All Things Maine
All Things Maine

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Frontier Justice on Matinicus

Ariel Sabar writes today in the Christian Science Monitor about the Wild-West mentality that prevails among Matinicus lobster-boat captains.
Matinicus, the most seaward of Maine's inhabited islands, is cut off from the mainland town of Rockland, and the nearest police station, by 20 miles of water.

Frontier justice has reigned on this speck of granite - two miles long, one mile wide - since its first white settler, Ebenezer Hall, arrived in 1750 and tangled with the Indians. The native Penobscots warned the colonial governor that if Hall wasn't removed, they'd take matters into their own hands, according to a local history book. A plaque under weeds near the post office commemorates the episode's end: "Ebenezer Hall. The First White Settler on Matinicus Isle, Maine. Killed by the Indians. June 6, 1757."
When Knox County Sheriff Daniel Davey told The Working Waterfront newspaper in 2001 that there was a group of Matinicans "that definitely does not want the presence of law enforcement," one lobsterman wrote to the editor that some didn't much like Mr. Davey either: "Sheriff Davey was unable to win an election out here in which he was unopposed; out of 24 votes cast, one was for an island resident and 12 were for 'anyone else.'" [Link]


At 11:07 PM, August 01, 2006, Blogger T. Oklahoma Bandwagon said...

Thanks for alerting me about this story. Here's the follow-up I put together ...


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