Maine: York County

We begin our tour of Maine’s 16 counties in York County, located at the southern tip of the state. This is the route that we’ll be taking:

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One of five York counties in the U.S.

York County (pop. 197,131) has the second-largest population in Maine, but its county seat of Alfred (pop. 3,019) is the state’s second-smallest county seat.

York County Courthouse

Alfred is inland, but most of York County’s population is along the Atlantic Ocean and the Interstate 95 corridor that parallels the coast.

The town of Kittery (pop. 9,490) is across Portsmouth Harbor from the city of Portsmouth, N.H. The Portsmouth Naval Shipyard is actually in Kittery.

Submarines are remodeled and repaired there.

Southeast of Kittery – closer to New Hampshire than to Maine – are the Isles of Shoals. About half of these small islands are in Maine, and about half are in New Hampshire.

Smuttynose Island is in Maine.

A few miles up the coast, in the town of York (pop. 12,529), is the Wiggly Bridge.

Known as “The World’s Smallest Suspension Bridge”

The Ogunquit Playhouse in Ogunquit (pop. 1,429) has been putting on a summer season of plays since 1933.

In Kennebunk (pop. 10,798) and other York County communities is the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge, which protects a variety of habitats including dunes, estuaries, and rocky coastline.

More than 5,000 acres

Kennebunkport (pop. 3,474) is the home of the Seashore Trolley Museum, which calls itself the world’s oldest and largest collection of mass transit vehicles.

More than 260 vehicles

The Bush family has had a family retreat in Kennebunkport for more than a century.

Summer home of the first President Bush.

Biddeford (pop. 21,277) is the largest city in York County. The private University of New England is in Biddeford.

Where the Saco River flows into the Atlantic

York County has many miles of Atlantic Ocean beaches. Old Orchard Beach (pop. 8,624) has a seven-mile beach.

Pier at Old Orchard Beach


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South Carolina: York County

York County (pop. 226,073), on the border with North Carolina, is in the Charlotte Metropolitan Statistical Area. It’s one of five York counties in the U.S.

The Charlotte Knights of the Triple-A International League actually play in Fort Mill, S.C. The team is scheduled to move to a new stadium in downtown Charlotte – about 15 miles away – for the 2014 season.

Knights Stadium, Fort Mill (1990)

York County is bordered by the Broad River on the west and the Catawba River on the east. Lake Wylie is a reservoir on the Catawba River.

Created in 1904

The county seat of York County is the city of York (pop. 8,189).

York County Courthouse (1914)

The Sylvia Theater, in a 100-year-old building in downtown York, has movies and a variety of concerts and other events.

The largest city in York County is Rock Hill (pop. 66,154). Located about 25 miles south of Charlotte, it is the fourth-largest city in South Carolina; its population has doubled since 1970.

Rock Hill City Hall

Winthrop University in Rock Hill is a public university, founded in 1886. It has about 6,000 students.

Tillman Hall (1894)

Kings Mountain National Military Park, northwest of York, commemorates the Battle of Kings Mountain in the Revolutionary War.


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