Happy Birthday, Maine!
Did you know that Maine is celebrating it's 200th birthday this year? On March 15, 1820, Maine became the 23rd state in the nation following the Missouri Compromise.
But Maine's rich history begins long before that.
The first European settlers sailed up the Penobscot in the late 1500s, reporting they had discovered a city of great wealth, which they believed was the lost city of gold known as Norumbega. When Samuel de Champlain sailed up the Penobscot River in 1604, he was unable to find the city, but did encounter local Native American tribes and began trading furs with them.
As settlers continued to flock to Maine, they established settlements along or at the mouths of rivers using the waterways for trade and transportation - resulting in thriving industry for the state.
Two centuries later, cities and towns across Maine are planning a summer full of celebrations in honor of Maine's rich history.
Along the Penobscot River, The Penobscot Maritime Heritage Association has a massive four-town celebration in the works. The event will kick off on July 9 in Searsport with the arrival of Tall Ships America, who will embark on a journey up river to Bucksport, Bangor and Brewer. Running through July 14, the 4 Port Loop will include educational activities reflecting Maine's 200 years of history, culminating in Castine's "Bastille Day" celebrations on July 14.
To learn more about events happening near you, visit the official website of Maine's bicentennial, Maine 200: Leading the Way.