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Online Exhibits

Your results include these online exhibits. You also can view all of the site's exhibits, view a timeline of selected events in Maine History, and learn how to create your own exhibit. See featured exhibits or create your own exhibit


Exhibit

The Life and Legacy of the George Tate Family

Captain George Tate, mast agent for the King of England from 1751 to the Revolutionary War, and his descendants helped shape the development of Portland (first known as Falmouth) through activities such as commerce, shipping, and real estate.

Exhibit

Port of Portland's Custom House and Collectors of Customs

The collector of Portland was the key to federal patronage in Maine, though other ports and towns had collectors. Through the 19th century, the revenue was the major source of Federal Government income. As in Colonial times, the person appointed to head the custom House in Casco Bay was almost always a leading community figure, or a well-connected political personage.

Exhibit

Mural mystery in Westport Island's Cornelius Tarbox, Jr. House

The Cornelius Tarbox, Jr. House, a well-preserved Greek Revival house on Westport Island, has a mystery contained within--a panoramic narrative mural. The floor-to-ceiling mural contains eight painted panels that create a colorful coastal seascape which extends through the front hallway and up the stairwell. The name of the itinerant painter has been lost over time, can you help us solve the mystery of who he or she was?

Exhibit

William King

Maine's first governor, William King, was arguably the most influential figure in Maine's achieving statehood in 1820. Although he served just one year as the Governor of Maine, he was instrumental in establishing the new state's constitution and setting up its governmental infrastructure.

Exhibit

Begin Again: reckoning with intolerance in Maine

BEGIN AGAIN explores Maine's historic role, going back 528 years, in crisis that brought about the pandemic, social and economic inequities, and the Black Lives Matter movement in 2020.

Exhibit

Shepard Cary: Lumberman, Legislator, Leader and Legend

Shepard Cary (1805-1866) was one of the leading -- and wealthiest -- residents of early Aroostook County. He was a lumberman, merchant, mill operator, and legislator.

Exhibit

Popham Colony

George Popham and a group of fellow Englishmen arrived at the mouth of the Kennebec River, hoping to trade with Native Americans, find gold and other valuable minerals, and discover a Northwest passage. In 18 months, the fledgling colony was gone.

Exhibit

Launch of the 'Doris Hamlin'

The Doris Hamlin, a four-masted schooner built at the Frye-Flynn Shipyard in Harrington, was one of the last vessels launched there, marking the decline of a once vigorous shipbuilding industry in Washington County.

Exhibit

Great Cranberry Island's Preble House

The Preble House, built in 1827 on a hilltop over Preble Cove on Great Cranberry Island, was the home to several generations of Hadlock, Preble, and Spurling family members -- and featured in several books.

Exhibit

Chinese in Maine

In 1857, when Daniel Cough left Amoy Island, China, as a stowaway on a sailing ship from Mt. Desert Island he was on his way into history as the first Chinese person to make his home in Maine. He was soon followed by a cigar maker and a tea merchant who settled in Portland and then by many more Chinese men who spread all over Maine working mostly as laundrymen.

Exhibit

Ice: A Maine Commodity

Maine's frozen rivers and lakes provided an economic opportunity. The state shipped thousands of tons of ice to ports along the East Coast and to the West Indies that workers had cut and packed in sawdust for shipment or later use.

Exhibit

Summer's Favorite Game

Baseball often is called the National Pastime. For many people, baseball is encountered in the backyard and down the street, a game played by a few or the full contingent of a team.

Exhibit

A Celebration of Skilled Artisans

The Maine Charitable Mechanic Association, an organization formed to promote and support skilled craftsmen, celebrated civic pride and members' trades with a parade through Portland on Oct. 8, 1841 at which they displayed 17 painted linen banners with graphic and textual representations of the artisans' skills.

Exhibit

Capt. Grenville F. Sparrow, 17th Maine

Grenville F. Sparrow of Portland was 25 when he answered Lincoln's call for more troops to fight the Confederates. He enlisted in Co. A of Maine's 17th Volunteer Infantry regiment. He fought in 30 battles between 1862 and the war's end in 1865.

Exhibit

Big Timber: the Mast Trade

Britain was especially interested in occupying Maine during the Colonial era to take advantage of the timber resources. The tall, straight, old growth white pines were perfect for ships' masts to help supply the growing Royal Navy.

Exhibit

Student Exhibit: The Great By-Pass

The debate over a proposed bridge and bypass in Skowhegan in 2005.

Exhibit

Harry Lyon: An Old Sea Dog Takes to the Air

Through a chance meeting, Harry Lyon of Paris Hill became the navigator on the 1928 flight of the Southern Cross, the first trans-Pacific flight. His skill as a navigator, despite his lack of experience, was a key factor on the flight's success.

Exhibit

Belfast During the Civil War: The Home Front

Belfast residents responded to the Civil War by enlisting in large numbers, providing relief from the home front to soldiers, defending Maine's shoreline, and closely following the news from soldiers and from various battles.

Exhibit

A City Awakes: Arts and Artisans of Early 19th Century Portland

Portland's growth from 1786 to 1860 spawned a unique social and cultural environment and fostered artistic opportunity and creative expression in a broad range of the arts, which flowered with the increasing wealth and opportunity in the city.

Exhibit

Shaarey Tphiloh, Portland's Orthodox Synagogue

Shaarey Tphiloh was founded in 1904 by immigrants from Eastern Europe. While accommodating to American society, the Orthodox synagogue also has retained many of its traditions.

Exhibit

Commander George Henry Preble

George Henry Preble of Portland, nephew of Edward Preble who was known as the father of the U.S. Navy, temporarily lost his command during the Civil War when he was charged with failing to stop a Confederate ship from getting through the Union blockade at Mobile.

Exhibit

John Bapst High School

John Bapst High School was dedicated in September 1928 to meet the expanding needs of Roman Catholic education in the Bangor area. The co-educational school operated until 1980, when the diocese closed it due to decreasing enrollment. Since then, it has been a private school known as John Bapst Memorial High School.

Exhibit

A Craze for Cycling

Success at riding a bike mirrored success in life. Bicycling could bring families together. Bicycling was good for one's health. Bicycling was fun. Bicycles could go fast. Such were some of the arguments made to induce many thousands of people around Maine and the nation to take up the new pastime at the end of the nineteenth century.

Exhibit

Civil Defense: Fear and Safety

In the 1950s and the 1960s, Maine's Civil Defense effort focused on preparedness for hurricanes, floods and other natural disasters and a more global concern, nuclear war. Civil Defense materials urged awareness, along with measures like storing food and other staple items and preparing underground or other shelters.