The Long Island Historical Society, located on Long Island, Maine, is an organization dedicated to the preservation, research, collection, and displaying of objects of historical significance to the Town of Long Island, the City of Portland, and the neighboring islands in Casco Bay, Maine.  Our exhibits feature the island’s history as it relates to fishing and lobstering; tourism, islanders, their lives and homes; WW I and WW II as they affected Long Island; the efforts of King Resources and Phoenix to establish a major oil storage and transfer terminal serviced by supertankers on the island; secession from the City of Portland, and the incorporation of the Town of Long Island on July 1, 1993.  The Society is a member of Maine Archives & Museums.

We welcome inquiries into our collection. If you have items you feel might be of interest to Long Islanders, please contact us at longislandhistory@hotmail.com attention the Collections Committee.

Upcoming events in July! 

We are honored that the Ambassador to the US from the Republic of Ireland Daniel Mulhall and the Irish Consulate General of Boston Laoise Moore will be visiting us for a tour of our summer exhibit Sense of Place: Two Brothers Six Generations on Tuesday July 23.  Following their private viewing of the exhibit, islanders are invited to attend a brief reception in the Community Center from 9:00 am – 9:30 am. 

Our summer program Chasing Your Tales: Genealogy Basics will be held in the Long Island Learning Center on Thursday July 25.  The social begins at 6:30, with the program beginning at 7:00.  Cheryl Nickerson-Nutter, who did the genealogical research for our summer exhibit, will be giving tips on how to get started in doing your own family research, what resources are available, and how to “connect the dots” in your family line.  RSVP (encouraged but not required) Karen Rea, 207-317-0316.

History of the Long Island Historical Society

Although the first attempt to start a historical society on Long Island was in the 1970’s, it wasn’t until the fall of 1995 that the Long Island Historical Society was actually formed.  The Long Island Civic Association board expressed alarm that the island was rapidly losing many members of a generation who had firsthand knowledge of the Island’s early 1900 history.  The first meetings were held in a private home on the island, and by January 1996 the Society had incorporated as a non-profit organization and elected officers. The Chebeague Island Historical Society provided much needed assistance with the mechanics of what it takes to run a society.  An exhibit titles Now and Then was held that summer in the VFW Hall.  While it only lasted 4 hours, it was a huge success, demonstrating a definite interest by the islanders in having a society.  When the Town of Long Island purchased the Community Building at Mariner’s Wharf, space was allocated to the Society for a museum.  In 2006, the Historical Society moved into a new space specifically designed to serve as an Archives Room in the basement of the Long Island Learning Center, providing stable temperature-controlled storage for the growing collection of artifacts.  Thanks to several grants the society was able to purchase state-of-the-art computers and equipment to safely record and store the many objects in the collection.     The Society has mounted summer exhibits, lectures and field trips, and hosted visiting groups and families interested in  researching their family’s presence on the island.


PHOTO CREDITS: Postcard donated by Beth Marchak