Maine is located in the Northeast United States and makes up the northern part of New England. It borders the Atlantic Ocean to the east, Quebec and New Brunswick to the north-northwest and New Hampshire to the west; its the only state in the US that borders just one other state. People come from all over the world to experience the pristine terrain among the high peaks of the Appalachian Mountains, the dense forests of the interior and the jagged 3,500 miles of coastline along the Gulf of Maine – which also features 4,613 islands. 6,000 lakes and ponds dot the landscape, offering exponential locations to relax in the serine Maine wilderness. To put things in prospective, the total area of Maine is 33,215 square miles and 26,562 square miles are undeveloped.
The people of Maine live a slow-paced New England lifestyle and have a strong sense of community. Most of them live in small fishing villages or quaint mountain towns, where you will find the essence of the people among the many farms and early colonial homes. Even Maine’s largest city, Portland, has a population of only 63,194 people and holds true to the traditions of a small town. It is common place for people to smile and wave as you pass by, whether it is on foot or in a car, casual conversations are had in line at the local grocer or variety store. Among Mainers, it is also generally understood that if someone needs help, you help them. Whether they be broken down on the side of the road or struggling with an armful of whatever, rules of common courtesy dictate that you should step in.
Maine Lobster: For years, lobster has been harvested along the coast of Maine. Originally thought of as a disgusting bottom feeder, it was usually found on the tables of poor Maine families. In the early 1800’s, the crustacean began to grow in popularity and today, it has become world renowned and considered a delicacy. In the summertime, Mainers have feasts called lobster bakes which also include steamed clams, corn on the cob and Maine potatoes.
Maine Blueberries: Wild Maine Blueberries can be found almost anywhere in Maine. For years, Maine’s first inhabitants – the Maliseet, Passamaquoddy, Abenaki, and Penobscot Indians – have used the berries for their healing properties and rich nutrients. It wasn’t until the mid-1800’s that the berries were harvested on the commercial level. Best enjoyed during the summer months, wild Maine blueberries can also be frozen to be had year-round.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882): A world renowned poet and educator, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow is well known for his poems “Paul Revere’s Ride” and “The Song of Hiawatha.” He attended and taught at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine and took professorships at Harvard College in Boston, Massachusetts, as well as at many colleges in Europe. His contributions to education and literature around the world were profound and live on to this day.
Hannibal Hamlin (1809-1891): Founder of the Grand Old Party (Republican Party,) Hannibal Hamlin served as US Senator from Maine three times, then preceded to sit as Governor of Maine for one term and finally served as the Vice President of the United States from 1861-1865 during the American Civil War under Abraham Lincoln. Hamlin also served as US Ambassador to Spain and held a number of other public offices both nationally and on the state level. This great diplomat played a key part in the history of the United States.
George J. Mitchell, Jr. (born 1933): Between 1989 and 1995, Senator Mitchell sat as US Senate Majority Leader until he was appointed as United States Special Envoy for Northern Ireland under President Bill Clinton. He chaired the peace negotiations that lead to the Belfast Peace Agreement; signed in 1998, it ended tensions between the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland which had lasted for decades. More recently the senator has been appointed as US Special Envoy for the Middle East under Barack Obama and has compiled reports on the Arab-Israeli conflict which have been pivotal in on-going peace negotiations. He is a true Mainer and to this day, he gives back to his home state in substantial ways.
Stephen King, Milton Bradley, Patrick Dempsey, Edmund Muskie, Margaret Chase Smith, Nelson Rockefeller, Jud Nelson, EB White, LL Bean, Thomas Reed, James G. Blaine
Portland Head Light: Located in Fort Williams Park in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, Portland Head Light was commissioned by George Washington in 1791, making it first lighthouse in the United States. The lighthouse continues to warn sailors as they navigate the rocky coast into Portland Harbor and is the most photographed lighthouse in the world.
Acadia National Park: The first national park on the eastern seaboard, Acadia National Park on Mount Desert Island showcases the beauty of Maine’s rugged coast in close proximity to Cadillac Mountain, the largest on the Atlantic Coast. The park was donated by the Rockefellers in order to preserve such a magical place. Words do not suffice when attempting to describe the significance and fascination of these profoundly preserved seaside gem. Come see for yourself when you book your car rental in Portland, Maine.