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View of the White Mountains from Range Hill Road, Welcome to the site for Poland, Maine
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Poland Town Seal
History of Poland
HISTORY

The following is a summary of some of Poland’s historical highlights from 1736 to 1990.


1736


The General Court of Massachusetts granted a petition for two townships of land, including the geographical area of present-day Poland, to the officers and soldiers who had served in the disastrous campaign of 1690 against Canada. The grant was called the Bakerstown Grant. No real attempt to settle the area took place until 1768-69.


1741


George II settled a boundary dispute by creating the Province of New Hampshire. The land for the Bakerstown Grant fell within the new province’s boundary lines and the title issued by Massachusetts was invalidated.


1765


The General Court responded to demands of agents for the Bakerstown Grant proprietors and granted a township of land (including Poland) to them.


1768


Bakerstown was established which is now East Poland.


1768-69


Some of the first settlers were Nathaniel Bailey, Daniel Land, Moses Emery, and John Newman.


1770


Moses Emery, Sr. settled in what is now East Poland and built mills on the south side of the Little Androscoggin River at Minot Corner and established a ferry. Mills provided boards for boxes, cornmeal and grains for settlers.


1772


Moses Emery, Jr. was the first male to be born in Bakerstown, as the area was originally called. He built the first sawmill in 1798 as well as a grist mill, and took on other enterprises. His grave can be found in the ancient church cemetery at Center Minot.


1779


The second permanent settlement made on what is now known as the Dockham Farm in South Poland.


1790


The first settlement in West Poland was made on what is now known as Megquier Hill.



1792


Captain George Waterhouse built a grist mill at the outlet of Range Pond.


1792


The first tavern was built in Poland by Captain George Waterhouse. This established hotel keeping in Poland as a major business in the early days.


1793


The first meeting house was built. The location is in question.


1793-94


The first church was built sometime during this period with the location unknown.


1795


On February 17, Poland was incorporated and it embraced the territory of Minot and Poland. It is believed that the name was taken from the old hymn tune “Poland,” a great favorite of Moses Emery. During the settlement of Poland, small communities were established in the Town including Central, East, South and West Poland. Central Poland, known as Poland Corner, became the busiest portion of Poland after 1800.


1797


The Poland Spring Hotel opened. Spring water was discovered on the site and believed to have medicinal properties. As the fame of the water grew, the hotel expanded in size and remained open for over 150 years.


1798


The first Baptist Church was organized on Megquier Hill.


1800


The first Post Office was established at Poland Corner.


1802


Minot became a separate town from Poland.


1803


The first School House was established in South Poland at the Four Corners.


1819


The Shakers settled on Range Hill, a mile from Poland Spring. Their original house was destroyed by lightning, but a marker on Route 26 shows the spot.


1837


A Post Office was established in West Poland.


1840


The second Baptist Church was formed on White Oak Hill.


1845


Ground was broken for the first railroad which went between Portland and Montreal. The Androscoggin and Kennebec Railroad was chartered in this year and in1849 it opened a route from Danville Junction on the Grand Trunk to Waterville.


1852


Part of Poland known as Marston’s Corner became part of Auburn.


1859


The first commercial sale of Poland Spring water was made.


1870


John S. Briggs built a steam mill. In 1875, an addition was built for a saw and shingle mill as well as a clapboard mill and planer. He added a butter factory in 1884, and a threshing machine in 1888.


1876


The Poland Spring Hotel opened.


1877


The first barreling and bottling house of Poland Water was built.


1877-80


The Shakers joined with New Gloucester.


1883


 The Poland Dairy Association built a butter factory where the Poland Community School now stands. The factory had an output of 300 pounds per day. The old creamery well is still in the school basement.


1885


Twenty eight school districts had been formed by this time. The first district had been established on Range Hill in the southern part of Town.


1890


The New Gloucester Shakers changed their name to Sabbathday Lake.


1893


Mechanic Falls became a separate town. The Maine State Building was constructed at the World’s Fair in Chicago.


1893-84


The Maine Central Railroad came through Poland.


1894


The Maine State Building was transported from Chicago and reconstructed on the Poland Spring property.


1895


There was a 100 year celebration of Poland’s incorporation held under a big tent set up next to the Poland Town House for dinner and speeches.


1904


The Summit Springs Hotel was completed.


1906-07


The original Poland Spring house bottling facility was erected.


1912


All Souls Chapel was constructed.


1954


The new Poland Community School was constructed on the site of the old butter factory.   


1956


The Town converted to manager form of government.


1959


The Summit spring Hotel was torn down.


1963


The Alvan Bolster Ricker Memorial Library and Community House opened.


1965


The State Park and Recreation Commission acquired over 500 acres of land on the southern end of Lower Range Pond for a park.


1966


An addition to Poland Community School was built.


1973-74


The Town Highway Department Garage was constructed.


1975


The Poland Spring Hotel burned.


1977-77


The Town took over the Plains Road from the State.  Range Pond State Park was opened for public use.


1978


The Poland spring Mansion House burned.


1979-80


The Town’s solid waste transfer station was constructed.


1979


The Poland Spring Health Institute was opened.


1981


The second addition to Poland Community School was constructed.


1986


 The Sebago area, including Poland, was identified as a potential nuclear dump site. In the face of strong local     opposition, the U.S.   Department of Energy withdrew consideration of the area.


1989


Residents of Poland gathered to build a new playground for elementary children.


1989


The new Town office was constructed and opened.


1989


A new Fire and Rescue building was constructed.


1990


Soviet elementary school children arrived in Poland to spend a month living and going to school at Poland      Community School.


1990


A new post office was opened on Route 26 serving Poland Spring located one mile south of Poland Corner.


1990


The Maine Bottling Company began bottling Garden Spring Water.


1990


The Poland Comprehensive Plan Committee began work on the Poland Comprehensive Plan.


 1990


 Population of Poland, Maine is approximately 4,321


1990


Poland takes part in Statewide “Maine Street ‘90 celebration”- “Welcome to Poland, Maine” signs erected


1990


 Last year that Poland’s financial activities and operations reported on a calendar basis- Jan. to Dec.


1991


Poland transitioned to a July 1 to June 30 fiscal year, with semi-annual tax billings, saving the Town significant dollars by avoiding the cost of borrowing in anticipation of taxes.


1992


New vehicle registration program implemented in Town office.



 •      Town computer system replaced





 •      Interior of Town Hall repainted


1992


•       Old Town office building leased to Biological Services (Ira Levine)




 •      Community bulletin board activated on Town’s public access TV channel


1993


Townwide revaluation initiated, the first since 1978


1994


Valuation $139,484,540 tax rate $22.35 per $1,000 valuation


1995


Valuation $205,014,080 tax rate $16.90 per $ 1,000 valuation


 


Town awarded grant from Dept. of Environmental Protection for 1/2 payment of cost of closing and capping   Town’s old dump.

Town purchases land adjoining Transfer Station to permit reorganizing solid waste recycling area 
Poland Bicentennial Year


1996


Establishment of fee for service approach for Town Rescue
Road naming-house numbering project started for implementation of Statewide E-91 1 emergency response system.
Process started for building High School in Poland


1997


Poland’s first ever Community Development Block Grant- awarded to improve accessibility to Alvan Bolster Ricker Memorial Library plus construction of sidewalk between Community School and Library
Range Hill Bridge (Thunder Bridge) replaced under” Local Bridge Program” administered through Me. Dept. of Transportation.


1998


ICE STORM OF 1998 - 2,000 tons of down and damaged trees on Poland’s roads. Clean up cost in excess of $200,000 paid with FEMA Disaster Reimbursement Funds.
Poland’s Code Enforcement Officer Edward Blow dies.

1999


Poland Regional High School and Bruce M Whittier Middle School opens.




•      Poland School Dept. takes ownership of School Bus Fleet from Harry Busch.




•      Goss apple orchard operating under new ownership Donald and Angela Roberts- shipping apples worldwide.


2000


George W.Bush elected President of United States.


2001





2002





2003


Poland Town Office renovated and expanded.


2004


Town salt shed built
Town Garage expanded
School Union #29 office and Bus dispatch complex constructed.
Gravel pit off Aggregate Rd. reclaimed.
Bell tower constructed and school bell returned to District #22 schoolhouse-now- home of Poland Historical Society.
Bell Tower removed from roof of Poland Community Church, replaced with fiberglass steeple
George Walker Bush re-elected 2 term
2003
Poland community school (PCS) is 50 years old.

PCS added a multipurpose room, music room, and small rooms for instruction.

New library media center.

All classrooms in original school upgraded and renovated.

Portable classrooms eliminated.

Poland Historical Society moved into the Old School House.

A sign was placed on the building as the home of the Poland Historical Society

Poland Spring Bottling Company sewer extension project Empire Rd/ Lewiston Junction road completed.

Town replaced 1978 fire engine #2

Public works replaced 1985 snow plow

Joy and Hamilton architects working on town office expansion project. Poland Spring Bottling Company provided town with services of its hydrologist in an attempt to site a reliable water supply source for town buildings after two attempts to establish wells on site failed.

Record number building permits issued.

Mobile homes 26
Modular 7
1-2 homes 45
Total 78

Marriages 38
Births 51
Deaths 27

2004-2005
Androscoggin County is 150 years old this year.

Completion of a $150,000 expansion and renovation at the town office which included new conference room, work space renovations, lobby area improvements, reallocation of office space, new service counter, and inclusion of modular office furniture.

Formation of Poland recreation department.

Hiring of a full time recreation director.

Scott Segal first director.

Fire and rescue department combined into a single department Willie Rice Jr. hired as town’s full time fire/rescue chief.

Public works garage site improvements started.

Which included sand and salt storage building, 3 bay addition to existing town garage, closure of towns Poland Corner gravel pit with conversion into school bus parking area.

Construction of new fuel island with spill and ground water protection capabilities.

Construction of central office space School Union 29 School bus-dispatching center

New water source for all town buildings in Poland Corner area on town owned land.

Poland Regional High School received 5-year grant from Gates Foundation and Mitchell Institute as part of the Great Maine School Project. Poland community school implemented full day kindergarten program

High residential growth continues in Poland.

16 mobile
8 modular
51 stick built
Total 75 homes

Marriages 38
Births 46
Deaths 37
2005-2006
Dr. William Doughty became Poland Regional High School’s third principal.

Poland public works site improvement continued and completed.

Assistant CEO authorized by townspeople at annual Town Meeting.

Randy Brown first assistant, upon his death was replaced by Bill Willett.

Replaced administrative assistant for the Code Officer and secretary for the Planning Board

The replacement was Kathy Berry.

Poland fire and rescue received 2 grants totaling $65,480 towards purchase of thermal imaging camera and hydraulic equipment for new heavy rescue truck approved at the annual Town Meeting.

High residential growth pressure continues.

Mobile 13
Modular 5
Single family 55
Total 73

Estimated population Poland as of June 30 2004 over 5600 people.


                   

                     

                     

                     

                      

                      












1231 Maine Street, Poland, ME 04274  PH:207.998.4601  FAX:207.998.2002  
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