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Winterport, Maine
Penobscot River in 1906
Penobscot River in 1906
"A Great Place to Live and Work"
Location of the town of Winterport (in yellow) in Waldo County and the state of Maine
Location of the town of Winterport (in yellow) in Waldo County and the state of Maine
Country United States
State Maine
County Waldo
Incorporated March 12, 1860
 • Type Town Council
 • Total 37.05 sq mi (95.96 km2)
 • Land 35.52 sq mi (92.00 km2)
 • Water 1.53 sq mi (3.96 km2)
220 ft (67 m)
 • Total 3,757
 • Density 105.8/sq mi (40.8/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 207
FIPS code 23-86760
GNIS feature ID 0582822
Website Town of Winterport, Maine

Winterport is a town in Waldo County, Maine, United States. The population was 3,757 at the 2010 census.


First settled in 1766 as part of Frankfort, it was set off and incorporated on March 12, 1860. It was named Winterport because of its fine harbor on the Penobscot River estuary, which generally remained ice free, and so became a busy local terminus for trade and shipping during winter months. When the upper Penobscot River froze, commodities like flour were hauled in large quantities from here to Bangor.

In 1841, Theophilus Cushing opened a large steam mill which manufactured 11,000,000 feet of lumber annually. It also made sugar box shooks, lath, clapboard, and soap and candle boxes. The town had two cooperage factories. Other industries produced harnesses, cheese and butter, and men's vests. Until the Panic of 1857, Winterport was a shipbuilding center. But the principal business for most of the town was agriculture.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 37.05 square miles (95.96 km2), of which, 35.52 square miles (92.00 km2) of it is land and 1.53 square miles (3.96 km2) is water. Drained by the Marsh River, Winterport is bounded by the Penobscot River.

Winterport Ferry Co. ticket Bucksport Centre to Winterport 1920s
Winterport Ferry Co. ticket for travel between Winterport and Bucksport in the 1920s

The town is crossed by U.S. Route 1A, as well as Maine State Route 69 and Maine State Route 139. It borders the towns of Frankfort to the south, Monroe to the west, and Hampden and Newburgh to the north. Bucksport lies across the Penobscot River to the east which prior to the opening of the Waldo-Hancock Bridge in 1931 was reached from Winterport by way of the Winterport Ferry Co.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1860 2,318
1870 2,744 18.4%
1880 2,260 −17.6%
1890 1,926 −14.8%
1900 1,623 −15.7%
1910 1,582 −2.5%
1920 1,433 −9.4%
1930 1,437 0.3%
1940 1,572 9.4%
1950 1,694 7.8%
1960 2,088 23.3%
1970 1,963 −6.0%
1980 2,675 36.3%
1990 3,175 18.7%
2000 3,602 13.4%
2010 3,757 4.3%
2014 (est.) 3,793 1.0%
U.S. Decennial Census
See also: Winterport (CDP), Maine

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 3,757 people, 1,503 households, and 1,100 families living in the town. The population density was 105.8 inhabitants per square mile (40.8/km2). There were 1,645 housing units at an average density of 46.3 per square mile (17.9/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 97.0% White, 0.3% African American, 0.6% Native American, 0.7% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 0.2% from other races, and 1.1% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.8% of the population.

There were 1,503 households, of which 32.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.7% were married couples living together, 10.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.1% had a male householder with no wife present, and 26.8% were non-families. 20.0% of all households were made up of individuals, and 6.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 2.84.

The median age in the town was 41.5 years. 22.9% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.6% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 25.1% were from 25 to 44; 34.2% were from 45 to 64; and 11.2% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the town was 49.4% male and 50.6% female.

Notable people

  • Mike Bordick, baseball shortstop (Baltimore and Oakland)
  • Joseph E. Brooks, state legislator and journalist
  • Alice Osborne Curwen (McKeen), biologist and Episcopal women's leader
  • James Otis Kaler, journalist and children's author
  • Frederick Low, US congressman and 9th governor of California
  • Jonathan Merrill (1801–1848), Major General, Third Division, Maine Militia
  • Michael Thibodeau, Maine state senator
  • Daniel White, brigadier general
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