Castine, Maine is an indecently pretty place, the very paradigm of a New England village, classic crisp white houses on Elm-lined streets, sloping to a breathtaking harbor at the mouth of the Bagaduce River. It is a history-proud town,with dozens of charming historical markers noting the sites of important events of the last four hundred years. Though the village has infinite charms, time is short, we all have lawns to mow, and we’ll look at just a very few today.
|The earthwork ramparts of Fort Madison, built as defense against the British in 1812. It didn’t work, and for a time after, our peninsula was again part of England.|
The rugosa roses are in full force this week, scenting the air and delighting the eye. One hedge in particular sweeps uphill at a curve on Perkins Street in Castine, leading to the front door of a most unlikely and charming little cottage.
According to the 1896 edition of Augustus Wheeler’s history of Castine, this cottage was originally the Witham farmhouse, its first floor one of the few stone buildings in town. In 1884, Frank Wood, an entrepreneur from Bangor who built a number of picturesque log structures in the neighborhood in an effort to develop a summer colony, built a new cottage atop the stone foundation, using bark covered logs. His original renovations can be seen below. A few years later, another renovation gave the cottage its current form.