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A Tour of Historic Machiasport, ME
Posted by: Groundspeak Regular Member BK-Hunters
N 44° 41.859 W 067° 23.638
19T E 627244 N 4950618
Quick Description: Little Machiasport had what turned out to be an important role to play in the early stages of the American Revolution.
Location: Maine, United States
Date Posted: 1/23/2018 1:09:33 PM
Waymark Code: WMXKC5
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member lumbricus
Views: 4

Long Description:
Today Machiasport consists primarily of a stretch of residences strung along the Machias River and Machias Bay. It has, however, three historic sites worth a visit as one passes by the village. The first, in the centre of the old town of Machiasport, is Liberty Hall. A source of great pride for the little town of Machiasport for many decades, Liberty Hall has recently been given new life. Designed and built in 1873 by Machias architect Andrew R. Gilson at a cost of about $8,000, the hall served the town until its closing in 2000 due to its declining condition and safety hazards. Locals, loathe to see the demise of their beloved town hall, formed the Committee to Save Liberty Hall and soon raised $1,000,000 toward its restoration. Two phases of a three phase restoration project have been completed, the remaining phase awaiting the forthcoming of sufficient funds to complete.

It has, since its construction, been used as Town Hall, Grange Meeting Hall, Pocahontas and Redmen Meeting Hall, the site of vaudeville shows, theatre productions, political rallies, basketball games, town festivals and suppers and Town Meetings.

From Liberty Hall we head south then west to the old Machiasport First Congregational Church, which is partially surrounded by the Church Hill Cemetery. First Congregational was built in 1828, making it 189 years old today, one of the oldest churches in the area. In 1975 repairs were done to the steeple. Unfortunately, by 2015, when we visited, more repairs were needed, as one of the four little spires which surround the central steeple was missing and one was laying on its side. The rest of the church, its tower and its steeple, however, appear to be holding up quite well, except for the missing shingles at the top of the spire.

In Church Hill Cemetery lie many of the pioneers of Machiasport and area, and many veterans of both the Revolutionary War and the Civil Car.

Continuing south we come to Fort O'Brien, also known as Fort Machias. It was built in 1775 on Machias Bay at the mouth of Machias River, shortly after the beginning of the American Revolutionary War.

The fort is one of a very few in Maine which were active in the American Revolution, the War of 1812 and the Civil War. Captured and burned by the British in 1814, the fort was returned in 1818. Rebuilt in 1863, the fort was renamed Fort O'Brien.

About two miles offshore from Fort Machias/O'Brien, near Round Island, is the site of what is locally claimed to be the First Naval Battle of the American Revolutionary War, the Battle of Machias, fought between citizens of Machias and a British warship, the Margaretta. Unfortunately, the Battle of Machias was actually the second naval battle of the war, the first taking place on May 14, 1775 at Fairhaven, Massachusetts, the Battle off Fairhaven, in which the Dartmouth whaling sloop Success captured a pair of vessels previousy captured by the British.

The Battle of Machias took place on June 11-12, 1775 with the British sloop tender Margaretta being captured by the townspeople at the cost of one man killed and six wounded, one of which later died of his wounds. Here is a recounting of the battle, taken from informational plaques at the fort.

Though the ultimate end was of no real consequence it gave the revolutionary leaders a talking point in favour of the formation of a navy by the revolutionaries.

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Liberty Hall Congregational Church
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Fort O'Brien Battle Scene

Recommended Time for this WayTour: From: 12:00 AM To: 12:00 AM

Stop Coordinates:
Click on the map above - all the coordinates are there.

Starting Address for this WayTour:
Highway 92/Port Road
Machiasport, ME United States

Number of Stops: 4

Website of stops: Not listed

Stop Website: Not listed

Visit Instructions:
You must include an original photo showing one of the stops along the tour route.
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