History of Friendship, Maine
A Gazetteer of the
State of Maine

By Geo. J. Varney
Published by B. B. Russell, 57 Cornhill,
Boston 1886

Friendship, the south-western town of Knox County, is situated at the north-west side of Muscoiigus Bay. On the north-west is Waldoboro, and on the east, Cushing. Friendship River forms the larger part of the boundary line on this side, and the outlet of Southwest Pond forms its entire line with Waldoboro. The greatest length of the town is from north-east to south-west. The area is about 8,000 acres of mainland, and Friendship Long Island, nearly 3 miles long, and Moses Island, about half as large, containing 85 acres. The surface of the town is very rough and ledgy, having but a thin layer of sand and alluvium.

Friendship was a part of the Muscongus or Waldo patent, and the original deeds are from General Waldo. The Indian and the plantation name of the town was Meduncook, signifying "Sandy Harbor." Yet the term seems inappropriate, for the shore is rock-bound, and in some parts are bold bluffs where ships may ride at anchor in safety in 20 feet of water. The first settlements were in 1750. About this date a garrison was erected on an island in the southern part; which, from this circumstance, bears the name of Garrison Island. It is connected with the main at low water. James Bradford, who was one of the first inhabitants, settled near the fort. In 1754, there were resident here 22 families, among whom occur other names as follows: Jameson, Wadsworth, Davis, Lowry, Gay, Cushing, Bartlett, Dernorse, Bickmore, Morton and Cook. In the war of 1755 all moved their families within the garrison except Bradford, who believed he could easily reach it whenever Indians should appear. One morning while he was engaged in pounding corn, the watchers in the garrison saw savages approaching the house, and at once fired a gun to alarm Bradford's family. None of them heard it, and the savages entered the house and killed Mr. Bradford and his wife with their tomahawks. As her infant fell from her arms, a daughter some twelve or fourteen years old, sprang from her concealment under the bed and caught the infant as it fell, instantly running away with it toward the garrison. The Indians pursued, flinging their tomahawks after her. One of these made a deep flesh wound, yet she reached the garrison still holding the infant. The girl recovered from her wound, and, removing to Vermont, became the mother of a large and respectable family.

The manufactures are mostly at Friendship Village, and consist of ship and boat building, sail, carriage, boot and shoe making; and there is one stave and shingle mill in operation. This place is 14 miles southwest of Rockland. It is on the stage-route from Thomaston to Friendship and thence to Waldoboro.

There is a church of the Methodists, of the Baptists, and of the Advents in the town. The number of public schoolhouses is seven. The total school property is valued at $2,000. The valuation of estates in 1870 was $140,267. In 1880 it was $157,165. The population in 1870 was 890. In 1880 it was 938.

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