The Casco Castle Tower is a beautiful old stone tower in Freeport, Maine. It is an obscure site with a fascinating history. The tower stands 185 feet tall and it can be found right near the Harraseekett Yacht Club. It is located on private property, so it is best to view it from the road.
Casco Castle Establishment
The Casco Castle was a resort in Freeport, Maine that was built in 1903. Amos F. Gerald of Fairfield, Maine was the man who had the grand vision for the castle-looking resort. He was so passionate about establishing this resort in Freeport because he was the owner of the Portland and Brunswick Street Railway which had just opened a new route. This route into Freeport would allow people to arrive at the resort via trolley cars. Ultimately, the trolley car business would benefit from the resort and the resort business would benefit from the trolley cars.
In order to build the grand castle, Gerald hired William R. Miller and his architecture firm. When finished the hotel building had 5 floors and a unique freestanding stone tower connected by a bridge. Rooms in the hotel and the tower boasted sweeping views of Casco Bay. Also, there was a restaurant inside the hotel and on the grounds, visitors could enjoy a picnic area, baseball field, and small zoo.
Troubles and Fire
The Casco Castle had a solid few years in operation, but then trouble occurred. As the automobile began to become the preferred mode of transport in the country, trolley car usage went down. This meant people had more options on where to travel to and many stopped showing up to the Casco Castle. Additionally, Gerald’s Portland and Brunswick Railway business was forced to foreclose in 1911. Eventually, the resort closed in 1914 after eleven years in operation. Following its closure, some new owners acquired the property and re-opened the resort. This re-opening occurred in 1914, just months after the closure.
Sadly, in late September of 1914 tragedy stuck. A fire broke out in the hotel and spread quickly. The whole hotel structure was made of wood and this lead it to burn down in a short amount of time. Ultimately, once the fire stopped, the hotel was destroyed and just the stone tower remained. Some people have speculated that the owners of the hotel burned it down, but this has never been proven.
What Remains Today
Today, the tower is the only remaining structure of the once-sprawling resort. For many years, the tower was open to the public and locals kids could often be seen exploring it. Eventually, the tower and surrounding land were purchased and a home was built adjacent to the tower. The tower is officially on private property and can only be viewed from the road. No visitors are allowed. Walking along Harraseeket Road yields some pretty great views of this obscure old stone tower.
- Year Established: 1903
- Year Abandoned: 1914 after a large fire burnt down most of it
- Original Function: A luxury resort complete with a hotel, zoo, and ball field. It was built and owned by Amos Gerald, owner of the Portland and Brunswick Street Railway.
Casco Castle Tower Location
- Address: 15 Castle Rd
- Town: Freeport
- State: Maine
- GPS: Lat 43.818723 Lng -70.112041
- Parking notes: The closest public parking can be found at the Brewer South Freeport Marine. There are about two dozen free parking spots at the marina. Walk along Harraseeket Road to see the tower.
- Parking directions: HERE
- Location directions: HERE