From the community

Editor of Maine genealogical quarterly marks 20 years

Posted Dec. 19, 2013, at 12:12 a.m.

In the editor’s note beginning the November issue of The Maine Genealogist, the quarterly journal of the Maine Genealogical Society, Joseph C. Anderson II wrote that he considered it a personal milestone to have been co-editor and sole editor of the journal for a total of 20 years.

Let me wish Joe a Happy Anniversary and point out what a privilege it is for the nearly 1,000 members of MGS to have his excellent work and faithful service in the editor position for so many years. Moreover, he performs his labors in Dallas, far from the “scent of the fragrant pines, the tang of the salty seas” that sustain us here in the Northeast corner of the country.

Joe enjoys reading genealogical journals not only as someone who may be interested in the family studied in a particular article, but as someone who wants “to learn about problem-solving techniques and new sources of information that might be applicable to my own research challenges.”

In the November issue, I found many things to ponder and explore further in Edward G. Hubbard’s “The Hatch and Peare Families of Greene, Maine, and Their Migrations.”

I’m always interested in Greene, where the second settler was my Lemuel Comins of Charlton, Mass.

It turns out that several people named Hatch settled Greene after leaving their hometown of Wells, including Elias Hatch, who married Lucy Chadbourne; and brother Eliakim Hatch, who married Zerviah Maxwell.

The families of both Elias and Eliakim moved on to Harmony, and Elias later moved to Ripley and then Cambridge. No surprise to me. My brother-in-law, who grew up in Harmony, and my sister-in-law, who grew up in Parkman, both have Chadbourne ancestors.

And, Hubbard uses as one of his sources “The Chadbourne Family in America: A Genealogy,” compiled by Elaine Chadbourne Bacon and published in 1994. He does point out that the book mistakenly listed Elias’ second son as Jeremiah.

Elias’ son Nehemiah married first a Bisbee and second Peace Wentworth. Among the sources listed here is the Vital Records of Cambridge, transcribed by Roland Rhoades, publications sales manager for MGS, and available online at www.rolandrhoades.com/cambridgeVR.pdf

Eliakim Hatch apparently served in the Revolutionary War, because he later applied for a pension on that basis when he was 56 in 1818.

Hubbard believes that Eliakim’s children probably include Mehitable Hatch, who married Abner Ford in Harmony, and moved with their family of several children to Sebec.

Of interest to me is that Mehitable and Abner’s first child was named Caleb Jewett Ford, born 1820 in Brighton. His descendants included Caleb Ford Dyer, 1908-1988, the son of Arthur and Helen (Ford) Dyer of Dover-Foxcroft. He went by the name C. Ford Dyer, and was principal of Hampden Academy until 1971. His wife, Marion (Roberts) Dyer, taught at HA and was my great-aunt.

Leighton, Littlefield, Simmons and Briggs are among the other Maine names I found in this one article, which will be continued in the next issue.

Other articles included here are:

- “Descendants of Pendleton Fletcher of Fletcher’s Neck, Winter Harbor, and Biddeford, Maine,” concluded, by Priscilla Eaton.

- “Daniel Ridley of Harpswell and Bowdoin, Maine,” by Priscilla Blount.

- “Josiah Spooner Swift: Nineteenth-Century Renaissance Man,” by J. Clarke Bursley.

- “Nineteenth-Century Records of the First and Second Congregational Churches of Wells, Maine,” submitted by Priscilla Eaton.

I was thinking how genealogy has changed over the years since its big boosts with the country’s Bicentennial in 1976 and the success of Alex Haley’s “Roots” the next year on television.

We also should take note of the start of the Maine Genealogical Society in 1976 — a real constant in keeping those interested in Maine ancestors and research connected regardless of where they reside.

There are many more people “doing genealogy” these days than ever before. Programs such as “Who Do You Think You Are?” in the United States, Canada and Great Britain prove that, as well as numerous programs that have run over the years on Public Broadcasting television.

Membership in the Maine Genealogical Society still numbers nearly 1,000 members in this country and beyond its borders, and local genealogical groups are doing well around the state.

Attendance at the MGS state conference each fall in Brewer is 125-130, but it should be higher. The fact that it isn’t higher indicates to me that too many genealogists are relying on the Internet for most, if not all, of their information.

There is much on the Web that is good information, and much more that is not. What is the difference? Look at The Maine Genealogist or the New England Historic and Genealogical Register, available in many libraries, and you will see what excellent genealogical work looks like. It lists the author’s sources.

On the other hand, the wonders of technology do mean that Joe Anderson can edit The Maine Genealogist from Texas, and also participate in MGS board meetings from there.

In addition to its journal four times a year, MGS membership includes four issues of the newsletter, which contains a bucketload of useful information in each issue, from activities in the local genealogical groups to what’s coming up in all kinds of venues. Members also receive a discount in purchasing MSG special publications, many of which are published volumes of Maine vital records for various towns.

So it is that I suggest a new or renewed membership in MGS for 2014, whether for yourself or for someone you know who loves Maine genealogy and family history.

Membership in the U.S. is $25 a year, or $30 if you want your mailings to come first class. Membership is $34 for Canadian membership, or $39 for membership outside the U.S. and Canada, with mailings sent first class.

Send checks to Maine Genealogical Society, PO Box 221, Farmington, ME 04938.

Husson University took note of family history recently in holding “A Conversation at the Dyke Center” with two Maine entrepreneurs on Dec. 5.

“A Conversation at the Dyke Center” featured insights from Tim Hussey of Hussey Seating and Kevin Hancock of Hancock Lumber. Each is the sixth-generation leader of his family’s company.

Tim Hussey is the president and CEO of Hussey Seating in North Berwick, a company which was started by William Hussey in 1835. The company began operations 56 years before the invention of modern basketball, 45 years before the invention of American football and 40 years before the invention of modern ice hockey, according to a press release from Husson.

Kevin Hancock is president of Hancock Lumber, which was established in 1848. The firm operates a timberland company, a sawmill division and a retail business in nine locations throughout the state. Hancock Land Co. is a national leader in timberland management and certified forestry practices, with more than 12,000 acres of certified timberlands in western Maine. All its land is open to the public for hiking, hunting, fishing and recreation. Additionally, the land is managed for multiple uses, with consideration given to water quality, soil quality, wildlife habitat and forestry.

For information on researching family history in Maine, see Genealogy Resources under Family Ties at bangordailynews.com/browse/family-ties. Send genealogy queries to Family Ties, Bangor Daily News, P.O. Box 1329, Bangor 04402, or email familyti@bangordailynews.com.

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