Glenn Wendell Starkey.

Maine, its history, resources and government online

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Copyright, 1920, by

5tPl3 1S20 ©CU576364




In the preparation of this book for use as a text in the upper
grammar grades and the high school, an attempt has been made
at all times to keep clearly in mind one definite purpose —
the presentation in as concise and readable a manner as possible
of a general view of the historical and industrial development of
Maine in the form of a connected story, without branching out
from the main thoroughfare into innumerable byways of de-
tail. It has been impossible to digress, even to include a few
incidents of the most unusual interest, because they do not
bear strongly upon the principal events either as direct causes
or effects.

Moreover, the well-known fact is recognized that the human
interest storj^ is most eagerly read, while lists of dates and the
bare record of events furnish little attraction for red-blooded
active boys and girls such as those who will read these pages.
At the same time history cannot be written without making
use of the chronological element to a sufficient extent to estabUsh
clearly the record of growth and progress. When Part I of this
book has been completed by the pupil, it is hoped that he may
have in mind a fairly vivid idea of the whole story of Maine,
and will be able to retell the plot exactly as if he had been read-
ing an absorbing narrative of adventure.

No emphasis has been placed upon the local history of any
particular town or city. This text is not, therefore, in any
sense intended as a reference book. Omissions have been made,
and made purposely, of many important items which some
readers will say should have been included. The wealth of
material is so great that the selection made by one would rarely,
if ever, agree with that of another ; but, if it is desired to trace
the complete record of Maine more minutely, reference may be
made to the more pretentious works to be found in the nearest



well-equipped public library. So comprehensive a course,
however, is not advisable for the average pupil in the schools,
whose time is already very much assigned, and who, at best,
can assimilate only a small part of what might easily be placed
before him.

The careful study of local history from first-hand sources is
recommended as the best method of interesting the pupil in
the broader phases of the subject. There is scarcely a town in
Maine which can be said to be devoid of historical material
worthy of investigation. The suggestions which are given on
a following page will be found useful as a basis for such study,
and the proposed outline may be expanded almost indefinitely
in many towns which are especially rich in the lore of the past.
The present must not, however, be forgotten in considering
what has taken place in other years. A study of the Maine of
to-day is, if possible, even more intensely interesting than the
record of its earlier development.

Part II of this book deals more particularly with the present
period of industrial prosperity. All that ha^ gone before has
been simply a story of preparation for the day in which we are
now living. The great natural resources of Maine have al-
ready been brought into use to a remarkable degree. Some of
them have doubtless reached the height of their utilization and
can scarcely be expected to show further gains, but others have
been developed only to a small fraction of their potential use-
fulness. No greater service can be rendered to the state by the
youth of this generation than to cultivate a spirit of pride in
Maine, — its past, its present, and its future, — and a deter-
mination to make the best possible use of the opportunities
which it offers.

In Part III is developed a brief summary of the central and
local government of Maine. The knowledge of how public
affairs are administered and the bearing wliich they have
upon the citizens of a state as individuals is one of the most
important and compelling duties in these days when so many
influences are abroad, seeking in more or less insidious ways to
cast suspicion and doubt upon the processes of organized gov-


ernment. The purpose and necessity of control and regula-
tion of the relations of all citizens with each other as a part
of the great social fabric of the nation should be clearly under-
stood, as well as the methods employed to give every one an
opportunity to express his own personal ideas so long as they
do not interfere with and disrupt the inalienable rights of others.
This principle of judicious restraint apphes to the smallest unit
of society — the family — and to every other unit therefrom
through the school, the town, the state, and the nation. When
each individual recognizes this one fundamental civic principle
of personal conduct and responsibihty to others, we shall have
accompHshed the true end of democracy and may look forward
to a fuller realization of our claim to the position as the best-
governed country on earth.

Glenn Wendell Starkey.

Augusta, Maine,
July 14, 1920.


1. Find out when your town was first settled, by whom, and in what

2. How did it get its present name ? Was it ever known by another

3. When was it incorporated ? Was it ever part of another town or
was any other town ever a part of it ?

4. By talking with people who have lived in the town longest or who
are descendants from early settlers, find out everything possible
of interest in connection with the early history of the town. Has
your town any reason for particular historical distinction ?

5. Many towns have a printed history. Has yours? If so, try to
get a copy of it for study.

6. What were the first public buildings — fort, garrison house, town
hall, church? Are any of those first buildings still standing?

7. What was the first industry aside from farming, which was, of
course, the earliest business in most Maine towns? What are
the present industries? When were they established? How
many workmen does each employ ? About how much is the annual
value of their product? Have there at any time been other in-
dustries in the town which are no longer in operation? What
caused them to give up business?

8. Look into the war record of your town. How many Civil War
veterans are still living in it ? How many men enlisted from your
town in army or navy during the World War? How many were
drafted ? How many died in service ? Did any one from your
town receive a war medal or other mark of distinguished service ?

9. What men or women who have received state or national recog-
nition in any line of work were born in your town or have made
their home there?

10. Make a scrapbook in as attractive form as possible containing
a record of all you learn about your local history, and include
in it pictures of past and present interest, together with such
other material of historical nature as you may be able to get.
Carefully preserve this book. It is recommended that each
school also make up such a book and place it in the library for
future reference and additions. As years go by, the value of such
a record increases because many of the people who know most
about early history are passing away each year, and, therefore, it
becomes more and more difficult to get accurate details of early
events unless there is available a written or printed record.




The necessary limits of any book intended for use as a school text
make it impossible to include more than a small part of the material
which pupils should have presented to them. Especially is this true
of a book which deals with a great variety of subject matter such as
contained in this volume. Teachers should be guided in its use, there-
fore, by the instructions received from principals and superintendents
as to the amount of time to be devoted to the subjects of history and
civics and to the methods employed in presenting each.

If there be no definite assignment in the school program of the upper
grammar grades or high school for Maine history and government,
the book may well serve as a supplementary reader, for outside read-
ing assignments, or as a basis for a certain amount of language work.
The importance of a knowledge of the three main divisions of subject
matter herein contained is, however, deemed sufficiently great to
warrant the taking of at least a minimum number of minutes per week
for the purpose of bringing to the attention of Maine boys and girls
the salient facts relative to the development of their own state.

One of the greatest benefits to be derived from the study of the
following pages will be the arousing of a desire for the further investi-
gation of many of the items to which it has been possible to make only
the briefest reference. Teachers will be able from their own knowledge
and experience to amplify the text and can, through discussion of the
subject, bring out numerous points of great interest and of the highest
permanent value.

The exercises at the close of each chapter are designed to suggest
further study of the topics under consideration. Answers to most of
the questions can be found in the text. Footnotes refer to outside
sources needed in answering questions based on the latest statistical
matter. Many questions will bring forth others of a similar nature
and can easily be expanded, almost indefinitely, by the teacher who
seeks to arouse a real interest in the subject. At all times the local
application of the ideas presented should be kept in mind. Especially
should care be taken that the section on government be approached
from this point of view. There is ample opportunity to lead pupils,
whatever their stage of maturity, to see how the machinery of govern-
ment is organized to reach every individual, and to bring them to a



realization of the part which each must play in making his own town or
community a good place in which to live.

Entirely aside from the workings of the machinery of state govern-
ment, which each pupil in Maine ought to know, at least in its most
elementary phases, the field of community civics is almost as broad as
life itself. Such subjects as good roads, good schools, good health and
sanitation may very properly be given a prominent place in connec-
tion with the study of those sections of the book which deal with
closely related topics in the several departments of local and state
government. Only in this way will it be possible to make the study
of civics a really vital and interesting subject to boys and girls who
have not yet reached the age at which such things as the bare facts of
governmental activities and responsibilities have in themselves a
strong appeal.

There can be no more important function of the school than the
instilling of a right attitude toward public affairs in the minds of those
who are to compose the state's future citizenship. Teachers have,
therefore, a greater opportunity and a greater responsibility than any
other group in this most vital part of the program for making the
United States a nation whose people are law-abiding and whose high
ideals are expressed in their manner of living. It is with the hope that
this book may contribute specifically to such an end that it is placed
in the hands of teachers for use in their schools.




1. The Earliest Exploration and Settlement . . 3
II. Further Settlement and Union with Massachu-
setts . . . . . . . . .11

III. The French and Indian Wars ..... 21

IV. The Revolution and the End of Maine as a

Province ........ 38

V. A Century of Statehood ...... 47

VI. History of Education in Maine .... 67

VII. The Present Educational System in Maine . . 75

VIII. Some op Maine's Noted Men and Women . . 103



I. Geography and Transportation
II. Agricultural and Industrial Maine




Local Self-Government

Section I. The Town .

Section II. The City .
The County Government .
How the State Is Governed

Section I. The Departments of Government

Section II. The Work of the Courts





IV. State Officers and Their Work .... 197
Section I. Officials and Commissions . . 197
Section II. Public Money and Its Expendi-
ture 229

V. How We Elect Our Officers ..... 234

VI. Maine's Future through Good Government . . 243


Constitution of the State of Maine —

Preamble .......... i

Article I. Declaration of Rights . . . . i

Governors of Maine Since the Adoption of the State

Constitution ......... iv

Reference Table of Statistics ...... iv

Index ............ ix








A Common Mismiderstanding. Most people are inclined to
think of the State of ]Maine as having been a well-defined unit
of the United States ever since the time when the first settle-
ments were made in this country, or at least since the original
colonies were established. As a matter of fact, however, its
boundaries have been in dispute over a long period of j-ears. It
is natural that we should look at the outline of the state with its
strongly indented seacoast, its fairly regular western border,
its arched and curving northern boundaiy line, and its well-
established eastern limits, just as it is represented on the
accompanying map, and take it as a matter of course that its
contour was smiilar to its present form from the beginning.
But, were we to take the time and effort to follow through a
series of sketches showing the various boundary changes, we
should soon discover that many of us are now living in territory
which for years was under control first of one nation and then
of another, with no settled status and no guarantee that it
would ever belong finally to the great country of which we are
now a part.

Visitors from Northern Europe. We cannot know certainly
when or by whom any part of the territory now included in Maine
was first visited by white men. There is reason to beheve
that men, coming by way of the island of Greenland from some
northern European country, explored several places on our
coast long before Christopher Columbus discovered America
in 1492. It may have been as much as five hundred years
before that date. However, we have no means of knowing



that fact even though we may be reasonably sure that there
were white visitors to our shores much earUer than those of
whom we have authentic record. If this is true, then un-
doubtedly to Maine belongs the distinction of having been the
first bit of the present territory of the United States to be seen
by inhabitants of the Old World. Those brave and adven-
turous souls coming from northern Europe by way of Iceland
and Greenland probably first reached the shores of Labrador and
the island of Newfoundland, and thence followed the coast
southward as far, perhaps, as Cape Cod in Massachusetts.
These statements cannot be accepted as established facts be-
cause of lack of really substantial evidence, but in a study of
the history of Maine we should not overlook an interesting in-
cident of this kind for which there is at least some foundation.

Maine's Peculiar Location. Look for a moment at a relief
map of North America and see if you can find Maine. You
will note that it is more or less difficult to trace its boundaries
even though you have many times examined maps on which
they are clearly indicated. There is no natural dividing line
on a large part of its border, as is the case with many states,
which might serve to set it off by itself behind a well-established
barrier such as a very large river or an extensive chain of
lakes. This may in part account for the fact that this state,
destined as it was to become the border state in the most irreg-
ular corner of the nation, proved to be peculiarly unfortunate
in its position as a battle-ground over which surged the tide of
conflict for generations. At the same time, however, this fact
has contributed much to the interest which attaches to our
history and has left us rich in the lore of historical happenings
worthy of study and of preservation as a part of local records
in nearly every town and city in the commonwealth.

What Maine Was Like. If we could have traveled about in
the days before the colonists began to arrive and to attempt
settlements within our present limits, we should have found
practically the whole area of Maine one vast wilderness, with
magnificent forests stretching northward from the coast and
covering the fine farms that we now see about us on every hand.


The splendid rivers and countless, beautiful lakes, however,
would have looked much as they do to-day except for the dams
which have been built and the storage basins formed by them in
many localities. The rivers probably flowed somewhat more
swiftly, and rapids were more numerous than now. Forest
trees overhung the banks of the streams everywhere in place
of the miles of cleared land that now form their background,
and wild animals of every description, many of them at present
almost entirely unknown to us, roamed unafraid through the


m .^M,;^m.^^.^mL : % «»^ ' i - ■; J

A Headland on the Maine Coast

Lighthouses, similar to this one, dot the strongly indented shore-line.

dense growth and swam or forded the waters which happened
to come in their path. That lakes and rivers and streams and
ocean were fairly alive with fish in those days needs scarcely to
be mentioned. Even to-day one of Maine's great resources is
the abundance of fish and game which annually brings thousands
of hunters and fishermen from all parts of the land to trail its
deer and moose in the hope of carrying home a prize, or to cast
and troll for the wary trout and salmon in some of the thousands
of inland lakes or streams. Along the coast and in the lower
reaches of the principal rivers a multitude of people pursue


fishing as a regular business for which the value of the catch
runs yearly into millions of dollars.

The Indians. Like practically all the northern part of our
continent Maine was inhabited by Indians. Some writers
estnnate their number as high as 30,000 at the time when the
first white settlers began to appear shortly after the year 1600,
but we have no means of knowing how accurate that estimate
may be. It is certain, however, that several strong and popu-
lous tribes held sway in different sections of the state and later
made their power felt in ways which the white men found far
from agreeable, although at times the two races lived together
for years without serious conflict. The records which have come
down to us indicate that the members of the Indian tribes which
inhabited Maine were for the most part vigorous and of per-
haps more than average stature. The rigor of the climate and
the consequent necessity of more strenuous exercise, together
with the added hardships of the preparations for the winter
season, no doubt contributed to a physical development some-
what more marked than that observed in the tribes farther

First Record of Exploration and Settlement. There are con
flicting claims as to the place which should have the honor of
being the first to receive a colony of settlers, or even the first
to be explored and claimed by any of the nations which after-
wards made permanent settlements in Maine. Probably there
IS no way in which we can ever definitely determine which claim
IS inost valid, but there is more or less foundation for believing
t^iat Verrazano, an Itahan, Gomez, a Spaniard, Thevet a
Frenchman and Rut, an Englishman, voyaged along and
possibly landed on the coast of Maine during the first half of the
sixteenth century, even if no thoroughly authenticated record of
these visits is available. It is generally accepted that Bar-

l^rZ !^"''''Jf. '^"'^ ^^'^^ ^"S^^^^^ ^"^ ^'^^ched Maine in
1602. Martin Prmg, an Englishman, is recorded as having
visited Penobscot Bay in 1603 for the purpose of trading with
the Indians. Shortly after, George Weymouth, also an English-
man, explored the Maine coast from Monhegan to the mouth


of the Kennebec. One of the blackest deeds of our early history
is placed at the door of Weymouth when he took advantage of
the friendliness and trustfulness of the Indians with whom he
came in contact by enticing five of their number on board his
ship and carrying them away with him to England. This
marks the beginning of trouble between the English and the
Indians in Maine. The part played by Weymouth cannot be
excused and when we remember that one of the strongest
characteristics of the Indian was never to forget a favor nor to
forgive a wrong, we can scarcely wonder that the future rela-
tions between the red men and the white men were not of the
most friendly nature.

Three of Weymouth's captives, upon arrival in England,
were placed in the family of Sir Ferdinando Gorges, and the
kind treatment which he accorded them availed much in atoning
for the wrong done them, so that, when they eventually were
sent back to America, they were of great assistance in bringing
about a better understanding for a time between the two races.

While there were doubtless small stations established for
very brief periods by other venturesome parties of explorers,
it appears that the first real attempt at a settlement was made
in 1607 by a colony of about one hundred persons who estab-
lished themselves at the mouth of the Kennebec River in what
is now the town of Phippsburg. All of this part of the North
American continent was claimed at that time by England on the
strength of explorations by the Cabots and other early English
voyagers who had landed on this side of the Atlantic. As was
customary in those days, the king, as ruler and holder of all
territory claimed as a right of discovery by a subject, gave
grants of land to companies or individuals for purposes of settle-
ment and colonization. Usually these grants were given as
payment for services or as favors to influential noblemen and
were bestowed with lavish hand. To them great tracts, com-
prising thousands of square miles with only the most general
limits, were thus parceled out by royal grant and with little
thought of the vastness of the enterprise, since these lands,
located as they were on the other side of the ocean, were sup-


posedly of little value except as a means of satisfying royal
obligations and affording opportunity for adventure to those
who were ever looking for something new.

Thus it was that Sir Ferdinando Gorges and Sir John Popham,
as members of the Plymouth Company, received from King
James I the right of the control of an enormous tract of terri-
tory which included all of the present New England states and
much besides. The colony which settled at the mouth of the
Kennebec was led by George Popham, brother of Sir John, and
the name Popham Beach, in the town of Phippsburg, com-
memorates the name of the leader of this early settlement.
The colonists erected a number of buildings and intended to
make this a permanent place of abode and a center from which
other settlements should be made. They soon found, however,
that Maine winters, without adequate protection against their
severity, were not to their liking and they became so discour-
aged, after the hardships they were called upon to endure, that
they abandoned the whole plan and, rather than try again in a
less rigorous climate farther south, they returned to England.
Popham himself had become ill and died, and this no doubt
was a potent reason also for their withdrawal. At any rate it
marked the end of that settlement and no other of consequence
was attempted for several years.

The French and Acadia. In the meantime the French had
been very active in establishing a trade with the Indians farther
north and east. They had planted a thriving colony at Port

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Online LibraryGlenn Wendell StarkeyMaine, its history, resources and government → online text (page 1 of 22)