Brunswick, Maine

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Brunswick, Maine
Downtown Brunswick, ME IMG 1967.JPG
Downtown Brunswick, looking north
Seal of Brunswick, Maine.png
Motto(s): 
"Beautifully balanced"
Cumberland County Maine incorporated and unincorporated areas Brunswick highlighted.svg
Location in Cumberland County and the state of Maine
Coordinates: 43°54′39″N69°57′47″W / 43.91083°N 69.96306°W / 43.91083; -69.96306 Coordinates: 43°54′39″N69°57′47″W / 43.91083°N 69.96306°W / 43.91083; -69.96306
Country United States
State Maine
County Cumberland
Settled1628
Incorporated (town)1739
Communities Brunswick
Bunganuc Landing
Cooks Corner
Dyer Corner
Growstown
Harding
Merepoint
Area
[1]
  Total54.34 sq mi (140.74 km2)
  Land46.73 sq mi (121.03 km2)
  Water7.61 sq mi (19.71 km2)
Population
 (2020) [2]
  Total21,756
  Density433.9/sq mi (167.5/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern)
  Summer (DST) UTC-4 (Eastern)
ZIP code
04011
Website www.brunswickme.org

Brunswick is a town in Cumberland County, Maine, United States. The population was 21,756 at the 2020 United States Census. [3] Part of the Portland-South Portland-Biddeford metropolitan area, Brunswick is home to Bowdoin College, the Bowdoin International Music Festival, the Bowdoin College Museum of Art, the Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum, and the Maine State Music Theatre. It was formerly home to the U.S. Naval Air Station Brunswick, which was permanently closed on May 31, 2011, and has since been partially released to redevelopment as "Brunswick Landing".

Contents

History

Map of Brunswick, Maine, dated May 29, 1795 Brunswick Maine map 1795.jpg
Map of Brunswick, Maine, dated May 29, 1795
The rail yard at Brunswick, Maine, pictured in a c. 1910 postcard Brunswick Maine.png
The rail yard at Brunswick, Maine, pictured in a c. 1910 postcard

Settled in 1628 by Thomas Purchase and other fishermen, the area was called by its Indian name, Pejepscot, meaning "the long, rocky rapids part [of the river]". In 1639, Purchase placed his settlement under protection of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. During King Philip's War in 1676, Pejepscot was burned and abandoned, although a garrison called Fort Andros was built on the ruins during King William's War. During the war, in Major Benjamin Church's second expedition a year later, he arrived on 11 September 1690 with 300 men at Casco Bay. He went up the Androscoggin River to the English Fort Pejepscot (present day Brunswick, Maine). [4] From there he went 40 miles (64 km) up-river and attacked a native village. Three or four native men were shot in retreat; when Church discovered five English captives in the wigwams, six or seven prisoners were butchered as an example; [5] and nine prisoners were taken. A few days later, in retaliation, the natives attacked Church at Cape Elizabeth on Purpooduc Point, killing seven of his men and wounding 24 others. [6] On September 26, Church returned to Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

The 1713 Treaty of Portsmouth brought peace to the region between the Abenaki Indians and the English colonists. [7]

In 1714, a consortium from Boston and Portsmouth bought the land, thereafter called the Pejepscot Purchase. The Massachusetts General Court constituted the township in 1717, naming it "Brunswick" in honor of the House of Brunswick and its scion, King George I. A stone fort called Fort George was built in 1715 near the falls. But during Dummer's War on July 13, 1722, Abenaki warriors from Norridgewock burned the village. Consequently, Governor Samuel Shute declared war on the Abenakis. In 1724, 208 English troops left Fort Richmond and sacked Norridgewock during Dummer's War. Brunswick was rebuilt again in 1727, and in 1739 incorporated as a town. It became a prosperous seaport, where Bowdoin College was chartered in 1794. [7]

The Androscoggin River falls in three successive stages for a total vertical drop of 41 feet (12 m), providing water power for industry. Brunswick became a major producer of lumber, with as many as 25 sawmills. Some of the lumber went into shipbuilding. Other firms produced paper, soap, flour, marble and granite work, carriages and harness, plows, furniture, shoes and confections. The town was site of the first cotton mill in Maine, the Brunswick Cotton Manufactory Company, built in 1809 to make yarn. Purchased in 1812, the mill was enlarged by the Maine Cotton & Woolen Factory Company. [8] In 1857, the Cabot Manufacturing Company was established to make cotton textiles. It bought the failed Worumbo Mill and expanded the brick factory along the falls. Needing even more room, the company in 1890 persuaded the town to move Maine Street. [9]

Today, Brunswick has a number of historic districts recognized on the National Register of Historic Places, including the Pennellville Historic District preserving shipbuilders' and sea captains' mansions built in the Federal, Greek Revival and Italianate architectural styles. Principal employers for Brunswick include L.L. Bean, Bath Iron Works, as well as companies that produce fiberglass construction material and electrical switches. A number of health services providers serving Maine's mid-coast area are located in Brunswick. [10] The former Naval Air Station Brunswick was a major employer in Brunswick prior to its closure.

The book Uncle Tom's Cabin was written by Harriet Beecher Stowe while she was living in Brunswick, during the time that her husband was a professor at Bowdoin. She got a key vision for the book in the First Parish Church. [11]

A scene in the 1993 movie The Man Without a Face was filmed in the town. [10]

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 54.34 square miles (140.74 km2), of which 46.73 square miles (121.03 km2) is land and 7.61 square miles (19.71 km2) is water. [1] Brunswick is located at the north end of Casco Bay, as well as the head of tide and head of navigation on the Androscoggin River.

Climate

Climate data for Brunswick, Maine
MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYear
Record high °F (°C)61
(16)
59
(15)
73
(23)
84
(29)
94
(34)
100
(38)
98
(37)
104
(40)
95
(35)
85
(29)
74
(23)
68
(20)
104
(40)
Average high °F (°C)31
(−1)
34
(1)
43
(6)
54
(12)
65
(18)
74
(23)
79
(26)
78
(26)
70
(21)
59
(15)
47
(8)
36
(2)
56
(13)
Average low °F (°C)10
(−12)
14
(−10)
23
(−5)
33
(1)
44
(7)
53
(12)
59
(15)
58
(14)
50
(10)
38
(3)
30
(−1)
18
(−8)
36
(2)
Record low °F (°C)−49
(−45)
−25
(−32)
−10
(−23)
13
(−11)
27
(−3)
34
(1)
37
(3)
37
(3)
28
(−2)
18
(−8)
1
(−17)
−21
(−29)
−49
(−45)
Average precipitation inches (mm)3.72
(94)
3.55
(90)
4.37
(111)
4.74
(120)
4.52
(115)
4.17
(106)
4.00
(102)
3.30
(84)
4.23
(107)
4.94
(125)
5.62
(143)
4.07
(103)
51.23
(1,300)
Source: weather.com [12]

Neighboring cities and towns

Demographics

Historical population
CensusPop.
1790 1,357
1800 1,80933.3%
1810 2,68248.3%
1820 2,9319.3%
1830 3,54721.0%
1840 4,25920.1%
1850 4,97716.9%
1860 4,723−5.1%
1870 4,687−0.8%
1880 5,38414.9%
1890 6,01211.7%
1900 6,80613.2%
1910 6,621−2.7%
1920 7,2619.7%
1930 7,6044.7%
1940 8,65813.9%
1950 10,99627.0%
1960 15,79743.7%
1970 16,1952.5%
1980 17,3667.2%
1990 20,90620.4%
2000 21,1721.3%
2010 20,278−4.2%
2020 21,7567.3%
[13] [14] [15]

As of 2000, the median income for a household in the town was $40,402; and the median income for a family was $49,088. Males had a median income of $32,141 versus $24,927 for females. The per capita income for the town was $20,322. About 5.0% of families and 8.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.6% of those under age 18 and 8.1% of those age 65 or over.

2010 census

As of the census [2] of 2010, there were 15,175 people, 7,183 households, and 6,498 families residing in the census-designated place of Brunswick. The population density was 433.9 inhabitants per square mile (167.5/km2). There were 9,599 housing units at an average density of 205.4 per square mile (79.3/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 93.0% White, 1.7% African American, 0.3% Native American, 2.1% Asian, 0.5% from other races, and 2.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.9% of the population.

There were 8,469 households, of which 25.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them; 44.7% were married couples living together; 9.7% had a female householder with no husband present; 3.3% had a male householder with no wife present; and 42.3% were non-families. 35.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 16.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.19 and the average family size was 2.83.

The median age in the town was 41.4 years. 19.2% of residents were under the age of 18; 14.1% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 20.8% were from 25 to 44; 27.6% were from 45 to 64; and 18.2% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the town was 47.1% male and 52.9% female.

Education

Brunswick High School Schoolfront.jpg
Brunswick High School

The Brunswick School Department operates public schools, including:

Other educational institutions include:

Sites of interest

Curtis Memorial Library c. 1915 Curtis Memorial Library, Brunswick, ME.jpg
Curtis Memorial Library c. 1915
House where Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Bowdoin Class of 1825, roomed House Where Longfellow Roomed, Brunswick, ME.jpg
House where Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Bowdoin Class of 1825, roomed
Harriet Beecher Stowe House, where, between 1850 and 1852, Stowe wrote Uncle Tom's Cabin Stowe House, Brunswick, ME.jpg
Harriet Beecher Stowe House, where, between 1850 and 1852, Stowe wrote Uncle Tom's Cabin

Infrastructure

Transportation

The town is served by Interstate 295, U.S. Routes 1 and 201, and Maine State Route 24, Maine State Route 123 and Maine State Route 196.

Maine Eastern Railroad train at the Amtrak station in Brunswick Maine Eastern Amtrak train, Brunswick, ME IMG 1946.JPG
Maine Eastern Railroad train at the Amtrak station in Brunswick

Amtrak's Downeaster train service terminates at Brunswick Maine Street Station and connects the town to the Portland Transportation Center and Boston's North Station.

Metro Greater Portland Transit District provides several trips a day between the Portland Transportation Center and Brunswick Maine Street Station with its Breez bus service.

Notable people

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Harriet Beecher Stowe 19th-century American abolitionist and author

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Harriet Beecher Stowe House (Brunswick, Maine) United States historic place

The Harriet Beecher Stowe House is a historic home and National Historic Landmark at 63 Federal Street in Brunswick, Maine, notable as a short-term home of Harriet Beecher Stowe and Calvin Ellis Stowe and where Harriet wrote her 1852 novel Uncle Tom's Cabin. Earlier, it had been the home of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow as a student. It is today owned by Bowdoin College. A space within the house, called Harriet's Writing Room, is open to the public.

Calvin Ellis Stowe

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First Parish Church (Brunswick, Maine) United States historic place

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Federal Street Historic District United States historic place

The Federal Street Historic District of Brunswick, Maine encompasses a part of the town whose development was influenced by its 18th-century success as a shipping center, and by the presence of Bowdoin College, whose historic central campus is part of the district. In addition to the campus, the district includes a series of relatively high-style Federal and later-period houses along Federal Street and Maine Street, which join the campus to downtown Brunswick. The district was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1976.

References

  1. 1 2 "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2012-12-20. Retrieved 2012-12-16.
  2. 1 2 "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau . Retrieved 2012-12-16.
  3. "Population, Census, April 1, 2020 Brunswick, ME". U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts.
  4. Drake, The Border Wars of New England. p. 66
  5. Drake, p. 67
  6. Drake, p. 69
  7. 1 2 Coolidge, Austin J.; John B. Mansfield (1859). A History and Description of New England. Boston, Massachusetts: A.J. Coolidge. pp.  75–77. coolidge mansfield history description new england 1859.
  8. Varney, George J. (1886), Gazetteer of the state of Maine. Brunswick, Boston: Russell, archived from the original on 2013-02-01
  9. "Historical Sketch of Brunswick, Maine (1889)". rays-place.com. Archived from the original on 1 February 2013. Retrieved 1 May 2018.
  10. 1 2 Southern Midcoast Maine Chamber of Commerce Archived November 26, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  11. Pope, Sarah Dillard. "Aboard the Underground Railroad-- Harriet Beecher Stowe House--Maine". www.nps.gov. Archived from the original on 2 September 2013. Retrieved 1 May 2018.
  12. "Monthly Averages for Brunswick, Maine". Weather.com . The Weather Channel. Archived from the original on June 5, 2008. Retrieved August 15, 2013.
  13. "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". Archived from the original on 2012-10-12. Retrieved 2013-01-10.
  14. "U.S. Census Bureau". Archived from the original on 2011-05-20. Retrieved 2015-11-03.
  15. "University of Virginia Library". mapserver.lib.virginia.edu. Archived from the original on 11 August 2012. Retrieved 1 May 2018.

Further reading