Posts Tagged With: William King

Gov. William King


History comes to life … and, for the first time, is available online

“It brings history to life,” said Amoroso, a genealogy buff who is director of digital projects for the Maine Historical Society. Amoroso was one of many people who trolled through data on millions of mid-20th century Americans that became publicly…

Fires a part of Fort Kent’s history

“That section of town had never burnt,” Chad Pelletier, president of the Fort Kent Historical Society, said this week. “Those were some of the town’s original buildings from the 1880s.” Pelletier referenced a map from an old Roe & Colby atlas showing…


April event at Museums of Old York

15 Blue Grass Jam with Kevin Dyer and Friends. Join this lively bunch on the third Sunday of (almost) every month from 1-4 p.m. at The Parsons Center at Museums of Old York, 3 Lindsay Road, York. $4 donation appreciated. FMI, email or call 207-363-4974 ext 13.

18 – 20 April Vacation Camp – History of Science — KIDS PROGRAM 9:30am —1:30PM. Travel back through the ages to experience the world as people begin to understand scientific principles. $65 ($60 members) Ages 5-12. Preregistration is required. All activities take place at the Parsons Center on the corner of York Street and Lindsay Road in York, Maine.

Wednesday: Travel back to ancient Greece where Archimedes proved the use of the lever and pulley. Demonstrate these principles using our giant trebuchet to throw watermelons far into the York River and haul them back using pulleys!

Thursday: Meet 17th century scientist Sir Isaac Newton and help him prove universal gravitation and the laws of motion. Build a marble roller coaster, race toy cars, and build a bottle tornado.

Friday: Experience the world of color! Learn about natural dyes, perform some amazing science experiment, and Tie Dye a t-shirt with chemicals and plants.

20 Tavern Dinner. Traditional hearth cooked meal in a cozy, colonial tavern environment. Menu includes Baked Stuffed Clams, Assorted Pickled Vegetables, Herbed Cheeses, Crackers, and Nuts, Shaker Stew with Chive Dumplings, Fiddleheads Dijon, and Pecan Pie with Whipped Cream. Bring your Favorite Beverage. 6-8 p.m. at Jefferds Tavern, 3 Lindsay Road, York. Cost: $30 members / $35 non-members. Reservations are required. Please email early to reserve your space.

Events at the Maine Historical Society

Tuesday, April 10, 12pm

The Titanic: A Survivor’s Story

Speaker: Dr. Karen Lemke, St. Joseph’s College

Thursday, April 19, 7pm

The Civil War of 1812

Speaker: Dr. Alan Taylor, University of California, Davis

Tuesday, April 24, 7pm

Gateways to Portland: Rebuilding Veterans Memorial and Martin’s Point Bridges

A panel discussion presented in partnership with Greater Portland Landmarks

Spotlight on Maine History

Gov. William Ring.

Portrait ca. 1806 by Gilbert Stuart

THE first Governor of Maine was a son of Richard King, of Scarborough, who is said to have been a man of surpassing natural ability. He was a merchant, and laid the foundation of his fortune from the profits he received as Commissary under Sir William Pepperell.

William King, the seventh child of Richard, was born in Scarborough, Me., February 9, 1768. He was half brother to Rufus King, the statesman, who took such an important part in the formation of our government. William had few advantages in his boyhood. While Rufus was fitting himself at Cambridge for the great eminence he afterwards attained in the nation, William was tending a sawmill in Saco. Notwithstanding his lack of early educational training, his wonderful native ability, his great natural resources, and his strong, energetic intellect forced him early to the front. He set his standard high, and his ambition was untiring and almost unconquerable. Being possessed of wonderful perceptive faculties and a sound judgment, he relied upon these to carry him through, and they never failed him. In native endowment, he was thought to have been superior to his celebrated brother, Rufus.

When a young man Mr. King removed to Topsham, where he lived for a time, but as the Kennebec River offered superior advantages for his lumbering and ship building operations, he removed to Bath in or about the year 1800, where he carried on business very extensively. He afterwards established the town of Kingfield, in Franklin County, of which he was at one time principal owner.

He was a merchant and ship-builder, in which he acquired a large fortune. At one time, he was one of the largest ship-owners in America. In politics, he was a Democrat, and being first in everything he was connected with, he was the leader of his party in Maine—the master mind that managed all the party machinery. He wielded an immense influence in favor of the separation of Maine from Massachusetts. He was President of the Convention that framed the Constitution of the State, and it was his great wisdom and good judgment that directed all the affairs in the formation of the new State.

Mr. King became immensely popular with the people, and was elected the first Governor of Maine by an overwhelming majority. He administered the office with marked ability and to the great satisfaction of the people. Before the expiration of his term, he was appointed a Commissioner under the Spanish Treaty at Washington. Upon receiving this appointment, he resigned the office of Governor of the State and entered upon the duties of his new office, which he also discharged with great ability. He afterwards accepted the appointment as Collector of Customs at Bath, which office he held from 183 1 to 1834. He was a prominent Free Mason and was the first Grand Master of Masons in this State.

Several writers have described his characteristics and personal appearance. John H. Sheppard, Esq., of Boston, said of him: “In his person he was tall and of a striking figure; and with a finely formed head, strongly marked features, high forehead, and black, impending brows, he had a natural and majestic air of command which impressed every beholder with respect.” Deane Dudly wrote; “The sound of his voice seemed to echo grimly from the deep concaves of his eyes, which from under their forest-like brows would sternly look a command that was not to be resisted by ordinary mortals. So conspicuous was he in every circle where he moved, that the most indifferent observer failed not to notice him.”

Mr. King was unfortunate in his last years, not only in the loss of a considerable portion of his property, but in the loss of friends and relatives, which broke down his once splendid mind so that at last his sun went down in darkness. He died at Bath, Me., June 17, 1852, and his wife died in Portland, July 4, 1857.

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