The Maine Coon is originally coming from the United States, from the state of Maine. "Coon" refers to the tail of the Racoon which resembles because it is also long and thick. Sailors took the beautiful cats on their long voyages to Europe. The cats took care of the rats and mice on board of the ships.

Maine Coon owners enjoy the breed's characteristic clown-like personality, affectionate nature, amusing habits and tricks, willingness to 'help' with any activity, and easily groomed coat. They make excellent companions for large, active families that also enjoy having dogs and other animals around. They adapt very good to different circumstances.
Striking is their modest sound.

The thick coat does not require very much maintenance, it is half-long an self-cleaning and needs a weekly brush. During shedding season you will want to spend some more time brushing out dead hairs so that they do not cover your clothes and furniture.

The head is slightly longer than it is wide, presenting a gently concave profile with high cheekbones and ears that are large, wide at the base, moderately pointed, and well tufted inside. They are set well up on the head, approximately an ear's width apart. Lynx-like tufting on the top of the ears is desirable.
The neck should be medium-long, the torso long, and the chest broad.
The body is muscular and longer than it is in height. Heavy bones and big round feet with plucks of hair between the toes. The tail should be at least as long as the torso. One of their most distinctive features is their eyes, which are large, round, expressive, and set a a slightly oblique angle. Overall, the Maine Coon should present the appearance of a well-balanced, rectangular cat.

All natural colours are possible and there are different combinations and markings.
White maine coons with blue eyes are rare. Siamese  marking is unwished.

You can read more about the Maine Coon on the site Rasclub Maine Coon (in dutch).