Mountain Explorations Publishing Company
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In Copyright. All Rights Reserved. Files provided with the permission of the publisher. No part of this book may be reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission from the author/copyright holder, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.
The 1825 fire consumed 832,000 acres, a great deal of it in the Piscataquis River valley, and was nearly four times the size of Maine’s 1947 fires that consumed 220,000 acres. This is the only book that has more than a couple paragraphs about the fire; it includes all the limited amount of recorded information about the fire that started in the township of Guilford and burned in every direction on a compass. Furthermore, it is the only publication of any form that uses existing information to create a possible map of its boundary lines.
The central focus of the book is logging in the aftermath of the fire, the log-driving era of the Piscataquis watershed, c.1800-1953. To know about the great fire (chapter one) leads to a greater understanding of the logging history that followed. Each subsequent chapter is devoted to a major artery of the river and includes two major focal points, “inside the burn” and “outside the burn.” Surprisingly this book is also the only one focused on the history of logging in the log-driving era within the Piscataquis watershed.
This watershed has sections that are every bit as fascinating as those with considerable collected log driving lore. It took lumbermen nearly 37 years to figure out how to successfully drive long logs through Gulf Hagas on the West Branch of the Pleasant River. In a 25 mile segment of the East Branch of the Pleasant River, lumbermen built over 20 dams and side dams, and 1,000s of feet of abutments.
The totality of the book (with no cover) is five downloads. The first section includes chapter one, the fire, and the introduction and acknowledgements sections. The second is the Piscataquis River and its East, West, and South Branches. The third is Sebec River, Sebec Lake and Tributaries. The fourth is the Pleassant River, East and West Branches of the Pleasant River and their Tributaries.
This, the fifth and final section, includes chapter five, Schoodic Stream drainage, chapter six, Seboeis Stream drainage, Afterword, Source of Information, and Glossary.
Geller, Bill, "832,000 Acres: Maine's 1825 Fire and Its Piscataquis Logging Aftermath, Chapters 5-6" (2020). Maine History Documents. 316.
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