Monday, February 28, 2011

Pejepscot Chapter, MGS - 13 March 2011 Meeting

March 13, 2011 - 2pm Morrell Meeting Room, Curtis Memorial Library,
Brunswick, ME

PGS President, Brian Bouchard will give a preview of a discussion to be delivered at the 2011 MGS Fall Conference on using community based web sites to accelerate your research and find things you may not have been able to find anywhere else. Build on the research of others and make connections to bring your own research to the next level. We'll not only discuss what these technologies are, but present real-life examples of how they have benefited researchers just like you!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

An Act Relating to Access to Vital Records

LD 258 "An Act Relating to Access to Vital Records" is sponsored by Rep. Deborah Sanderson of Chelsea. It amends LD 1781 [PL 601] which was passed last year and which closed Maine's vital records for 100 years.

Due to the very short time between the public hearing (Wednesday, March 2) and the work session where the bill will be voted on (Thursday, March 3) it is vital that people submit testimony supporting LD 258 via e-mail as soon as possible.

Testimony may be submitted by e-mail to the HHS Committee Clerk, Lisa Cote at:

There is another bill to amend the law,
LD 388, which will be presented at the same public hearing. It has a provision to lower the fee for the state researcher identification card to $25 and make it good for 2-years. We do not want any requirement that genealogists buy a special card to access vital records. We already pay to belong to various genealogy and historical societies; membership cards from those organizations should be sufficient to prove one is a genealogist. Comments on this bill are also requested. [send to the Lisa Cote]

You may download a copy of LD 258 (and LD 388) by going to and typing the bill number in the box in the upper right corner.

If you can come to present testimony at the hearing you need to bring at least 20 copies of the testimony. The hearing will be at 10:00 a.m. in Room 209 of the Cross State Office Building. Please be advised that parking is very limited around the capitol complex and will be further affected on Wednesday & Thursday by supporters & protesters of the state budget which is also having public hearings.

Please pass this on to any and all genealogists and supporters thereof.

If you have questions, please email Helen Shaw (

New Native American Blog

Nancy Lecompte writes to introduce her new Research Journal Blog titled Gwilodw├┤gan.

The word refers to exploration or investigation in the Western Abenaki dialect.

She will be exploring what is known about families with potential Native American heritage in the Northeast, one family at a time. It is her hope the blog will serve as a teaching tool for any beginning researcher, a resource for descendants, and a journal of what is known, what is still left to learn, what is incorrect (and why), and what her conclusions are (and why) for each family examined.

She will begin with Edward Marden (also Mardin), c1751-1835 of Lyman, NH, who is said to have an "Indian" wife. His grandchildren are scattered all over the Northeast (ME, NH, VT, Quebec, MA).

The next family she will examine is that of a woman named Marleah Kanistaux of Stockton, NY, who is said to be the granddaughter of Metallic. Metallic was a rather famous Abenaki man known in western Maine and northern New Hampshire. He died in Stewartstown, NH in 1845 at an age well over 100 years.

She will be looking for another family to work on this summer. If you have an interesting "Indian" puzzle, write and share it.

You can email Nancy at

Friday, February 18, 2011

Ellsworth, ME Historical Society Announces New Webpage

Ellsworth, Maine – February 15, 2011 – Today, The Ellsworth Historical Society announces its first ever webpage at

Terri Weed Cormier – Co president of the society was pleased to make this announcement and said “This webpage marks a transformative experience for the society’s long history. This represents the next major step ahead as we continue to expand our community outreach and make more people aware of the society’s goals and continued preservation of our building and archives. We could not have done this without the help of John and Allison of MDI Web Design who offered their services to us as well as the webhosting at and who have been wonderful to work with in helping us achieve this goal”

The Ellsworth Historical Society evolved from a meeting held in 1978 of interested members of the community to save and protect our history. An item in the Ellsworth American invited those interested in forming a local historical society to meet at the First Congregational Church. The attendees decided to meet again and the first meeting of the Historical Society was held on May 22, 1978.

Since that time the society has been collecting the history and memorabilia of Ellsworth and serving the local community in preserving and sharing our local history through exhibitions and local outreach.

The Society and the Ellsworth Historic Preservation Commission joined forces to preserve the Old County Jail from demolition in 1980 and after working with the County Commissioners office an agreement was made that the building was a fitting place for the society and in 1980 a lease was signed that allowed the society to finally have a home. The first meeting was held in the Old County Jail in June 1981. The building was officially transferred to the society with the signing of the deed in 1998.

Restoration of the interior of the building started at once and with local help from area businesses, groups, and concerned citizen’s work began to restore the interior of the beautiful brick Queen Anne Revival Building that was built in 1886. The building now houses the society’s collection of Ellsworth history, with displays and changing exhibits from the society’s collections. The museum is open on Thursdays and Saturdays in July and August free of charge.

In 2008 the building was named to the National Registry of Historic Places. The announcement was made by Earle Shuttleworth Jr., President of the Maine Historic Commission which submitted the nomination. The front of the building was a former residence for the jail warden and his family, and the back contains 14 small cells on two floors. A dividing wall between the two sections once allowed the warden to monitor inmates through two small wickets that are still in place today.

The Ellsworth Historical Society is an all volunteer society that is dedicated to preserving the history of Ellsworth for future generations. Membership is open to all and we look forward to growing more in our local community, continuing to collect and preserve local history, and to helping others know the history of our home town we hope that everyone will visit our new website and join us to show your support. For additional information please email us at or write to us at The Ellsworth Historical Society PO Box 355 Ellsworth, Me 04605

Greater Portland Chapter of MGS Cumberland County Deeds Project

At the March 8, 2008 meeting of the Greater Portland Chapter of the Maine Genealogical Society, President Carol McCoy suggested the chapter work on indexing the Cumberland County Deeds covering the years 1760 to 1796. The membership approved her idea, and voted to start work on this major project. In February, 2011, the purpose of the project was redefined.

The results so far . . . Even though we are not finished with the project, you may have access to the information we have collected so far. You may download the information in Excel or .pfd format here. The data is listed alphabetically by grantor or by grantee. If you download the Excel file, you can sort as you like, but you must have Excel software to open it. So check it out at

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Captain Henry Small of Falmouth/Portland, ME


Birth & Parentage: Capt Henry Small of Falmouth/Portland, Maine. According to his death certificate he was b 1769, Falmouth, Maine. Death: 22 Nov 1825 Dead at Sea, Capt of Brig to Havana; his body was returned to Portland, buried at Eastern Cemetery lot 11-12. Buried beside him is Timothy Small d. 1818 age 75, possibly father and 2nd wife Sarah (Wright) Small, also a part of Lot 11. Henry first married Jerusha “Rusha” Challis on 2 Nov 1791 in Falmouth/Portland, Maine. Jerusha died 17 Mar 1810. Children by first marriage according to 1800 census were three sons and one dau.; all under the age of 10 years. We found the birth of Nathaniel May 1799 and his sister Mary Apr. 1796, both born in Portland. However, two sons are still a mystery, plus other children were born to Henry and Jerusha, because we found Emily b 4 Jan 1810 about 10 weeks prior to her mother’s death on 17 March 1810. Henry remarried to a Sarah Wright Oct 1810 in Portland, Maine. Children by his second marriage were: George b. 4 Oct 1813 and Sarah b. 18 Mar 1816 also born in Portland. Found info on Henry years as a Captain. Maine Marine Historical has the information on his years as a Master-Captain for Asa Clapp, schooner Susan, etc. Please contact me if you have any information.

Thank you Christine Morrill;