The Norumbega is a distinguished landmark unlike any other property along the coastline of Maine. Its rich history has supplied its current owners with endless inspiration and curiosity, and its original owner left no corner untouched.
Born in 1831, Joseph Barker Stearns was a native Mainer who left the Down East to seek his fortunes in Boston. He would not catch his break for several years, but his persistence paid off – after many failures, Stearns revolutionized the fire alarm system with his patented reverse currents. Encouraged by his recent success, he focused his genius on the telegraph, eventually leading to his invention of the double telegraph. He sold his rights to Western Union, and, after traveling extensively around the globe – often staying in lavish homes – set about to build his own castle by the sea. Declaring Camden, Maine the most beautiful place in the world, he began construction on this great house in 1885. He hired New York architect G.B. Jennings and spared no expense to furnish it with the new electric light and steam heat.
The house remained a private home for the next century, until it was eventually turned into The Norumbega Inn that you know today. Still featuring its endlessly elaborate original wooden millwork, its many impressive fireplaces, and its iconic turret, it is easy to see how it captured the attention of another New York architect, Will Tims. Will and his partner, Brett Haynie, purchased The Norumbega in May 2022 and look forward to hosting you for a fantastic first season.