Readers, Welcome to my blog (formerly Birds, Blooms, Books, etc). I'm entering a new decade taking on the challenge of moving from Maryland after living there 46 years and learning about my new home here in New England in the Live Free or Die state - New Hampshire. Join me as a write this new chapter of my life.

Monday, September 27, 2021

Maine Capital

 Augusta is Maine's capital city.

What brought us to town was Fort Western - the first European structure in the area - built in 1754.  It's the oldest wooden garrison in North America.

It was built as a resupply fort and military outpost for the Province of Massachusetts and its mission was to supply the provincial Fort Fairfax up the Kennebec River during the French and Indian War. At this point in the river the larger ships couldn't travel upstream so supplies were transferred to wooden bateaus and rowed up to Fort Fairfax.

Once the war ended settlement began around the fort which led to Augusta becoming a town.

We arrived at the fort shortly after it opened and were given an extensive history tour. Our guide dressed in period costume was a high school student named Dorothy.  I was amazed by how much she knew and thought she was a college graduate.


She took us first to one of the two blockhouses that would have been on corners of the fort.  This was a re-creation since the original structures didn't survive.

The 5 lb cannons wore sheepskin to keep them dry and free from rust.

The structure below is what dates to 1754.  Originally it housed the garrison. 

In 1767 the Howard family purchased it and had a store here until 1807.

It was also the Howard home from 1770-1852.

It became tenement apartments in 1852 until 1920.

Views of Augusta across the Kennebec River from the fort.

In 1922 Fort Western became a museum.