Union, Maine

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Union is a town in Knox County, Maine, United States. The population was 2,209 at the 2000 census. It is home to the Matthews Museum of Maine Heritage and annual Union Fair.

Contents

History

Union was part of a tract of land called the Muscongus Patent, a grant made March 2, 1629 by the Plymouth Council to John Beauchamp and Thomas Leverett. About 1720, it was purchased by General Samuel Waldo of Boston and thereafter called the Waldo Patent. The town was settled on July 19, 1774 and named Taylor Town after the original purchaser and settler, Dr. John Taylor from Lunenburg, Massachusetts. On May 3, 1786, it was organized as the Plantation of Sterlingtown, and on October 20, 1786 the town was incorporated and named Union. Washington was formed from a portion of Union in 1811. [1]

Agriculture was the principal business, and on October 5, 1869 the North Knox Agricultural & Horticultural Society opened the first annual Union Fair. The town had mills operated by water power at the outlets of ponds. Factories at Union produced carriages, cultivators, leather, harness, boots and shoes. South Union had a cabinet and musical instrument factory, an iron foundry, a machine shop and a coffin factory. East Union had a lumbermill, in addition to a chair and table factory. [2]

A war memorial was dedicated at the common on July 4, 1888. When Union celebrated on July 19, 1974 the bicentennial of its settlement, a time capsule was buried near the statue, to be dug up July 19, 2024. The capsule contains a picture of children from around the town and "scores of current memorabilia." Union was the subject of the 1940 historical novel, Come Spring, by author Ben Ames Williams. [3]

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