The web of our life is of a mingled yarn, good and ill together. – William Shakespeare
Aroostook is the northernmost county in Maine. It is bordered on the south by Somerset, Piscataquis, Penobscott, and Washington counties; on the north and east by the Canadian province of New Brunswick; and on the west by the province of Quebec.
Aroostook County was established 1 May 1839, and Comprised all the state “north of the north line of the fourth range of townships north of the lottery townships, and east of the dividing line between ranges five and six west of the east line of the state and of a line from the north termination of said dividing line and running the same course to the north line of the state…”
The county was enlarged thus in 1843: “All of the land north of townships numbered eight in the sixth range, eight in the seventh range, and eight in the eighth range of townships west of the east line of the state” was annexed from Penobscot County on 21 March 1843.
The county was further enlarged in 1844 thus: …from Piscataquis and Somerset Counties, and bounded on the south by a line beginning at the northwest corner of township number eight, in the eighth range of townships west from the east line of the state; thence north to a point due west from the northwest corner of township numbered ten in the seventh range of townships west from the east line of the state, thence west to the west line of the state.
Aroostook’s county seat is Houlton. Early eastern Aroostook records are in Michias. Remaining records are in Bangor. It is doubtful that any record prior to the organization of Penobscot, Piscataquis and Somerset Counties (1809 – 1816) are in existence, but if so they would be located in Augusta, Ellsworth and Wiscasset.
– from Maine Towns and Counties What was What, Where and When, by Michael J. Denis
Aroostook County’s geography is laid out like a grid and is made up of Ranges, Townships, Plantations, and Towns. For an explanation of Ranges, Townships, and Plantations, please see the Introduction to Places page.