Damariscove is an uninhabited island that is part of Boothbay Harbor, Lincoln County, Maine, United States, about 5nmi off the coast at the mouth of the Damariscotta River. The long, narrow island is approximately 2mi long and 1500ft at its widest point. The island has served in the past as a fishing settlement and a Coast Guard life saving station.To visit Damariscove Island on your trip to Boothbay Harbor, use our Boothbay Harbor holiday planner .
The earliest residents of the island were the Abenaki, who called the island Aquahega or "place of landing." As early as 1604, the island was settled as a commercial fishing enterprise, with Francis Popham among those sending fishing vessels there on yearly expeditions. Captain John Smith charted the island as "Damerils Iles" after a visit in 1614, with the name traditionally attributed to Humphrey Damerill. Damerill had been a member of the failed Popham Colony, but moved to Damariscove in 1608 to establish a store to supply the fishing community. By 1622, the island was home to 13 year-round fishermen, with 2 shallops in the winter and up to 30 sailing ships fishing the waters in the spring. The fishermen had also constructed a fort with a palisade and mounted gun. When the Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony were facing starvation in the spring of 1622, they sent a boat to Damariscove to beg for assistance. The fishermen responded by filling the colonists’ boat with cod which helped ensure the Pilgrims’ survival.
Damariscove Island Reviews
For a time this historical island hosted the oldest ongoing English-speaking settlement in America. Now part of it is available for visiting and hiking every summer while some of it is a bird preserve... more »
Our B&B innkeeper suggested we drive from Boothbay Harbor to Damariscove Island to see the lighthouse on our way home. Are we happy we did! An easy 45-50 minute drive, beautiful views, and a cute gift... more »
If you have the opportunity spend a few hours and walk the trails ....gorgeous
Always beautiful. Boothbay Regional Land Trust has done a wonderful job preserving this historic and natural treasure.
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