World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Presque Isle, Maine

Article Id: WHEBN0000115913
Reproduction Date:

Title: Presque Isle, Maine  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Magdalena Neuner, Aroostook County, Maine, Maine, Caribou, Maine, WAGM-TV
Collection: Cities in Aroostook County, Maine, Cities in Maine, Populated Places Established in 1828, Presque Isle, Maine
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Presque Isle, Maine

Presque Isle, Maine
City of Presque Isle
Clockwise, from top:  Crown of Maine Balloon Fest in Presque Isle, Downtown, University of Maine at Presque Isle, Aroostook Band of Micmac headquarters and museum, Nordic Heritage Center, Aroostook Centre Mall, UMPI windmill, Main Street
Clockwise, from top: Crown of Maine Balloon Fest in Presque Isle, Downtown, University of Maine at Presque Isle, Aroostook Band of Micmac headquarters and museum, Nordic Heritage Center, Aroostook Centre Mall, UMPI windmill, Main Street
Official seal of Presque Isle, Maine
Nickname(s): The Star City
Motto: The Hub Of Aroostook
Presque Isle, Maine is located in Maine
Presque Isle, Maine
Location in the state of Maine
Country United States
State Maine
County Aroostook
Incorporated (town) April 4, 1859
Incorporated (city) January 1, 1940
 • Total 77.60 sq mi (200.988948 km2)
 • Land 75.76 sq mi (196.22 km2)
 • Water 1.84 sq mi (4.77 km2)
Elevation 456 ft (139 m)
Population (2010)[2]
 • Total 9,692
 • Estimate (2012[3]) 9,529
 • Density 127.9/sq mi (49.4/km2)
Demonym(s) Presqueillian
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 04769
Area code(s) 207
FIPS code 23-60825
GNIS feature ID 0573790

Presque Isle is the commercial center and largest city in Aroostook County, Maine, United States. The population was 9,692 at the 2010 census. The city is home to the University of Maine at Presque Isle, Northern Maine Community College, Husson University Presque Isle,[4] Northern Maine Fairgrounds, The Aroostook Centre Mall, and the Northern Maine Regional Airport.

Presque Isle is the headquarters of the federally recognized tribe, the Aroostook Band of Micmac.[5]


  • History 1
    • Name and incorporation 1.1
    • Industry, agriculture and transportation 1.2
      • Lumbering and early industries 1.2.1
      • Agriculture 1.2.2
      • Railroad 1.2.3
      • Airport 1.2.4
    • Colleges and universities 1.3
    • Presque Isle's Hospital 1.4
    • The Double Eagle II 1.5
    • All American City 1.6
    • Historic Images of Presque Isle, Maine 1.7
  • Geography and climate 2
  • Demographics 3
    • 2010 census 3.1
    • 2000 census 3.2
  • Economy 4
  • Media 5
    • Television 5.1
    • Radio 5.2
    • Newspaper 5.3
  • Sites of interest 6
  • In popular culture 7
  • Notable people 8
  • References 9
  • External links 10


The first pioneers, who were British loyalist, reached the area in 1819 hoping to obtain land for lumber. Though, border disputes between in the United States and Great Britain over the area made it impossible for pioneers to gain titles for the land. In response, the neighboring now Canadian province of New Brunswick gave out patents for pioneers to live on the land but not claim ownership or sell it. By 1825 surveyors traveling along the Aroostook river noted that twenty families lived along it and noted that while agriculture was present, all of the family employed most of their time towards lumber.[6]

The boundary dispute slowed development in the area, but the government of Massachusetts which governed the territory at the time, saw the territory as theirs and encouraged the development of settlements in northern Maine by offering land grants and mill privileges in the 1820s. The first American to settle in the area was Dennis Fairbanks in 1828 who gained ownership over the land under the provisions set up by Massachusetts and later Maine which gained statehood, both in 1820.[7]

Name and incorporation

Originally known as Fairbanks for its founder Dennis Fairbanks, it was settled in 1828 in land that was unknown to be part of British North America (Canada) or the United States. The Aroostook War broke out in 1838 because of boundary disputes between the two countries, which were resolved in 1842 by the Webster-Ashburton Treaty. The township was incorporated from Plantations F, G and H on April 4, 1859 as Presque Isle, the French term for peninsula (presqu'île), as the courses of the Aroostook River and Presque Isle Stream form a peninsula here. In 1864, Fairmount Cemetery was established in the south of Presque Isle to accommodate Union soldiers returning from the Civil War. In 1883, the town of Maysville was annexed.

On January 1, 1940, Presque Isle was incorporated as a city.

Industry, agriculture and transportation

Lumbering and early industries

The first industry to form in Presque Isle was the lumber industry. By the 1880s industries included two lumbermills, a gristmill, a wool carding mill, a furniture factory, a carriage factory and a tinware factory.


During the last 30 years of the 19th century, agriculture became important, and the entire county became noted for its production of potatoes. On October 9, 1851, the first Northern Maine Fair exhibition opened. A starch factory was opened in 1874, providing a ready market for local potatoes.[8] In 1914 the Aroostook Farm was purchased as a Maine Agricultural Experiment Station.[9]


In 1881 the New Brunswick Railway created the first rail connection in Presque Isle. The Bangor and Aroostook Railroad arrived in 1895.


A small airport was established in 1931. It was expanded within the decade and later assumed major military importance. The Presque Isle Air Force Base, in operation between 1941 and 1961, was a major departure point for U.S. fighter planes during World War II and the Korean War due to its relative proximity to Europe. The former base is now the Northern Maine Regional Airport at Presque Isle, the Northern Maine Community College, and the Skyway Industrial Park.

Colleges and universities

In 1903, the Aroostook State Normal School offering a two-year teacher preparation program. In 1968, it was renamed the University of Maine at Presque Isle. Northern Maine Technical College was established in 1961, now Northern Maine Community College.[10] The first students entered the college in 1963, while today it serves about 2000 students.[10]

Presque Isle's Hospital

The first Presque Isle Hospital was established on April 8, 1912.[11] Four physicians were affiliated with the hospital, whose dual aims were to serve the community and to provide a training school for nurses.[11] The building was a white-frame structure, enlarged from a home under construction. The need and demand for the hospital increased so rapidly, that in 1921 a new 3-story brick hospital was dedicated.[11] This hospital served for nearly four decades, when it, too proved inadequate. A major fundraising campaign was launched in the late 1950s. After a large donation was given by Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Wildes, the daughter of the late Senator Gould, the Arthur R. Gould Memorial Hospital was constructed and opened in 1960.[11] The hospital has expanded and been modernized in recent years and in 1981 became a part of The Aroostook Medical Center.[11]

The Double Eagle II

On August 11, 1978, the

  • The Aroostook Medical Center
  • City of Presque Isle, Maine
  • Turner Memorial Library
  • Presque Isle Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Presque Isle webcam
  • Presque Isle area schools – MSAD #1 in Presque Isle, Maine
  • Northern Maine Community College
  • University of Maine at Presque Isle
  • Presque Isle Snowmobile Club
  • The Star-Herald
  • Aroostook County - LocalWIKI

External links

  1. ^ a b "US Gazetteer files 2010".  
  2. ^ a b "American FactFinder".  
  3. ^ "Population Estimates".  
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Tribal Directory." National Congress of American Indians. Retrieved 1 May 2013.
  6. ^ Sebold, Kimberly. "History of Presque Isle". Presque Isle Maine Memory. Presque Isle Historical Society. Retrieved 14 May 2015. 
  7. ^ Sebold, Kimberly. "History of Presque Isle". Presque Isle Maine Memory. Presque Isle Historical Society. Retrieved 14 May 2015. 
  8. ^ Sebold, Kim. "History of Presque Isle". Maine Memory Network. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  9. ^ Smith, David C. (1980). A History of the Maine Agricultural Experiment Station 1885-1978. Orono, ME: University of Maine. pp. 196–197. 
  10. ^ a b "About NMCC". Northern Maine Community College. NMCC. Retrieved 21 Feb 2013. 
  11. ^ a b c d e Dean, Marilyn (1984). A History of Presque Isle's Hospital. Presque Isle, ME: The Aroostook Medical Center. 
  12. ^ – Maine Office of TourismDouble Eagle II
  13. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990".  
  14. ^ "NCDC: U.S. Climate Normals" (PDF).  
  15. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  16. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  17. ^ "American FactFinder".  


Aroostook State Normal School in 1908, now the University of Maine at Presque Isle

Notable people

Is the focal location for operations in Island in the Sky (1953 film).

In popular culture

  • Aroostook Farm – Maine Agricultural & Forest Experiment Station
  • Aroostook State Park
  • Mark and Emily Turner Memorial Library
  • Northern Maine Fair
  • Northern Maine Museum of Science
  • Presque Isle Air Museum
  • Presque Isle Historical Society & Museum
  • Nordic Heritage Center and Ski Trails
  • The Maine Solar System Model
Commemorative model of Double Eagle II

Sites of interest

There are no daily newspapers in Aroostook County. The Presque Isle Star-Herald is published Wednesdays, one of several weekly newspapers published in Aroostook County. Others include Caribou's Aroostook Republican, Madawaska's St. John Valley Times, The Fort Fairfield Journal and Houlton's Pioneer Times. The Bangor Daily News has an Aroostook County edition.


Several radio stations have studios located in Presque Isle, including WBPW, WOZI and WQHR, all owned by Townsquare Media. The city is also home to WUPI, the University of Maine Presque Isle's student radio station which broadcasts on 92.1 and Maine Public Broadcasting Network on 106.1.


Presque Isle is home to one of the smallest TV markets as defined by Nielsen market research. It consists of WAGM-TV channel 8, a CBS/Fox affiliate; and WMEM-TV channel 10, affiliated with the Maine Public Broadcasting Network and PBS. While not part of the Presque Isle TV market, WVII-TV, the ABC affiliate out of Bangor, Maine, airs in Presque Isle, as does NBC affiliate WLBZ.



Presque Isle typically has a slightly higher unemployment level when compared to the state average.

Due to being Aroostook County's largest city, Presque Isle is the retail center for a large number of both American and Canadian towns. The Aroostook Centre Mall became a major shopping center for residents during the 1990s. A Super Wal-Mart center also attracts a large number of shoppers. Agriculture remains a top industry of Presque Isle and the surrounding area, with potatoes being the top crop. During the winter months many local businesses rely on the snowmobiling industry as there is a highly regarded trail system connecting far away towns and cities with Presque Isle. Presque Isle is also home to a significant industrial park near the Northern Maine Regional Airport.


The median income for a household in the city was $29,325, and the median income for a family was $37,090. Males had a median income of $27,510 versus $19,785 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,712. About 9.2% of families and 14.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 16.1% of those under age 18 and 15.2% of those age 65 or over.

In the city the population was spread out with 21.6% under the age of 18, 13.1% from 18 to 24, 27.0% from 25 to 44, 22.4% from 45 to 64, and 15.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 91.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.2 males.

There were 3,963 households out of which 28.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.8% were married couples living together, 11.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.8% were non-families. 31.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.25 and the average family size was 2.82.

As of the census[17] of 2000, there were 9,511 people, 3,963 households, and 2,464 families residing in the city. The population density was 125.6 people per square mile (48.5/km²). There were 4,405 housing units at an average density of 58.2 per square mile (22.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 95.13% White, 0.36% African American, 2.26% Native American, 0.84% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.17% from other races, and 1.21% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.65% of the population.

2000 census

The median age in the city was 40.2 years. 19.6% of residents were under the age of 18; 12.4% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 24.1% were from 25 to 44; 27.8% were from 45 to 64; and 16.2% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 48.2% male and 51.8% female.

There were 4,201 households of which 25.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.1% were married couples living together, 12.1% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.2% had a male householder with no wife present, and 42.6% were non-families. 34.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.19 and the average family size was 2.78.

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 9,692 people, 4,201 households, and 2,413 families residing in the city. The population density was 127.9 inhabitants per square mile (49.4/km2). There were 4,608 housing units at an average density of 60.8 per square mile (23.5/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 94.5% White, 0.6% African American, 2.4% Native American, 0.9% Asian, 0.2% from other races, and 1.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.3% of the population.

2010 census


Climate data for Presque Isle, Maine
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 55
Average high °F (°C) 20.7
Average low °F (°C) 1.2
Record low °F (°C) −35
Average precipitation inches (mm) 2.55
Average snowfall inches (cm) 18.9
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in) 11.0 7.8 9.7 10.8 12.6 12.2 12.9 11.8 11.4 12.2 11.8 11.3 135.5
Average snowy days (≥ 0.1 in) 7.6 5.6 5.0 2.3 0.2 0 0 0 0 0.4 3.0 6.4 30.5
Source: NOAA [14]

Presque Isle has a humid continental climate (Köppen: Dfb) typified by long cold winters and short warm summers.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 77.60 square miles (200.98 km2), of which 75.76 square miles (196.22 km2) is land and 1.84 square miles (4.77 km2) is water.[1] Presque Isle is drained by the Aroostook River and Presque Isle Stream.

Presque Isle is located at (46.679321, −68.002166).[13]

Geography and climate

Historic Images of Presque Isle, Maine

Presque Isle was named an "All American City" in 1966.

All American City


This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.