Maine

Maine

[meyn]
Maine, Sir Henry James Sumner, 1822-88, English jurist and historian, educated at Cambridge. A pioneer in the historical and comparative study of institutions, he viewed the history of laws as the most certain way of studying the history of civilization. He drew analogies between 19th-century institutions in India and those of Anglo-Saxon society and believed that society progressed from custom to law, with Roman law demonstrating the intermediate stage between ancient usage and modern British law. Parts of his theories have been discredited, but his influence on the study of the history of jurisprudence is incalculable. His first work, Ancient Law (1861; new ed., with introd. by C. K. Allen, 1931, repr. 1970), was his most famous. He was (1862-69) legal member of the viceroy's council in India, where he planned the codification of Indian law. He embodied his lectures on legal history, given at Oxford and Cambridge, in several books, including Village Communities in the East and the West (1871) and The Early History of Institutions (7th ed. 1966). In Popular Government (1885) he challenged the thought of his day by warning that democracy and progress were not necessarily equated.
Maine, region and former province, NW France, S of Normandy and E of Brittany. It now comprises the departments of Mayenne and Sarthe and parts of Loire-et-Cher, Eure-et-Loir, and Orne. Le Mans, the historic capital, is an important industrial and commercial center. Other towns in the region are Laval, Mayenne, and Vendôme. Maine is primarily agricultural, with important stock raising in the hilly Perche; it is well irrigated by the Mayenne, Loire, and Sarthe rivers. Important during Roman times, Maine was Christianized between the 4th and 6th cent. Made a county in the 10th cent., it passed (1126) to Anjou and was held for long periods by England. It frequently reverted to the French crown, or to members of the royal family, until it was finally united with the crown in 1584 upon the death of the Duke of Alençon.
Maine, largest of the New England states of the NE United States. It is bordered by New Hampshire (W), the Canadian provinces of Quebec (NW) and New Brunswick (NE), the Atlantic Ocean (the Gulf of Maine; SE), and the Bay of Fundy (E).

Facts and Figures

Area, 33,215 sq mi (86,027 sq km). Pop. (2000) 1,274,923, a 3.8% increase since the 1990 census. Capital, Augusta. Largest city, Portland. Statehood, Mar. 15, 1820 (23d state). Highest pt., Mt. Katahdin, 5,268 ft (1,607 m); lowest pt., sea level. Nickname, Pine Tree State. Motto, Dirigo [I Direct]. State bird, chickadee. State flower, white pine cone and tassel. State tree, Eastern white pine. Abbr., Me.; ME

Geography

Located in the extreme northeast corner of the United States, Maine consists largely of a coastal plain of eroded valleys, with more resistant rock forming the generally mountainous west (the Longfellow Mts., an extension of the White Mts. and part of the great Appalachian system), Mt. Desert and other islands in the east, and isolated peaks including Katahdin (5,268 ft/1,606 m), the highest point in the state. Receding glaciers deposited long drift ridges across the countryside and dammed the valleys to form more than 2,200 lakes (Moosehead Lake is the largest) and to establish new, rugged watercourses for more than 5,000 streams and rivers. The major rivers are the St. John (which, with the St. Croix, forms part of the international boundary with New Brunswick), the Penobscot, the Kennebec, the Androscoggin, and the Saco. The sea has encroached on the low coastal valleys, leaving a jigsawed coastline of 3,500 mi (5,630 km), including numerous irregular and rocky islands offshore. East of Casco Bay the coast of Maine is rugged and wild, but farther west the shoreline has sandy beaches and marshy lowlands.

Over 80% of Maine is forested with great stands of white pine, hemlock, spruce, fir, and hardwoods. Sheltered by the woods and with abundant water from numerous lakes, particularly in the northern counties, wildlife includes moose, deer, black bear, and smaller animals; fish and fowl are also plentiful.

The population of Maine is centered on the cleared land along the coast and major rivers. Augusta is the capital; Portland, Lewiston, and Bangor are the largest cities. Maine's two great parks are Acadia National Park on and around Mt. Desert Island; and Baxter State Park, which includes the northern end of the Appalachian Trail at Mt. Katahdin in the N Maine wilderness.

Economy

Maine's generally poor soil, short growing season, and remoteness from industrial and commercial centers have long militated against development and population growth. Lumbering, shipbuilding, and textile production have all enjoyed booms in the past, but changes in technology and competition from other states have always undercut the state's economic position.

In the 1980s, however, Maine successfully transformed a major portion of its economy into trade, service, and finance industries, the greatest growth occurring in and around Portland. Picturesque coastal and island resorts and the promise of tranquil outdoor life hold a strong appeal for tourists, recreational and seasonal visitors, and, increasingly, retirees, and tourism is an important contributor to the state's economy.

Many of Maine's traditional economic activities have experienced difficult times in recent years. Fishing, the state's earliest industry, has declined considerably, although lobsters are still caught in abundance. Lumbering—the first sawmill in America was built in 1623 on the Piscataqua River—dominated industry and the export trade from the days when the white pines provided masts for the British navy, but with the big trees largely exhausted, Maine loggers now produce chiefly pulp for papermaking. The proximity of harbors to forests early encouraged shipbuilding, which reached its peak in the 19th cent. With the disappearance of wooden ships and the related timber trade, commercial activity slackened. Portland, the largest port, now operates far below its substantial capacity, handling chiefly oil for the pipeline to Montreal. Bath Iron Works, which builds warships, remains the state's largest single-site employer.

Manufacturing is still the largest sector in the state's economy. Maine is a leading producer of paper and wood products, which are the most valuable of all manufactures in the state. Food products and transportation equipment are also important, but production of leather goods (especially shoes) has declined. The mineral wealth of the state is considerable. Many varieties of granite, including some superior ornamental types, have been used for construction throughout the nation. Sand and gravel, zinc, and peat are found in addition to stone. However, much of Maine's abundant natural and industrial resources remain undeveloped.

Agriculture has always struggled with adverse soil and climatic conditions. Since the opening of richer farmlands in the West, Maine has tended to concentrate on dairying, poultry raising and egg production, and market gardening for the region. The growing of potatoes, particularly in Aroostook County, was stimulated by the completion of the Aroostook RR in 1894. Blueberries, hay, and apples are other chief crops, and aquaculture is growing in importance.

Government and Higher Education

Maine is governed under its 1820 constitution as amended. The state has a two-house legislature of 35 senators and 151 representatives, all elected for two-year terms; the governor is elected for a four-year term and may be reelected once. Maine politics are noted for their unpredictability. Angus King, an independent, won the governorship in 1994 and again in 1998; he was succeeded by John Baldacci, a Democrat, elected in 2002 and reelected in 2006. The state elects two representatives and two senators to the U.S. Congress and has four electoral votes.

Among the state's leading educational institutions are Bowdoin College, at Brunswick; Colby College, at Waterville; Bates College, at Lewiston; the Univ. of Maine, with campuses at Orono and five other locations; and the Univ. of Southern Maine, at Portland.

History

Early Inhabitants and European Colonization

The earliest human habitation in what is now Maine can be traced back to prehistoric times, as evidenced by the burial mounds of the Red Paint people found in the south central part of the state. The Native Americans who came later left enormous shell heaps, variously estimated to be from 1,000 to 5,000 years old. At the time of settlement by Europeans the Abnaki were scattered along the coast and in some inland areas.

The coast of Maine, which may have been visited by the Norsemen, was included in the grant that James I of England awarded to the Plymouth Company, and colonists set out under George Popham in 1607. Their settlement, Fort St. George, on the present site of Phippsburg at the mouth of the Kennebec (then called the Sagadahoc) River, did not prosper, and the colonists returned to England in 1608. The French came to the area in 1613 and established a colony and a Jesuit mission on Mt. Desert Island; however, the English under Sir Samuel Argall expelled them.

In 1620 the Council for New England (successor to the Plymouth Company) granted Ferdinando Gorges and Captain John Mason the territory between the Kennebec and Merrimack rivers extending 60 mi (97 km) inland. At this time the region became known as Maine, either to honor Henrietta Maria, queen of Charles I, who was feudal proprietor of the province in France called Maine, or to distinguish the mainland from the offshore islands. Neglected after Gorges's death in 1647, Maine settlers came under the jurisdiction of the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1652. King Philip's War (1675-76) was the first of many struggles between the British on one side and the French and Native Americans on the other, all of which slowed further settlement of Maine.

French influence, which had been reasserted east of the Penobscot, declined rapidly after 1688, when Sir Edmund Andros, royal governor of all New England, seized French fortifications there. After the colonists overthrew Andros, Massachusetts received a new charter (1691) that confirmed its hold on Maine. With Sir William Phips, a Maine native, as governor and the territorial question settled, local government and institutions in the Massachusetts tradition took root in Maine. Maine soon had prosperous fishing, lumbering, and shipbuilding industries.

Revolution and Economic Development

Dissatisfaction with British rule was first expressed openly after Parliament passed the Stamp Act in 1765; in protest, a mob at Falmouth (Portland) seized a quantity of the hated stamps. As conflicts increased between the colonies and England, nonimportation societies formed to boycott English goods sprang up in Maine. During the American Revolution Falmouth paid dearly for its defiance; it was devastated by a British fleet in 1775. In that same year Benedict Arnold led his grueling, unsuccessful expedition against Quebec through Maine.

During the war supplies were cut off and conflicts with Native Americans were frequent, but with American independence won, economic development was rapid in what was then called the District of Maine, one of the three admiralty districts of Massachusetts set up by the Continental Congress in 1775. However, the Embargo Act of 1807 and the War of 1812 interrupted the thriving commerce and turned the district toward industrial development.

Statehood and Prosperity

Agitation for statehood, which had been growing since the Revolution, now became widespread. Dissatisfaction with Massachusetts was aroused by the inadequate military protection provided during the War of 1812; by the land policy, which encouraged absentee ownership; and by the political differences between conservative Massachusetts and liberal Maine. The imminent admission of Missouri into the Union as a slave state hastened the separation of Maine from Massachusetts, and equality of power between North and South was preserved by admitting Maine as a free state in 1820, as part of the Missouri Compromise.

With Portland as its capital (moved to Augusta in 1832) the new state entered a prosperous period. During the first half of the 19th cent. Maine enjoyed its greatest population increase. A highly profitable timber trade was carried on with the West Indies, Europe, and Asia, and towns such as Bath became leaders in American shipbuilding. The long-standing Northeast Boundary Dispute almost precipitated border warfare between Maine and New Brunswick in the so-called Aroostook War of 1839; the controversy was settled by the Webster-Ashburton Treaty with Great Britain in 1842.

Political Issues since the 1850s

Political life was vigorous, particularly in the 1850s when the reluctance of the Democrats, who had been dominant since 1820, to take a firm antislavery stand swept the new Republican party into power. Hannibal Hamlin was a leading Republican politician and was vice president during Abraham Lincoln's first administration. Antislavery sentiment was strong, and Maine made sizable contributions of men and money to the Union in the Civil War. Generals Oliver O. Howard and Joshua L. Chamberlain were from Maine. For decades regulation of the liquor traffic was the chief political issue in Maine, and the state was the first to adopt (1851) a prohibition law. It was incorporated into the constitution in 1884 and was not repealed until 1934.

State politics entered a hectic stage in 1878 when the newly organized Greenback party combined with the Democrats to carry the election, ending more than 20 years of Republican rule. The following year the coalition was accused of manipulating election returns, a charge sustained by the state supreme court, which seated a rival legislature elected by the Republicans. In 1880 the fusionists were again successful, but from that time until the 1950s the state was generally Republican, providing that party with such national leaders as James G. Blaine, Thomas B. Reed, and Margaret Chase Smith, who in 1948 became the first Republican woman U.S. senator. Former U.S. Secretary of State Edmund S. Muskie, a Democrat, was elected governor in 1954. In 1964 and 1968 (when Muskie, then a U.S. senator, ran unsuccessfully for vice president) the state voted Democratic in the presidential election for the first time since 1912.

In 1969 personal and corporate income taxes were added to the sales tax within the state. Maine's population grew 13.2% during the 1970s and 9.2% during the 1980s, its largest increases since the 1840s. Environmental issues have occupied the state's attention in recent decades. In an attempt to revive native salmon populations, river logging was banned in the 1970s, and some dams have been removed or slated for removal. Maine voters narrowly defeated several referendum proposals to hasten the scheduled 1997 closing of the nuclear power plant at Wiscasset. The effects of clear-cutting practices in Maine's forests and of large-scale fish farming along the coast were also focuses of debate.

Bibliography

See Federal Writers' Project, Maine, a Guide Down East (2d ed. 1970); L. D. Rich, The Coast of Maine (3d ed. 1970); M. Dibner, Seacoast Maine, People and Places (1973); E. Schriver and D. Smith, Maine: A History Through Selected Readings (1985); D. Delorme, ed., The Maine Atlas and Gazeteer (1988)

Maine, U.S. battleship destroyed (Feb. 15, 1898) in Havana harbor by an explosion that killed 260 men. The incident helped precipitate the Spanish-American War (Apr., 1898). Commanded by Capt. Charles Sigsbee, the ship had been sent (Jan., 1898) to Cuba to protect American life and property from the revolutionary turmoil there. The sinking of the Maine produced an outcry against Spain in the United States, particularly by the more jingoistic newspapers, which held the Spanish government responsible for the disaster. The cause of the explosion was never satisfactorily explained. A U.S. naval inquiry, headed by W. T. Sampson, reported on Mar. 21 that the Maine had been sunk by a submarine mine but that responsibility could not be fixed on any person. A Spanish naval inquiry reported that the disaster was an accident resulting from an explosion in the forward magazine. Recent evidence, however, points to an accident. Whatever the truth of the matter, "Remember the Maine" became a patriotic slogan during the Spanish-American War. The vessel was raised from the harbor, towed to sea, and sunk in 1912.
Maine, Gulf of, part of the Atlantic Ocean, between SE Maine and SW Nova Scotia, at the entrance of the Bay of Fundy. The area is noted for its scenery and fishing. Overfishing and pollution led to the enactment of strict commercial fishing regulations regarding the gulf and other New England fishing grounds in the 1990s.
Maine, University of, main campus at Orono; coeducational; land-grant and state supported; chartered 1865 as Maine State College of Agriculture and the Mechanic Arts, opened 1868, renamed 1897. There are also campuses at Farmington (1864), Fort Kent (1878), Presque Isle (1903), and Machias (1909). The university's facilities include the Maine Center for the Arts; the Canadian-American Center; the Center for the Study of the First Americans, at Orono; and the Archeological Research Center, at Farmington.

(born Aug. 15, 1822, Kelso, Roxburgh, Scot.—died Feb. 3, 1888, Cannes, France) British jurist and legal historian. He taught civil law at the University of Cambridge (1847–54) and lectured on Roman law at the Inns of Court. These lectures became the basis of his Ancient Law (1861) and Early History of Institutions (1875), which influenced both political theory and anthropology. In 1869 he became the first professor of comparative jurisprudence at the University of Oxford; in 1887 he became professor of international law at Cambridge. As a member of the council of the governor-general of India (1863–69), he shaped plans for the codification of Indian law. He was knighted in 1871.

Learn more about Maine, Sir Henry (James Sumner) with a free trial on Britannica.com.

(born Aug. 15, 1822, Kelso, Roxburgh, Scot.—died Feb. 3, 1888, Cannes, France) British jurist and legal historian. He taught civil law at the University of Cambridge (1847–54) and lectured on Roman law at the Inns of Court. These lectures became the basis of his Ancient Law (1861) and Early History of Institutions (1875), which influenced both political theory and anthropology. In 1869 he became the first professor of comparative jurisprudence at the University of Oxford; in 1887 he became professor of international law at Cambridge. As a member of the council of the governor-general of India (1863–69), he shaped plans for the codification of Indian law. He was knighted in 1871.

Learn more about Maine, Sir Henry (James Sumner) with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Historical region, northwestern France. A hereditary countship in the 10th century, it briefly fell under English rule and then was united with Anjou in 1126. With Anjou and Normandy, it fell to France early in the 13th century. After alternating between English and French rule, it reverted to the French crown in 1481 and was made a duchy under Louis XIV.

Learn more about Maine with a free trial on Britannica.com.

The State of Maine is a state in the New England region of the northeastern United States of America, bordering the Atlantic Ocean to the southeast, New Hampshire to the southwest, the Canadian provinces of Quebec to the northwest and New Brunswick to the northeast. Maine is the northernmost portion of New England and is the easternmost state in the contiguous United States. It is known for its scenery — its jagged, mostly rocky coastline; its low, rolling mountains; and its heavily forested interior — as well as for its seafood cuisine, especially lobsters and clams.

The original inhabitants of the territory that is now Maine were Algonquian-speaking peoples. The first European settlement in Maine was in 1604 by a French party. The first English settlement in Maine, the short-lived Popham Colony, was established by the Plymouth Company in 1607. A number of English settlements were established along the coast of Maine in the 1620s, although the rugged climate, deprivations, and Indian attacks wiped out many of them over the years. As Maine entered the 18th century, only a half dozen settlements still survived. American and British forces contended for Maine's territory during the American Revolution and the War of 1812. Maine was an exclave of Massachusetts until 1820 as a result of a growing in population, becoming the 23rd state on March 15, as per the Missouri Compromise.

Origin of the name

There is no definitive answer for the origin of the name Maine. The state legislature in 2001 adopted a resolution establishing Franco-American Day, which stated that the state was named after the ancient French province of Maine. Other theories mention earlier places with similar names, or claim it is a nautical reference to the mainland. Whatever the origin, the name was fixed in 1665 when the King's Commissioners ordered that the "Province of Maine" be entered from then on in official records.

Geography

To the south and east is the Atlantic Ocean and to the north and northeast is New Brunswick, a province of Canada. The Canadian province of Quebec is to the northwest. Maine is both the northernmost state in New England and the largest, accounting for nearly half the region's entire land area. Maine also has the distinction of being the only state to border just one other state (New Hampshire to the west). The municipalities of Eastport and Lubec are, respectively, the easternmost city and town in the United States. Estcourt Station is Maine's northernmost point and also the northernmost point in the New England region of the United States. (For more information see extreme points of the United States).

Maine's Moosehead Lake is the largest lake wholly in New England (Lake Champlain being located between Vermont and New York). A number of other Maine lakes, such as South Twin Lake, are described by Thoreau. Mount Katahdin is both the northern terminus of the Appalachian Trail, which extends to Springer Mountain, Georgia, and the southern terminus of the new International Appalachian Trail which, when complete, will run to Belle Isle, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Maine also has several unique geographical features. Machias Seal Island and North Rock, off its easternmost point, are claimed by both the U.S. and Canada and are within one of four areas between the two countries whose sovereignty is still in dispute, but is the only one of the disputed areas containing land. Also in this easternmost area is the Old Sow, the largest tidal whirlpool in the Western Hemisphere.

Maine is the most sparsely populated state east of the Mississippi River. It is called the Pine Tree State; ninety percent of its land is forested. In the forested areas of the interior lies much uninhabited land, some of which does not have formal political organization into local units (a rarity in New England). The Northwest Aroostook, Maine unorganized territory in the northern part of the state, for example, has an area of 2,668 square miles (6,910 km²) and a population of 27, or one person for every 100 square miles (255 km²).

Maine is equally well known for its ocean scenery, with almost of shoreline West Quoddy Head is the easternmost piece of land in the contiguous 48 United States. Along the famous rock-bound coast of Maine are lighthouses, beaches, fishing villages, and thousands of offshore islands, including the Isles of Shoals, which straddle the New Hampshire border. Jagged rocks and cliffs and thousands of bays and inlets add to the rugged beauty of Maine's coast. Just inland, by contrast, are lakes, rivers, forests, and mountains. This visual contrast of forested slopes sweeping down to the sea has been aptly summed up by American poet Edna St. Vincent Millay of Rockland and Camden, Maine in "Renascence":

"All I could see from where I stood
was three long mountains and a wood
I turned and looked the other way
and saw three islands in a bay"
More prosaic geologists describe this type of landscape as a drowned coast, where a rising sea level has invaded former land features, creating bays out of valleys and islands out of mountain tops. A rise in the elevation of the land due to the melting of heavy glacier ice caused a slight rebounding effect of underlying rock; this land rise, however, was not strong enough to eliminate all the effect of the rising sea level and its invasion of former land features.

The noted American ecologist Rachel Carson did much of her research at one of the Maine seacoast's most characteristic features, a tide pool for her classic "The Edge of the Sea." The spot where she conducted observations is now preserved as the Rachel Carson Salt Pond Reserve at Pemaquid Point.

George Lorenzo Noyes, known as the thoreauvian of Maine is a noted state naturalist, mineralogist, development critic, writer and landscape artist. He lived a devout wilderness lifestyle in the mountains of Norway, Maine, expressing in his paintings his spiritual reverence for nature and writing of the values of a simple life of sustainable living. Harvard Quarry at the summit of Noyes Mountain, named in his honor, in Greenwood, provides an excellent panoramic view and is a popular destination for rock and mineral collectors.

Much of Maine's geography was created by heavy glacial activity at the end of the last ice age. Prominent glacial features include Somes Sound and Bubble Rock. Carved by glaciers, Somes Sound is considered to be the only fjord on the eastern seaboard and reaches depths of . The extreme depth and steep drop-off allow large ships to navigate almost the entire length of the sound. These features also have made it attractive for boat builders, such as the prestigious Hinkley Yachts. Bubble Rock is what is known as a "glacial erratic" and is a large boulder perched on the edge of Bubble Mountain in Acadia National Park. By analyzing the type of granite, geologists were able to discover that glaciers carried Bubble Rock to its present location from the town of Lucerne, Maine--30 miles away.

Acadia National Park is the only national park in New England.

Areas under the protection and management of the National Park Service include:

Climate

Maine experiences a humid continental climate (Köppen climate classification Dfb), with warm (although generally not hot), humid summers. Winters are cold and snowy throughout the state, and are especially severe in the northern parts of Maine. Coastal areas are moderated somewhat by the Atlantic Ocean. Daytime highs are generally in the 75-80 °F (24-27 °C) range throughout the state in July, with overnight lows in the high 50s°F (around 15 °C). January temperatures range from highs near 32 °F (0 °C) on the southern coast to overnight lows below 0 °F (-18 °C) in the far north.

Maine is generally safe from hurricanes and tropical storms. By the time they reach the state, many have become extratropical and few hurricanes have made landfall in Maine. Maine has fewer days of thunderstorms than any other state east of the Rockies, with most of the state averaging less than 20 days of thunderstorms a year. Tornadoes are rare in Maine with the state averaging fewer than two per year, mostly occurring in the southern part of the state.

Monthly Normal High and Low Temperatures (°F) For Various Maine Cities
City Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Caribou 19/0 23/3 34/15 47/29 63/41 72/50 76/55 74/53 64/44 51/34 37/24 25/8
Portland 31/12 34/16 42/25 53/35 63/44 73/53 79/59 77/57 69/48 58/37 47/30 36/19

History

The original inhabitants of the territory that is now Maine were Algonquian-speaking Wabanaki peoples including the Abenaki, Passamaquoddy, and Penobscots. The first European settlement in Maine was in 1604 by a French party that included Samuel de Champlain, the noted explorer. The French named the entire area, including the portion that later became the State of Maine, Acadia. The first English settlement in Maine was established by the Plymouth Company at Popham in 1607, the same year as the settlement at Jamestown, Virginia. Both colonies were predated by the Roanoke Colony by 22 years. Because the Popham Colony did not survive the harsh Maine winters and the Roanoke Colony was lost, Jamestown enjoys the distinction of being regarded as America’s first permanent English-speaking settlement. The coastal areas of western Maine first became the Province of Maine in a 1622 land patent. Eastern Maine north of the Kennebec River was more sparsely settled and was known in the 17th century as the Territory of Sagadahock.

The province within its current boundaries became part of Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1652. Maine was much fought over by the French and English during the 17th and early 18th centuries. After the defeat of the French in the 1740s, the territory from the Penobscot River east fell under the nominal authority of the Province of Nova Scotia, and together with present day New Brunswick formed the Nova Scotia county of Sunbury, with its court of general sessions at Campobello. American and British forces contended for Maine's territory during the American Revolution and the War of 1812. The treaty concluding revolution was ambiguous about Maine's boundary with British North America. The territory of Maine was confirmed as part of Massachusetts when the United States was formed, although the final border with British territory was not established until the Webster-Ashburton Treaty of 1842. (Indeed, in 1839 Governor Fairfield declared war on Britain over a boundary dispute between New Brunswick and northern Maine. Known as the Aroostook War, this is the only time a state has declared war on a foreign power. The dispute was settled, however, before any blood was shed.

Because it was physically separated from the rest of Massachusetts and was growing in population at a rapid rate, Maine became the 23rd state on March 15, 1820 through the Missouri Compromise. This compromise allowed admitting both Maine and Missouri (in 1821) into the union while keeping a balance between slave and free states. Maine's original capital was Portland, the largest city in Maine, until it was moved to Augusta in 1832 to make it more central within the state.

Demographics

As of 2008, Maine has an estimated population of 1,321,504, which is an increase of 6,520, or 0.5%, from the prior year and an increase of 46,582, or 3.7%, since the year 2000. This includes a natural increase since the last census of 6,413 people (that is 71,276 births minus 64,863 deaths) and an increase due to net migration of 41,808 people into the state. Immigration from outside the United States resulted in a net increase of 5,004 people, and migration within the country produced a net increase of 36,804 people. The population density of the state is 41.3 people per square mile.

Maine is a very popular tourist destination, but it also experiences harsh winters, and consequently, the great temporary influx of visitors occurs during the warmer months. Many of these visitors establish an alternate secondary residence in Maine during the warm months and then depart for their primary residence in the off-season. These are the summer people of Maine lore. Official census figures normally count a person as a resident only once, at the place of the primary home. Therefore, there are some situations in which official census figures could be misleading for Maine. For example, some communities may have a much larger seasonal retail sector than their official, small population figure would imply.

The mean population center of Maine is located in Kennebec County, in or near the town of Mount Vernon. The Greater Portland metropolitan area is the most densely populated with nearly 20% of Maine's population. As explained in detail under "Geography", there are large tracts of uninhabited land in some remote parts of the interior.

Race, ancestry, and language

The largest ancestries in the state are: English American (21.5%), Irish (15.1%), French or French Canadian (14.2%), American (9.4%), and German (6.7%).

Maine is second only to New Hampshire in the percentage of French Americans among U.S. states. It also has the largest percentage of non-Hispanic whites of any state and the highest percentage of current French-speakers who come from Quebec. Franco-Mainers tended to settle in rural northern Maine (particularly Aroostook County) and the industrial cities of inland Maine (especially Lewiston), whereas much of the midcoast and downeast sections remain mostly of British heritage. Smaller numbers of various other groups, including Italian and Polish have settled throughout the state since the early 20th c. immigration waves.

The 2000 Census reported 92.25% of Maine residents age 5 and older speak English at home. Census figures show Maine has a greater proportion of people speaking French at home than any other state in the nation, a result of Maine's large French-Canadian community, who migrated from adjacent Quebec and New Brunswick. 5.28% of Maine households are French-speaking, compared with 4.68% in Louisiana. Spanish is the third most spoken language at 0.79%, followed by German at 0.33% and Italian at 0.12%

Religion

The religious affiliations of the people of Maine are shown below:

Economy

The Bureau of Economic Analysis estimates that Maine's total gross state product for 2003 was US$41 billion. Its per capita personal income for 2003 was US$29,164, 29th in the nation.

Maine's agricultural outputs include poultry, eggs, dairy products, cattle, wild blueberries (the state produces 25% of all blueberries in North America, making it the largest blueberry producer in the world), apples, maple syrup and maple sugar. Aroostook County is known for its potato crops. Commercial fishing, once a mainstay of the state's economy, maintains a presence, particularly lobstering and groundfishing. Western Maine aquifers and springs are a major source of bottled water. Maine's industrial outputs consist chiefly of paper, lumber and wood products, electronic equipment, leather products, food products, textiles, and bio-technology. Naval shipbuilding and construction remain key as well, with Bath Iron Works in Bath and Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery. Naval Air Station Brunswick is also in Maine, and serves as a large support base for the U.S. Navy. However, the BRAC campaign recommended Brunswick's closing, despite a recent government-funded effort to upgrade its facilities.

Tourism and outdoor recreation play a major and increasingly important role in Maine's economy. The state is a popular destination for sport hunting (particularly deer, moose and bear), sport fishing, snowmobiling, skiing, boating, camping and hiking, among other activities. Maine's unemployment rate is 4.8%

Maine ports play a key role in national transportation. Beginning around 1880, Portland's rail link and ice-free port made it Canada's principal winter port, until the aggressive development of Halifax, Nova Scotia, in the mid-1900s. In 2001, Maine's largest city of Portland surpassed Boston as New England's busiest port (by tonnage), due to its ability to handle large tankers. Maine's Portland International Jetport was recently expanded, providing the state with increased air traffic from carriers such as JetBlue.

Maine has very few large companies that maintain headquarters in the state, and fewer than before due to consolidations and mergers, particularly in the pulp and paper industry. Some of the larger companies that do maintain headquarters in Maine include Fairchild Semiconductor in South Portland; IDEXX Laboratories, in Westbrook; Unum, in Portland; TD Banknorth, in Portland; L.L. Bean in Freeport; Cole Haan and Delorme, both located in Yarmouth. Maine is also the home of The Jackson Laboratory, the world's largest non-profit mammalian genetic research facility and the world's largest supplier of genetically purebred mice.

Maine has an income tax structure containing 4 brackets, which range from 2% to 8.5% of personal income. Maine's general sales tax rate is 5%. The state also levies charges of 7% on lodging and prepared food and 10% on short-term auto rentals. Commercial sellers of blueberries, a Maine staple, must keep records of their transactions and pay the state 1.5 cents per pound ($1.50 per 100 pounds) of the fruit sold each season. All real and tangible personal property located in the state of Maine is taxable unless specifically exempted by statute. The administration of property taxes is handled by the local assessor in incorporated cities and towns, while property taxes in the unorganized territories are handled by the State Tax Assessor.

Shipbuilding

Maine has a longstanding tradition of being home to many shipbuilding companies. In the 18th and 19th centuries, Maine was home to many shipyards that produced wooden sailing ships. The main function of these ships was to transport either cargoes or passengers overseas. One of these yards was located in Pennellville Historic District in what is now Brunswick, Maine. This yard, owned by the Pennell family, was typical of the many family-owned shipbuilding companies of the time period. Other such examples of shipbuilding families were the Skofields and the Morses. During the 18th and 19th ceunturies, wooden shipbuilding of this sort made up a sizable portion of the economy.

Transportation

Airports

Maine receives passenger jet service at its two largest airports, the Portland International Jetport in Portland, and the Bangor International Airport in Bangor. Both are served daily by many major airlines to destinations such as New York, Atlanta, and Orlando. Essential Air Service also subsidizes service to a number of smaller airports in Maine, bringing small turboprop aircraft to regional airports such as the Augusta State Airport, Hancock County-Bar Harbor Airport, Knox County Regional Airport, and the Northern Maine Regional Airport at Presque Isle. These airports are served by US Airways Express with small 19 to 30 seat planes. Many smaller airports are scattered throughout Maine, only serving general aviation traffic.

Highways

Interstate 95 runs through Maine, as well as its easterly branch I-295. In addition, U.S. Route 1 starts in Fort Kent and runs to Florida. The eastern terminus of the eastern section of U.S. Route 2 starts in Houlton, near the New Brunswick, Canada border to Rouses Point, New York, at US 11 . There is also another US 2A connecting Old Town and Orono, Maine, primarily serving the University of Maine campus. U.S. Route 2, Route 6 and Route 9 are often used by truckers and other motorists of the Maritime Provinces en route to other destinations in the United States or as a short cut to Central Canada.

Rail

Passenger

The Downeaster passenger train, operated by Amtrak, provides passenger service between Portland and Boston's North Station, with stops in Old Orchard Beach, Saco, and Wells. The Downeaster makes five southbound trips and five northbound trips every day.

Seasonal passenger excursions between Brunswick and Rockland are operated by the Maine Eastern Railroad, which leases the state-owned Rockland Branch rail corridor.

Freight

Freight service throughout the state is provided by a handful of regional and shortline carriers: Pan Am Railways (formerly known as Guilford Rail System), which operates the former Boston & Maine and Maine Central railroads; St. Lawrence and Atlantic Railroad; Maine Eastern Railroad; Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway; and New Brunswick Southern Railway.

See also: List of Maine railroads

Law and government

The Maine Constitution structures Maine's state government, composed of three co-equal branches - the executive, legislative, and judicial branches. The state of Maine also has three Constitutional Officers (the Secretary of State, the State Treasurer, and the State Attorney General) and one Statutory Officer (the State Auditor).

The legislative branch is the Maine Legislature, a bicameral body composed of the Maine House of Representatives, with 151 members, and the Maine Senate, with 35 members. The Legislature is charged with introducing and passing laws.

The executive branch is responsible for the execution of the laws created by the Legislature and is headed by the Governor of Maine (currently John Baldacci, a Democrat). The Governor is elected every four years; no individual may serve more than two consecutive terms in this office. The current attorney general of Maine is G. Steven Rowe. As with other state legislatures, the Maine Legislature can by a two-thirds majority vote from both the House and Senate override a gubernatorial veto.

The judicial branch is responsible for interpreting state laws. The highest court of the state is the Maine Supreme Judicial Court. The lower courts are the District Court, Superior Court and Probate Court. All judges except for probate judges serve full-time; are nominated by the Governor and confirmed by the Legislature for terms of seven years. Probate judges serve part-time and are elected by the voters of each county for four-year terms.

State and local politics

In state general elections, Maine voters tend to accept independent and third-party candidates more frequently than most states. Maine has had two independent governors recently (James B. Longley, 1975–1979 and Angus King, 1995–2003). The Green Party candidate won nine percent of the vote in the 2002 gubernatorial election, more than in any election for a statewide office for that party until the 2006 Illinois gubernatorial election. The locally organized Maine Green Independent Party also elected John Eder to the office of State Representative in the Maine House of Representatives, the highest elected Green official nationwide. Pat LaMarche, 2004 Green Party vice-presidential candidate, resides in the southern coastal town of Yarmouth. Maine state politicians, Republicans and Democrats alike, are noted for having more moderate views than many in the national wings of their respective parties.

Maine is an Alcoholic beverage control state.

Federal politics

Maine's federal politics are notable and are dramatic for several reasons. In the 1930s, it was one of very few states which remained dominated by the Republican Party. In the 1936 Presidential election, Franklin D. Roosevelt received the electoral votes of every state other than Maine and Vermont. In the 1960s, Maine began to lean toward the Democrats, especially in Presidential elections. In 1968, Hubert Humphrey became just the second Democrat in half a century to carry Maine thanks to the presence of his running mate, Maine Senator Edmund Muskie, although the state voted Republican in every Presidential election in the 1970s and 1980s. Maine has since become a left-leaning swing state and has voted Democratic in four successive Presidential elections, casting its votes for Bill Clinton twice, Al Gore in 2000 and John Kerry (with 53.6% of the vote) in 2004. Republican strength is greatest in Washington and Piscataquis counties. Though Democrats have carried the state in presidential elections in recent years, Republicans have largely maintained their control of the state's U.S. Senate seats, with Ed Muskie, William Hathaway and George Mitchell being the only Maine Democrats serving in the U.S. Senate in the past fifty years.

The Reform Party of Ross Perot achieved a great deal of success in Maine in the presidential elections of 1992 and 1996: in 1992 Perot came in second to Bill Clinton, despite the longtime presence of the Bush family summer home in Kennebunkport, and in 1996, Maine was again Perot's best state.

Since 1969, two of Maine's four electoral votes are awarded based on the winner of the statewide election. The other two go to the highest vote-winner in each of the state's two congressional districts. 2004's presidential race saw reports that the campaign of President George W. Bush had made the calculation to devote attention to one of Maine's two Congressional Districts with the possibility of carrying the district's vote for an Electoral Vote in a close national race.

Famous politicians from Maine include Percival Baxter, James Blaine, Owen Brewster, William Cohen, Susan Collins, Hannibal Hamlin, George J. Mitchell, Edmund Muskie, Thomas Brackett Reed, Margaret Chase Smith, Olympia Snowe, and Wallace H. White, Jr..

Maine's U.S. senators are Republicans Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins. The state's two members of the U.S. House of Representatives are Democrats Tom Allen and Mike Michaud.

Municipalities

Organized municipalities

An organized municipality has a form of elected local government which administers and provides local services, keeps records, collects licensing fees, and can pass locally binding ordinances among other responsibilities of self-government. The governmental format of most organized towns and plantations is the Town Meeting while the format of most cities is the Council-Manager form. As of 2007 the organized municipalities of Maine consists of 22 cities, 432 towns, and 34 plantations. Collectively these 488 organized municipalities cover less than half of the state's territory. Maine also has 3 Reservations: Indian Island, Indian Township Reservation, and Pleasant Point Indian Reservation.

  • The largest municipality in Maine, by population, is the city of Portland (pop. 64,249).
  • The smallest city by population is Eastport (pop. 1,640).
  • The largest town by population is Brunswick (pop. 21,172).
  • The smallest town by population is Frye Island, a resort town which reported zero year-round population in the 2000 Census; one plantation, Glenwood Plantation, Maine, also reported a permanent population of zero.
  • In the 2000 Census, the smallest town aside from Frye Island was Centerville with a population of 26, but since that Census, Centerville voted to disincorporate and therefore is no longer a town. The next smallest town with a population listed in that Census is Beddington, (pop. 29).
  • The largest municipality by land area is the town of Allagash (128 square miles).
  • The smallest municipality by land area is the plantation of Monhegan Island (0.86 square miles).

Unorganized territory

Unorganized territory has no local government. Administration, services, licensing, and ordinances are handled by the State Government. The Unorganized Territory of Maine consists of over 400 townships (towns are incorporated, townships are unincorporated), plus many coastal islands that do not lie within any municipal bounds. The UT land area is slightly over one half the entire area of the State of Maine. Year round residents in the UT number approximately 9,000, about 1.3% of the state's total population, with many more people residing only seasonally within the UT. Only four of Maine's sixteen counties are entirely incorporated, although a few others are nearly so, and most of the unincorporated area is in the vast and sparsely populated Great North Woods of Maine.

Most populous cities and towns

Fact Finder US Census Maine Portland:
The 49 most populous cities and towns as of the year 2000 US Census [2006 Estimate in brackets]
Portland
(64,249)
[63,011]
Lewiston
(35,690)
[35,734]
Bangor
(31,473)
[31,008]
South Portland
(23,324)
[23,784]
Auburn
(23,203)
[23,156]
Biddeford
(20,942)
[22,092]
Brunswick
(21,172)
[21,915]

Sanford
(20,806)
[21,534]
Augusta
(18,560)
[18,560]
Scarborough
(16,970)
[18,880]
Saco
(16,822)
[18,289]
Westbrook
(16,142)
[16,201]
Waterville
(15,605)
[15,639]
Windham
(14,904)
[16,546]
Gorham
(14,141)
[15,402]
York
(12,854)
[13,302]
Kennebunk
(10,476)
[11,505]
Falmouth
(10,310)
[10,557]
Kittery
(9,543)
[10,495]
Presque Isle
(9,511)
[9,253]
Wells
(9,400)
[10,038]
Standish
(9,285)
[9,832]
Bath
(9,266)
[9,184]
Orono
(9,112)
[9,712]
Topsham
(9,100)
[9,940]
Lisbon
(9,077)
[9,419]
Cape Elizabeth
(9,068)
[8,826]
Brewer
(8,987)
[9,079]
Old Orchard Beach
(8,856)
[9,349]
Skowhegan
(8,824)
[8,876]
Yarmouth
(8,360)
[8,132]
Caribou
(8,312)
[8,283]
Old Town
(8,130)
[7,723]
Freeport
(7,800)
[8,151]
Winslow
(7,743)
[7,944]
Rockland
(7,609)
[7,578]
Buxton
(7,452)
[8,171]
Farmington
(7,410)
[7,580]
Cumberland
(7,159)
[7,653]
Gray
(6,820)
[7,420]
South Berwick
(6,671)
[7,252]
Fairfield
(6,573)
[6,787]
Houlton
(6,476)
[6,283]
Rumford
(6,472)
[6,409]
Ellsworth
(6,456)
[7,075]
Belfast
(6,381)
[6,803]
Berwick
(6,353)
[7,403]
Hampden
(6,327)
[6,771]
Winthrop
(6,232)
[6,475]

Throughout Maine, many municipalities, although each separate governmental entities, nevertheless form portions of a much larger population base. There are many such population clusters throughout Maine, but some examples from the municipalities appearing in the above listing are:

  • Portland, South Portland, Cape Elizabeth, Westbrook, Scarborough, and Falmouth
  • Lewiston and Auburn
  • Bangor, Orono, Brewer, Old Town, and Hampden
  • Biddeford and Saco
  • Brunswick and Topsham
  • Waterville and Winslow

Education

Public schools

Maine has four types of school departments: the first is a local school, one which serves only one municipality, and is headed by a superintendent. Usually, it serves kindergarten through grade 12, although some only go to grade 8. Usually, independent school districts which do not have a high school are not totally independent; they are part of a school union, the second type of school district.

A school union is two or more school departments that share a superintendent but nothing else; each town has an independent school board. Usually, only one of the schools in the school union has a high school, but unlike MSADs (discussed below), students in the whole school union are not compelled to attend that school. School union students are given a choice of neighboring school districts, and the school union pays for the student's tuition.

The third type is a MSAD (Maine School Administrative District). This is a regional school district that incorporates two or more towns into one school department with one high school and middle school. These towns do not have independent school boards, but instead have one central board governing the entire district. Students are obligated to attend the central high school. Usually, a MSAD comprises one larger town and one or more smaller towns. The larger town is equipped with a high school and middle school, while the surrounding towns have elementary schools as well, but no secondary schools. The elementary schools usually cut off after grade 5 or grade 6. Sometimes, towns in a MSAD do not have an elementary school but possess a high school and/or middle school, whereas the surrounding towns have the elementary schools.

The last type of school district is a CSD (Community School District, sometimes called a Consolidated School District). This usually (but not always) exists in school districts with such a small student population between several towns that the school district cannot justify an elementary school outside the largest town in the district. In rare cases a CSD refers to only a high school of a school union. Sometimes, in towns geographically isolated (such as island towns) the entire student population attends one school grades PK-12.

Students can choose to attend a school in another district if the parents agree to pay the school tuition. Vocational centers are usually regional, so one school department will administer a technical center but other school districts will transport their students there to take classes.

Private schools

Private schools are less common than public schools. A large number of private elementary schools with under 20 students exist, but most private high schools in Maine are actually semi-private high schools. This means that while it costs money to send children there, towns will make a contract with a school to take children from a town or MSAD at a slightly reduced rate. Often this is done when it is deemed cheaper to subsidize private tuition than build a whole new school when a private one already exists.

Magnet schools

Maine has one major magnet school: The Maine School of Science and Mathematics in Limestone. Another specialty public school exists in Portland: the Maine School of Performing Arts.

Colleges and universities

Professional sports teams

Miscellaneous topics

  • Four U.S. Navy ships have been named USS Maine in honor of the state.
  • Maine is the only U.S. state to have a name one syllable long; all other 49 states have at least two syllables. It also is the only state within the 48 contiguous states to border only one other state.
  • Maine is the number one exporter of blueberries and toothpicks. The largest toothpick manufacturing plant in the United States is located in Strong, Maine. The Strong Wood Products Incorporated plant produces twenty million toothpicks a day.
  • Cadillac Mountain in Bar Harbor, Mt. Katahdin in Baxter State Park, and Mars Hill Mountain in the town of Mars Hill each battle to be the first site in the contiguous United States to see the morning's sunlight. Maine's first light depends on the time of year, as the sunrise moves from South to North. From October 7 to March 6, Cadillac Mountain is first. From March 7 to March 24, West Quoddy Head is first in the country. Warmer months, March 25 to September 18, Mars Hill sees first light. Then, when the sun starts getting lower in the sky, The country's day begins between September 19 to October 6 back at West Quoddy Head.
  • Maine has 62 lighthouses, of which more than 50 are still in use.
  • Maine has traditionally been a source for Maine Salmon, however economic considerations and environmental activism have caused some of the industry to move to Canada.

State symbols

(See also: www.maine.gov portal)

Maine in fiction

Literature

Film

Television

Famous Mainers

A citizen of Maine is known as a "Mainer," though the term "Downeaster" may be applied to residents of the northeast coast of the state.

Gallery

See also

References

External links

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