The February 28th Issue of The American

Ellsworth City Council members were understandably uneasy Monday as they sorted through a draft proposal to require a certain level of property maintenance in the city. On the one hand, foreclosed houses and empty buildings can take on a blighted appearance that’s bad for the city’s image and a turn-off for new businesses thinking about setting up shop here. On the other hand, telling people what to do with their own property is a tough sell in Downeast Maine. Page 1.

Want to know what isn’t a tough sell in Downeast Maine? Lottery tickets, that’s what. Sales were up in 2012 and Washington County residents successfully defended their title as the per capita biggest spenders in the state. Read all about it.

Read also about a training burn in Ellsworth Sunday that cleared the path — quite literally — for a new access road up to the high school. Hey, we even have a video.

And Republicans gathered for their annual Lincoln Day Dinner, an opportunity to reflect on the legacy of the great president and look to the future of the Grand Old Party. Page 1.

All this plus the final word on the Eastern Maine High School Basketball Tournament, a plan to limit the number of elver licenses, good news from Deer Isle-Stonington High School, a proposal to make Myrick Street less exciting for motorists, word that Rick Foster is back on the radio and the tale of a kitty cat looking for his forever home.

All in The American ... The Ellsworth American ... serving the community since 1851, the year of The Great Fire in San Francisco. Yes, it was on May 3, 1851, just after 11 p.m. in a store on the south side of Portsmouth Plaza. A ruffian was seen running from the store moments before, according to one report, “it exploded in flame and simultaneous fires erupted in the business district. Water evaporated to steam as swift winds sent the roaring flames everywhere through the great blow-pipe-like hollows beneath the plank streets. Men in their anguish, ran for shelter within new, fancied "fireproof" brick and iron buildings, only to perish miserably when the metal shutters and doors expanded and couldn't be opened. Three-fourths of the city was lost, yet, in ten days, San Franciscans rebuilt one-fifth of their city.”

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