Built for a Louisiana hotelier and his wife, the jaw-dropping rooms of Portland’s Victoria Mansion constitute the first and only extant interior by 19th-century design star Gustave Herter. Today, more than 150 years after it was built, the mansion retains 90 percent of its original furnishings and grants a rare look at 19th-century design.
Rope’s history in Maine is as long as the coastline that once housed the long buildings, known as ropewalks, where lines for fishing boats and sailing vessels were made. Like sail lofts and chandleries, ropewalks were a necessary part of any seaport, yet few of the buildings remain today. Writer Laurie Schreiber explains why.
Maine has a thriving oyster growing industry. Until recently most of these oysters were raised from commercial seed. As the industry has grown and coastal water temperatures have inched up, cultured oysters have begun to multiply on their own, particularly in the brackish waters of the Damariscotta River.
Founded by Bill Lowe of Owls Head, Maine, who started out making special metal fittings for yachts, Lowe Hardware has expanded into the high-end custom hardware home market. The company makes doorknobs, pulls, hinges, cabinet handles, and even fittings for furniture, in finishes that range from shiny or rough bronze to gold-plated brass or nickel.
Tubby Legs, a Finboat designed by Harry Bryan of New Brunswick, Canada, has a flexible fin off the stern. Reciprocating foot pedals push the fin back and forth, propelling the vessel through the water like an undulating fish. It’s the eighth boat built at Islesford Boatworks, a summer boatbuilding school.
Cottrell Boatbuilding of Searsport, Maine, built a pair of custom classic Moths for a customer who had raced Moths when he was young. His charge to the Cottrells: “Design and build me two identical Moths within the classic Moth rules.”
Teresa L. Carey, who spent two years sailing alone on a boat and writes a blog called “Sailing, Simplicity, and the Pursuit of Happiness,” shares her thoughts about why the water makes us happy and why we should spend more time in boats.
Who hasn’t dreamed about a car that can go in the water? A German company made amphibious cars in the 1960s and exported them to the United States. Some are still on the road today. Bob Stover of Belfast, Maine, has owned and restored three of these plucky hybrids, which are at home both on land and in the water.
Novelist Alice Greenway sailed a leg in the first-ever Black Sea Tall Ships Regatta last spring. Along with Greenway, the crew of the 170-foot Kaliakra included twenty-five Bulgarian maritime high school students, two teachers, and a dozen seamen.
The Island Country Golf Club on Deer Isle is one of those rare institutions that bring together people of all sorts. Affordable and accessible, it’s the kind of place where golfers of all ages and abilities can enjoy the ancient game. A recent expansion and renovation has made the course even more of a joy to play.