|Incorporated||March 16, 1901|
|• Total||18.22 sq mi (47.19 km2)|
|• Land||15.95 sq mi (41.31 km2)|
|• Water||2.27 sq mi (5.88 km2)|
|Elevation||351 ft (107 m)|
|• Estimate (2012)||4,447|
|• Density||282.5/sq mi (109.1/km2)|
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||0582596|
Millinocket was first settled in 1829 by Thomas Fowler and his family, who cleared land for a farm. When the Bangor and Aroostook Railroad extended service to Houlton in 1894, the line ran through the area, opening it to development. Charles W. Mullen, an engineering graduate from the University of Maine, proposed a hydroelectric dam on the Penobscot River. He recognized the falls as an ideal water power source to operate a large pulp and paper mill. Mullen contacted Garret Schenck, vice-president of the International Paper mill at Rumford Falls and an expert in the industry, about building a pulp and paper mill near the dam. Mr. Schenck agreed, and set about obtaining the necessary financial backing.
After securing land rights, the chosen site was at the junction of the West Branch of the Penobscot River and Millinocket Stream, where it stands today. Things moved quickly, and on May 15, 1899, construction began on the Great Northern Paper Company mill. As the location was not near existing towns, it became necessary to build one. Millinocket, meaning "the land of many islands" after all the islands in the Penobscot River, was incorporated on March 16, 1901.
Garret Schenck contracted bonded labor, especially stonemasons from Italy. The term "bonded" in this case referred to the fact that the Italians owed for the passage to America and were in debt the minute they set foot in this country. Italian masons were largely responsible for the construction of the Millinocket mill.
Throughout the 20th century, the community prospered. It developed a reputation as a small but successful rural town, mostly due to the paper industry, but also to its proximity to Katahdin, Maine's tallest mountain, and Moosehead Lake, Maine's largest lake.
In early 2003, however, Great Northern Paper announced it had filed for bankruptcy protection for its Millinocket and East Millinocket mills. Since then, the mill town has struggled to reshape its economy, while receiving significant help from the state government and local economic development efforts. Shortly after closing the mills, a Canadian corporation purchased the bankrupt paper mills in both Millinocket and East Millinocket. Currently, the paper mill employs over 200 workers in East Millinocket Mill only. In additional to the traditional forest products industry, Millinocket has been growing a service economy, and has grown into a major four-season tourist attraction. The region is served by the Millinocket Municipal Airport, which sells both 100LL avgas and jet fuel.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 18.22 square miles (47.19 km2), of which, 15.95 square miles (41.31 km2) of it is land and 2.27 square miles (5.88 km2) is water. Millinocket Lake is drained by the West Branch Penobscot River and Millinocket Stream. Millinocket Lake is 9 miles (14 km) to the northwest. Millinocket is the closest town to Mount Katahdin, elevation 5,270 feet (1,610 m), located in Baxter State Park 20 miles (32 km) to the northwest.
This climatic region is typified by large seasonal temperature differences, with warm to hot (and often humid) summers and cold (sometimes severely cold) winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Millinocket has a humid continental climate, abbreviated "Dfb" on climate maps.
|Climate data for Millinocket, Maine|
|Record high °F (°C)||57
|Average high °F (°C)||23
|Average low °F (°C)||3
|Record low °F (°C)||−35
|Precipitation inches (mm)||2.96
As of the census of 2010, there were 4,506 people, 2,167 households, and 1,305 families residing in the town. The population density was 282.5 inhabitants per square mile (109.1 /km2). There were 2,586 housing units at an average density of 162.1 per square mile (62.6 /km2). The racial makeup of the town was 97.7% White, 0.2% African American, 0.7% Native American, 0.4% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 0.1% from other races, and 0.8% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.5% of the population.
There were 2,167 households of which 19.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.4% were married couples living together, 8.7% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.1% had a male householder with no wife present, and 39.8% were non-families. 34.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 17.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.06 and the average family size was 2.58.
The median age in the town was 51.5 years. 15.5% of residents were under the age of 18; 5.5% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 17.8% were from 25 to 44; 36.6% were from 45 to 64; and 24.6% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the town was 48.6% male and 51.4% female.
As of the census of 2000, there were 5,203 people, 2,295 households, and 1,556 families residing in the town. The population density was 327.5 people per square mile (126.4/km²). There were 2,679 housing units at an average density of 168.6 per square mile (65.1/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 98.52% White, 0.10% Black or African American, 0.54% Native American, 0.37% Asian, 0.02% from other races, and 0.46% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.23% of the population.
There were 2,295 households, out of which 25.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.7% were married couples living together, 9.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.2% were non-families. 28.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.25 and the average family size was 2.69.
In the town the population was spread out with 21.1% under the age of 18, 4.9% from 18 to 24, 25.0% from 25 to 44, 29.7% from 45 to 64, and 19.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 44 years. For every 100 females there were 93.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.5 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $29,318, and the median income for a family was $40,893. Males had a median income of $41,218 versus $23,289 for females. The per capita income for the town was $17,130. About 11.8% of families and 14.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.4% of those under age 18 and 12.4% of those age 65 or over.
Sites of interest
Schools in Millinocket are under the jurisdiction of the Millinocket School Department. The town's primary school is the Granite Street School, the middle school is Millinocket Middle School, and the secondary school is Stearns High School.
Millinocket has one newspaper that serves the area:
- Katahdin Press, a weekly newspaper formed in 2005, through a merger of the Katahdin Times and the Community Press
Regionally, the Bangor Daily News is also circulated throughout the area.
The area is served by several radio stations, mainly Millinocket-licensed WSYY-FM 94.9 (classic hits/adult contemporary) and WSYY 1240(CBS Sports Radio). Stations from Bangor and the more powerful stations from Presque Isle are also heard. Cable television is provided by Beeline Cable, which provides most of the network affiliates from Bangor.
Millinocket is currently home to the Discovery Channel TV show American Loggers which showcases the logging efforts of Gerald Pelletier Incorporated. The television show, when in season, is on Friday nights at 10:00 PM Eastern/Pacific.
- Harry A. Corey, entrepreneur, Canadian politician
- Mary Kathryn Gonya, Miss Maine (1966)
- Jane Harragan, Miss Maine (1950)
- Andrew St. John, actor
- Joe Whalen, tennis player
- Ervin Williams, musician
- "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-16.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-16.
- "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-07-06.
- "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Millinocket town, Penobscot County, Maine". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved November 20, 2012.
- History of Millinocket, Maine
- "Brief History of Millinocket, Maine," Millinocket Historical Society
- "Area History", Katahdin Area Chamber of Commerce
- Climate Summary for Millinocket, Maine
- "Monthly Averages for Millinocket, Maine". Weather.com. The Weather Channel. Retrieved August 15, 2013.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- Millinocket page on GreatSchools
- American Loggers on Discovery
- Town of Millinocket official website
- Millinocket Memorial Library
- Jo Mary Riders Snowmobile Club
- Northern Timber Cruisers Snowmobile Club
- Katahdin Regional Wiki: Millinocket
- What Happened To Lieutenant Hare?
- Katahdin Area Chamber of Commerce