News from the Edmund Chandler Family Association

A new year means an opportunity to make new discoveries.  In the past, our member, Billie, made a major breakthrough with the early Duxbury Chandlers – Joseph and Capt. John!  Last year, we found a family of Chandler orphans, found out more about who we now know was an ordained minister, Rev. Abel Chandler and his family and much more.

In the year ahead I hope to do more research into two Maine Chandler families and solve a couple of mysteries. I recently found another sibling of Hewett Chandler, the Shaker leader and inventor.  He was Luther P. Chandler who ended up in Wisconsin. The Shakers of New Gloucester, Maine have long wondered who their brother, Hewett Chandler descended from.  Hewett was a Shaker leader and prominent inventor. Several of us worked on that project a while back, but came to an impasse, although this new clue may help. My hunch is that he descended from the Joseph line through Judah Chandler.

A few years back, our member, Elsie, and I researched the three Rebecca Chandlers of Minot, Maine.  She found her Rebecca and I thought mine was the daughter of the other Abel Chandler of Duxbury, then Minot, Maine, but now I am not so sure as there is a possibility that my Rebecca was of the same family as the mysterious Hewett Chandler.  I hope to find out as there may have been four Rebecca Chandlers of Minot, Maine all born within a few years of each other.

Our member, Dick, is working on finding English Chandlers for DNA studies.  Hopefully, as more English Chandlers are tested, one will match our Edmund descendants.  If that happens we may have a major breakthrough on Edmund’s English origins.

There are ongoing changes over there at We hope to have more information about what is going on in the Spring issue. Just when you get your research techniques adapted to their new system, its changed again

Coming, probably in the Spring issue, will be an article about another Chandler inventor (is there a common family thread here?) Elisha Otis, Lucy Chandler’s grandson.  He invented the modern elevator.

Of course, one starts researching one Chandler and lo and behold a discovery is made about another.  So who knows which direction our research will take us or what discovery will be made about which Chandler.

This issue we have Tips and Resources, updates to past genealogy stories including a Civil War update, the return of the TV genealogy show, “Who Do You Think You Are?”, news about the probable future Queen of England who is also a Chandler descendant (we don’t know which Chandler family yet) plus more.


One resource, and a great resource that is usually overlooked, is the Bureau of Land Management patent office. This government website shows land awarded to soldiers, their widows or their heirs.  Often the soldiers never lived on or even saw the land, but sold or traded it for something that they could use. Check to see if you can find your ancestor. If the record has been indexed and microfilmed, you can see the actual land patent (award) and what regiment he served and who he served under. The order was signed by the president at the time, or more likely the president’s representative. Many clues can be found by searching these records.

For those of you with Dover-Foxcroft, Maine ancestors, you may wish to see this site:

The Probable Future Queen

Kate Middleton, the fiancée of Prince William, is a Chandler descendant.  The question is from which Chandler family does she descend?  Could she be related to Edmund or another American Chandler?  Possibly, we just don’t know. Hopefully in the future her family tree will be expanded upon.  Perhaps we can get a Chandler from Randwick, England, where her Chandler ancestors were from, to be DNA tested to find out.


You may like to know that one of the great grandmothers of Kate Middleton,
hopefully to become the bride of the future King William in 2011 and later
become known as Queen Katherine, was Edith Eliza Chandler born in
Buckinghamshire, England in 1889.

“Gloucestershire and Kent are the two English counties most heavily
populated with Chandlers.  Kent also has a lot of Chantlers, but few of
them in Gloucestershire.  In the whole of Gloucestershire, the densest
Chandler population was in Randwick, where Kate’s ancestors came from.

  • Chandler – Labourers from Gloucestershire and Worcestershire, rising to tradesmen

If you would like to see her family tree, go to the site below.

Ancestry of Kate Middleton

I have helped a correspondent with her ancestry, which connects with Kate Middleton’s Chandler ancestor Theophilus Benjamin Chandler.  Although Theophilus was born in Worcestershire, his ancestral roots lie in Randwick in the county of Gloucestershire, which has been a Chandler stronghold for centuries.  I have been contacted about this by the producer of a British TV documentary about Kate Middleton’s family history, and the screening of that show could also give us some good publicity in the run-up to the Royal Wedding (which will hopefully prove much happier than that of her huband-to-be’s mother, Princess Diana.)” From Dick Chandler

“Who Do You Think You Are?” returns

2011’s “Who Do You Think You Are” Celebrities are announced: Gwyneth Paltrow, Tim McGraw, Rosie O’Donnell, Steve Buscemi, Kim Cattrall, Lionel Richie, Vanessa Williams and Ashley Judd take a look inside their family histories on NBC’s genealogy alternative series produced by Lisa Kudrow. The series begins airing on Friday, February 4, 2011.

“I am quite excited because we hope that the widow and sons of the famous English Napoleonic-era military historian Dr David Chandler will attend, and that one of his sons will give a DNA sample there, which Family Tree DNA will process free of charge – I expect there to be a match with two existing DNA project participants (one in Britain, one in Canada) whose roots lie in the English county of Suffolk.  That could give us and our English DNA efforts some good publicity.” From Dick Chandler


The Civil War Fate of Alvin Chandler

Last time we had a story about Rev. Abel Chandler’s family.  Alvin, who we believe was Rev. Abel’s son, disappeared from the records and his fate was unknown. Thanks to’s free access to military records over Veteran’s Day weekend, his fate was revealed.  Alvin died while serving in the Union army in the Civil War.

Civil War records indicate that Alvin Chandler enlisted on November 15, 1861 at age 31.  He served in Company H, Maine 12th Infantry Regiment. His residence was listed as Barnard, Piscataquis, Maine.  Prior to his enlistment he was enumerated in the 1860 census along with Xoa Chandler, his sister-in-law, in Barnard. Barnard was a very small place noted for its slate quarries.

Interestingly, according to the American Civil War database, he entered as a sergeant, but then was reduced to ranks, but then promoted to full private. He died January 5, 1863. I don’t know why he was reduced to ranks, but then promoted.

He was in a regiment that saw much combat.  You can read the regimental history below. He most likely participated in the fighting in New Orleans and also the battle of Ponchatoula, Louisiana (read the account below) as that took place in September of 1862 and he died in January of 1863.  The regiment suffered many casualties.  Of the enlisted men, 49 were lost in combat, but 237 died from illness or accidents. So the odds are that Alvin died of disease rather than from injuries sustained in combat.

(Three Years) 

Twelfth Infantry.–Cols., George F. Shepley, William K.
Kimball; Lieut.- Cols., William K. Kimball, Edwin Illsley;
Majs., David R. Hastings, Gideon A. Hastings. This regiment
was organized at Portland, Nov. 16, 1861, to serve for three
years, and was mustered out of service at the same place, Dec.
7, 1864, the recruits and reenlisted men, however, being
organized into a battalion of four companies and remaining in
the field. This battalion was afterwards ordered to Savannah,
Ga., and was raised to a full regiment by the assignment of the
10th, 11th, 15th, 18th, and 16th, companies of unassigned
infantry, organized at Augusta, Me., in the early part of 1865,
to serve, one, two and three years, and which were assigned as
Companies E, F, G, H, I and K, respectively. The regiment was
intended from the outset to form a part of Gen. Butler’s New
England division, designed for the capture of New Orleans. It
left the state for Lowell Mass., on Nov. 24, 1861, and after a
delay of several weeks at Lowell and Fortress Monroe, finally
disembarked at Ship island, Miss. On May 4, 1862, the regiment
went to New Orleans, which city had fallen into Union hands,
and where Col. Shepley, now commanding the 3d brigade of Gen.
Butler’s army was appointed military commandant of the city.
The regiment saw much exciting and arduous service in the South
before it finally returned to the battlefields of Virginia, on
July 20, 1864. Col. Kimball, who succeeded Col. Shepley in
command of the regiment, aided by a gunboat, performed
brilliant service at Manchac pass, where he captured two
Confederate batteries of six 32-pounders, with a stand of
colors, a large amount of stores, and $8,000 of Confederate
currency. The achievement was eulogized by the war department,
which ordered the captured colors to be kept in the possession
of the 12th and they were subsequently added to the trophies of
the state. The 12th, during this period, also took an
important part in the reduction of Port Hudson, accompanied the
expedition of Gen. Grover up Grand lake, and engaged the enemy
at Donaldsonville, La. On March 12, 1864, two-thirds of the
regiment reenlisted as veterans, and went back to Maine on a
short furlough. They rejoined the regiment at New Orleans on
June 16. On the arrival of the regiment at Fortress Monroe on
July 20, 1864, it reported to Gen. Butler at Bermuda Hundred.
From this time until the muster out it was engaged in an almost
incessant conflict. It participated in the battle of
Winchester, where it lost 113 officers and men; at Cedar creek
it lost 82 officers and men, and was in many smaller
engagements. On Nov. 19, 1864, the term of service of about 80
of the officers and men having expired, they returned to Maine
and were mustered out. The recruits and reenlisted men,
augmented by unassigned infantry, as above detailed, remained
in the field to form a new regiment. The two and three years’
men remained on duty, together with the battalion of veterans,
at Savannah, Ga., until April 18, 1866, when the whole
battalion was mustered out of service at that place.

Source: The Union Army, vol. 1

Battles Fought
Fought on 13 Sep 1862 at New Orleans, LA.
Fought on 15 Sep 1862 at Ponchatoula, LA.
Fought on 25 Mar 1863.
Fought on 25 May 1863 at Port Hudson, LA.
Fought on 27 May 1863 at Port Hudson, LA.
Fought on 28 May 1863 at Port Hudson, LA.
Fought on 31 May 1863 at Port Hudson, LA.
Fought on 14 Jun 1863 at Port Hudson, LA.
Fought on 15 Jun 1863 at Port Hudson, LA.
Fought on 19 Jun 1863 at Port Hudson, LA.
Fought on 25 Jun 1863 at Port Hudson, LA.
Fought on 17 Sep 1864.
Fought on 19 Sep 1864 at Winchester, VA.
Fought on 19 Oct 1864 at Cedar Creek, VA.
Fought on 28 Apr 1865.

Ponchatoula, La.,
Sept. 15, 1862.

Detachments of 12th Maine 13th Connecticut and 26th
Massachusetts Infantry.

Owing to the heavy draft of the boats in which the expedition
embarked it was impossible to surprise Ponchatoula as had been
planned, but notwithstanding this the attack was made. Maj.
George C. Strong, at the head of 112 men, made a march of 1O
miles and when within a mile of the village the whistle of a
locomotive gave the enemy notice of his approach.

On entering the place his column was met by a discharge of
canister from a Confederate light battery. Strong deployed his
men and poured in such a destructive fire that the enemy was
obliged to retreat. Strong lost 21 men killed, wounded and
missing while the enemy’s killed alone numbered 20.

Source: The Union Army, Vol.,6 p.,702


I haven’t seen this book, but it may useful for those researching the Civil War era. If any of you have seen it, let us know what you think.

Genealogical Resources of the Civil War Era – Online and Published Military or Civilian Name Lists, 1861-1869 & Post-Civil War Veteran Lists;

Most genealogical records during the decade of the Civil War are related to the soldiers and regiments of the Union and Confederate military. However, there are numerous records relating to the entire population as well.

More on Danvers State Hospital

Last issue we had an article on spooky places in Massachusetts, Danvers being the spookiest looking of all.  Here is a little more on its fate.  After it was no longer being used as a hospital only the Kirkbride façade was retained and much of it was torn down to make way for an apartment and condo complex with all of the amenities.  During construction of the apartments, even adding more to its haunted reputation, there was a huge fire destroying the many of the new apartments. As far as I know the case has not been solved.

The link below is to a video of some pictures of the fire. I am not particularly keen on pictures of fires, as we get a good view of them periodically here in Southern California, but the accompanying music on this video  is as pretty and as haunting as it gets.  The music is “Anna’s Theme from the movie the, “Red Violin” by John Corigliano, Joshua Bell, violin soloist with Essa-Pekka Solonen conducting the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.

As far as I know no Chandlers were sent there when it was a hospital.  It does make one pause and think, however, of those poor people  who were  there.

As always, if you find errors in the research or wish to contribute a news item or a story contact us. The Spring issue should be out sometime in April.  Until then, happy hunting!


1 Comment

Filed under Chandler News

One response to “WINTER 2011 CHANDLER NEWS by Carol May

  1. Thanks for sharing such an interesting post with us. You have made some valuable points which are very useful for all readers

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