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Cushing Island Real Estate
Casco Bay Islands

Cushing Island is a small privately owned island that lies across the channel from Peaks Island. Best known for Old Whitehead which is a one hundred and fifty foot granite cliff.

Cushing Island, MaineA rock formation which appears to be the silhouette of a lady can be found in the cliffs and is visible from passing boats.

There are many stories about the settlers hardships, but none so unfortunate as that of George Felt who took some men to Peaks to round up some sheep left there by fleeing residents only to be massacred by natives who let them land with a false sense of security.

Cushing Island, MaineToday the island is privately owned and approximately 45 families live there seasonally. Initially Ezekiel Cushing owned the island in the 1700s and sold it to Joshua Bangs in 1760. The island was then known as 'Bangs Island' until Lemuel Cushing bought it in 1859. Lemuel planned to turn the island into a summer resort and built the Ottawa House hotel.

A Summer Colony

Lemuel's son Francis Cushing formed the Cushing's Island Company in 1883 and hired Frederick Law Olmstead the same year to develop the island as a planned 'summer colony'. Olmstead designed the landscape of the island, along with landscape architect Charles Eliot. The first Ottawa House was destroyed by fire and rebuilt in 1888. The second Ottawa House burned down in 1917 and was not rebuilt.

The US Army began acquiring land on the island in the 1890s to build Fort Levett, named for Capt. Christopher Levett, the English explorer and first settler of what is now Portland, which eventually grew to 200 acres. The island was initially known as Levett's Island, after the first English settler of Maine.

The fort was last used during World War II for coastal defense. That land was purchased by island residents in 1970.

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