"We know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose." (Romans 8:28)

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Maine, Part 3: Penobscot Narrows Observatory and Fort Knox

As we crossed the Penobscot Narrows Bridge, I noticed the old bridge beside it.
So I stopped at the other end for a better look. Old and new:
From below:
Found out the tower on the new bridge has an observatory....the only bridge observatory in the Western Hemisphere and the tallest in the world at 420 feet - 42 stories. Of course we had to go up for the 360 degree views.
In this direction we see Fort Knox, a state historic site we will also visit. Across the river is the town of Bucksport, ME.
Looking down at the old bridge:

Info about the old bridge and why they needed a new one:

This compass rose design on the is based on a 1613 map by Samuel Champlain.

Champlain's map

The Penobscot River
Info about the river

This paper mill makes the paper for L. L. Bean's catalogs.
Distant mountains can be seen from here, including Cadillac Mtn. at Acadia NP.

But you might need binoculars.

Fort Knox is Maine's largest historic fort, constructed between 1844 and 1864. It was named after Major General Henry Knox. America's other Fort Knox, in Kentucky, is also named after him.
It was built to defend the Penobscot River Valley from naval attacks, a need that became apparent during the Revolution and the War of 1812 when enemy british ships seized control of the river.
A map showing the fort's location. The fort never saw combat, but was garrisoned during the Civil and Spanish-American Wars.
The fort was built of granite.
The granite was quarried on Mt. Waldo, 5 miles upriver. The granite blocks were transported down the mountain, then carried by scow to Fort Knox's wharf. Some of the granite was cut and finished to proper sizes on site at the fort.
A Civil War era ambulance.
We were advised to bring a flashlight to navigate many dark passageways during our self-guided tour.
The large Rodman cannon was extremely powerful, but slow to maneuver. Twelve men were needed to load the cannon. A mechanical hoist was used to lift the 450 pound solid cannonball. It could fire it 5,579 yards.
Info about the casemates where the cannons were mounted.
A view from the roof.
Also known as the terreplein.

It was a good idea, but no ships ever threatened the Penobscot River valley again, so the fort was never finished.

From here we followed a road less traveled and found some unique places off the beaten path. Coming up next.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you Liz... very interesting... I see bear was by the cannon it showed just how big that was...