Built - 1897
The town of Union is located on the St. George River in Knox County in mid-coast Maine. This area was originally used by the Wawenock Indians of the Abenaki Nation for hunting, fishing and gathering of berries in abundance along with vegetables. White settlers came to the area in 1776 and built the Plantation of Sterlington 10 years later. The name soon changed to Union because of the "uncommon harmony" among its growing populations of settlers.
The Union Common, on which the bandstand sits, was a donation of land accepted by the town in 1801 from a generous resident, David Gilmore, who was a local entrepeneur, who had just built the Cobb Tavern on the Common's north side to attract travelers on the stagecoach route to Searsmont. The Common is considered to be the oldest public common in the state and is still a beautiful piece of land with mature apple and birch trees and a flower planter made from an old water trough. The bandstand is a veneered structure that was built in 1897 and is still in marvelous condition since the town painstackingly keeps it in great shape since it is still used extensively as a popular venue for band concerts, Founder's Day ceremonies, library book sales and annual Christmas decorations. Not much other information is available on the building of the bandstand but it is readily believed that the structure was built to house the Union Cornet Band that is known to have played for William Jennings Bryan in 1896.
INFORMATION SUPPLIED BY:
D. Davis, Union Historical Society