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Among the many important events in the early history of the State of Maine one of much interest is that known as the Aroostook War, a brief sketch of which is given below. By the treaty of 1783, at the close of the Revolutionary struggle, one-half of the St. John's River belonged to Maine.

After the war of 1812, the British claimed the whole of the upper part of the vast valley of the St. John. They demanded all the land above the forty-sixth degree of north latitude, which included about one-third of what was supposed to be the territory of Maine. There was at this time, on the north or eastern side of the river, an American settlement extending for a distance of nearly twenty miles.

The inhabitants were principally of French descent, and had emigrated to that American region when the English took possession of Arcadia. This plantation had been incorporated as the town of Madawaska, and a representative was sent to the legislature of Maine. In June, 1837, Congress sent an officer to Madawaska to take a census of the people, and at the same time to distribute the surplus money which had accumulated in the United States treasury. A British constable arrested this agent and carried his prisoner to the nearest English shire town. But the sheriff there, alarmed, refused to receive the prisoner, and he returned to Madawaska, and continued to prosecute his mission.

Publication Date



Kennebec Journal Print


Augusta, Maine


Aroostook War, Aroostook County Maine, Madawaska Maine

Aroostook War: Historical Sketch and Roster of Commissioned Officers and Enlisted Men Called into Service for the Protection of the Northeastern Frontier of Maine, from February to May, 1839



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