Biographical reviews area fount of information

By Roxanne Moore Saucier, BDN Columnist
Posted Aug. 16, 2009, at 6:44 p.m.

Even an ancestor who never became the subject of his or her very own book may pop up in a “Biographical Review” of an area, or a “Biographies of …” volume.

My great-great-grandfather Sumner Robinson Bennett, who bought a large farm near the Moosehorns in Abbot in 1868, has an entry in the 738-page “Biographical Review, Volume XXIX: Containing Life Sketches of Leading Citizens of Somerset, Piscataquis, Hancock, Washington, and Aroostook Counties, Maine,” published in 1898.

The book is available in the Bangor Room at Bangor Public Library; in Special Collections on the third floor of the University of Maine’s Fogler Library in Orono; in the Reference Room at the University of Maine at Farmington; and at Maine State Library in Augusta.

“Biographical Review: This Volume Contains Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens of Cumberland County, Maine” can be found at Bangor Public Library; Special Collections at the University of Maine; University of Maine at Farmington; Maine State Library; and University of Southern Maine at Gorham.

“Biographical Review: This Volume Contains Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens of York County, Maine” is at Bangor Public Library; Special Collections at the University of Maine; and Maine State Library.

“Biographical Review: Containing Life Sketches of Leading Citizens of Sagadahoc, Lincoln, Knox, and Waldo Counties, Maine” is available at Bangor Public Library; Maine State Library; Special Collections at University of Maine; University of Maine at Fort Kent; and University of Maine at Farmington.

“Biographical Review: This Volume Contains Biographical

Sketches of Leading Citizens of Oxford and Franklin Counties, Maine” is available at Bangor Public Library; Maine State Library; Special Collections at the University of Maine; and University of Maine at Farmington.

That’s 13 of our 16 counties.

Three smaller books, all pertaining to Piscataquis County, were written by Frank W. Keniston in the 1940s:

• “Biographies of Dover-Foxcroft,” available at Bangor Public Library; Maine State Library; and Special Collections at the University of Maine.

• “Biographies of Milo, Maine,” available at Bangor Public Library; Maine State Library; and Special Collections at the University of Maine.

• “Biographies of Guilford, Sangerville, Abbot, and Parkman, Maine,” also at Bangor Public Library; Maine State Library; and Special Collections at the University of Maine.

The “Guilford” volume is the one that has my great-great-grandmother artist Mary (Cummings) Bennett Lord of Abbot. Whenever I can’t remember the birth order of Uncle Mike and Aunt Norma Bennett’s kids, I can look it up there: Barbara, twins Joyce and Joan, Walter (died young) and Kathryn. Ga’s bio also mentions my dad, Gayland Moore Jr.; my grandparents Gayland Moore Sr. and Ione Bennett; my great-grandparents Walter and Rena (Bennett) Bennett; my great-great-grandfather Prosper Alvarus Bennett; and my great-great-great-grandparents Silas and Sarah (Hildreth) Cummings of Greenville.

That’s a lot of ancestors for one listing!

But what about my mother’s Steeves ancestors? Well, Stanley Steeves was the son of Harry Steeves Sr. and Thressa (Given) Steeves of Sangerville, all three of them immigrants from Saint John, New Brunswick.

Well, we find Clifton R. Stone in Guilford, a farmer born in Grand Lake, New Brunswick, who in 1906 married Miss Elizabeth Given, born to Thomas and Minnie Carson Given.

Elizabeth was my grandfather’s “Aunt Bessie,” as she was a half-sister to Thressa. So the Stones and the Albees and the Grants and the Wilsons are all half-cousins of mine back a ways, including my friend Nancy Stone Page.

Oh, speaking of Wilsons, it turns out that Isaac Wilson, who was born in Cloverdale, New Brunswick, and knew my grandparents forever, was a son of Stephen B. and Ruth (Steeves) Wilson, who are buried very close to my grandparents in Sangerville village. Ruth was a sister to my grandfather’s grandmother Margaret Steeves.

And then there was Harold B. Wilson, drugstore owner, a brother to Isaac Wilson and also a son of Stephen and Ruth (Steeves) Wilson. Well, his children are twice related to my mother, because Harold married Vivian Stone, a daughter of Clifton and Elizabeth (Given) Stone. As in my family, a Steeves descendant married a Given descendant.

It’s a small world.

Send genealogy queries to Family Ties, Bangor Daily News, P.O. Box 1329, Bangor, ME 04402; or e-mail queries to familyti@bangordailynews.net.

http://bangordailynews.com/2009/08/16/living/biographical-reviews-area-fount-of-information/ printed on August 20, 2014