On the Cadillac Mountain summit in Acadia National Park there is a kiosk at the start of the North Ridge Trail. On it is a small plaque which states simply: "This trail head sign was donated in honor of E. Robert Kinney by his children on the occasion of his 80th birthday."*1
|Plaque location on Cadillac summit|
|E. Robert Kinney*|
An entrepreneur in spirit, he noticed that lobstermen were tossing away the crabs they caught in their traps and saw an opportunity. With a $300 loan from a Bangor, ME bank he began buying the crabs for a penny apiece and canning the crab meat. He conducted his canning business in Bangor, where he established the North Atlantic Packing Company. In 1943 he relocated the company to West Street in Bar Harbor in the Nickerson, Spratt and Greeley Grain Company building he had purchased. There he employed 18 women to can mussels. By 1945 the company's products had expanded to clams, flaked cod and haddock, chowder mix, blueberry jam and sweet orange marmalade. That year the company received a contract from the U.S. Army for 1.5 million pounds of canned orange marmalade. It completed the contract in less than five months by producing 25 tons daily, using 75 employees in two shifts to process navel oranges shipped from California. The marmalade was delivered in 8-lb. camouflaged tins.*2 Fire destroyed the three-storey building in 1950, but Kinney rebuilt. The company ultimately employed 300 and grossed $2 million annually.