval of the Legislature. The Board selects the Chancellor.
The system campuses are the University of Maine (located in Orono), the University of Southern Maine (in Portland and Gorham), and five others known as the University of Maine at Augusta, Farmington, Fort Kent, Machias, and Presque Isle respectively.
Graduates of the University who became U.S. Representatives include Clifford G. McIntire.
National Register of Historic Places – Listings
Maine Experiment Station Barn, University of Maine Campus
University of Maine at Orono Historic District, Munson, Sebec, and Schoodic Roads
University of Maine, Raymond H. Fogler Library, Special Collections
Bailey, Judith I. A Framework for Change: Teaching, Research, and Outreach. Orono, Me. University of Maine, Division of Academic Affairs. 1996.
Chamberlain, George Walter. “The University of Maine.” Extract from: Americana. January, 1910.
Fernald, Merritt Caldwell. History of the Maine State College and the University of Maine. Orono. University of Maine. 1916.
Hauck, Arthur Andrew. Maine’s University and the Land-grant Tradition. New York. Newcomen Society in North America. 1954.
The University of Maine Historic Preservation Master Plan: March 2007. Orono, Me. University of Maine. 2007. [University of Maine, Raymond H. Fogler Library, Special Collections]