Posts Tagged ‘genealogy

21
May
17

Part Two – Ancestor Appreciation Day

Two posts ago, I wrote about one of my ancestors who completed a great feat, at the time. He was the first to take a wheeled vehicle from the Kennebec River to the Penobscot River (Skowhegan to Bangor).

I do not know if this was a 2 wheeled or 4 wheeled vehicle, but it did cause a stir among settlers as he passed by small settlements in the 1800’s, according to reports. It certainly must have been horse or oxen drawn.

I wish there was more documentation – was he alone? what was he transporting? how long did it take (about 50 miles)? what time of year did this take place?

So, today, I had the opportunity to drive this route myself (in my 4 wheeled car! and in the opposite direction). I just wanted to drive the drive and imagine what it must have been like in the early 1800’s.

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Most of the area is now farm country so it is nice open fields, but at the time it would have been all wooded (as above), and as I mentioned in my original post, must have certainly needed some trailblazing!

I passed by a few lakes, bridged several rivers and went up and down countless hills! All I could think of was the poor horse(s) or ox(en) that had to work so hard. The modern road is a nice, wide 2 lane highway in very good shape and was a pleasure to drive.

Caleb Shaw must have had good reason to go to all that trouble, or maybe he was just up to a challenge! Some of my Shaw ancestors certainly have been the type to make their own way.

History is wonderful, haunted or not, but always leaves us wishing for more…

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25
Aug
14

Research is Fun, but Sharing is Better

I have selfish reasons for this business – I love history and I love research! As fulfilling as intriguing research can be, I’ve found that it really needs to be shared for the best results.

I think of it as a treasure hunt – whether it is genealogy or a ghost story or historical research, once I find that first clue, I’m sucked in. I often can’t devote the time I’d like to continue the hunt, at least for the moment, but sometimes it’s hard to break away. The challenge is to find the information I need, but not get swept away for the whole day!

I have a diary that I’ve been reading. It dates to the late 1800’s – spanning 40 years! I don’t know how many transcribed typewritten pages it is but I’m only on page 70 something and not a third of the way through. It’s at a nearby library, in the reference section, which is probably a good thing. If I could check it out, no one would see me for days!

In my last post I mentioned a new offering coming to Wiscasset. It is an afternoon tour called History & Haunts of High Street. At either end of beautiful High Street are 2 historic buildings that we will tour through, while telling history, folklore and tales of both as well as all the homes in between. We will offer these only once a month June through October. Our first is this coming Friday, August 29.

One of the buildings is a courthouse; the oldest continuously working courthouse in Maine, dating to 1824. The other is “Castle Tucker,” now a museum owned by Historic New England, but once was a private home. It dates to 1807. The other buildings we will see are sea captains’ homes, a painted lady, an old bank with a “jug vault” in the cellar, a duplex dating to 1852 (who knew they built them that early?!) and more.

As I’ve been researching for this new tour, I’ve found myself getting so excited about sharing the information I’ve found! I can’t wait until Friday, and I hope the guests will appreciate the tidbits that I’ve come up with.

Another exiting “show and tell” that I experienced recently was during Boothbay’s 250th Anniversary Celebration. I was fortunate enough to be able to share “Ye Ol’ Burying Ground” with about 50 people. The amount of history found in old cemeteries and graveyards is incredible! Did you know a cemetery is different from a graveyard? A cemetery is not associated with a church, while a graveyard is. We ran into difficulties at this particular burying ground because it is now called a cemetery, but there did used to be a church right next to it. I didn’t know about the church until a local person shared with me during this celebration, so now there’s yet more research to be done – which came first the church or the burying ground?

I had a winter full of research this past year, and now it’s time to share… my husband has written a book, with my assistance, and it is now available to the public! “Haunted Damariscotta, Ghosts of the Twin Villages and Beyond” by Greg Latimer was published by History Press and can be purchased from them online here:

https://historypress.net/catalogue/bookstore/books/Series/Haunted%20America/Haunted-Damariscotta/9781626193055

Obviously, we’re very excited to have accomplished this, but also to share with all of you. Please let us know if you’d like to purchase signed copies from us – we can take care of that for you.

I hope you enjoy these last days of summer – I know I will, peeking out between the pages of that diary!

19
Aug
11

Salem Witch Trials and Hangings

These didn’t take place in Maine, but Maine was part of Massachusetts at the time, and they did influence certain happenings here. This is a “nice” chronology of events, with some hangings taking place on today’s date 319 years ago. http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/salem/asal_ch.htm

I believe I have witch related relatives in my genealogy – do you? Even testifying counts!