Resources on the Civil War are plentiful

Posted Nov. 14, 2010, at 6:37 p.m.

In the grocery store last week, a dear friend decided to pick my brain about resources on Andersonville, the Civil War prison in Georgia.

The first thing I thought of was Cyndi’s List, the mammoth website at www.cyndislist.com which shares countless Web addresses on many, many topics.

Visit the website, I said, look under Military, then under Civil War.

Further, I suggested, check out Bangor Public Library. Local history librarian Bill Cook in the Bangor Room is a Civil War re-enactor and knows a good deal about that period in history.

The next day, it occurred to me that I should have mentioned URSUS, the best bear in all of genealogy.

URSUS has one of the Web addresses worth memorizing: http://ursus.maine.edu.

You may know that URSUS is the wonderful online card catalog for Bangor Public Library, Maine State Library in Augusta and all the University of Maine campus libraries.

You can look up a book by title, author, subject or keyword.

I like to use the keyword search, especially when it’s a word with a unique connotation, such as Andersonville.

Some of the many resources I found on Andersonville were:

  • “Prisoners Who Died at Andersonville Prison: Atwater List,” by Dorence Atwater, 1981, Bangor Room, Bangor Public Library.
  • “Andersonville Diary,” e-book, 2009, must be used at Fogler Library, University of Maine in Orono.
  • “Report of the Maine Andersonville Monument Commissioners,” 1904, Bangor Public Library, Maine State Library, University of Maine at Presque Isle, Special Collections room at Fogler Library.
  • “Andersonville: The Story of a Civil War Prison Camp,” by Raymond F. Baker, based on research by Edwin C. Bearse, 1972, government documents section at Fogler Library and at Maine State Library.
  • “Andersonville Journey,” by Edward F. Roberts, Maine State Library.
  • “The Andersonville Prison Civil War Crimes Trial: A Headline Court Case,” by Susan Banfield, 2000, Bangor Public Library children’s room and Maine State Library.

Although Andersonville was open only 13 months, some 13,700 Union soldiers are buried in the cemetery, which is a National Historic Site.

Other resources to check on the Civil War include the Secretary of State’s Archives website at www.maine.gov/sos/arc, and any Web search engine.

• • •

Diana Bartlett has compiled the town of Milbridge’s vital records from 1848 through 1900.

Picton Press in Rockport, which specializes in genealogical and historical research material from the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, published the work in book form as “Vital Records of Milbridge, Maine.”

The 364-page volume contains an index with 11,375 names. The original ledgers are deteriorating fast and the use of this book eliminates the task of having to search multiple volumes when trying to locate a particular entry.

The book gives the ledger number, page number and even a transcription of the original record since reading old handwriting often is a major task in itself. Bartlett is currently working on Milbridge vital records from 1901 to the present.

For information, visit www.pictonpress.com.

• • •

Bill Sawtell is looking for information for a book he is doing on Anna King’s store in Bradford.

If you have information to share, send it to Bill Sawtell at P.O. Box 272, Brownville 04414-0272, or call 965-3971.

• • •

The Penobscot County Genealogical Society will meet at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 17, in the Lecture Hall at Bangor Public Library, 145 Harlow St.

Co-presidents Janet Spencer and Annette Roberts will lead the group in discussing “Brick Walls” in our own research and how we can help each other find ways to break down those walls through the sharing of techniques or experiences.

All are welcome.

• • •

For many years, Richard Merrill of Orrington has collected Indian artifacts, found mostly in the Penobscot River Valley.

He will present his collection and knowledge during the next meeting of the Orrington Historical Society at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 16, at the Orrington Town Hall Annex, 29 Center Drive.

A business meeting will be held afterward. There is ample parking with access to the meeting room. For information, call Henry Wiswell at 989-7546, or Judith Frost Gillis at 825-8965.

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

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