Friendship, Maine

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Friendship is a town in Knox County, Maine, United States. The population was 1,204 at the 2000 census.

Contents

History

Abenaki Indians called it Meduncook, meaning "bay at the end of the sandbar." Part of the Waldo Patent, it was first settled in 1750. A garrison was built on Garrison Island, which connects to the mainland at low tide. By 1754, 22 families lived in Meduncook, most taking shelter within the garrison when the French and Indian War broke out. A party of Indians attacked just after sunrise on May 22, 1758, killing and scalping Joshua and Hannah Bradford and their infant son Winslow. An original settler from Kingston, Massachusetts and great-grandson of Governor William Bradford, he had remained in his house, believing it close enough to the garrison that his family could flee there when necessary. But while pounding corn, the Bradfords missed hearing the garrison's alarm gun. Five of their children managed to escape their pursuers into the fort, but two of their sons Cornelius (21)and Joshua (12) were captured and carried to Canada.

On February 25, 1807, Meduncook Plantation was incorporated as Friendship. By 1859, when the population was 691, the village had two shipbuilders, two gristmills, one shingle mill and three sawmills. By 1880, when the population was 938, other manufactures included sails, carriages, boots and shoes. But boatbuilding remained the dominant industry in town, which became famous for producing the Friendship Sloop, a gaff-rigged sailboat designed for lobstering and fishing. Each summer the town hosts the Friendship Sloop Races.

Author John Cheever wrote his 1957 novel, The Wapshot Chronicle, while vacationing here. The majority of the 1995 film Casper was set in Friendship, though the production crew chose the nearby resort town of Rockport for filming, citing it to be "more authentic". In the film, Friendship is home to a fictional Art Nouveau mansion called Whipstaff Manor, which is haunted by four ghosts. The mansion—and therefore the town—also appear in the 1996-1998 animated series The Spooktacular New Adventures of Casper.

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