Keywords: Falmouth Hotel
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Contributed by: Greater Portland Landmarks
Date: circa 1940
Contributed by: Maine Historical Society
Date: circa 1900
Media: Glass negative, photograph
Since the establishment of the area's first licensed hotel in 1681, Portland has had a dramatic, grand and boisterous hotel tradition. The Portland hotel industry has in many ways reflected the growth and development of the city itself. As Portland grew with greater numbers of people moving through the city or calling it home, the hotel business expanded to fit the increasing demand.
At the heyday of trolleys in Maine, many of the trolley companies developed recreational facilities along or at the end of trolley lines as one further way to encourage ridership. The parks often had walking paths, dance pavilions, and various other entertainments. Cutting-edge technology came together with a thirst for adventure and forever changed social dynamics in the process.
The Wadsworth-Longfellow house is the oldest building on the Portland peninsula, the first historic site in Maine, a National Historic Landmark, home to three generations of Wadsworth and Longfellow family members -- including the boyhood home of the poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. The history of the house and its inhabitants provide a unique view of the growth and changes of Portland -- as well as of the immediate surroundings of the home.
When Peleg Wadsworth built his house in 1785, what is now Congress Street in Portland was on the rural outskirts of the community known as Falmouth. The house passed on to other family members and Portland changed around what remained a family home until 1901, when it became a historic house museum.
A multi-village history of this western Maine town as created by students and teachers from MSAD #74, the New Portland Community Library, and the New Portland Historical Society. Exhibits are divided into sections examining North New Portland Village, East New Portland Village, and West New Portland Village.
Eleven communities comprise the Western Foothills Region, all interconnected yet each with its own unique, rich history. This site is the beginning of the towns sharing their stories with the world, each other, and the next generation. Working closely with local schools, six historical societies came together to help the next generation understand the heritage of their area. We invite you to explore our exhibits that celebrate the individuals and events that formed our communities.