Little Cranberry Island
Inhabitants of the Cranberry Islands have long depended on resources they could extract from the land and sea. Centuries after the Wabanaki started canoeing to the islands, European settlers, some of whose descendents still live on the islands today, were farming, tending to livestock, fishing, and even hunting whales. Salted cod and smoked mackerel were daily nutritious fare for the settlers, who also sold their catch to earn money or credit for basic goods that they could not hunt, fish, or grow themselves. Today, lobster traps have replaced drying fish as the most visible evidence of an island community reliant on fishing. The Islesford Historical Museum, an Acadia National Park property since 1949, is dedicated to past and present life on the Cranberry Isles. Popular community curated exhibits, professionally designed and produced, tell island stories using both historic and contemporary objects, photographs, artwork, movies and activities. Museum is staffed by Acadia National Park rangers.
207-288-3338 | https://islesfordhistoricalmuseum.org/
Seasonal (Memorial Day – Columbus Day; M-Sat 10-4, Sun 11-3). Free. Restroom.
Just before the Civil War, a visitor to Cranberry Isles wrote, “The occupations of the inhabitants as well as the substantial arrangements of their tables, are furnished from the mute briny world.” [AJ Coolidge and JB Mansfield, A History and Description of New England: Maine, Boston, Austin J. Coolidge, 1860, p. 90.]
Events & Activities
Sources & Links
Maine Folklife Center, Life of the Maine Lobsterman Interview Collection: Interviews with Edwin Lawson, 73, about lobstering on the Maine coast.