Fort Kent, Maine, USA - 1886 - Fort Kent
Fort Kent is situated on the south bank of St. John’s River, in the northern part of Aroostook County. It is 126 miles N.N.W. of Houlton via Caribou and Van Buren. Frenchville adjoins it on the east, Wallagrass Plantation on the south of the western half, and New Brunswick on the north. The territory is about 11 miles in length along the river east and west, and from 3 to 6½ miles in width. The surface is somewhat uneven with few hills above 200 feet in height. The streams that furnish water-power within the town are Fish River and Daigle and Perley Brooks. The fall on the first is about a mill above its confluence with the St. John, and is occupied by a saw—mill having several single saws and a gang, and a grist-mill with four sets of stones. There is also a good power on the St. John River about a mile below the mouth of Fish River. Other powers are being improved, and will doubtless soon mingle the hum of mills with the roar of their falls.
Slate is the underlying rock. The soil of the upland is a dark loam, while there is some rich interval land. Oats, wheat, buckwheat, barley and potatoes are all cultivated, and yield well. The buildings in the town are generally in good repair, showing the people to be a thrifty community. The centre of business is near the mouth of Fish River. The town is the terminus of the stage-lines to the St. Francis.
Fort Kent was first settled by Acadian-French refugees. The fortification from which the town takes its name was erected in 1841, and was named in honor of Governor Kent. Among the valued citizens not now living were I. H. Page, Major Wm. Dickey and B. W. Mallett. The church organizations are the Congregationalists and Roman Catholics. The latter have a church-edifice. The Madawaska Training School for Teachers, a State institution, is located here. Fort Kent has nine public schoolhouses, valued at $1,725. There are also 1,000 acres reserve land for public purposes. The valuation of estates in 1870 was $65,357. In 1880 it was $72,666. The population in 1870 was 1,034. In 1880 it was 1,512.
A Gazetteer of the State of Maine By Geo. J. Varney Published by B. B. Russell, Boston 1886
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