Grafton Notch State Park – A Wild To Be Enjoyed By All

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During the past weekend I had the pleasure of taking a trip up north in my home state of Maine to almost the Canadian border. Here lies a true natural hideaway that not everyone knows about, Grafton Notch State Park.

For all of you that do not know what a notch is…well it’s a New England/New Hampshire term for a pass through the  mountains. I’ve told people “notch” and have gotten many confused looks.

The state park encompasses an assortment of unique landmmarks/attractions to delight any day hike. I recommend Screw Auger Falls. It is trully breathtaking.

 

 

Grafton Notch State Park is located on Route 26 between Newry and Upton, Maine, and offers opportunities for sightseeing, picnicking, and hiking on its 3,000 acres of beautiful natural terrain.

Several interesting attractions are conveniently located on scenic Route 26. Interpretive signs explain the glacial sculpting of Screw Auger Falls and the formation of Mother Walker Falls. A quarter-mile loop trail leads to Moose Cave with its narrow gorge and lush lichens and mosses. At Spruce Meadow and Screw Auger Falls visitors will find picnic tables and grills.

Both short and long day hikes extend through this spectacular, scenic area at the end of the Mahoosuc Range. The 2,000-mile Appalachian Trail passes through the park on the way to the trail’s northern terminus, Mt. Katahdin. Facilities include picnic tables and grills. In the winter, a main artery snowmobile trail (ITS 82) traverses the park and is maintained by a local snowmobile club.

3,112 acres; Sights include: Screw Auger Falls, Spruce Meadow, Mother Walker Falls, Old Speck Mountain, and Moose Cave.

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Flashback To The 1931 Maine Central Railroad Schedule

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Fort Baldwin – A Piece Of Maine’s Military History

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I recently visited to document Fort Baldwin in Popham Beach, ME. For those going down to take a look this is a lengthy drive down the penninsula. The site is extremely well preserved and one can walk through almost all of the buildings to explore. Sadly the fire tower was not open at the end of the path. Here is a Wikipedia roundup of it………….

Fort Baldwin, a coastal defense land battery near the mouth of the Kennebec River in Phippsburg, Maine, United States, was named after Jeduthan Baldwin, an engineer for the Colonial army during the American Revolution. The fort was constructed between 1905 and 1912 and originally consisted of three batteries, all of which were removed in July 1924:

  • Battery Cogan with two three-inch guns. Named in honor of a lieutenant in the 5th Continental Infantry during the American Revolution. Cogan, who had also been quartermaster of the 1st New Hamsphire Regiment, died August 21, 1778.
  • Battery Hawley with two six-inch pedestal guns. This battery also housed the fort’s original observation station and electric equipment. Named in honor of Brigadier General Joseph R. Hawley who served with distinction during the American Civil War.
  • Battery Hardman with one six-inch pedestal gun. Named in honor of a Captain in the 2nd Maryland Regiment, Continental Army during the American Revolution. Hardman was taken prisoner at Camden, South Carolina and died while a prisoner of war on September 1, 1780.

During World War I, Fort Baldwin and Fort Popham held a garrison of 200 soldiers including the 13th and 29th Coast Artillery.

During World War II, between 1941 and 1943, D Battery, 8th Coast Artillery protected Fort Baldwin and its Fire Control Tower that could radio the precise position of enemy vessels to batteries in Casco Bay.

 

Boobytown

For some time now I had the knowledge of a mysterious part of Maine’s varied history, this time from Lewiston. I lived almost my entire life in the tri-state region of Massachusetts so upon reading this story I never acted on actually going for an actual visit. I cannot even tell you now that I have been there, I haven’t. What I can tell is the unusual stigma attached to a village in Maine by the name of Lower Dallas.

In the mid 1800’s the prosperous city of Lewiston in Maine had an innovative and at the same time bastardy plan at the same time. The roll call for welfare was quite large during this period. The city needed a way to turn the tide of people depending on the system. Someone, I do not know who, came up with the idea with shipping them off to what is known as Lower Dallas just east of Rangely in the northwest corner of the state. These people were hard up while living in Lewiston and after the move to Lower Dallas things only got worse. Stories of people running off into the fields to eat dandelions raw were the norm. Of all of these welfare afflicted Lewstonians the most prominent family was the Bubiers thus the towns name of “Boobytown” came into being.  The Boobytowners were always known by the people of Rangely as honest and fair trading partners and always had the utmost respect for them. Sad that such a quality of people was shipped away in favor of saving a few dollars (in today’s money mush more).

Today if you can find the way to the location of Lower Dallas you will find a virtual ghost town, complete with newspapers from the period around WW 2 on the floor of some of the structures. It is in these ways that Maine is trully unique as if someone leaves the forest locks it up until later discovery. Last heard, the is only one descendant of the Bubiers still living near Boobytown, Virgil Bubier. If anyone is looking to go there I hear he is one of the best people out there with the history of the place.  It’s an understatement to say that a general feeling of paranormal activity also prevails here according to reports, which can only be imagined with the history of these people stolen from their home. I hope in the future more attention can be brought to this incident in Lewiston’s history and the whole state of Maine in general. I can only hope this article keeps alive the drive for people to find out more about it.

I want to give special credit to Art Sordillo and Yankee Magazine for this other, somewhat related article, definitely a good read.

http://www.outtakes.com/45th/45thnopics.html

April Signs Of Life In Maine

The Poland Springs Resort, A Bygone Treasure

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I recently brought my family to the Poland Springs Park in Poland Springs, ME. The hill and area contained on top the said hill once had the wondorous Poland Springs Resort upon them. People from all walks of life from presidents to common men came to this spot to relax and drink in the “miraculous” waters contained there in. The resort is no longer there but the Maine House, a tourist mecca, is in the general spot where it once was. Here is the photo set from there and I encourage everyone as always to check out these great places.

Views Of Lewiston/Auburn, Maine

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