Historical Ecology Atlas of New England

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Known as Maine’s city of ships, Bath sits on the shores of the Kennebec River, about 15 miles from the Gulf of Maine and 40 miles up the coast from Portland. Though small in population, Bath’s impact on Maine, the rest of United States, and even on the world has been anything but small. Today Bath is known mostly for the Bath Iron Works, which supplies the US Navy with a large portion of its fleets, however, in Bath’s early days it built large, wooden yachts and schooners mostly for trade, not war. The next few pages will explore Bath’s history of shipbuilding as well as other changes to the town throughout the years; specifically Bath’s impact on the people and land along the Kennebec River and the human and environmental the factors that have shaped Bath into the town that it is today.


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