Kingfield, Maine

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Kingfield is a town in Franklin County, Maine, United States. The population was 1,103 at the 2000 census. Kingfield is the principal gateway to Sugarloaf, a major ski resort, and is headquarters to Maine Huts and Trails.

Contents

History

The area was first known as township T3 R1 BKP WKR, or Plantation No. 3, Range 1 of Bingham's West Kennebec Purchase. It was first settled in 1806 by John W. Dutton, Nathaniel Kimball and their families, who built homes at the foot of Vose Mountain. In 1807, Plantation No. 3 was bought by William King, temporary resident and future governor of Maine, in partnership with three others.[1] On January 24, 1816, the township was incorporated as Kingfield, named after William King. [2]

Farms produced hay, potatoes, apples and pears. The confluence of the West Branch and Carrabassett rivers at the town's center provided 20 places for water power of industry. Kingfield businesses included sawmills, a shingle mill, gristmill, carding mill, rake factory, carriage factory and tannery. [3] In 1895, the town became headquarters to the Kingfield and Dead River Railroad, a narrow gauge line which would be merged with others to form the Sandy River and Rangeley Lakes Railroad. But with the Great Depression, industry in Kingfield began to decline, although the two mills of the Wing Spool & Bobbin Company remained in operation until the late 1950s. In the early 1950s, a local partnership organized Sugarloaf Mountain Ski Development, which transformed Sugarloaf Mountain into a ski resort. The Sugarloaf ski resort is an important part of the Kingfield economy. [4]

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 43.6 square miles (112.9 km²), of which, 43.4 square miles (112.5 km²) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.4 km²) of it (0.37%) is water. Situated in the Carrabassett River valley, Kingfield is drained by the Carrabassett River.

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