Jay is a town in Franklin County, Maine, United States.
The population was 4,985 at the 2000 census
. Jay, which includes
the village of Chisholm, is the
regional commercial center.
Jay Bridge Falls in 1869
This was once territory of the Anasagunticook (or Androscoggin
) Abenaki Indians
, whose main
village was Rockameko, located on Canton Point. They were wiped out
in 1757. The township was then
granted by the Massachusetts
to Captain Joseph Phipps and 63 others for their
services in the French and Indian
. Called Phipps-Canada, the plantation was not settled until
after the Revolutionary
. On February 26,
1795, Phipps-Canada was incorporated as Jay for
John Jay, the first chief justice of the
Court. In 1821, Canton was set off
and incorporated as a town.
found the soil to be loamy and
productive, yielding great quantitites of hay
. In 1793, a tavern was constructed at Jay Hill.
On the Androscoggin River
Jay Hill was erected a toll bridge
in 1839 a sawmill
. At North Jay was built a
and granite quarry
. White granite from the
North Jay Granite Company, established in 1884, would be used to
construct numerous important buildings throughout the country,
East Jay had a sawmill, and Bean's Corner a
factory. In 1857, the Maine Central Railroad
Jay had a population of 1,490 in 1870. The following years would
develop into the town's
predominant industry. In 1888, industrialist Hugh J. Chisholm
built at southern Jay the Otis
Falls Pulp & Paper Company mill, then the 3rd largest paper mill
in the country. Nearby developed the
village of Chisholm. In 1898, it
became one of the founding mills of International Paper
. In 1905,
International Paper built a mill on the opposite side of the river,
which became known as the Otis mill. In 1978, this mill was sold to
Wausau Paper. In 1965, International Paper opened the Androscoggin
Mill. It is an integrated pulp
finished paper goods plant employing 990 people operating 5 paper
machines. In 1987, it was site of the International Paper strike
March 2009, Wausau Paper announced the closing of the Otis mill.
Operations there will stop permanently at the end of May,
According to the United
States Census Bureau
, the town has a total area of
49.2 square miles (127.5 km²), of which, 48.5 square
miles (125.5 km²) of it is land and 0.8 square miles
(2.0 km²) of it (1.58%) is water. Jay is drained by Seven Mile
Stream and the Androscoggin
The town is crossed by state routes 4
, 17, 133, 140 and 156. It is bounded by the
towns of Wilton to the
north, Chesterville to the east, Livermore and Livermore Falls to the south, and Canton and Dixfield to the west.
View at Jay in 1910
As of the census
of 2000, there were 4,985
people, 2,019 households, and 1,449 families residing in the town.
The population density
people per square mile (39.7/km²). There were 2,155 housing units
at an average density of 44.5/sq mi (17.2/km²). The racial
makeup of the town was 97.91% White
, 0.26% African American
, 0.06% Pacific Islander
, 0.10% from
, and 0.98%
from two or more races. Hispanic
of any race were 0.48% of the
There were 2,019 households out of which 32.7% had children under
the age of 18 living with them, 55.9% were married couples
living together, 11.4% had a female
householder with no husband present, and 28.2% were non-families.
22.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.4% had
someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average
household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 2.87.
Paper mills at Chisholm c.
In the town the population was spread out with 26.2% under the age
of 18, 6.0% from 18 to 24, 28.2% from 25 to 44, 25.3% from 45 to
64, and 14.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was
39 years. For every 100 females there were 95.0 males. For every
100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.5 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $36,746, and the
median income for a family was $43,365. Males had a median income
of $35,405 versus $20,897 for females. The per capita income
for the town was
$17,123. About 8.7% of families and 10.4% of the population were
below the poverty line
, including 12.8%
of those under age 18 and 7.9% of those age 65 or over.
Jay has the only independent school department in Franklin County,
and provides full public education K-12 (some independent school
districts in Maine only cover K-8).
Sites of interest