Mountains of Possibilities… Come Play In Our Backyard

History & Heritage

Benedict Arnold and his troops passed through Maine’s High Peaks Region on October 19, 1775, on their way up the North Branch of the Dead River to fight in the ill-fated Battle of Quebec.

The first recorded visitors to the southern end part of Maine’s High Peaks Region were John W. Dutton and Nathaniel Kimball in 1805. They returned the following year with their families and began a settlement. In 1807, William King (later to be Maine’s first Governor) purchased the township as part of the Bigham Plantation. In 1816 Kingfield was incorporated as the 210th town in the Maine District of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Salomon Stanley was one of the earliest town settlers. His twin sons, Francis Edgar (F.E.) and Freelan Oscar (F.O.) became famous as manufacturers of Stanley Dry Plate, bought in 1903 by Eastman Kodak, and the Stanley Steamer automobile, manufactured from 1902-1924. Their sister, Chansonetta, became a photographer renowned for her portraits of local rural life. The Stanley Museum celebrates the family and its accomplishments.

The first recorded residents to the northern part of Maine’s High Peaks Region (Eustis) Caleb Stevens, a native of New Hampshire, was the first settler. He brought with him his wife and nine children, the eldest, a son being eighteen years of age. Abram Reed, of Kingfield, was the second settler; and was soon followed by Capt. Isaac Proctor, Frank Keen, Nathanici Allen, and Reuben Bartlett, from Hartford, and Noah Staples, from Dixfield.

Eustis village in the northernmost town in Franklin County. It is located on the North Branch of the Dead River and the smaller of the two villages is Stratton is located on Stratton Book and Flagstaff Lake.

Carrabassett Valley is the youngest Town in the State of Maine. It was incorporated on Oct 26, 1971, and is the home to Sugarloaf Mountain. This area of Maine’s High Peak’s Region was part of the William Bingham’s Kennebec Purchase, had been known as Jerusalem Township, Sugarloaf Township, and Carrabassett Plantation.

In the early 1950s, local residents began developing Sugarloaf Mountain as a ski resort.