17,000 before present (BP)
- Last glacier – Wisconsin glaciation – begins to recede
- What is now Maine mostly glacier free, except for far north
- Paleo–Indians, first humans in Maine, arrive
- Archaic peoples with seagoing culture, inhabit Maine, engage in swordfishing
- Maine Indians begin making ceramic pottery; evidence of wigwams dates from this period
- "Dawnland" inhabited by about 20,000 people: Armouchiquois (Casco Bay to Massachusetts), Etchemin (Kennebec to St. John River Valley), and Abenaki (interior). Collectively known as Wabanaki – People of the Dawn
- Giovanni Da Verrazano (1485-1528), Italian navigator in French employ, makes first recorded landfall in region; names area Terra Onde Di Mala Gente – Land of the Bad People – due to rude reception by Indians
- Estevan Gomez (ca. 1483-1538), Portuguese exploring for Spain, sails up Penobscot River to site of present–day Bangor
- Verrazano's map names region "Oranbega"
- Richard Haklyut's (ca.1552-1616) Voyages includes story of David Ingram about fabulous city of Norumbega; region becomes "Norumbega"