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Rockland, ME

Rockland is a city in Knox County, Maine, in the United States. It is the county seat of Knox County. The city is a popular tourist destination. It is a departure point for the Maine State Ferry Service to the islands of Penobscot Bay: Vinalhaven, North Haven and 

Matinicus

.
Once boarded up shops are now colorfully decorated and the Farnsworth Art Museum and Wyeth Center offer a diverse Maine artisan collection. Rockland plays host to many festivals, including the Maine Lobster Festival and the North Atlantic Blues Festival.

History

Abenaki Indians called it Catawamteak, meaning "great landing place." In 1767, John Lermond and his two brothers from Warren built a camp to produce oak staves and pine lumber. Thereafter known as Lermond's Cove, it... Read more

Rockland, ME

Destination:
Rockland is a city in Knox County, Maine, in the United States. It is the county seat of Knox County. The city is a popular tourist destination. It is a departure point for the Maine State Ferry Service to the islands of Penobscot Bay: Vinalhaven, North Haven and 

Matinicus

.
Once boarded up shops are now colorfully decorated and the Farnsworth Art Museum and Wyeth Center offer a diverse Maine artisan collection. Rockland plays host to many festivals, including the Maine Lobster Festival and the North Atlantic Blues Festival.

History

Abenaki Indians called it Catawamteak, meaning "great landing place." In 1767, John Lermond and his two brothers from Warren built a camp to produce oak staves and pine lumber. Thereafter known as Lermond's Cove, it was first settled about 1769. When in 1777 Thomaston was incorporated, Lermond's Cove became a district called Shore village. On July 28, 1848, it was set off as the town of East Thomaston. Renamed Rockland in 1850, it was chartered as a city in 1854.

Rockland developed rapidly because of shipbuilding and lime production. In 1854 alone, the city built eleven ships, three barks, six brigs, and four schooners. The city had twelve lime quarries and 125 lime kilns, with upwards of 300 vessels to transport the mineral to various ports in the country.

By 1886, shipbuilding was surpassed by the lime business, which had twelve manufacturers employing 1,000 workers. Nevertheless, Rockland had three or more shipyards, a marine railway, five sail lofts, and two boatbuilders. Other industries included three-grain mills, two foundries, three carriage factories, six lumber mills, two machine shops, three cooperies, one tannery, four granite and marble works, two boot and shoe factories, and four printing offices. Fishing was also important. Fleets of Friendship Sloops sailed between the harbor and fishing grounds across Penobscot Bay.

The opening of the Knox and Lincoln Railroad in 1871 brought an influx of tourists. Inns and hotels were established to accommodate them, with the grandest being The Bay Point Hotel in 1889. With a commanding view near the breakwater, the resort offered every luxury and amusement. Renamed The Samoset Hotel in 1902, it was successful until the Great Depression, which began a slow decline. In the age of automobiles, travelers were no longer restricted to the limits of train service but were free to explore elsewhere. Closed in 1969, the Victorian hotel burned in 1972. A new Samoset Resort opened in 1974.

In 1915, the new superdreadnought USS Nevada (BB-36) conducted tests and completed her running trials just off the shore from Rockland.

Today, Rockland is an officially designated micropolitan area. Since the early 1990s, Rockland has seen a shift in its economy away from the fishery and toward a service center city. It has also seen a substantial increase in tourism and the downtown has transformed into one of the unique shops, boutiques, fine dining, and art galleries. Rockland is the commercial center of the midcoast Maine region, with many historic inns, a coffee roaster, a food co-op, a community radio station WRFR-LP, and the

Farnsworth Art Museum

. Rockland was named a Coast Guard City in March 2008, in recognition of the long-standing and special relationship that the city and its residents have with the United States Coast Guard.

Attractions

Rockland is home to the Maine Lobster Festival, a celebration held annually in honor of the town's primary export: lobster. In the first week of August, thousands of people come from all over the world to participate in this five-day event. Rockland also is home to the Farnsworth Art Museum, a world-famous art gallery containing paintings by Andrew Wyeth and other well-known New England artists. Rockland's main street also features numerous small shops and businesses including coffee shops, bookstores, art supply stores, restaurants, and toy stores. Penobscot Bay, which Rockland borders, is known internationally as one of the best recreational sailing grounds in the world. The city's breakwater, built in the 19th century, also draws tourists. Also, the Maine Eastern Railroad is based in Rockland and offers limited seasonal passenger train excursions starting in Brunswick, running to Rockland and back.

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 15.07 square miles (39.03 km2), of which 12.84 square miles (33.26 km2) is land and 2.23 square miles (5.78 km2) is water. Rockland is located on Penobscot Bay and the Gulf of Maine, part of the Atlantic Ocean. About ten miles to the east are the islands of North Haven and Vinalhaven, reached by ferry from Rockland.

Rockland is crossed by U.S. 1 and 1A, and state routes 17, 73 and 90. It borders the towns of Owls Head to the southeast, Thomaston to the southwest, Warren to the northwest, and Rockport to the northeast.


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Rockland, ME: Port Information


Cruise ships anchor offshore, and passengers are transported ashore by the tender boats. Downtown is very close, within walking distance.

Get around Rockland, ME


  • Maine State Ferry Service. To Vinalhaven, North Haven, and Matinicus Island. 
Besides walking or using a rental car, the best mode of transportation in town is a taxi. 
Remember to stop for pedestrians in crosswalks! This is a state law in many other places, but it is strictly enforced in Rockland, particularly along Main Street. You WILL be ticketed if you fail to yield to pedestrians who are in a crosswalk. 

What to see in Rockland, ME


  • Farnsworth Art Museum, 16 Museum St., Phone: 207-596-6457. 10 AM-5 PM. Daily in summer; closed Monday in other seasons. 
  • Maine Lighthouse Museum, 1 Park Drive, ☎ +1 207-594-3301. M-F 9AM-5PM, Sa-Su 10AM-4PM. Largest collection of Lighthouse artifacts in the country. Recently merged with the American Lighthouse Foundation. Located in the recently renovated Penobscot Bay Gateway Visitor's Center. 
  • Owl's Head Transportation Museum, Route 73, Owls Head, Phone: 207-594-4410. Owl's Head has a terrific collection of pioneer-era aircraft and automobiles including more than 100 historic aircraft, automobiles, bicycles, carriages, and engines. Rockland Public Library

What to do in Rockland, ME


  • Take a Windjammer Cruise
  • Walk the 7/8 mile long breakwater to the Breakwater Lighthouse
  • Check out the many galleries, shops, and restaurants downtown
  • Take the ferry from Rockland to one of many beautiful working islands, including Vinalhaven, North Haven or Matinicus
  • Take a day trip to Camden, Belfast or around the beautiful Saint George Peninsula
  • Atlantic Baking Company, 351 Main Street (across from Farnsworth Museum), ☎ 207-596-0505. 7-4 pm m-sat. 

Festivals

  • Maine Lobster Festival
  • North Atlantic Blues Festival
  • Maine Boats Homes & Harbors Show

What to eat and drink in Rockland, ME


Eat

  • Primo, 2 South Main Street, Phone: 207-596-0770. One of the top-rated restaurants in the state.
  • Cafe Miranda, 15 Oak Street, Phone: 207-594-2034. Offering an exceptionally large number of inventive dishes, many of which are cooked in an open wood-fired oven.
  • Amalfi, 12 Water Street, Phone: 207-596-0012, Excellent Mediterranean restaurant.
  • Rockland Cafe, 441 Main Street. The best option for a well-prepared, affordable homestyle meal.
  • Any of the areas many fantastic lobster pounds, for fresh-off-the-boat seafood. Ask a local.
  • Wasses Hot Dogs, 2 North Main St, ☎ 207 594 7472. Famous hot dog stand operating since the early 1970s, featuring the best hot dogs in the state (fried in peanut oil). They also operate another location in Belfast.  

Drink

  • In Good Company, 415 Main Street, Phone: 207-593-9110. A wine bar with a varied (and often affordable) selection of wines, ports, and beers, as well as expertly prepared appetizers and entrees.
  • Waterworks Pub, 7 Lindsey Street, Phone: 207-596-2753. Beers brewed by local Rocky Bay Brewery and good pub fare. Live music.
  • Timeout Pub, 275 Main Street, Phone 207-596-9336. Blues Night M 7-10pm. F, Sa local music.

Shopping in Rockland, ME


Art galleries, gift and souvenir shops, jewelry, antique stores, etc. - here you'll find many nice shops to buy handicrafts, presents, and souvenirs. Besides, there are several markets.

Safety in Rockland, ME


  • Hikers should carry and know how to use a map and compass and dress in layers for changeable weather. Maine has one of the lowest crime rates in the United States -- in fact, in some parts of the state, "Mainers" leave their houses and cars unlocked even when gone for long periods of time. Violent crime is rare, but visitors to Maine or anywhere should safeguard their possessions. Avoid leaving valuables in plain view in an unattended vehicle. Risk of death from animals is usually remote, but black flies and mosquitoes may drive one mad. Automobile collisions with moose can be deadly for both the moose and the occupants of the vehicle. It is best not to drive too fast in areas frequented by moose. Many, but not all, areas with a high risk of moose-auto collisions are marked with signs. Drivers from warmer climates visiting between December and April should avoid driving on snow or ice covered roads.
  • It is unsafe to venture out onto Maine's coastal waters without having the necessary equipment and experience. This is true of kayaking, canoeing, sailing or any other kind of boating. The water is cold and hypothermia can set in in a short amount of time, and the rip currents are strong. Dense fog often rolls in very quickly as well as the occasional storm. If you are determined to go out on your own to do so without every single passenger wearing a PFD and/or without having a compass and knowing how to use it and/or without understanding how to navigate safely around other boats and water hazards is not only foolish but could result in serious fines from the Coast Guard or a Marine Patrol officer. There are numerous companies that offer guided sea kayak, sailing, and power boat tours.

Language spoken in Rockland, ME


There are two de facto co-official languages in the state: English and French.

LOCAL TIME

9:10 am
October 14, 2019
America/New_York

CURRENT WEATHER

12.13 °C / 53.834 °F
broken clouds
Tue

10.89 °C/52 °F
overcast clouds
Wed

11.87 °C/53 °F
sky is clear
Thu

12.2 °C/54 °F
heavy intensity rain
Fri

9.93 °C/50 °F
light rain

LOCAL CURRENCY

USD

1 EUR = 0 USD
1 GBP = 0 USD
1 AUD = 0 USD
1 CAD = 0 USD

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