According to George Varney’s, Gazetteer of the State of Maine, published in 1881, Washburn, in Aroostook County, lies on the Aroostook River in the 3rd range of townships from the New Brunswick border. Maysville and Caribou lie on the east. Caribou Lake, in the northeastern part, is the largest sheet of water, but there are several small ponds scattered over the town. There is one sawmill, run by water power, for manufacturing long and short lumber, and one for shingles. There are two mills manufacturing shingles, and a furniture factory run by steam.
The underlying rock in this town is limestone. The surface is rolling, and without high hills. The soil is a sandy loam, and at present potatoes are found to be the most profitable crop for money returns. Cedar, spruce, birch and maple constitute the woods. The bridge across the Aroostook in the western part of the town is 75 feet in length. The nearest railroad station is at Caribou, 12 miles from the principal settlement in Washburn.
This town was surveyed by W.P. Parrott in 1842. Nathaniel Churchill was the foremost man of the colony, which settled here about 1829. The town was incorporated February 25, 1861; being named in honor of Governor Washburn. The Baptists have a minister resident in the town. The number of public schoolhouses is six. The entire school property is valued at $2,500. The population in 1870 was 922. In 1880, it was 1,110. The valuation of estates in 1870 was $63,021. In 1880, it was $100,243. The rate of taxation in the latter year was ½ of 1% on the whole valuation.