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The first explorers to see the region we now know as the state of Maine were French. Finding the region rich in wild game and accessible waterways, short lived colonies were established by the French at the St. Croix River mouth in 1604 and 1605. A short time later British settlements were established at Kennebee River mouth in 1607 and 1608. Further French attempts to settle were prevented by Sir Samuel Argall, who destroyed the colony on Mount Desert Island in 1613. Sir Ferdinando Gorges attempted to build settlements after recieving a grant in 1622 and again after recieving a royal charter in 1639.
Maine was sold to Massachusetts by King George's heirs in 1677 and the region was set up as admiralty district of Massachusetts in 1775. The territory turned from commerce to industry through disturbances of Embargo Act of 1807 and War of 1812. The Embargo Act was passed by the United States Congress in answer to British orders in council restricting neutral shipping and to Napoleon's opposing the Continental System. It forbade all international trade to and from American ports in an attempt to persuade England and France of the value and rights of a neutral commerce. In 1809, prohibition was extended to inland waters and land commerce to halt trade with Canada, England and France.
Maine was admitted as the 23rd state through the Missouri Compromise which was measures passed by the United States Congress to end the first of a series of crises concerning extension of slavery into national territory. They provided that Maine would enter the Union as a free state. The area thrived on timber trade and shipbuilding after the Northeast Boundary Dispute was ended by Webster-Ashburton Treaty of 1842. Maine was the first state to have prohibition law in 1846-1934. The state has retained it's down east individualism and charm despite a trend toward industrilization and urban life. Maine was the first U. S. State to create wilderness waterway at Allagash Wilderness Waterway in 1966. The Capitol of Maine is Augusta. The State Bird is the Chickadee and the State Flower is the White Pine Cone and Tassel.