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The Historical Journey to Rangeley

When the urge to travel hits, those with a heart for the great outdoors looking for a place where nature is the highlight often turn their sights to Rangeley, Maine. Complete with its many lakes, rolling hills, rivers, mountain peaks, and a seemingly endless lineup of inspiring wildlife, Rangeley is known and loved for its options for getting out and exploring the great outdoors. For those that are looking to travel with a passion for pursuing historical landmarks, Rangeley also comes with the added benefit of being a place rooted in history. From early settlers to innovators of forestry, the landscape of Rangeley offers up a plethora of museums and stops that speak to the story that defines the destination. When you’re looking to enjoy a historical journey this direction, be sure to add the following stops to your itinerary.

Rangeley Outdoor Sporting Heritage Museum

Situated in scenic Oquossoc, The Rangeley Outdoor Sporting Heritage Museum is a must-see for those visitors to Rangeley that are looking to learn more about exploration of the landscape that has come to define time in Rangeley for visitors through the years. In the summer months, the museum is open daily from 10:00 am until 4:00 pm and with an admission of $5 for adults, visitors can step inside and step back in time. The Outdoor Heritage Museum includes a collection of exhibits and displays that highlight everything from First Nation tribes that called Rangeley home over 14,000 years ago to the history of fly-fishing in the area and the many famous names that have headed this way to enjoy it! Artifacts, art, and film can all be found in the museum, making a stop as comprehensive as it is informative.

Rangeley Lakes Historical Society

Easily accessible on Main Street in Rangeley, the Rangeley Lakes Historical Society is dedicated to conserving and sharing the history of the Rangeley Lakes region with visitors and locals. This historical society runs The Outdoor Heritage Museum as well as their primary location on Main Street which is open to the public daily. Visitors are invited to step inside and enjoy a collection of photographs, artifacts, and publications that take you on a journey back in time through the Civil War era, the arrival of local sporting camps, and the importance of railroad travel through the area. This destination also highlights many of the founding families that helped Rangeley grow into the thriving locale it is today.

Maine Forestry Museum

The lush terrain that makes up the Rangeley Lakes Region has made it an oasis of potential in the forestry division for decades. A stop by the Maine Forestry Museum while you’re in town is a great opportunity to get a closer look at the logistics of this industry as well as the efforts locals make to conserve their natural resources while providing for the economy. The Maine Forestry Museum is located at 221 Stratton Road in Rangeley and provides visitors a wonderfully comprehensive look at logging in the area. Home to unique forests of virgin spruce, Rangeley first appealed to settlers in the name of this lucrative prospect, while the many birch, beech, and balsam fir were vital in native tribes’ construction of early homes, including canoes, food, and medicine production. Take a look at the timeline of logging in the area and see how innovative technology has changed the face of production through the centuries.

Wilhelm Reich Museum

Located at 19 Dodge Pond Road, the Wilhelm Reich Museum in Rangeley is the perfect stop for the visitor looking to enjoy a more unique historical perspective that exists within this region. The Wilhelm Reich Museum is the former home and laboratory of this well-known psychoanalyst who studied alongside Freud throughout the 1920s. Reich fled Germany in 1933 and was notorious for his rather controversial study of character structure. From cloudbusters to orgone accumulators, the opinions on his studies and subsequent products were greatly divided and upon his death in 1957, his home and laboratory were transformed into a museum per his final will and testament. Today, the museum is run by the Wilhelm Reich Infant Trust, and depending on the time of year you visit, you might be lucky enough to be a part of a symposium where his work continues to be discussed and argued.

Book Your Rangeley Getaway

From forestry to psychoanalysis, history to architecture, Rangeley is a destination filled with options for insightful stops and when you’re here to make the most of them all, the team at Morton & Furbish Vacation Rentals is here to help make sure you have accommodations to match. Whether you’re in the market for a rental cabin, home, or condo, our portfolio of options is sure to please. Contact our team today to learn more about our many property choices and to begin planning your amazing getaway to this delightful destination! We can’t wait to welcome you to beautiful Maine.