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Waterford, Maine
—  Town  —
View from Blackguard Road
Waterford, Maine is located in Maine
Waterford, Maine
Location within the state of Maine
Coordinates: 44°11′27″N 70°42′27″W / 44.19083°N 70.7075°W / 44.19083; -70.7075
Country United States
State Maine
County Oxford
Incorporated 1797
Area
 - Total 53.1 sq mi (137.6 km2)
 - Land 50.5 sq mi (130.7 km2)
 - Water 2.6 sq mi (6.9 km2)
Elevation 669 ft (204 m)
Population (2000)
 - Total 1,455
 - Density 28.8/sq mi (11.1/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 - Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 04088
Area code(s) 207
FIPS code 23-80635
GNIS feature ID 0582794

Waterford is a town in Oxford County, Maine, United States. The population was 1,455 at the 2000 census. It is a recreation area noted for historic architecture and scenic beauty.

Contents

History

Waterford Flat in 1908

The township was granted on February 24, 1774 by the Massachusetts General Court to Captain Andrew Gardner and his company of soldiers for services under Sir William Phipps during the 1690 expedition against Canada. It replaced a 1735 grant called Toddstown or Township No. 6 (now Henniker, New Hampshire), which was ruled invalid when the state line was redrawn between Massachusetts and New Hampshire in 1741 to satisfy a prior claim by the heirs of John Mason.

The land was surveyed in 1774; in spring of 1775, David McWain of Bolton, Massachusetts arrived with his dog at a lot he bought for $40. He cleared land and built a log cabin, returning to Bolton for 2 winters until he settled permanently at Waterford in spring of 1777. McWain preferred solitude, and was deeply annoyed when he first saw smoke rising about 12 miles (19 km) away at Paris Hill. "Humph," he said, "I would like to know who is settling over there right under my nose!" Other grantees arrived nevertheless, most from the Massachusetts towns of Bolton, Harvard, Stow, Northborough and Rowley. Indeed, the northwestern part of the plantation was once known as Rowley after the inhabitants' former hometown.

On March 2, 1797, Waterford was incorporated, with land annexed from Albany in 1811. The surface of the town is uneven, somewhat mountainous. It was well-suited for pasturage and orchards, and agriculture became a principal occupation. Sawmills were built at streams to manufacture the region's abundant timber into lumber. Wood products included window sashes, barrel staves, salt boxes and buckets. There was also a gristmill, carriage factory and tannery. Today, Waterford Flat is a resort area, and home to The Lake House, a 1797 inn set among antique buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Notable residents

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 53.1 square miles (137.6 km²), of which, 50.5 square miles (130.7 km²) of it is land and 2.7 square miles (6.9 km²) of it (4.99%) is water. Waterford is drained by the Crooked River. It contains a number of small lakes including Keoka Lake and Bear Pond, as well as Mount Tire'm.

The town is crossed by state routes 35, 37 and 118. It is bordered by the towns of Norway to the northeast, Albany and Stoneham to the northwest, Sweden and Lovell to the southwest, and Harrison and Bridgton to the southeast.

Demographics

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 1,455 people, 590 households, and 437 families residing in the town. The population density was 28.8 people per square mile (11.1/km²). There were 895 housing units at an average density of 17.7/sq mi (6.8/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 98.83% White, 0.27% Native American, 0.07% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, and 0.76% from two or more races.

There were 590 households out of which 29.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.5% were married couples living together, 9.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 25.9% were non-families. 21.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.46 and the average family size was 2.80.

In the town the population was spread out with 23.5% under the age of 18, 6.6% from 18 to 24, 28.0% from 25 to 44, 27.6% from 45 to 64, and 14.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 101.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.3 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $31,458, and the median income for a family was $35,000. Males had a median income of $25,560 versus $22,188 for females. The per capita income for the town was $16,416. About 9.5% of families and 13.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.0% of those under age 18 and 7.3% of those age 65 or over.

Site of interest

  • Waterford Historical Society & Museum

References

External links

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