Here’s What Life Was Like Back In The Rowdy Days Of Bangor
You can't live in the past, but it's nice to visit it.
If there's one thing I kind of regret, it's that I never recorded any of the conversations I used to have with my grandfather about the old days here in Bangor. He, like many Mainers of his generation, had no shortage of tales from how life used to be, and that at a certain point, Bangor had all the "conveniences" of the big city.
And most of those were to be found in the Hancock Street area of Bangor. The Devil's Half Acre is up for debate as to where exactly it was located, but rest assured, this section of town fit the bill by reputation, at the least. Though it could probably be more accurately described as being more similar to Boston's former "Combat Zone".
Bangor was the boomtown of the North. Good and bad.
Hancock Street was lined with bars, brothels, hotels, bootleggers, pickpockets.....you name it. If there was trouble to be found back then, this was the spot. And for years to come as well.
But today I found this awesome YouTube video posted by Sadie Flood of a gentleman who lived through it, Jay Millet, and the many stories he had to share. Like I said, I wish I'd always recorded the conversations I used to have with old Gumpy. This video kind of reminds me of what those recordings would've been like.
So sit back, and enjoy. Some of it might be 100% accurate, some might not. Who cares?! It's fascinating stuff. Bangor was once a boomtown for grifters as well as business. And the history is alive here. Check it out!