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Small Point, Phippsburg, 1731
Small Point, Phippsburg, 1731
Maine Historical Society

The Beyond Borders: Mapping Maine and the Northeast Boundary project, a two and half year initiative (2020-2022) supported in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities, was crafted to digitize and provide free, full-text online access to three of Maine Historical Society’s oldest and most significant archival holdings: the Plymouth Company, also known as the Kennebec Proprietors (Coll. 60), the Pejepscot Proprietors (Coll. 61), and the Barclay (Coll. 26) Collections.

These collections, collectively spanning 1625 to 1893, carry what became Maine from shortly after European settlement (1607) to the turn of the twentieth century. The project documents European settlement of northern New England, specifically coastal and interior Maine, land distribution, and conflicts before and during Maine’s transition from a District of Massachusetts to statehood (1820), as well as the establishment of the American-Canadian border (ca. 1843.) Topics included Maine’s role in the American historic narrative, including exploration, colonization, and settlement; relations with Indigenous peoples and Nations; and the economic, political, geographic, and social establishment of Maine as a state.

These primary resources provide essential context for important contemporary topics such as Indigenous land and water rights; and the preservation and use of public lands. The Beyond Borders portal provides access to vital primary resources for framing scholarship, programs, exhibitions, and civic dialog about land and waterways in Maine.

This project was made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) PW-269341-20. Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this project do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities; and adheres of the NEH’s Code of Ethics related to Native Americans.