Houlton, the oldest town in Maine’s largest county of Aroostook! Houlton Maine is the “shiretown” capital seat for the biggest county east of the Mississippi. Known as the “Crown of Maine”, at one time Houlton was one of the richest towns of its size in the east half of the nation. The exquisite and abundant local Victorian housing stock and stately Market Square / Main Street brick buildings down town illustrate the fine design character features.
The 28 turn-of-the-20th-century commerce town center buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places are a rare find in a small Maine community. Farming the fertile soil and lumbering the vast forest resources catapulted Houlton Maine off the ground in the early years of settlement around 1807. They came looking for good land in Maine.
The terrain level to rolling and was founded March 8, 1831. Maine did not become a state until 1820 and was part of Masschusetts prior to statehood. In 1799 a resolve had been enacted by the Legislature of Massachusetts granting to New Salem Academy one half-township of land in some of the unappropriated lands in what was called the District of Maine. This tract of land, the southern half of the present town of Houlton was purchased by a company of thirteen men from the trustees of the academy.
Only three of the original thirteen ended up starting the Houlton Maine Settlement.
After the War of 1812, many new settlers came over from the Canadian provinces. The settlement was organized as a plantation in 1826. Besides the New Salem grant, the town of Houlton included the grant to Williams College given in 1815 with this part of the town known for a long time as Foxcroft. An unclear international boundary line slowed progress in development of Houlton and Northern Maine. It delayed the iron rails from a much needed railroad clearing train roadways. From opening up Aroostook County until the several treaties led to a final boundary resolution of where Maine ended and Canada began. Here is the link for more on what the latest US Census information for Houlton Maine shows.
Exit 305 is the Houlton International Airport and industrial park last chance to turn before entering the customs / immigration border crossing into New Brunswick Canada. Yes you need your passport.
This border base was a source of labor for area farmers needing the helping hand. Before the war, the 1939 Neautrality Act caused local farmers to drag planes from Houlton Maine into New Brunswick Canada.
They used tractors and the practice to avoid a violation of US pilots flying them into Canada stipulation when a foreign nation had bought the planes.
To roller over, get in and fly from the Canadian side of the US border again to the final destination over the pond.
Presque Isle Maine’s PQI offers daily commercial airline flights and rental cars for tooling around Aroostook County. Fly into Bangor or Portland Maine.
Or enjoy the strong American dollar against the weaker loonie by flying out of Fredericton, Moncton or St John in New Brunswick Canada.
Or on area lakes with pontoons. Corporate jets clear customs quickly and the aviation fuel is some of the lowest priced around the state. Cyr Bus lines offers passenger service twice a day. Get used to less traffic, friendlier motorists that don’t test positive for road rage.
Easy does it and less fender benders too when the number of cars on the road in Northern Maine is not bumper to bumper.
Local senior citizen and low income transportation buses provide another option for those needing it. Rental vehicles are available in Houlton from York’s and Ace car dealerships, both located on the US Rt 1 the North Road in Houlton Maine. Uber and Lyft are just starting to spread into Northern Maine.
I have had real estate sales to buyers who offer to give you a lift for a fee. And as long as their apartment and phone are on to show they are on duty, you can be picked up.
Your thumb still works hitchhiking because of the low crime, friendlier people.
People help each other out. I pick up hitchhikers because I did my share as a youngster.
Small rural Maine residents help each other out and you are not a total stranger as one by one the locals get to know you!
Each season presents a different opportunity for indoor and outdoor fun. The many lakes, proximity to Baxter State Park and juants into Canada or hitting the nature trails make Houlton a good spot to discover all Maine offers. Take a trip Downeast easily from Houlton Maine. Hit the hiking or groomed snow sled / ATV trails around Southern Aroostook that connect Houlton to north, west, southern Maine.
Canoe and kayaks from all over the northeast take part in the Meduxnekeag River Race. An event started by Ricker College water paddling enthusiasts.
A 35 year old tradition, the Houlton river race benefits Dollars For Scholars fund raising for the area college bound young adults. The canoe river race starts in New Limerick to the west, is 9.5 miles long, ends with every eating red snapper hot dogs and sharing stories at the Riverfront Park in Houlton.
Another earlier river race video to watch. Don’t get wet.
Looking forward to providing the best insider local information from a native passionate about living here.
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You get involved living in small Maine towns. I do. You will too. You will fit in just perfectly. Proud member of the state and national REALTOR associations. Past president of the Aroostook REALTOR Council, Rotary Club, Chamber Of Commerce, the Southern Aroostook Growth Council and Drews Lake Property Owners Association. Past chairman of the Houlton Zoning Board.