Bell Laboratories began the Nike missile project in 1945. The project was intended to provide a viable line of site anti-aircraft gun replacement that was capable of keeping up with jet aircraft. Traditional anti-aircraft guns could not match the speed and altitude at which jet aircraft were flying. The first missile system, Nike Ajax, was delivered in 1953.
Nike missile batteries were deployed around large cities and Strategic Air Command bases that were home to long-range bombers (such as Loring AFB). The Nike sites would be placed in a defensive perimeter around whichever city or base they were to protect.
The Caswell site, L13, was positioned to the northeast of Loring AFB. L13 was active from September of 1957 through June of 1966.
To reach the Caswell site from Bangor, take I95 north to Houlton and then take Route 1 north. Go straight (right) at the fork in Mars Hill and head north to Limestone. Instead of turning left on Route 89 (Access Road) to head to Loring AFB, continue north on Route 1, past the former Caswell AFS.
When you see the "pickled" (boarded up) site housing on your left, you're very close to the site. It's probably another half mile up on your left. The buildings are in poor condition, though the grounds are mowed and neat. Inside the gated missile assembly area the current owner is keeping farm equipment. I tried to ascertain who the current owner was from the Posted sign, but there was no contact info.
If you are in any way allergic to bee stings, please use extreme caution at this site. There were several large nests scattered about the property.
These pictures were taken during an August 2010 visit.