Colony, Chapter 3: Massachusetts’ conquest of Maine
Maine is celebrating the bicentennial of its statehood this year, but the story of our beginnings lies in the millennia and centuries that preceded March 15th, 1820, the day we regained our independence from Massachusetts.
The conquest made Maine a colony of a colony, and Boston ruled what eventually became known as the District of Maine — which didn’t even border on the rest of the Commonwealth — in the interests of mainland Massachusetts, not the people living on the eastern frontier. As we’ll see in the next three chapters of Colony, this experience, which lasted until 1820, fundamentally shaped Maine’s culture, economy and self-conception.
COLIN WOODARD is a New York Times bestselling author and award-winning journalist. He is the author of six books that have been translated into a dozen foreign languages and inspired an NBC television drama. He is currently a Senior Visiting Fellow at the Pell Center for International Relations and Public Affairs at Salve Regina University and State and National Affairs Writer at the Portland Press Herald and Maine Sunday Telegram, where he won a 2012 George Polk Award and was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize in 2016. He is a contributing editor at POLITICO and his work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Economist, Smithsonian and dozens of other major publications.
A native of Maine, he has reported from more than 50 countries and seven continents and lived for more than four years in Eastern Europe during the collapse of the Soviet empire and the transition that followed. A graduate of Tufts University and the University of Chicago he is past Pew Fellow in International Journalism at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies and a recipient of the Jane Bagley Lehman Award for Excellence in Public Advocacy.