The Blaine House in Augusta, which is the executive mansion, was built in the 1830s and bought by Maine political leader James G. Blaine in 1862. The silver service in the dining room was recovered from the battleship Maine ten years after it was sunk in the harbor of Havana, Cuba, in 1898. This service was presented to the battleship by the state when the ship was launched.
Souvenirs, documents, and personal belongings of American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow are displayed in Portland’s Wadsworth-Longfellow House, his childhood home. The Portland Head Lighthouse, on Cape Elizabeth on the south side of Portland Harbor, is one of the oldest and most recognized of the nation’s lighthouses. Another attraction is the Seaside Trolley Museum, in nearby Arundel, with the world’s largest collection of trolley cars.
The covered Sunday River Bridge, built in 1870 near Bethel, has been photographed and painted so often it has been nicknamed “Artist’s Bridge.” Life continues in the mode of the 19th century at the Norlands Living History Center, a stately Victorian mansion, granite library, church, and schoolhouse near Livermore. The famous seacoast village of Bar Harbor features the Natural History Museum. In Columbia Falls, the 1818 Ruggles House sports a flying staircase and intricately detailed woodcarvings throughout the interior. Acadian Historic Village in Van Buren consists of 16 reconstructed and relocated buildings preserving the unique French Acadian culture. Burnham Tavern, in Machias, has been made into a museum.
It was used in 1775 as a meeting place by local patriots planning the first naval battle of the American Revolution (1775-1783). Old Gaol, in York, was used as a jail from the time it was built in 1719 until 1860. It is now a museum and contains many colonial and Native American relics.
Fort Popham, on Popham Beach, is near the site of Maine’s first attempted English settlement, made in 1607. The present fort was begun in 1861, and although it was never completed, it was used by U.S. soldiers until World War I (1914-1918). A number of other historic forts have been preserved as memorials, including Fort McClary at Kittery, Fort Edgecomb near Wiscasset, and Fort O’Brien, near Machiasport. Maine’s largest fort is Fort Knox across the Penobscot River from Bucksport. Fort Western, in Augusta, was built on the site of a trading post constructed in 1628. The original garrison house has been restored, furnished with colonial antiques, and made a museum.
Maine has many annual sports competitions, including ski races in winter and sailing regattas, golf tournaments, and horse races in summer. Among the special summer events are the Great Kennebec Whatever Festival at Augusta and the Potato Blossom Festival at Fort Fairfield, which are both held in July, and the five-day Lobster Festival held at Rockland in late July and early August.
Lobsters are also the focus on the Fourth of July in Jonesport, which hosts the World’s Fastest Lobster Boat Races. Agricultural fairs are held in more than 20 towns during the summer and early fall. The Litchfield Fair, in September, is a community fair that has been celebrated for almost 140 years. The many summer theaters in the state give regular performances from June to Labor Day. Winter highlights include the World Mogul Invitational at Newry and the statewide Maine Maple Sunday, which are both held in March. Numerous international skiing events are held from January to April at Sugarloaf/Carrabassett. "Maine" © Emmanuel BUCHOT, Encarta, Wikipedia
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