Southern Aroostook
   Agricultural Museum
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Name:            Southern Aroostook

                       Agricultural Museum

Address:        1664 US Route One

                       Littleton, Maine  04730

Phone:           207-538-9300




Mid-June through September:

Thursday through Saturday: 1-4 p.m.

Oct. through May:

Tours offered during the days of suppers; private

tours; school field trips; or group tours by

appointment.  Call 207-538-0050, or



Products and Services:

-thousands of farm items on display

-various exhibits

-group tours

-public suppers

-special events


-meeting room

-rental of multi-purpose room

-Ross Ridge School House

-Carl and Helen Hagan Barn

-handicapped accessible- wheelchairs available

-memberships available

What Makes the Southern Aroostook Agricultural Museum Unique?

When Unique Maine Farms was visiting

Aroostook County this past August, there

was one rainy day when outside farm pictures proved impossible.  A reference to the Southern Aroostook Agricultural Museum appeared in one of the regional brochures and it looked like a great possibility of a place to spend some time indoors.  It was not one of the days that the Museum was open. There was a phone number listed on the brochure and when the Museum was contacted, volunteer Francis Fitzpatrick kindly agreed to open the doors.  After visiting this amazing facility and becoming introduced to the history of how this agricultural museum originated, there was no question that it was most worthy of being included in the Unique Maine Farms’ project.

Although active farming is not taking place

at the Southern Aroostook Agricultural Museum, a great deal of information about farming is shared.  Students and visitors are provided with the opportunity to view firsthand an incredible collection of farm tools and equipment and memorabilia from the past two centuries. It is difficult to assess exactly how many individuals might choose to pursue an agricultural endeavor after visiting the Museum, but there is no question that the facility serves as a wonderful resource for students and educators.

Aroostook County has always had a rich agricultural heritage.  Maine history books often highlight the significance of the potato industry.  When Cedric and Emily Shaw retired from farming in 1988, they cleaned out their barn and began displaying their farm equipment and farm furnishings.  They welcomed visitors and their “Pastime Museum” was born.  It was well received and individuals began dropping off items to add to their collection. 

Area residents realized the value of the Shaws’ efforts and they mobilized to acquire a larger space for a farm-related museum.  In 2001, the former Littleton Elementary School was purchased and the Shaws generously agreed to move the “Pastime Museum” to three rooms in the newly-founded Southern Aroostook Agricultural Museum.

What an accomplishment the Southern Aroostook Agricultural Museum truly is! It is mind-boggling to view all the farm-related and antique items that have been donated.  It appears that just about every inch of space is occupied with an historical treasure.  Even more impressive is the knowledge that the Museum is totally run by the efforts of volunteers.

Area residents have stepped forward to rebuild rooms, arrange various displays, catalog items, lead tours, and help fundraise to pay off the $51,000 mortgage on the former school building. According to the Museum’s website, Luther and Kay Grass added a spectacular collection of tools now housed in “The Grass Tool Room.”  There have been other projects such as “This Old House,” and the “Old Potato House” in which there are hundreds of potato bags on display, as well as several early seed cutters, conveyors, and potato handling pieces of equipment.

There are several buildings that are situated on the property of the Southern Aroostook Agricultural Museum.  The local Ross Ridge School House was moved to the site. It operated as a one-room school from 1872 through 1951. The amount of work that was donated to renovate this building is quite apparent when one looks at the “before” and “after” photos.

A new 60‘x100’ barn was built recently to house several large pieces of farm equipment thanks to the generosity of the Houlton Rotary Club, Rural Development USDA, Maine Community Foundation, Naturally Potatoes, and many individuals.  The barn was named the Carl and Helen Hagan Barn after the former President of the Museum and his wife.

In the past twelve years, volunteers have stepped forward to help with making many needed improvements to the old school building. A new metal roof and a new furnace and commercial dishwasher were installed.  All the windows were replaced and new siding was installed.  Several different rooms have been added to the Museum with such themes as dairy farming and automotive equipment.  Visitors can acquire a very comprehensive and realistic overview of what farm life was like many years ago.  Although many books depict some of the antique farming memorabilia found in the Southern Aroostook Agricultural Museum, it is so much more beneficial to be able to view the items up close and listen to an explanation of their uses.

Underlying the operation of the Southern Aroostook Agricultural Museum is a strong sense of community.  The Museum participates in various area events such as the Northern Maine Fair, the Fourth of July parade, and the Houlton Trade Show.  They have hosted various groups such as retired educators, antique car and truck enthusiasts, family reunions, and weddings.  A Houlton High School Alumni Corner has been begun in the Museum.  Community pot luck suppers are offered on a regular basis to help with raising funds.  The Museum has conducted raffles and has sold memberships, gift certificates, and Museum photo cards to raise funds.  Several supporters have chosen the Museum as a recipient of memorial gifts.

Dr. Allen Delong, a Bowdoin College faculty member and a native of Monticello, Maine, has brought Bowdoin College students to the Southern Aroostook Agricultural Museum for three days of volunteering for the past seven years.  School classes and various groups are always welcome to tour the Museum with advance notice.

Hats go off to all the volunteers and donors

who have contributed to this commendable farming endeavor.  How fortunate that Cedric and Emily Shaw had the foresight to begin a collection of farm memorabilia.  Their generosity in sharing all their farm equipment and antique items in the beginning days of the Southern Aroostook Agricultural Museum proved to be a wonderful incentive for others to follow their example.  Farm-related donations are always welcome.  The Museum’s website lists the various items that would prove beneficial on a wish list.  Volunteer opportunities are also posted.   The Museum is a beautiful testament to the value that has always been placed on farming in Aroostook County. 

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Cedric and Emily Shaw contributed three rooms of farm items to the Museum.  Photo courtesy of the Southern Aroostook Agricultural Museum Facebook page.

Ross Ridge School House

Francis Fitzpatrick is the President of the Southern Aroostook Agricultural Museum.