Panel Exhibits and the Kennebec River

History House Outdoor exhibits tell the stories of the Kennebec River – which has always been at the heart of the town of Skowhegan. Our rich heritage includes the earliest Native American settlers in the region, the failed Benedict Arnold Expedition, the explosion of water-powered commerce in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, and the log drives that finally ended in 1976.

These Exhibits include:

      • A Kennebec Riverside Overlook with signage offering information about factories and mills, early pottery making, ice harvesting, ferry service, water rights, construction of two dams providing hydropower, and more.
      • A 13’ model of a bateau constructed by local boat builder, Dave Axelman. The accompanying signage depicts photos and information about the historic usage of the bateau for Benedick Arnold’s prerevolutionary journey to Quebec, the Kennebec River as the power behind the industrial development of Skowhegan Island and falls area during the 1800’s, and the Kennebec as a highway for logging drives.
      • An eight foot wigwam, revealing the skills and artistry of a traditional Wabanaki builder, to be constructed in July on the History House grounds. The interior of the wigwam will feature a photographic exhibit highlighting current Native American homes and their everyday household articles. Going forward the wigwam will host speaker events and exhibit-related activities once we are able to reopen to the public.

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