Bangor Public Library will host May 28 Maine at War book signing

The Bangor Public Library will host a book signing for Maine at War Volume 1: Bladensburg to Sharpsburg in the Minsky Lecture Hall from 6-7:30 p.m., Tuesday, May 28. Author Brian F. Swartz will speak about Maine at War Volume 1 and the important role that Maine played during the Civil War. Copies of the […]

A Maine angel of mercy completed his mission at Port Hudson

Playing “angel of mercy” briefly cost Charlie Blake his freedom at Port Hudson, La. in late spring 1863. Hailing from Portland, 21-year-old Charles H. Blake had enlisted in Co. B, 12th Maine Infantry Regiment as a corporal in November 1861. The regiment accompanied Ben Butler’s New Orleans expedition in early 1862. Within 12 months, Union […]

Confederates shoot a Maine deserter at Vicksburg

Not every Maine boy donning a Civil War uniform wore Union blue. More than a few wore Confederate gray or butternut, and the Johnny Rebs shot a particular Maine lad after he bolted for Union lines somewhere in the Mississippi River Valley in early summer 1863. Many Union newspapers picked up the story, brought north […]

New book titled Maine at War Volume 1 covers an exciting 18-month period

For Civil War buffs everywhere, we are pleased to announce the May 1st release of Maine at War Volume 1: Bladensburg to Sharpsburg. Experience Maine’s involvement in the first 18 months of the Civil War as told by the men and women who left the Pine Tree State to defend and preserve the Union. Gleaned […]

Georgia plantation wife from Maine, part 4

For Dolly Lunt Burge, the Georgia plantation wife born and raised in Bowdoinham in Maine, the jig was up sometime in mid-morning on Saturday, November 19, 1864. Fired on by Union soldiers, she and her 9-year-old daughter, Sadai, raced to their plantation house some nine miles east of Covington as infantrymen from XVI Corps marched […]

Georgia plantation wife from Maine, part 3

After Union soldiers stole three mules from Burge plantation near Covington, Georgia on August 2, 1864, Dolly Lunt Burge could only wonder if the Yankees would return. Born in Bowdoinham, Maine in 1817, Dolly had moved south to teach school in rural Georgia. She married Thomas Banner Burge, a wealthy plantation owner, and gave birth […]

Georgia plantation wife from Maine, part 2

Through spring and early summer 1864, William Tecumseh Sherman and Joe Johnston conducted their side-stepping campaign that brought Sherman’s Union army to the Atlanta outskirts. Commanding the Army of Tennessee, Johnston discovered that almost every natural defense position he tried to hold, Sherman outflanked the defending Confederates, who withdrew deeper into Georgia. Angry that Johnston […]

Georgia plantation wife from Maine, part 1

Revealing that she was from Maine would not have saved Dolly Burge a single chicken when Sherman’s “Bummers” came calling in mid-November 1864. Some Mainers moved South in the decades before the Civil War and, when the shooting began, promptly forgot their Yankee roots. Maine-born men fought for the Confederacy, and Maine-born women like Burge […]

A long day’s tramp to Gettysburg, part 2

Their brogans and socks soaked after fording a stream, the 19th Maine Infantry lads tramped onward through the afternoon on Monday, June 29, 1863. The miles fell away across Maryland — and suddenly the regiment (Col. Francis Heath) and 1st Brigade (Brig. Gen. William Harrow) and 2nd Division (Brig. Gen. John Gibbon) led II Corps […]

A long day’s tramp to Gettysburg, part 1

As Part 1 noted, Pvt. John Day Smith would always remember Monday, June 29, 1863, when the 19th Maine Infantry Regiment “set out on the longest day’s march in its history.” From Litchfield in Androscoggin County, Smith belonged to Co. F, which would provide a rogue’s gallery of regimental historians long before the last 19th […]