Construction Workers From All Over

Peter Plourde came to Millinocket, with his family, in 1899. They put up two tents on a hill near the Fowler Farm, and went to work helping to build the new town, beginning with their own home.

French Canadians came from along Maine’s northern border with Canada, and from the St. John Valley, to work in the woods, as well as the mill. Some of the early families carried surnames that included Albert, Beaulieu, Bilodeau, Michaud, Theriault, Cyr, Pelletier, Ouellete.

People came from all over the country, and world, becoming the carpenters, railroad men, shopkeepers, and millworkers who were to form the new settlement.

Among the early tradespeople, many whose businesses had first been established in Bangor, were those who carried names from the Far East, such as Hikel, Jamo, Maguris, and Maragus.

Families whose names were of English lineage included Baker, Boynton, Caffrey, Doyle, Galvin, Hunt, McPheters, and McInnis. Scandinavians, most of whom came from the Kennebec River Valley, included the Andersons, Carlstroms, Johnsons, Larsons, and others.

From Scotland, John Crawford came to Millinocket to take a job in the new mill. After a year, he had put aside enough money to be able to send for his family.

Newcomers needed somewhere to live. Some built behind the mill, where there was higher ground, in an area that was to be called “Shack Hill,” where they lived until the GNP needed the land for expansion of the mill itself. Others settled along the tote road, in an area now known as Old Medway Road.

© Michelle Anderson 2005-2014