United States Geography in the Early Republic - MAINE
Until 1820, was only a part of Massachusetts, though the two states are
separated by New Hampshire. It is shaped like a mitton, with the fingers
pointing north, and the thumb pointing east, into the Atlantic Ocean. Its
northern half is surrounded by Canada, all the way down to the tip of the
"thumb" (essentially Washington County), where the Atlantic coastline begins.
Its western border is New Hampshire.
It is largely mountainous, with one peak rising 5268 feet (quite high
for the east). Much of its surface is covered by lakes, rivers, and streams.
The Penobscot River runs almost straight
south til it passes Bangor, and runs out into
Towns and Cities in Maine:
Small town about 15 miles east of Waterville,
near the eastern border of Kennebec county. Birthplace of Elijah
P. Lovejoy, the abolitionist editor who died defending his printing
press in Alton Illinois, and Owen
Lovejoy, an abolitionist and pastor of the Congregational Church from
1839-1856, and member of U.S. House of Representatives from 1857 til his
death in 1864.
On the Kennebec River; home, in the 1840s (approx) of Sylvester Judd;
also at that time, the state capitol.
County seat of Waldo County. Home
of Wm George
Crosby; Bowdoin 1823, who wrote a series of 52 papers entitled "Annals
of Belfast for Half a Century, by an old Settler".
This can be found at NYPL as part of:
Early Histories of Belfast Maine / [transcribed by Elizabeth
M. Mosher]. Camden, Me. : Picton Press, 1989.
Call #: IQB (Belfast) 91-5131
xiv, 298 p. ; 24 cm.
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Contents: Annals of Belfast for half a century / by William
George Crosby --
Sketches of the early history of Belfast / by John Lymburner Locke
-- History of Belfast from its first settlement to 1825 / by Herman Abbot
-- A history of Belfast with introductory remarks on Acadia / by William
Home of Bowdoin College, alma mater of Nathaniel
Hawthorne, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Franklin Pierce, Wm. Pitt Fessenden.
Lovejoy, the abolitionist minister and congressman.
Situated on the Androscoggin river, which in the early 1800s carried
much lumber from the interior.
Located on a bend in the St Croix River, which makes up much of the
border between Maine and Canada (New Brunswick). A mile or two from Moosehead
National Wildlife Refuge.
It is where Otis Livingston Bridges (Bowdoin 1822) first practiced
In Penobscot Co, about 25 miles WNW of Bangor. Geo Lessley Parsons
(Bowdoin '23) settled there to practice law about 1826, but died a few
months after of consumption.
Seems to have merged into Dover-Foxcroft. It is well inland -
perhaps 80 miles, and about midway between the Kennebec and Penobscot Rivers,
and itself lies on the Piscataquis River, a tributary of the Kennebec.
Town where Charles Parsons Chandler (Bowdoin 1822) settled into a law
practice in 1825, and remained until his death in 1855.
In Oxford Co, on the border with Androscoggin Co (10 mi from the A.
River). Home of Zenas Caldwell (Bowdoin 1824).
About the middle of the seacoast in York,
the southernmost county of Maine.
About 7 mi from the middle of the western boundary of York Co.
Home of an Limerick Academy where John Mcdonald (Bowdoin 1823) was partly
educated and where returned to take charge of it for a brief while.
About 7 mi from the middle of the western boundary of York Co.
Birthplace of John McDonald (Bowdoin 1823).
In Kennebec County, about 15 mi. WSW
of Augusta. There was a "Monmouth Academy" run by
"Mr Joslyn" around 1820 (how long before or after this, I don't know).
Page Benson, Whig/Republican representative 1853-57 was prepped for
entry to Bowdoin there.
Cumberland Co.; north of the mid point between Lake Sebago and Brunswick.
It is also 10-15 miles up the Royal (River?) from its mouth (at Yarmouth).
Home of lawyer Peleg Chandler, and birthplace of his son Charles Parson
Chandler, and of Jabez Cushman Woodman. These two graduates of Bowdoin
1822 returned for a while to study under Peleg Chandler before establishing
The major(?) port city of Maine. About 50 miles up the coast
from the New Hampshire border, and Portsmouth,
NH. In early days called Falmouth (a suburb still goes by that
name). Destroyed by the British in 1775, and later rebuilt.
installation into a church there was accompanied by a sermon by Lyman
Beecher in April 1829. (source: Auto...Beecher,
Home of Henry
Wadsworth Longfellow and his family including his father Stephen,
a one time congressman.
Eastern Argus: Established
by Nathaniel Willis (1780-1870) in 1803 as an anti-Federalist paper; sold
by him in 1809. Edited by Seba
Smith from around 1820 to 1826. "An important Democratic paper". (Sources:
on Smith and Willis).
Portland Courier: Started
10/29 by Seba Smith -
the first daily paper in Maine. (Sources: DAB
Near the head of a long narrow bay that empties into Boothbay harbor.
Where William Smyth (Bowdoin 1822 and from 1825, prof. of mathematics)
grew up, with his ship-carpenter father who died in 1816.
Town at the mouth of the Royal River (or maybe Creek). Home of
a well known and well regarded academy where many Bowdoiners were prepared
Counties in Maine:
An irregularly shaped, rather small county, surrounding the lower 40
miles or so of the Androscoggin River.
The northernmost, and apparently wildest county. Probably in
disputed territory until the Webster-Asburton Treaty. There was a
not very significant affair called the Aroostook War around 1837.
Contains Lake Sebago, Portland, Yarmouth (with its locally famous academy),
Shaped somewhat like a gourd with a long neck. Makes up the northern
2/3 of the border of Maine and Vermont.
Contains the towns of Paris, Waterford, Rumford, Norway, Sweden, and
Also contained the farm on which Cyrus Hamlin grew up, "on the county
road leading from Bridgton through Waterford and Norway to Paris".
Contains peaks over 4000 feet.
Runs about 100 miles north-south, roughly corresponding with its drainage
basin of the Penobscot River. The
ascent of the river is almost straight north. Contains Bangor (the county
seat), Brewer, Old Town, Milford, Enfield, Lincoln, Medway, Millinocket,
Howland, Lowell, Passadumkeag, Newport, Hermon, Newburgh, Bradford, Dexter,
Etna, Newport, Carmel, Kenduskeag, Cardville, Orono, Veazie, Eddington,
A rough rectangle, running north-south. Has Moosehead Lake as
part of its western border.
Smallish and irregular shaped; would more or less fit in a 30 mile
square. Lines the western shore of Penobscot Bay. County Seat at
Forms the thumb if we view the state as a mitton (or oven mitt).
Has about 50 miles of coastline. Present-day county seat appears
to be Machias.
Other Bodies of Water in Maine:
Begins in New Hampshire (at Lake Umbagog?); running down its
eastern border a for 40 miles or so; turns sharply to the east, crosses
into Maine at Giliad, and cuts from west to east
across Oxford County. It then turns southwards to run down the middle
of small county named after it. It exits Androscogin County, and for 5
miles or so forms the boundary between Sagadahoc and Cumberland Counties,
then enters an estuary of the Kennebec River
near Bath. Lewiston, the
county seat, is on it, and
Does little more than traverse Washington
County, running 50 miles or so. Machias,
the county seat is a few miles up from its mouth.
Looks like the largest in the state - near the border of Somerset
and Piscataquis Counties.
The easternmost major river in Maine. The long, irregular
shape of Penobscot County roughly corresponds
with its drainage basin.
Has its headwaters in the Notch of the White Mountains in NH, where
it nearly meets the headwaters of the Ammonoosuk. Once it enters
Maine, near Fryeburg
5-10 miles across, in the center of Cumberland
County. Raymond and Sebago are on its shores.