“People of the First Light,” the main exhibit at the Abbe Museum in downtown Bar Harbor, explores the history and culture of the native people who lived on Mount Desert Island for thousands of years before the arrival of Europeans. Photo by Dick Broom.
By the time European explorers “discovered” the coast of Maine in the early 1600s, native people already had been living here for thousands of years.
Archaeologists have found evidence of human habitation dating back at least 5,000 years on and around Mount Desert Island.
Long before the first Europeans came, the native people had established “a well-adapted and fairly affluent life in their homeland surrounding present-day Acadia National Park,” wrote Julia Clark and George Neptune of the Abbe Museum of Maine Native American history and culture in Bar Harbor.