Tremont, Maine, part of Hancock County, includes Bass Harbor, Bernard, Gotts Island, Seal Cove, and West Tremont. These are small quiet communities with many nice coastal and interior views. The approximate population is 1,563 (per year 2010 census, an increase over 1,529 recorded in the 2000 census) and it covers 10,329 acres or 52.36 sq. miles (16.83 sq. miles land versus 35.53 sq. miles water). This southwestern part of Mount Desert Island is often referred to as being on the “quiet” or “back” side as it is on the opposite side of the busiest section of Mount Desert Island which includes the well known Bar Harbor resort area.
Tremont, Maine was first settled in 1762. It was incorporated on June 3, 1848 as Mansel, a name first given by a company of emigrants led by John Winthrop in 1630 when Maine was actually part of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. The name was quickly changed to the French word Tremont (meaning “three mountains”) just two months later. The three mountains refer to the contiguous peaks of Beech Mountain, and the East and West peaks of Western Mountains. In the late 17th century, it was believed that “accused” and executed pirate, Captain Kidd, buried some of his treasure on the Maine coast and one place was Dog Mountain in Tremont. One historical account said “Dog Mountain has been carefully prospected with spade and pick, for money hidden by Captain Kidd.” (None was found.) The most well-known village within Tremont is Bass Harbor. Bass Harbor Head Light, in Acadia National Park, is perhaps the most famous landmark.
The most direct way from Ellsworth on the mainland is to take Route 3 South to Mount Desert Island. Immediately when getting to the island, go straight ahead onto Route 198 (veering left on Route 3 goes to Bar Harbor). Continue South into Somesville. You will come to a split in Route 102. Keep going straight. Go through Southwest Harbor eventually arriving in Tremont and the village of Bass Harbor to the left on 102A.
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