Fort William Henry at Colonial Pemaquid
Fort William Henry at Colonial Pemaquid
Colonial Pemaquid State Historic Site in Bristol will open its 2017 season at 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 27, with a performance by Maine St. Andrew’s Pipes & Drums, playing traditional tunes of the British Isles on the parade ground of Fort William Henry, along with a commemorative commentary and a salute to those who have served the nation.  There is no rain date.

Colonial Pemaquid, on the site of a 17th-century English settlement, showcases aspects of life in midcoast Maine during that era, including a partly reconstructed fortress, a replica of a thatched-roof house, and a wide array of artifacts on exhibit. The Friends of Colonial Pemaquid (FOCP) present living history events and lectures by experts in a range of fields. Most living history events take place outdoors on weekends; there is no charge for those programs other than the customary park fees.   

History lectures are held on Monday evenings at the Contented Sole Restaurant, adjacent to the museum. Lectures are free for members of Colonial Pemaquid, $5 for non-members. The restaurant offers a lecture night dinner special, a 15 percent discount on all food items consumed there between 5:30 and 7:30 p.m.

Colonial Pemaquid’s 2017 season will include:

• Saturday, July 1: 241st anniversary of the Declaration of Independence  — Public reading and commentary by living history interpreters at 2 p.m.; rain date Sunday, July 2

• Monday, July 10 — Lecture “Photos of the Beginning of Colonial Pemaquid State Historic Park” by Maine State Historian Earle G. Shettleworth, Jr., 7:30 p.m.

• Saturday, July 15 — “Pirates at Pemaquid!” with living history presenter and local author James Nelson as the infamous Dixie Bull, 1 and 3 p.m.; rain date Sunday, July 16

• Monday, July 17 — Lecture “The Rise and Fall of Fort William Henry” by FOCP Lecture Series Chairman Don Ashton, 7:30 p.m.

• Monday, July 24 — Lecture “Early Maine Drinking Habits and Anecdotes” by Kate McCarty, author of “Distilled in Maine: A History of Libations, Temperance & Draft Spirits,” 7:30 p.m.

• Monday, July 31 — Lecture “New England’s Knight, Sir William Phips, and His Connections to Pemaquid” by Emerson “Tad” Baker, 7:30 p.m.

• Monday, August 7 — Lecture “The Archaeology of the 17th-Century Walter Phillips Homestead Site Along the Banks of the Upper Damariscotta” by Tim Dinsmore, 7:30 p.m.

• Monday, August 14 — Lecture “Madockawando to Knox: Corruption, Insider Trading and the Sale of Mid-Coast Maine” by Mike Dekker, 7:30 p.m.

• Monday, August 21 — “A Man Astride Two Worlds: The Odd Adventures of John Gyles, Interpreter and Culture Broker” by Dr. Neill DePaoli, 7:30 p.m.

• Sunday, September 3 — Castlebay in Colonial Pemaquid’s traditional outdoor Labor Day Weekend Concert; Fred Gosbee and Julia Lane perform Celtic, nautical and early American music, 1 and 3 p.m. (no rain date)

Colonial Pemaquid is open daily, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Memorial Day through Labor Day. For more information, visit To make reservations for school or group tours, call 677-2423.