Oct. 17, 1793: After eight years of failed efforts to separate Maine from Massachusetts, a meeting called by separation proponents is held at the courthouse in Portland.

They hope a provision in the 1780 Massachusetts Constitution calling for a people’s review of that document might provide impetus for the District of Maine’s separation and that it could occur in 1795. They call for a districtwide convention on Dec. 31 in Portland.

The flurry of activity fails to generate sustained enthusiasm for the movement, however.

Maine does not achieve statehood until 1820.

Joseph Owen is an author, retired newspaper editor and board member of the Kennebec Historical Society. Owen’s book, “This Day in Maine,” can be ordered at islandportpress.com. To get a signed copy use promo code signedbyjoe at checkout. Joe can be contacted at: [email protected]

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