“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
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The Museum in the Streets®: Augusta, Maine Historical Markers

<i>Comfort</i> Magazine / Le Magazine <i>Comfort</i> Marker image, Touch for more information
By William Fischer, Jr., July 30, 2017
Comfort Magazine / Le Magazine Comfort Marker
1 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 9 — Comfort Magazine / Le Magazine ComfortAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
In July 1895, the first color issue of Comfort rolled off the presses to be sent nationwide to over a million subscribers. W. H. Gannett established his phenomenally successful magazine (1888-1942) to promote Giant Oxien, his . . . Map (db m111271) HM
2 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 25 — A New Look for Water Street / Un nouvel arrivant dans Water StreetAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
Holiday shoppers on Water Street in 1932 had a brand new store to shop! That year, the S.S. Kresge five and dime store opened in a modern Art Deco building unique in downtown Augusta. The new building replaced an Italianate block . . . Map (db m111199) HM
3 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 26 — An Ornament to the City / Un joyau de la villeAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
In 1856, James North built Meonian Hall, named for Maeonia in Asia Minor. The Italianate building stood on the site of the Burton House, Augusta's first post office in 1789. During the Civil War, patriotic rallies and civic meetings . . . Map (db m111246) HM
4 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — Map — Augusta, MaineThe Museum in the Streets™
Welcome to Augusta Indigenous people occupied the Augusta area for thousands of years before European explorers arrived. Little evidence remains of their time here, but patches of forested land along the Kennebec give us a glimpse . . . Map (db m186068) HM
5 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 23 — Augusta's Publishing Empire / L'empire de l'édition à AugustaAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
These buildings were built to house the E. C. Allen Publishing Company. Allen has been called the forerunner of the advertising agency business, the pioneer of low-priced mail order periodicals, and the creator of the premium idea . . . Map (db m111073) HM
6 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 20 — Cornerstone Day / La pose des premières pierresAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
On June 14, 1894, the cornerstones for the Masonic Temple and Lithgow Library were laid with imposing Masonic ceremonies. Parades, speeches, and feasting marked the day, and hundreds of people from all over the state participated. . . . Map (db m111147) HM
7 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 1 — Cushnoc Trading Post / Le Comptoir Commercial De CushnocAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
An endless quest for riches brought Europeans to the Kennebec River by 1607 and to Augusta by 1625. In 1628, the Plymouth (Massachusetts) Colony constructed Cushnoc Trading Post on the Kennebec riverbank at the head of navigation, . . . Map (db m110861) HM
8 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 12 — D.W. Adams Department Store / Le grand magasin de D.W. AdamsAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
In 1910, Delbert W. Adams opened a store on Water Street offering "strictly first-class goods at a fair margin of profit." In 1920, Adams moved across the street to 190 Water Street, where the store operated until it closed in 1982. . . . Map (db m111248) HM
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9 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 10 — First Kennebec Bridge / Le premier pont du KennebecAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
For over 200 years, this site has anchored a span over the Kennebec River. Construction of the first bridge began in May 1797 by the Proprietors of the Kennebec Bridge, which owned and subsequently operated the bridge. Completed on . . . Map (db m110811) HM
10 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 22 — Flag Protest ~ War of 1812 / Drapeau en berne - Guerre de 1812Augusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
The embargoes leading to war caused economic hardship in Augusta, and news of war generated disdain in this Federalist Town. Citizens mounted a protest by hanging an effigy of President Madison from the public wharf and flying an . . . Map (db m153146) HM
11 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 18 — Granite Block / Un Bâtiment en granitAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
Amid the destruction of the 1865 Great Fire, a new and magnificent building was already rising. Granite Block, built at the corner of Water Street and Market Square, was a three-story edifice faced with granite. The third floor had a . . . Map (db m111087) HM
12 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 2 — Gunshots Reverberate on the Kennebec / Des coups de fusil résonnent sur le fleuve KennebecAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
The Pilgrims' trading post at Cushnoc had enjoyed a monopoly of fur trade with local Abenaki since 1628. In the spring of 1634 a vessel commanded by John Hocking of Portsmouth challenged that monopoly. Arriving at Cushnoc, Hocking . . . Map (db m110824) HM
13 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 6 — Majestic House / Une demeure majestueuseAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® — Reported missing
Constructed facing the Kennebec River in 1799 by Arthur Lithgow, this majestic Federal style dwelling in 1807 became home to Reuel Williams, one of Augusta's most prominent nineteenth century citizen. The 14-room house featured an . . . Map (db m110889) HM
14 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 15 — Market Square / La place du MarchéAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
Market Square was an early civic and commercial center for the community. Bordering the Square were Pollard's Tavern and the first Meeting House, built in 1782. In 1816, hard times prompted "Ohio Fever" and the square was a . . . Map (db m111082) HM
15 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 3 — Old Fort Western / Le vieux Fort WesternAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
As part of the strategy to expand and strengthen Massachusetts' territorial claims along the Kennebec River, a Boston-based land company, the Kennebec Proprietors, built Fort Western in 1754. Commanded by James Howard, the Fort . . . Map (db m110822) HM
16 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 7 — Riverside: Temple of Peace / Le Temple de la PaixAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
The Gothic style cottage, now used for business, was built by the Reverend Sylvester Judd as a home and parsonage. In 1840, Judd became minister of Augusta's Unitarian Church, the church of local elite. In 1841, Judd married Jane . . . Map (db m110891) HM
17 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 17 — Shipbuilding Days / L'époque des chantiers navalsAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
In the golden years of wooden shipbuilding, Maine-built ships carried American goods worldwide-and Augusta was no exception! Master William Jones' shipyard was located here in the 1840s & 1850s. From 1837 to 1856, 37 vessels were . . . Map (db m153160) HM
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18 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 4 — Sousa the nonpariel / L'incomparable SouzaAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
The afternoon concert at Augusta city hall on May 1, 1897, proved to be both popular and historic. On that day the people of Augusta heard the most famous band in the land—Sousa's Band! John Philip Sousa was by the time of his . . . Map (db m110780) HM
19 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 16 — Steamboat Landing / L'embarquement des bateaux à vapeurAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
Steamboats debuted on the Kennebec in 1818. By 1823, the Kennebec Steam Navigation Company operated the Waterville between Bath and Augusta. A nationwide economic decline later forced them out of business, but the organization . . . Map (db m111161) HM
20 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 8 — Strive to Excel! / Vive L'Excellence! Reported missing
Map (db m110936) HM
21 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 14 — The Great Fire / Le Grand incendieAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
On the morning of September 17, 1865, a fire began in the new, still unoccupied Dr. H. H. Hill building on the east side of Water Street, above Oak Street. An arsonist later convicted of setting a Portland fire was suspected, . . . Map (db m111205) HM
22 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 24 — They Were Superior Buildings / Des bâtiments pittoresquesAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
By 1858 Water Street had been transformed from a wilderness into a bustling business district featuring many fine commercial brick and wooden buildings. That year a pioneer photographer, Simon Wing of Waterville, took two stereo . . . Map (db m111238) HM
23 Maine, Kennebec County, Augusta — 21 — United States Post Office / La Poste des Etats-UnisAugusta, Maine — The Museum in the Streets® —
Augusta's "Castle"! When first opened in 1890, the Portland Transcript called 295 Water Street "one of the most picturesque public buildings that the government has bestowed upon any city in the Union." Built of Hallowell . . . Map (db m111133) HM
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Jun. 8, 2023