Gazetteer of the State of Maine, 1882 page 368
Click on the image to view a larger, bitmap (.bmp) image suitable for printing.


Click on the image above for a larger, bitmap image suitable for printing.

Gazetteer of the State of Maine With Numerous Illustrations, by Geo. J. Varney

BOSTON: PUBLISHED BY B. B. RUSSELL, 57 CORNHILL. 1882. Public domain image from

368    GAZETTEER    OF    MAINE.

The name, Monhegan, is a corruption of an Indian word signifying
“Grand Island.” It is the “ St. Georges’ Island” of Capt." George
Weymouth, who landed here in 1605. Here, also, Popham’s colonists
landed on the 29th of August, 1607, when Richard Seymour, the chap-    i

lain, preached the first English sermon ever given in A'merica. A plan
has been formed for erecting a monument upon the island in commem-
oration of this event.

Monhegan has, from their first knowledge of the coast, been a place
of resort for European fisherman and traders; and in 1618-19 part of    **

a crew sent out by Sir Ferdinando Gorges spent the winter here. In
1626, Abraham Shurt was sent over by Elbridge and Aldsworth, the
owners of the Pemaquid Patent, to purchase the island from Abraham
Jennings, of Plymouth, paying for it £50. It was depopulated in
King Philips’ war ; but was soon after resettled, and has ever since
continued in a thriving condition. On the island “Mananas,” forming
the western side of the harbor of Monhegan, are some markings on a
rock, which by some antiquarians are believed to be letters made by
Scandinavian explorers in ancient days. The characters are about
eight inches in length, and are sunk quite deeply into the rock, npon a
stratum which seems to be softer than the main ledge, which is horn-
blende. They all stand in proper parallels to each other, and obliquely
to the course of the stratum. A cast was taken by Dr. Hamlin, which
wras sent to the American Antiquarian Society at Copenhagan ; but
tbe society have not been able to establish its human origin. Many
incline to the opinion that the marks are only peculiar fissures in the

There was formerly an Advent society and meeting on the island ;
and during the season of 1880 a church was finished and dedicated by
the Methodists. Monhegan has one good public schoolhouse, which,
with the appurtenances, is valued at $500. The valuation of estates
in 1870 was $24,345. In 1880 it was $10,305. The rate of taxation in
the latter year was 2-| per cent. The population in 1870 was, together
with Marsh Isle, 165. In 1880 it was 133.

Monmouth the north-westerly town of Kennebec County,
is about 16 miles from Augusta, and about 48 miles from Portland, on
the line of the Maine Central Railway from the latter place to Water-
ville. The town is nearly square in its form ; and is bounded on the
east by Litchfield and West Gardiner, north by Winthrop and Wayne,
and having the town of Wales, in Androscoggin County on the south,
and Green and Leeds, in the same county, on the west. On or near
the border lie five ponds, commencing at the south-east with Purgatory
ponds, there follow Cobbossee Contee Great Pond at the north-east,

Annabessacook at the north, Androscoggin Pond at the north-west,
and parallel to and south-easterly of this, Wilsons’ Pond. The latter
takes its name from a man who was drowned in it by the Indians. The
first settlers found a small tribe of these residing in town, who grad-
ually disappeared. In the western part of the town lies Cochnewagan
Pond, whose outlet furnishes the power for the manufactories at Mon-
mouth Centre. There are a grain mill, capable of grinding seventy-
five bushels of wheat per day, and of corn, five or six hundred ; a sash-
factory, a saw-mill wTith capacity to saw from five to seven thousand
feet of boards per day; a shingle-mill and carpenter’s shop. The other


This page was written in HTML using a program written in Python 3.2