Gazetteer of the State of Maine With Numerous Illustrations, by Geo. J. Varney
BOSTON: PUBLISHED BY B. B. RUSSELL, 57 CORNHILL. 1882. Public domain image from
242 GAZETTEER OF MAINE.
This plantation was formerly No. 2, and was composed of the Bux-
ton, Milton Academy and Bartlett grants. The first clearing was
made in 1816, the first settlement in 1820, general settlement, 1880.
The plantation was organized in 1841. The only church is that of the
Advents. The number of public schoolhouses is three, having a value
of $300. The valuation of estates in 1870 was $35,487. In 1880 it
was $26,110. The population in 1870 was 178. In 1880 it was 159.
Freedom lies on the western line of Waldo County, 18 miles
W. N. W. of Belfast. It is bounded on the north by Unity, east by
Montville, south by Palermo, and west by Albion, in Kennebec County.
The surface is uneven. The principal hills are Beaver and Sandford.
The ponds are Sandy and Duck. Both are situated in the eastern part
of the town, and supply Sandy Stream, which runs northward through
Freedom Village to Unity Pond. The area of Sandy Pond is about
850 acres, of Duck, 200 acres. On Sandy Stream near the village are
five powers. On these are a flour-mill, a corn-mill, a saw-mill for long
lumber, a shingle-mill, a shovel-handle factory, a carding, clothiug and
woollen mill, and a tannery. The village has several handsome resi-
dences, and the streets are pleasantly shaded with maple and elm trees.
The nearest railroad station is that of the Belfast branch of the Maine
Central at Thorndike. As an agricultural town Freedom ranks at
about an average. The soil is chiefly gravelly loam. The chief crops
are hay and potatoes. There is some ledge and many granite bowlders.
The usual variety of trees are found in the forests, but these are
mainly of the hard woods.
Freedom wras a part of the Plymouth Patent. The first opening
was made in the forest in 1794 by Stephen Smith, a soldier of the
Revolution. With the assistance of his brothers, lie also built the first
house in the town in the latter part of the same year. It was located
a short distance south of the burying-ground in South Freedom. The
next June, John Smith, subsequently known as Father Nehemiah, set-
tled in the township. Then followed Rev. Aaron Gould, Isaac Worth-
ing and James and Joshua Smith. Other prominent names of a little
later date are Jason Wood, Frost Gerry, Gideon Robinson, Colonel
Brown, Benjamin Comings, Bradstreet Wiggins, William Sibley and
Rev. Reuben Keen. Still later well-known nam«s are honorables
Robert Elliot, J. D. Lamson, N. A. Luce, William Sibley, esquires;
and of M.D.s, Ithamer Bellows, Varney Blackstone and Aaron W.
Gould. The plantation name was at first Smithstown, afterwards
Beaver Hill. In 1813, during the last war with Great Britain, the
town was incorporated under its present name, which was the choice
of the inhabitants and had a political significance.
The Congregationalists have the only church-edifice in the town.
Freedom Academy was incorporated in 1836. It has furnished a part
of their education to many who have become prominent in their call-
ings. Freedom has nine public schoolhouses, valued, with their appur-
tenances, at $2,500. The valuation of estates in 1870 was $191,505.
In 1880 it was $177,241. The rate of taxation in the latter year was
13^- mills on the dollar, cash tax. The population in 1870 was 716. In
1880 it was 652.
Freeman is situated near the middle of the eastern side of
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