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Abenaki Indians called it Catawamteak, meaning "great landing place." In 1767, John Lermond and his two brothers from Warren built a camp to produce oak staves and pine lumber. Thereafter known as Lermond's Cove, it was first settled about 1769. When in 1777 Thomaston was incorporated, Lermond's Cove became a district called Shore village. On July 28, 1848, it was set off as the town of East Thomaston. Renamed Rockland in 1850, it was chartered as a city in 1854. Rockland developed rapidly because of shipbuilding and lime production. In 1854 alone, the city built eleven ships, three barks, six brigs and four schooners. The city had twelve lime quarries and 125 lime kilns, with upwards of 300 vessels to transport the mineral to various ports in the country. By 1886, shipbuilding was surpassed by the lime business, which had twelve manufacturers employing 1,000 workers. Nevertheless, Rockland had three or more shipyards, a marine railway, five sail lofts and two boatbuilders. Other industries included three grain mills, two foundries, three carriage factories, six lumber mills, two machine shops, three cooperies, one tannery, four granite and marble works, two boot and shoe factories, and four printing offices. Fishing was also important. Fleets of Friendship Sloops sailed between the harbor and fishing grounds across Penobscot Bay. The opening of the Knox and Lincoln Railroad in 1871 brought an influx of tourists. Inns and hotels were established to accommodate them, with the grandest being The Bay Point Hotel in 1889. With a commanding view near the breakwater, the resort offered every luxury and amusement. Renamed The Samoset Hotel in 1902, it was successful until the Great Depression, which began a slow decline. In the age of automobiles, travelers were no longer restricted to the limits of train service, but were free to explore elsewhere. Closed in 1969, the Victorian hotel burned in 1972. A new Samoset Resort opened in 1974. Its a great place to have a lobster.
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