Whether you’re a history buff or love exploring new places, there are many amazing historical sites in Maine to see. From educational tours, self-guided walks, and museums, you have plenty of options for exploring pieces of our past. Just to get you started, we have compiled a list of engaging historical sites dating as far back as the 1750s. During your stay at our York, Maine, bed and breakfast, a visit to at least one of these beacons of history is a must!
12 Historical Sites in Maine to See
- Hamilton House – The setting for a novel by the author Sarah Orne Jewett who was also central to the efforts to preserve this beautiful 1788 house
- Sarah Orne Jewett House – Sarah Orne Jewett herself lived in this home built in 1774. As she was active in the historic preservation of many sites in the area, her family donated her home to the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiques.
- Lady Pepperrell House – This is a unique High Georgian mansion that was built in the early 1760s by the widow of the Sir William Pepperrell, who was known throughout New England as a businessman and a politician.
- McIntire Garrison House – For a wonderful example of vernacular log architecture of the late 17th or early 18th century, be sure to see what was undoubtedly one of the first dwellings built in the area.
- Old York Gaol – Now a museum, the Old York Gaol was used as a jail from 1719 through 1879, and was built with architectural elements that predate this period. After being a jail it served many other purposes.
- Neal Dow House – Neal Dow was the Mayor of Portland as well as a candidate for the presidency in 1980 for the Prohibition Party.
- Winslow Homer Studio – This quaint remodeled carriage house was once the studio of the artist Winslow Homer from 1884 until his death, and now belongs to the Portland Museum of Art which offers tours throughout the summer season.
- McLellan-Sweat Mansion – Another Portland Museum of Art property, this beautiful mansion was built for a shipping merchant in 1800.
- Morse-Libby Mansion – Known locally as the Victoria Mansion, it is acclaimed nationally as one of the best preserved examples of an Italianate Villa-style brick and brownstone townhouse. It was built in 1860 for a hotelier as his summer house.
- Portland Observatory – The oldest maritime signal tower in the United States, this wooden tower was built in 1807 and was, even at the time, capable of sending and receiving signals to ships entering the Portland Harbor.
- Tate House – George Tate was a Royal Navy agent sent to procure ship masts, and this was his house built in the 1750s. It is the first pre-Revolutionary house still standing in the Portland area that is open to the public.
- Wadsworth-Longfellow House – This was the home of the Revolutionary War General Peleg Wadsworth, whose grandson, poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow would also grow up here.