Kittery is distinctly the oldest town in the State of Maine, incorporated in 1647. That is more than a century and a quarter before the birth of the United States. Before the arrival of Europeans this area was known to Native Americans as Amiciskeag. Which in the Algonquin dialect translated roughly into “fishing point.” It originally included what are now the towns of Eliot, Berwick, North Berwick and South Berwick. The town was part of Massachusetts Bay Colony after 1652 and over time became a key center for trading and shipbuilding.
Several of the historic Isles of Shoals located six miles off the coast are also part of the town. In past centuries the Isles were reportedly a stopover for pirates such as Blackbeard and Captain Kidd. According to Seacoast lore lost treasure may still be hidden there. Kittery remains one of the state’s most popular tourist attractions, renowned for its outlet stores and restaurants.