By Joe Hebert
Photograph by Paul Giguere of the Maine Department of Transportation
We spoke with Earle G. Shettleworth, Jr., director of the Maine Historic Preservation Commission, to learn about some of the most remarkable architecture in Maine. These are his choices:
01 Victoria Mansion
109 Danforth St. | Portland
Designed by architect Henry Austin in 1858, Victoria Mansion was the summer home for New Orleans-based hotelier and Maine-native Ruggles Sylvester Morse and his wife Olive. Gustave Herter, a leading furniture maker and interior designer during the 19th century, decorated the interior of the home. Victoria Mansion has over 90 percent of its original furnishings in place.
02 Castle Tucker
2 Lee St. | Wiscasset
Perched above the Sheepscot River, Castle Tucker was home to three generations of the Tucker family. They made their fortune in the Maine shipping industry. Castle Tucker remains largely the same as it was in the mid–19th century. Visitors can enjoy a peek inside the beautiful estate the Tuckers called home for over 150 years.
03 Maine State House
State St. | Augusta
Construction of the original Maine State House was completed in 1832 and modeled after architect Charles Bulfinch’s well-known works, the Massachusetts State House and the United States Capitol Building. A new granite mural by artist Evan Haynes features English, French, Passamaqoddy, Penobscot, and Abenaki text.
04 Blaine House
192 State St. | Augusta
Since its donation to the state in 1919 by Harriet Blaine Beale, the Blaine House has been the home of Maine governors and their families. Originally built in 1833 by a retired sea captain, it was purchased by Beale’s father James G. Blaine as a present for her mother in 1862, the same year he was elected to Congress. Beale donated the house in memory of her son, Walker Blaine Beale, who was killed while in France during World War I. Restoration of the house began in 1987 by Governor John R. McKernan.
05 Woodlawn Museum, Gardens + Park
19 Black House Dr. | Ellsworth
Willed to the Hancock County Trustees by George Nixon Black, Jr.—the last of three generations to reside in Woodlawn—in 1928, the 180-acre estate has remained the same since Black’s death. The surrounding park and grounds have over two miles of trails, a croquet court, orchards, and gardens. A farmers’ market is held seasonally on Sundays. Explore the estate while perusing locally produced food and crafts.
06 Penobscot Narrows Bridge
Route 1 | Prospect + Verona
The only bridge observatory in the United States, the Penobscot Narrows Bridge opened in 2006. Since its opening, over 130,000 visitors have traveled to see the observatory and bridge. Built for $85 million dollars, it took only 42 months to plan, fund, design, obtain permits, and build.