The Use of Material Culture and Recovering Black Maine

Kate McMahon


Malaga Island, Maine, was home to a small mixed-racial
fishing community from the late 1860s to 1912. The community was forcibly evicted by the state
of Maine in 1912 after more than a decade of negative attention in the local and regional
press, which drew the ire of state officials. After their eviction, several residents were
institutionalized at the Maine School for the Feeble Minded at Pineland, and the state
attempted to erase any evidence of their community from the island. Archaeological excavations
in the early 2000s led to a museum exhibit in 2012. The excavation and exhibit have helped
solidify a large descendant community.

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