Category Archives: General Geneology



Chandler research marches on as usual and as usual instead of taking a straight line into the current topic, this time the Revolutionary War (although I did get there!), the path led to assisting in further research into Joseph’s will and his son Edmund’s inventory (half of our group descends from Joseph), the hunt for Edmund’s origins through DNA testing, breaking down more brick walls and making new discoveries, and more which are all featured in this issue.

Our Revolutionary War series continues with Part 2, “The Stirrings of Revolution: the Committees of Correspondence and Safety” of which two of our Chandlers were members. They were brothers Perez Chandler of Duxbury, who we will feature this issue, and Peleg Chandler of New Gloucester, Maine, who we will feature next issue.

I am working on a “Revolutionary War Timeline” which, as research progresses, I hope to add the various Chandler Revolutionary War veterans and Patriots to their place in the Timeline. At end of the series I hope to post the Timeline.

Next issue, in addition to Peleg Chandler, we hope to move on to military or Patriotic service by other Edmund descendants. Benjamin Chandler descendants have not been forgotten as we plan to feature Capt. Jonathan Chandler of the Battle of Bennington and some of the New Hampshire Chandlers in future issues. Judah Chandler will reappear as well as he participated in the capture of the British ship Margaretta in the Battle of Machias.

Also, Billie’s story of “The War of Richard Jenkins’ Ear” will be featured. Yes, this was a real war, ill-fated and ill advised, which Nathaniel Chandler was caught up in.

index1A reminder to those who are members of the ECFA, renewal notices have gone out. Dues go to maintaining the website, DNA research, and hopefully soon to re-vamp and update the website. Our member, Dick, is pushing DNA research into England and we want to be ready to provide funds for tests or upgrades if need be.


indexIf any of you have any tech skills such as knowledge about web sites or Rootsmagic that would also help. A lot!

Lastly, if any of you have pictures, stories, small or big, involving Chandlers please send them to me or to Barb for the Courier.


The search continues for DNA matches with the Edmund Chandler family in England. Currently we are waiting for test results for a Chandler testee from Essex, England whose lineage traces back to William Candler who was born in the 1700s. It was also a hot bed of religious dissent during Edmund’s time and Edmund was a dissenter which is why he left England. While a match wouldn’t necessarily tell us who Edmund descended from it would give us the likely place that he came from.

We struck out with a testee from Buckinghamshire, England, but we are not giving up on Buckinghamshire yet as that one testee may not be representative of all of the Chandlers in that area.

We found out about Buckinghamshire Chandlers from Orland Chandler, who has just rejoined our group. Buckinghamshire first interested Orland as a possibility for Edmund’s origins as the Chandlers who lived there were blacksmiths and a few years later they became famous for their bell making foundry. Those bells still ring today. There were also at least two Edmund Chandlers from the same era as our Edmund and there were also religious dissenters in the area so you can see why the Edmund Chandler research radar went on high alert.

As Dick wrote, this kind of research is a roller-coaster ride as we have had hopes raised and dashed in the past. If the Essex testee’s comes back as promising, the ECFA will pay for the upgrade if need be.

The video above shows the  raising the 2nd bell at Mentmore so that it can be rung for full circle change-ringing. This ring of 5 bells was cast by Chandler of Drayton Parslow in 1668 and installed in the timber frame which was made at the same time. The bells have never been removed from the tower or re-tuned, so sound as they did when they were first installed.

Monastic building at Coggeshall abbey.

Monastic building at Coggeshall abbey.

Coggeshall – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia The town where William Candler came from in Essex, England


Books by Our Members

The Genealogy and Real Estate of Joseph Chandler, Sr. of Duxbury, Massachusetts”

Our member, Billie, is still revising and expanding her book “The Genealogy and Real Estate of Joseph Chandler, Sr. of Duxbury, Massachusetts: With Proof of the Identity of his Grandson Capt. John Chandler.” She is adding new maps and adding more information about Joseph’s family. When it is finished a copy will be posted in our Members’ Only section.

Since the last issue, I assisted Billie with research into Plymouth Colonial law and dissecting Joseph’s will and son Edmund’s inventory. We have a copy of both Joseph’s will and Edmund’s inventory in the “Genealogy of Edward Small” in our Members’ Only library. She traced the real estate after identifying it by searching over 400 deeds, but there were still points in Joseph’s will and Edmund’s inventory that remained confusing especially dealing with the houses. There were issues involving Joseph and Edmund that were intertwined which made research complicated. There were also land transactions outside of the will and inventory which Billie has traced and which are now more fully explained and will be added as a chapter in the book. Billie’s work involved finding out who owned the land, and who had life estates, and who ended up with the land, and what Edmund’s assets and debts truly were.

This research, added with Billie’ prior monumental tracing of the land further supports that Capt. John was the son of Edmund and Elizabeth (Alden) Chandler.

 “The Immigrant,”

Our member, Al, is also in the process of editing his historical novel, “The Immigrant,” which is scheduled to be published this year. This book does not involve a Chandler, but his ancestor, John Law, who was taken prisoner at the battle of Dunbar, Scotland and endured a death march to Durham Cathedral and then expelled from the country. He was shipped, along with many other Scottish prisoners, to Boston. England dealt with the rebellious Scots by shipping them to New England, so if you have an early Maine ancestor of Scottish descent that is how he may have gotten here as that is where they ended up.

There is a sort-of Chandler connection in that the ship John Law was transported was named the Unity. Over a hundred years later there was another ship, also named “Unity”, which was involved in the capture of the British ship, Margaretta, at the beginning of the Revolutionary War. Judah Chandler was a Patriot involved in the capture of the Margaretta.

 New Members

This time we have a returning member and a new member.

We welcome back Orland Chandler who is back in full swing with Chandler research. In addition to his Buckinghamshire research, he was the one who discovered that Edmund, the immigrant had, a son named John, who died on the way to the Barbados. This discovery has been attributed others, but it came originally from Orland. Orland has a double connection to Edmund. Orland descends from both Capt. John Chandler and Nathaniel Chandler. Orland’s Capt. John line starting with Orland is:

Orland Chandler>Archie Donald Chandler>Hamer Lorenzo Chandler>Samuel Poole Chandler, Jr.>Rev. Samuel Poole>John Chandler, Jr.>Jonathan Chandler>Capt. John Chandler>Edmund Chandler>Joseph Chandler>Edmund Chandler, the immigrant.

His Nathaniel Chandler line is the same until we get to John Chandler, Jr. John Chandler, Jr. married his third cousin Mercy Sprague. Starting with that Mercy it is:

Mercy Sprague>Mercy (Chandler) Sprague>Nathaniel Chandler>Edmund Chandler>Joseph Chandler>Edmund Chandler, the immigrant.

Orland is not the only one with a double Chandler connection. I descend from both Edmund and Roger (who may be related to Edmund) and our member Cynthia, descends from Edmund and a Southern Chandler. Figuring that out took a lot of research!

We also welcome, new member, another Barbara Chandler. This Barbara is from Kingston, Mass, a neighbor of Duxbury. Her husband has deep Chandler roots in Duxbury and was the fire chief there. Her late father-in-law, Raymond P. Chandler, was a selectman and an athletic field is named after him. We hope to get picture of the field.

Her husband’s line is starting with his father is:

Raymond P. Chandler>Parker B. Chandler>Alden Chandler>Isaac Chandler>Ephraim Chandler>Nathaniel Chandler>Philip Chandler>Joseph Chandler>Joseph Chandler>Edmund Chandler, the immigrant.


No, it hasn’t been forgotten and we are still ready and willing to go forward with it. Unfortunately, there has been foot dragging by the town and the fellow in Duxbury who was enthusiastic about the Chandler research died. As I wrote previously, the Chandlers were a major family in the development of the town. Joseph Chandler originally owned what became the heart of the town –cemetery, church, town government buildings and more. There is still the Chandlerville area, a Chandler elementary school, Chandler Street and the aforementioned athletic field.

The good news is that our new member, Barbara, lives nearby and hopefully will be able to assist Billie in getting the plaque approved and placed.



As many of you are aware of, the CFA is our sister group. They now include not only Chandlers who descended from John Chandler of 1610 Jamestown, Virginia, but all Chandlers other than those who descend from Edmund. We would like to explore further contact and relationships with the CFA as it could help streamline Chandler research. We will keep our ECFA members posted on what we find out and will have discussions with our members in the future on how we should proceed.


web-designI have been trying to get a web site guru lined up amidst all of the other Chandler projects since last year. I did find someone, but have not yet heard back. If that does not work out, I will have to find someone else. Our web site does need updating and I am trying to find someone to re-vamp and it and make it easy to add updates.



One of the dilemmas that genealogists face is how to fill in birth and marriage places, etc. when the name of the place changed. The genealogy standard is to list it by the name that was used at the time. However, this can be confusing for non-genealogy relatives or even fellow genealogists if they are not familiar with the history of the area. That is how you may find your ancestor lived in maybe two different states and perhaps several different counties and towns, but never moved.

What seems like a more sensible approach is to list both the name of the place at the time the event occurred and the present name. That approach would seem to eliminate a lot of confusion.

The article “A Proposed Standard for Names, Dates and Places in a Genealogical Database” by Gary Mokotoff is an excellent discussion of the issue. Unfortunately, the article has disappeared from its former internet home, but as it is popular in genealogy circles you may be able to find it somewhere on the net.




Generally speaking, understanding the old British monetary system, which began after the Norman Conquest in 1026 when the pound was divided into twenty shillings, is not a concern. The system was used until 1971.

However, you may be faced with it, if you have to figure out a will or estate inventory as Billie and I did when working on the Joseph Chandler project. Pounds, shillings, pences, guineas, farthings, etc. are all in oddball amounts which make for fun figuring for math lovers and hair pulling for the math impaired. Here is the link that explains the old British system:

Understanding old British money – pounds, shillings and pence



They are continuing to add new vital records and features, so check back periodically. They also have much more research material online and news updates. More and more books have been digitized and some will eventually be posted online.

More genealogy programs including Rootsmagic and Legacy can now be directly linked to the Familysearch web site making the transfer of information direct. You can check to see if your program will link with them.

They also have a toll free help line. For this issue, I fruitlessly looked for a family tree. I gave up and called them. They have assistants located at their home computers waiting to help people. After no wait! I was connected to a fellow in British Columbia, Canada.

I was told that it turns out that they have their old family trees (you remember those error ridden things) archived in one section. If you want to see the new interactive and correctable ones they are in a separate section. You have to sign up to see this section. It is free and nobody bothers you once you sign up. You can also keep a Source Box at Familysearch to place your Familysearch “finds” from vital records, censuses and the like.

I didn’t bother to sign in which is why I couldn’t find that elusive family tree, but the help line assistant guided me right back to it.

Other free services can be found at the Family History Centers which are located worldwide. You can access, Heritage Quest and Find My Past (UK) FREE on their computers. Check their web site to find a location near you.

From home and for free, you can access their “Wiki. They are like Wikipedia and some are terrific and some are not and not every place or topic has a Wiki yet. The maps are helpful. Here are a couple of samples.

Grafton County, New Hampshire | Learn |

Danville, Maine | Learn |



The TV mini-series, tentatively titled “Plymouth” is still a go with NBC. It will be produced by Mark Burnett, of “Survivor” and “The Bible” fame. It will cover the voyage of the Mayflower and the settling of Plymouth Colony. It is still in development and is not yet in production (I got that from Mark Burnett Productions). TV and film production are perilous voyages themselves with many projects being sunk along the way, but things are looking good right now for “Plymouth.” I will keep you posted. Edmund didn’t arrive until c. 1630 so probably a little late to include him, but if the production covers a lengthy period of the Plymouth Colony, and if we are lucky, he may be included as he was appointed Constable in 1636/37.



The TLC cable network has renewed this genealogy series and has ordered 10 new episodes for 2014. This is the show that traces the family trees of celebrities. They do show the actual places where their celebrity guests’ ancestors are from and you do get a glimpse of the places, libraries and courthouses where the historical papers are trotted out to view, although we don’t get to see the multitude of researchers toiling away in the archives or slogging through graveyards. Air dates for 2014 have not yet been announced.



The Committees of Correspondence and Safety

The beginning of the Revolutionary War era began in 1763 after the French and Indian War. This war ended the French threat to the American Colonies, but the war’s expense and the expectation of future defense expenses caused the British to decide that the American colonists should pay more taxes.

The series of taxes the British imposed plus other laws exerting British control of the colonies caused rising protest and anger amongst the colonists. The colonists felt that they were being denied their rights as Englishmen hence the rallying cry” “No taxation without representation!”

This taxation and trampling of rights by the British caused Samuel Adams, in 1772, to persuade the Boston town meeting to form a Committee of Correspondence which prepared and sent a statement of rights and grievances to the other towns. Committees had been formed previously, but only temporarily and only for grievances about a specific issue. The idea of such a Committee spread throughout the colonies and soon most towns had a permanent Committee of Correspondence to keep in touch with other towns over grievances with the British and later to serve as a shadow government opposing the British.

 Two of our Chandlers, brothers Perez Chandler of Duxbury, Massachusetts and Peleg Chandler of New Gloucester, then Massachusetts and now Maine, were appointed to serve on their local Committees of Correspondence and later Safety. Town records have not been researched to find out what specific actions they took, but we do know in general how the Committees of Correspondence and Safety functioned. Later as war broke out they became known as Committees of Safety. The Committees of Safety functioned as local governments and had the power to call out the local minutemen and muster the militia when needed and punish those who did not respond.

In the early days of the Revolutionary period the first job of the Committees was to disseminate information to the local townspeople as Samuel Adams and others felt it was imperative to have an informed citizenry. News was spread to the farthest edges of the colonies by ships and couriers on horseback in handwritten letters and printed pamphlets. Many the Committee members were also members of colonial legislative assemblies and many were active in the secret Sons of Liberty.

samuel adamsThe Committees became the leaders of the American resistance to British actions at first in opposing and protesting British taxes and policies and later the Committees led the war effort on both a state and local level. It was the colonial and local Committees who took charge in reviewing merchant records looking for those who tried to defy the boycott, declared by Congress, of imported British goods and then they published the names of said merchants. They encouraged the colonists to buy American and avoid luxuries from England. The Boston Tea Party and other “Tea Parties” such as the one in Marshfield which adjoined Duxbury were instigated by the Committees of Correspondence and Safety.

Strident objections and warnings about British rule proliferated. In 1775 New Hampshire’s residents were warned by the Provincial Congress that “Tyranny already begins to waive its banners in your borders, and to threaten these once happy regions with infamous and destestable slavery.”

The Committees became a shadow government organized by Patriot leaders operating under nose of England and ultimately the First Continental Congress emerged from them. About 7,000 to 8,000 men Patriots served on these Committees. Loyalists were excluded. They set up espionage networks to ferret out those who were disloyal to the cause and they displaced Royal officials which led to the toppling of the entire Royal government in each of the colonies. By the end of 1774 and early 1775, the Committees supervised elections of provincial conventions which took over the operation of the colonial government. Once war broke out, it was the Committees who supervised the local militia’s response to the British threat.

The Committees became the brains and structure behind the Revolution and without them, instead of a Revolution, there would only have been separate and uncoordinated protests and uprisings which would have undoubtedly been quashed by the British.

From the shadow governments of the Committees came the beginnings of what was to become the government of the United States.


Coming of the American Revolution: The Committees of Correspondence

Committee of correspondence – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

SparkNotes: Samuel Adams: Section 8: Committee of Correspondence

Committees of Correspondence | American Revolution | 1773 | Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum

Committee of Safety: Definition from Information on the Committees of Safety The Boston Pamphlet produced by the Boston Committee of Correspondence

Samuel Adams – American Revolution – A very nice reenactment video of the Sons of Liberty and the founding of the Committees of Correspondence


Philip>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant

July 10, 1730-Jan. 28, 1800


Perez Chandler supported the Revolutionary cause by serving on the Duxbury Committee of Correspondence and Safety. He was selected on March 17, 1777. That might sound a quill pen pushing job, safely tucked away in a Meeting House, but it was a job that involved both risk and intelligence. The Committees of Correspondence and Safety, were the brains of the Revolutionary War effort, communicating and coordinating with other towns at with at first protests then later war planning and strategy. The Revolution never would have succeeded without that “shadow government” network.

As leaders they would have been the first ones to be sought by the British and probably the first to have been charged with treason and maybe hanged if the war had been won by the British.

Perez was 47 years old when he was appointed to the Committee. He may not have participated as a soldier in the Revolution, but he was a soldier when he was younger during the French and Indian Wars. Those wars were expensive and which was one of the causes of the British trying to extract more taxes out of the colonists which in turn led to the cry of “No taxation without representation” which in turn acted one of the catalysts for the Revolution.

The Duxbury town records may have a record of exactly what Perez did, but it is also possible that records were not kept or were destroyed lest fall into the hands of the British. The records would have to be searched to find out. We do know in general what the Committees did (see accompanying story).

We do know that there was a Liberty Pole in Duxbury, which was the site of protests against the British and there was a “Tea Party” in neighboring Marshfield, the most Tory town in New England, which may have involved the Committee that Perez served on. To read about the Liberty Pole, go to our back issues of the Courier on our web site.

The name Perez seems like an unusual name for a Revolutionary War New Englander as it sounds Spanish. However, Perez, like most of the forenames used in the Plymouth Colony, which included Duxbury, came from the Bible and not even England much less Spain.

According to the online, “Baby Name Wizard,” Perez, also spelled Pharez or Peretz, was the son of Judah and Tamar and means “burst forth” or “breakthrough.”

The Spanish name Perez is related to the Greek word for rock which puts it in the same group as Peter, Pierre, Petra and Pedro.

Perez was not the only Perez in Duxbury as he had a son and a grandson named Perez Chandler and there were others who were not Chandlers whose forenames were also Perez.

Perez was the son of Philip Chandler and Rebecca Phillips. Philip was unique in that he was the only son of Joseph and Martha (Hunt) Chandler to remain in Duxbury. Joseph moved to North Yarmouth, Maine (then still part of Massachusetts) in 1727 with the rest of his family following him a couple of years later. Joseph was a prosperous blacksmith like his father, Joseph, Sr. It may have been the need for land for his many sons that inspired him to leave Duxbury for the then wilderness of Maine to start anew.

Joseph sold his home and land to eldest son, Philip who remained in Duxbury although at one time Philip may also have seriously considered moving to North Yarmouth as he owned land there. Philip’s son, Peleg (to be featured next issue) and daughter Elizabeth, also moved to Maine. The rest of Philip’s children, including Perez, remained in Duxbury or nearby Kingston.

According to Duxbury vital records, Perez married Rhoda Wadsworth Dec. 24, 1793. Most of their children also stayed in Duxbury with the exception of sons Benjamin and Seth B. who moved to Maine where they practiced medicine.

There is a small hand-crafted notebook, which includes genealogy, created by Asenath Chandler, Perez’ daughter, at the Duxbury Rural Historical Society Library located in Duxbury, Massachusetts. Also in the collection are receipts, copies of deeds, etc. To see the list click on the source link below.


Chandler Collections | Drew Archival Library

Located in the Duxbury Rural Historical Society in Duxbury, Massachusetts Picture of Perez’ gravestone from Members’ Only section and family genealogy and information




Carol May


Since the last Courier, several brick walls of many years standing came down. The first was Charles Chandler, then my Rebecca Chandler, another Rebecca Chandler and two Charlotte Chandlers!

Charles Chandler

Charles>Abner, Jr.>Abner>Joseph>Benjamin>Edmund, the immigrant.

One of the earliest members of our group, you may remember her as East Coast Barbara, (there have been three Barbara Chandlers in our group!) was stuck with only a hunch and a few clues that her Charles Chandler descended from Edmund. Finally, due to both new records added to and DNA testing she was able to confirm the connection. Here is Charles Chandler’s line starting with Charles: Charles>Abner, Jr.>Abner>Joseph>Benjamin>Edmund, the immigrant. Charles was born in Piermont, New Hampshire, home of many of the Benjamin Chandler line.

The Rebecca Chandlers

The second wall to come down was my own. I learned over the years that there were FOUR Rebecca Chandlers of Minot/Poland, Maine. Our member, Elsie, and I had identified two of them as the daughters of brothers Nathaniel and John Chandler (>Jonathan>Capt. John>Edmund>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant), but I was left with a parentless Rebecca Chandler and a brick wall.

Then I figured out that there was probably a third Rebecca Chandler who was the daughter of Abel and Sarah (Weston) Chandler of Duxbury, then of New Hampshire and finally, Minot, Maine (There were four Abel Chandlers, but that is another story).

Circumstantial evidence began mounting up, naming patterns, tally marks in the censuses for a girl her age, marriage in Minot, home of Abel’s family, the family ties between Rebecca and Marcellus Augustus Weston Chandler, a proven grandson of Abel Chandler, all pointed to Rebecca being Abel’s daughter and Marcellus’ aunt.

Both Rebecca and Marcellus moved to Brunswick, Maine. Rebecca’s son, Abiezer, and Marcellus married sisters. Abiezer named his daughter Ellen Weston Snow and his son Marcellus. Both Marcellus and Abiezer were buried in the same cemetery. With all of this circumstantial evidence, I thought that I had at last found my Rebecca Chandler’s family.

As I mentioned in a previous issue, I had stumbled upon a since defunct web site which included a snippet of information that said that Rebecca Chandler was the daughter of Jonathan Chandler and that she had died in Brunswick. There was no direct source information other than it, and all of the other “info bits” on the site, was taken from a variety of old sources.

My Rebecca died in Brunswick, Maine, but I first dismissed Jonathan as her father as an error as I thought all of the Jonathan Chandlers in the Minot/Poland area had been accounted for.

Then uh oh! I had come across and was working on the “other” Jonathan Chandler family, when it occurred to me that this Jonathan could be the father of my Rebecca Chandler.

Neither Abel nor Jonathan’s children could be found in birth records and the censuses consisted of only tally marks and my Rebecca fit into the censuses for both of them. Both families had to be reconstructed circumstantially. The information was also conflicting. In the1880 census Abiezer’s mother’s birthplace was listed as Maine, not Massachusetts where Abel’s family was originally from. The marriage records for my Rebecca and Jonathan Snow said that she was a resident of Minot, Maine where Abel and family moved to and not Poland where Jonathan and family moved to.

Now I was sitting on top of my brick wall with two alternatives — Rebecca, daughter of Abel or Rebecca, daughter of Jonathan with circumstantial evidence for both sides.

Our member, Steve, had taken pictures of the Empire Cemetery in Poland, Maine. Buried there were, I believe, were several of Jonathan Chandler’s children. In the same plot and row there was Jonathan Chandler, Jr. and his wife Cynthia (Lane) Chandler and Jonathan and Rebecca Lane. Jonathan Chandler Jr. married Cynthia Lane, sister of Jonathan Lane, so it seemed quite possible that Rebecca Lane could have been the sister of Jonathan Chandler, Jr. In those days it was quite common for brothers to marry sisters from another family. If this were true this Rebecca would be Rebecca #4!

By now I also had a flimsy clue from a family tree full of mistakes that indicated that she could be a Chandler but even the creator of the tree was iffy about it. If Rebecca Lane was indeed Rebecca Chandler #4 then by default, Rebecca Chandler #3 was my Rebecca and the daughter of Abel and Sarah (Weston) Chandler.

Our member and uber researcher, Billie, offered to help. I explained that the tie breaker lay with being able to figure out if the mysterious Rebecca Lane’s maiden name was Chandler.

Almost simultaneously, both Billie and I, giving it one last shot, came across separate vital records that proved that this Rebecca Chandler was indeed the wife of Jonathan Lane and therefore, not my Rebecca who married Jonathan Snow. Death records for two of Jonathan and Rebecca Lane’s children, John C. and Eliza, both gave Jonathan Lane and Rebecca Chandler as their parents and as a bonus I even got the place of Rebecca’s birth on one of the records — North Yarmouth, Maine, original home of Jonathan Chandler and his family.

So by default, and with circumstantial evidence and after an exhaustive search of the Minot/Poland Maine Chandlers, I believe that my Rebecca Chandler was the daughter of Abel and Sarah (Weston) Chandler. Again, please note that the evidence is still circumstantial. Her line is below:

Rebecca Chandler #3


Rebecca Snow (1787-1844)

Rebecca>Abel*>John>Joseph>Benjamin>Edmund, the immigrant.

Maine Genealogy Archives: Marriage Records of Rev. Jonathan Scott of Poland and Minot, 1796-1819

And here is the line for the Rebecca Chandler, daughter of Jonathan Chandler of North Yarmouth, who later moved to Poland, Maine, starting with Rebecca:

Rebecca Chandler #4

rebecca lane

Rebecca Lane (1795-1847)

Rebecca>Jonathan*>Judah>Joseph>Joseph> Edmund, the immigrant.

Person Details for Jonithen Lane in entry for Eliza A Raynard, “Maine, Vital Records, 1670-1907 ” —

“Maine, Vital Records, 1670-1907 ,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 09 Mar 2014), Jonithen Lane in entry for Eliza A Raynard, 1903.

Person Details for Jonathan Lane in entry for John C Lane, “Maine, Vital Records, 1670-1907 ” —

“Maine, Vital Records, 1670-1907 ,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 09 Mar 2014), Jonathan Lane in entry for John C Lane, 1893.

 The Three Charlotte Chandlers

While researching, Rebecca (Chandler) Lane, I revisited the Charlotte Chandler mystery as it appears circumstantially that Rebecca #4 and a Charlotte Chandler were sisters. It also appears that the family trees on Familysearch mistakenly list some of Rebecca (Chandler) Lane’s children as Charlotte’s children. The information was very garbled, but it appears that some of it may have come from original sources.

Not only are the children mixed up, the three Charlotte Chandlers of Maine in those Familysearch family trees are also mixed up. The three Charlottes were all born within a year or two of each other. One is documented as an Edmund descendant and one is probably an Edmund descendant and the third does not descend from Edmund, but is documented as a descendant of William and Annis. I think that I have untangled them.

Charlotte Chandler #1

Charlotte>Jonathan>Judah>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant

It appears that there was a Charlotte, probably Chandler, who married Simeon Lane in Maine. We know that this Charlotte Chandler was not Joel Chandler’s daughter, as many family trees assert, because we have Joel’s daughter well documented as to who she did marry.

It appears circumstantially that she was the daughter of Jonathan and Zeruiah (Brown) Chandler who is a documented descendant of Edmund Chandler, the immigrant.

I couldn’t find a marriage record for Charlotte and Simeon, it is probably lost or destroyed, but there a record for her second marriage to Thomas Briggs. According to Ancestry she died in 1882 and was buried in the Pine Grove Cemetery in Poland, Maine. However, as only part of that cemetery has been photographed I have not been able to find her grave.

Both Simeon Lane and Charlotte’s name appears on her children’s birth records in Poland, Maine. One of their children was named Seth Chandler Lane, another clue. She is also mentioned as Simeon’s wife in the “Annals of Oxford County.” See excerpt below:

Simeon Lane, innkeeper at Welchville, ae. 54, d. June 8,

1849. T^^ following year, the family consisted of Charlot-

te, ae. 48, Seth C. ae. 21, George E. ae. 18, Elizabeth

E. ae. 15, Sarah W. ae. 13, Melinda, ae. 10, Abby A.

ae. 7, and farmers, George W. Welch, ae. 25, and Nelson

Dennin, ae. 22. Mrs. Charlotte Lane and Thomas A.

Briggs of Otisfield, were m. Dec. 16, 1855.

 This Charlotte was closely associated with Poland, Maine where the Jonathan Chandler family lived and spent much of her life there. She was born c. 1801. The 1810 census shows a daughter age 10-16 which would have been one year off.

The 1820 census shows a daughter age 16 to 26 which is spot on. There were only two Chandler families in Poland, Maine during the 1820s. The other family was Alden Chandler and he and his children have been well documented and are of a later generation than Jonathan’s family.

The US 1830 census for Poland, Maine shows Simeon and presumably his wife, Charlotte, living in Poland and the 1840 census shows not only Simeon and family, but Jacob Chandler and Jonathan Chandler (Jr.) listed one after the other so they were most likely next door neighbors.

More research may further strengthen and hopefully, confirm the connection.

Full text of “Annals of Oxford, Maine, from its incorporation, February 27, 1829 to 1850. Prefaced by a brief account of the s

 Charlotte Chandler #2

Charlotte>Joel>Jonathan>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant

This Charlotte J. Chandler was born March 6, 1802 in Portland, Cumberland, Maine to Joel and Pamela (Lincoln) Chandler according to vital records. Joel is a documented descendant of Edmund Chandler, the immigrant. According to marriage records a Charlotte or a Charlotte J. or T. Chandler (depending on the transcription) married Capt. David Harwood and after he died she married his brother Otis Harwood. David and Otis were from adjacent Sagadahoc County. She did not marry Simeon Lane (see above) nor did she marry John Charles of Oxford County, Maine. Maine death records show a Charlotte Harwood dying in Portland, Maine on Nov. 3, 1885 who was about the right age. Another clue is that her middle initial given variously, probably due to transcribing errors, as I, J or T appears periodically in the records.

Person Details for Charlotte Chandler, “Maine, Births and Christenings, 1739-1900” —

“Maine, Births and Christenings, 1739-1900”, index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 10 Mar 2014), Charlotte Chandler, 06 Mar 1802.

Person Details for Charlotte Chandler, “Maine, Marriages, 1771-1907” —

“Maine, Marriages, 1771-1907”, index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 10 Mar 2014), David Harwood and Charlotte Chandler, 23 Aug 1830.

Person Details for Charlotte J. Harwood, “Maine, Marriages, 1771-1907” —

“Maine, Marriages, 1771-1907”, index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 10 Mar 2014), Otis Harwood and Charlotte J. Harwood, 27 Sep 1832.

Person Details for Charlotte T. Harwood, “Maine, Deaths and Burials, 1841-1910” —

“Maine, Deaths and Burials, 1841-1910”, index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 10 Mar 2014), Charlotte T. Harwood, 03 Nov 1883.

Charlotte Chandler #3

Charlotte>Timothy and on back to William and Annis

This Charlotte is not of the Edmund family, but appears that she is of the William and Annis Chandler family. She was born Nov. 22, 1801 in Pembroke, Merrimack, New Hampshire to Timothy and Phebe (Holt) Chandler. The family later moved to Lovell, Oxford County, Maine. This Charlotte Chandler, not Joel’s daughter, appears to have married John Charles January 17, 1824 in Lovell, Maine.


The “Other” Jonathan Chandler Family of Poland, Maine

Jonathan>Judah>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant

Figuring out the Rebecca and Charlotte Chandlers has necessitated an update of the “other” Jonathan Chandler family. If you recall, back in the Fall 2011 Courier we began a series doing a circumstantial reconstruction of the “other” Jonathan Chandler of Poland, Maine family. There with no birth records and only census tally marks for primary evidence and so came with the disclaimer that it was subject to change. There were also two “mystery” girls who we think have been finally identified.

This was the Jonathan moved from North Yarmouth, Maine to Poland Maine after the 1810 census and before the1820 census and not the Jonathan Chandler who married Rebecca Packard as he had died before North Yarmouth Jonathan moved to Poland, Maine. Both were descendants of Edmund, the immigrant

The “other” Jonathan family tree is still circumstantial so still subject to change, but is now on firmer ground. It is not Mayflower or DAR level of proof yet as we still lack many primary sources. As we are a research group, we find that posting circumstantial findings, and labeling them as such, can lead to descendants out there who can either add or in some cases, refute, the research.

A newspaper from 1826 reported that when Mrs. Jonathan Chandler died seven of her 11 children were still living. Assuming that was accurate, all seven have been found and with the addition of Rufus Chandler, who died a few months before his mother, which brings the total to 8. It appears also that a son died very young and two daughters died young which brings the total to 11.

We still don’t know where Jonathan and Zeruiah are buried, but Jonathan, Jr., Reuben, Rufus, Rachel, and Rebecca along with many of their family members were all buried in a group in the Empire Cemetery in Poland, Maine. The only other family in Poland, Maine during that later time frame was Alden Chandler’s family, and some of his children are also buried there, but are well documented.

In addition, the suffix, “Jr.” had come into modern usage to only denote a son as opposed being used for a younger person with the same name, related or not, which was how it was used in earlier times.

Also, Jonathan, Jr. kept the suffix “Jr.” until he died as it was on his gravestone which is also the modern usage. In previous times that suffix would have been dropped as soon as the older Jonathan Chandler died.

The circumstantial evidence for Jacob and Anna Chandler is not as strong. It was noted in their marriage records that they were originally from North Yarmouth and they did live in Poland and adjacent Danville (later part of Auburn, Maine). This was the Jonathan Chandler family’s home territory.

As for Charlotte, the circumstantial evidence for her is the thinnest. She also married a Lane, but it appears that he was maybe a distant cousin of the other Lanes. She lived in Poland, Maine and her son was named Seth Chandler Lane. She appears in family trees as Charlotte Chandler, but without substantiation. She should only be listed tentatively as the youngest daughter of Jonathan and Zeruiah Chandler as more research needs to be done.

The 1840 census for Poland, Maine shows Simeon Lane (presumably with wife Charlotte), Jacob Chandler and Jonathan Chandler (Jr.) all listed one after the other in the 1840 census so they were probably living next door to each other which bolsters the argument that they were related.

Here is the new lineup for the “other” Jonathan Chandler’s family with more birth dates added:


Rachel Chandler born Feb. 1781 from grave stone and died Jan. 20, 1864. Empire Cemetery, Poland, Maine. Never married

Jacob Chandler born 1787, North Yarmouth (from Royal River Valley by David Colby Young). Died May 10, 1872 from Hotel Road Cemetery. Married Thankfull Higgins from vital records

Rufus Chandler born July 16, 1789 and died May 26, 1826 from grave stone, Empire Cemetery. Married Sarah Eaton Bradbury from vital records.

Anna Chandler born Jan. 20, 1792 (in North Yarmouth) and died June 7, 1880 from grave stone Oak Hill Cemetery, Auburn, Maine. Married Moses Bailey from vital records.

Reuben Chandler born April 1794 died 1852 from grave stone. Married Mary Parcher. From their children’s vital records.

Rebecca Chandler born April 1795 died Nov. 25, 1847 from grave stone Empire Cemetery. Married Jonathan R. Lane from grave stone and censuses.

Charlotte Chandler born c. 1801(from census) died after 1880. A Familysearch family tree has her buried in Pine Grove Cemetery in Poland, Maine. I have not been able to verify as this as not all of the graves have been photographed. She married first, Simeon Lane, and second, Thomas Briggs.

Jonathan Chandler, Jr. born 1803 died Dec. 13, 1840 from Empire Cemetery grave stone. Married Cynthia Lane. From censuses, children’s vital records and grave stone.

The Underground Railroad

by Barb Chandler

(Escaping slaves had to find their way north. Northern states such as New York and Massachusetts that had strong abolitionist societies and benevolent groups.People trying to escape slavery had many clues they could rely on to find out where “north” actually was. One of the best clues they could use to find north was to locate the North Star. The North Star is also called Polaris. Unlike other stars, it never changes position. It always points to the north. People have always used a group of stars to help them find the North Star. They have called this group of stars many names, depending on how they saw the “picture” created by the stars. Some people thought the group of stars looked like a dipper — with a cup that had a very long handle. Slaves knew this group of stars as the Drinking Gourd. They sometimes used hollowed-out gourds to dip and drink water. The gourds looked just like long-handled cups. Two stars on the cup’s edge always point to the North Star. By finding the “drinking gourd” in the sky, people traveling at night could always find the North Star. From: Pathways to Freedom Maryland and the Underground Railroad


I’ve been interested in the Civil Rights Movement for a long time so you can imagine my delight when I discovered my second great uncle was a conductor on the Underground Railroad. When I told Carol May his involvement she said that she had come across a Chandler who was an abolitionist. I don’t know whether she was in our line, but thought you would enjoy learning about this remarkable woman’s achievements.

elizabeth chandler

Elizabeth Chandler (1807-1834)

Elizabeth was born into a Quaker family in Centre (Wilmington) Delaware to Thomas Chandler (1773–1817) and Margaret Evans (1778–1808).

When she was 18 years old she wrote a poem titled the Slave-ship:

The Slave-ship was winding her course o’er the ocean,
The winds and the waters had sunk into rest;
All hush’d was the whirl of the tempest’s commotion,
That late had awaken’d the sailor’s devotion,
When terror had kindled remorse in his breast.

And onward she rode, though by curses attended,
Though heavy with guilt was the freight that she bore,
Though with shrieks of despair was the midnight air rended,
And ceaseless the groans of the wretches ascended,
That from friends and from country forever she tore.

On the deck, with his head on his fetter’d hand rested,
He who once was a chief and a warrior stood;
One moment he gain’d, by his foes unmolested,
To think o’er his woes, and the fate he detested,
Till madness was firing his brain and his blood.

“Oh, never!” he murmur’d in anguish, “no, never!
These limbs shall be bent to the menial’s toil!
They have reft us, my bride—but they shall not forever
Your chief from his home and his country dissever—
No! never will I be the conqueror’s spoil

“Say! long didst thou wait for my coming, my mother?
Did ye bend o’er the desert, my sister, your eye?
And weep at the lengthen’d delay of your brother,
As each slow passing moment was chased by another,
And still he appear’d not a tear-drop to dry.

“But ye shall—yes, again ye shall fondly embrace me!
We will meet my young bride in the land of the blest:
Death, death once again in my country shall place me,
One bound shall forever from fetters release me!”
He burst them, and sunk in the ocean’s dark breast.

After reading her poem Benjamin Lundy, a well known abolitionist and publisher, invited Chandler to write for his periodical, The Genius of Universal Emancipation. Chandler She wrote for and edited the “Ladies’ Repository” section of his newspaper. She used her appeal to women to demand better treatment for Native Americans  and the immediate emancipation of slaves.

Many of her articles were copied and circulated in the most popular newspapers of the time.  She also introduced one of the most famous abolitionist images, the kneeling female slave with the slogan “Am I not a Woman and a Sister.”

SlaveryIllustratedInItsEffectsUponWomanChandler used her articles and poems to participate in national discussions and debates about Abolitionism.

In 1830 she moved to Lenawee County, Michigan. She continued  writing articles as Editor of “The Ladies Repository” section in Lundy’s magazine. In 1832, she formed the Logan Female Anti-Slavery Society which eventually resulted in the establishment of one of the main links in the Underground Railroad system to Canada.


Elizabeth Margaret Chandler, Wikipedia

Elizabeth Chandler, The Michigan Women’s Historical Center and  Hall of Fame

Until next time, happy hunting!



Leave a comment

Filed under Chandler Ancestors, Chandler News, General Geneology




This issue, we are featuring Mary Elizabeth Chandler, a Civil War officer’s wife, who was a witness and to some of the most historic times during the Civil War and later during Reconstruction.  Many genealogical entries about ancestors, especially women are simple:  born, married, children, and then died, but fortunately she was mentioned in two books about the Civil War and we have the links to those books that you can read free online if you wish.  So for those of you are also Civil War buffs, and I know that at least one of our members is, this is a story that should be most interesting as gives a glimpse of what life was like with the first African American regiment, plus we have pictures.  Mary Elizabeth was the last child of Reuben and Mary (Parcher) Chandler whose family story was featured in the past few issues.

Member Alert!  If any of you still have the, I believe, 2006 Chandler calendar, there is a picture of Mary Elizabeth and her husband George Chamberlin in his uniform in it. Please let me know if you have it so we can scan it and add it to the story in the future.

Because of the amount of time it took for the Mary Elizabeth Chandler story and other ongoing Chandler research (what you see is the tip of the iceberg), plus non-genealogy obligations, the Revolutionary War series will not start until the next issue.

Also, tips, Duxbury news, the return of “Who Do You Think You Are,” DNA news, brick walls and more.

I am hoping to go the Czech Republic in the fall with my brother as that is where our grandmother came from (not all ancestors are Chandlers!) so I am not sure if the next edition of the newsletter will be before or after that trip.  I will keep you all posted.



This issue we welcome new members. I hope that the new members will browse our Members’ Only section which has over a thousand pages of information including maps and photos.  There is a lot of info that you won’t find elsewhere.  Probably the one resource that all Edmund Chandler descendants should see is the Chandler section of The Genealogy of Edward Small which is in our online Library. This is considered the bible on Edmund and the early Chandlers and is universally respected as it is meticulously researched from primary sources.  The first edition came out in the early 1900s and the second in the 1930s.  I believe that we have the second edition.  This is important to know because the author, Lora Altine Underhill, made corrections and updated a few items in the second edition.  Since she wrote her book information about Samuel Chandler, Edmund’s son, has been corrected.

The discovery of another son of Edmund (John who died on the way to Barbados), and proof that Capt. John Chandler was the grandson of Joseph Chandler were made by our members.  Our members through their own dedicated research have been able to continue and build upon her research.



As you all know we have been trying to get a plaque installed in Duxbury.  Our member, Billie, is going to Duxbury in June with plans to find people who will be receptive to the plaque and continue her Chandler research.  We have the funds allocated and just need someone official from Duxbury to give us the go ahead.


The genealogy TV show, “Who Do You Think You Are” is coming back.  This is the program which sent a squadron of researchers and their cohorts into the most obscure archives and worldwide locations tracing the family trees of celebrities such as Rob Lowe, Lisa Kudrow, Susan Sarandon and others.  The most interesting part, at least to we genealogy buffs, was not so much the celebrities, but the research and worldwide locations the show visited  The series ran for three years on NBC before it was cancelled, but like the phoenix it rose again.  This time it is will be on the cable TV network, TLC, formerly known as the Learning Channel. The first program is scheduled for July 23, 2013 at 9 PM Eastern.  Check your listings as TV schedules can change.  Here are a couple of links for more details:

U.S. Version of “Who Do You Think You Are?” Returns to Television on TLC, Starting July 23 – Eastman’s Online Genealogy Newsle

About The Show


For those of you who live in California you might want to see the Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree held June 6-9th. It is the second largest genealogy convention in the country. If you don’t want to pay to hear the lectures, the exhibit hall is free Friday through Sunday.  Parking is not free. Lots of clubs and group are represented such as  the DAR, German, Czech and  Civil War as well as the big genealogy companies such as Ancestry, Familysearch, Rootsmagic,  Fold3, FTDNA, Family Heritage and many more have booths and give big discounts on their wares.  DNA continues to be the hot topic as a whole day, June 6, is devoted to lectures on that subject.

Here is the link: Welcome to Jamboree!






Familysearch is continuing to plow forward with frequent changes and additions so can be quirky at times. They now require people to sign up before they can use their site.  It is a simple and free process and you will not be pestered with e-mails as a result.  They do have a new feature which allows people to put their family trees on the site.  They still are working on their plan to enable people to correct mistakes and have unified family trees.

The Plymouth Colony Pages – Consolidated Index to PCR

Dale H. Cook maintains several GenWeb pages which include Duxbury, Plymouth, Marshfield, etc.  He is also a terrific researcher.  The above source consolidates indexes from 13 volumes of early Plymouth records.  As Duxbury was a suburb of Plymouth there are many references to Chandlers and activities in early Duxbury. Previously if you wanted to look up Edmund Chandler or one of the early Chandlers, you would have to look in the index of each of the thirteen volumes to find that person.  Now they are in one place.


As far as I know, very few Edmund Chandler descendants migrated to New York.  A couple of them were wives and the one family who did move to New York moved back to Vermont or New Hampshire where they originally came from. The Chandlers who did leave New England seemed to favor, Illinois, Ohio and Iowa.

However, in case you have New York ancestors, Carrie, a teacher from New York who enjoyed our site sent along these two New York resources:

“New York State Historical Association Research Library”

“A Guide to New York Historical Resources” –




Our co-chairperson and treasurer, Bob, found the item below in his local genealogical society newsletter, the Lincoln-Lancaster Genealogical Society Newsletter, and wished to share it with our group. I contacted the author, Elyse Doerflinfer, who has a genealogy blog, and she granted us permission to use it. She also is offering free research forms that you can download.  Here is her blog address:

Elyse’s Genealogy Blog

Brick Walls


Elyse Doerflinfer

 Blogger Elyse Doerflinfer blogs at Elyse’s Genealogy Blog| ( Recently Elyse wrote an informative two-part blog post on how to organize and tackle a “brick wall ancestor” — that elusive ancestor for whom the research trail has gone cold. Elyse has graciously granted permission to reproduce the post in its entirety. Thank you Elyse! —Ed.


Every genealogist has a brick wall ancestor – that ancestor with the record trail that seems to just stop. One of the keys to busting down that brick wall is to organize your project in a way that lays out what you already know about the ancestor, your research problem, and a research to-do list. Having this summary and plan written up, will make it super easy to follow through and bust down those brick walls.


1.)    Write Down Everything You Know and How You Know It. I prefer to do this in a timeline format – starting from birth and listing every event I have about my ancestor until their death and/or burial. Under each event, I list the source from where the information came from. I also like to write a summary sentence or two about the weight of each piece of information.



2.)    A source is where you got the information from. Original sources provide information that is not derived by another source. Derivative sources, just as the name suggests, is a source that has been abstracted, transcribed, summarized, or in some way derived from another source. It is usually best to see the original source whenever possible to be sure exactly what it says. Derived sources like transcriptions and abstractions can sometimes contain errors.


There are two types of information that can be found within a source. Primary information comes from records created at or near the time of the event with information by a person with close knowledge of the event. For example, a birth record (unless it is delayed) will contain primary information about the birth of a child. This information was probably provided by the parents that were present or the midwife/doctor that was present during the birth. Secondary information is information found in records created after a long period of time has passed from the event or was contributed by a person who was not present at the event.


The complicated part is that one source may have multiple types of information within it. For example, a death certificate is an original source with primary information regarding the death date and place, but secondary information regarding the names of parents and date of birth. The secondary information will need to be assessed and it will probably be best to search for more records created closer to the time of the event.


2.) Identify the Problem: Now that you have a clear picture of what you know about your ancestor, it’s time to identify exactly what question you want to answer. If there are multiple questions, list each one separately and clearly.


Examples: Where was George Monroe Rogers born? What was the name of his parents? Where was John N. Morris living during the 1900 census? Did Adolph Doerflinger become a naturalized citizen? Where was Julia Morris Rogers buried?


3.) List Your Hypotheses. What are your educated guesses to answer your research question? What do you think may have happened? What is your reasoning behind your guess?


4.) Create the F.A.N. List: When researching your ancestors, it is super important to keep a list of the people your ancestors interacted with throughout their lives. These people are called F.A.N.s – friends, associates, and neighbors. These are the people your ancestors did business with, sat next to in church, and signed documents as witnesses. When you get really stuck with an ancestor, it is often the friends, associates, and neighbors that will have more information – research the F.A.N.s and you might find the missing piece of the puzzle to your research question.


5.) Create a To-Do List: Now that you have all information about your ancestor and the research problem laid out in a clear and organized manner, it is time to create a research to-do list. Carefully look at the information and begin to brainstorm the records and resources you want to check. Maybe you need to employ a new search strategy – like trying different naming spellings or checking the surrounding counties – to a resource you’ve already checked to find your ancestor.


6.) Collaborate: Collaborating with other researchers is a great way to find new perspective and get new research ideas. Whenever I have a research problem, I share the problem with others – two heads (or more!) are always better than one! I love to write blog posts

about my brick wall ancestors – this will hopefully attract unknown cousins that might have information to share, and other researchers can have a chance to make recommendations or share resources I hadn’t thought of yet. Someone else might look at your research and have a fresh perspective to offer – like maybe you read a word incorrectly or didn’t know that geographic boundaries had changed and you should be looking in a different jurisdiction for that record.

If blog posts are your style, use a message board to share your problem. Like a blog post, other people can comment with ideas and fresh perspective – and you might just find a cousin!

Also look into using collaborative websites like WikiTree (This is my favorite – and not just because I work there!) or WeRelate. Both of these options allow for multiple researchers to collaborate on one ancestor profile.


7.) Re-Evaluate & Repeat: As you finish steps 1-6, you’ve hopefully gathered some new information. Now repeat the entire process, entering in all new information, until you have successfully answered your question.



For those of you who are new and are not aware of the Chandler DNA Project , the ECFA is co-sponsoring the project with our sister group, the Chandler Family Association. Chandler is an occupational name so there are many unrelated Chandler families.  Our member and Chandler project co-administrator, Dick, estimates that there are about 150 distinct and unrelated Chandler families in the world. So far we have about 70 family clusters and the majority of men who have taken the YDNA test have found matches. You can click the link to find out more if you wish.

Additional Edmund Chandler descendants have taken the YDNA test recently and match Group 13, the Edmund Chandler Group. Out of respect for their privacy, I am only including part of their lines. We now have a second Capt. John Chandler descendant who matches the Edmund Chandler family. Capt. John was once one of our “mystery” Chandlers. Here is his line Capt. John>Edmund*>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant. (* indicates, in this case, compelling circumstantial evidence that he was the father of Capt. John)

We also have a descendant of Judah Chandler (Judah>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant who was a match to Group 13 and lastly a descendant of yet another Jonathan Chandler who took the test who matched Group 13. This Jonathan was from North Yarmouth, Maine and was the brother of Judah. Here is his line: Jonathan>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant

Dick is spearheading, both by leading and donating money, a big push into YDNA testing English Chandlers in hopes of connecting to them to Chandlers worldwide which would include the United States and of course, Edmund.  Thank you Dick!

Our paper trail for Edmund’s origins remains cold, but may warm up again with Billie on the trail. YDNA testing offers an alternate way to find his origins. 

The offer is for 12 marker tests for English Chandlers.  If the initial results look promising, the tests will be upgraded to more markers to either confirm or eliminate that particular testee as a match to a previously tested Chandler family.  Our ECFA members have donated money for research into the Edmund Chandler family previously and we will back that up with additional money from our treasury if need be for further testing of promising Edmund Chandler family candidates amongst those that Dick may find.

We are still looking for specific American Chandlers to test and we and/or the CFA will offer free DNA testing for proven Chandler male line descendants of the following men:

 Zebedee Chandler of Plympton, Mass born c. 1712.  He is one of our “mystery” Chandlers and is believed to be descended from Edmund. None of his descendants have been YDNA tested yet as to our knowledge.

William Chandler of Newbury, Mass. He immigrated to Newbury, Massachusetts in the 1600s. As none of his descendants have been YDNA tested it is unknown if he could be related to any previously tested Chandlers. William of Newbury is the patriarch of one of the “Big Four” New England Chandler families which consist of the aforementioned William of Newbury, Mass,  William of Roxbury, Mass, Edmund of Duxbury, Mass, and Roger of Concord, Mass. I refer to them as the “Big Four” because most of the early New England Chandlers descended from one of them.  Roger Chandler of Duxbury is not included as he had no surviving male descendants that we know of. 

William Chandler of Portsmouth New Hampshire and Deptford, Kent England.  It appears that he did not have many descendants.  He immigrated to the American colonies in the 1700s. His descendants settled in New Hampshire and York, Maine.  What is intriguing about him is that he was from Kent.  Roger Chandler, long believed to be related to Edmund, married Isabella Chilton in Canterbury, Kent. For that reason Kent is high on list of possible places where Edmund came from.

The U198 DNA Project

The U198 Project ( U198 Project-page 5 )goes back farther than the use of surnames which is about 500 years. It is a test for a marker whose common ancestor lived 2000 to 3000 years ago. That seems like a fairly useless bit of knowledge if surnames were not being used, so what can it show us?  Potentially if enough men check for this marker, we may find migration patterns and geographic clusters of descendants. We already have one Edmund descendant who is being tested to see if he has this marker and one is all we need per group. This testing is only in its infancy, so we will have to wait and see if it will give us any useful information.

If enough information can be gathered about U198, we may be able to find the general area where descendants of one of Edmund’s long ago ancestors live today. Now, with limited testing, there seems to be a cluster of U198 in Lowland Scotland.

I am the pipsqueak of the Chandler DNA committee and only answer the most basic questions as John Chandler (a William and Annis descendant) is the expert and Dick is rapidly becoming more expert. I help with lineage issues and occasionally get caught up in Chandler mysteries far afield from Edmund such as three southerners who match, but only one has the Chandler surname for sure, one is iffy, and the other has another surname. We made progress, but it is still a puzzle and more data is needed.


PBS announced that it will add a new series Genealogy  Roadshow to its fall lineup. Part detective story, part emotional journey, Genealogy Roadshow will combine history and science to uncover the fascinating stories of diverse Americans. Each individual’s past will link to a larger COMMUNITY history, revealing the rich cultural tapestry of America. GENEALOGY ROADSHOW will air Mondays, September 23-October 14, 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET.

Unlike “Who do You Think You Are,” everyone is qualified to be part of the show. The original airing will highlight people’s stories from several cities: Austin, Detroit, Nashville, and San Francisco.

If you live in, or by any of these cities, you can participate. The producers of the show are looking for people who can address these questions;

Is there a family legend you would like to explore? A missing piece or person in your family tree you have always wondered about? Do you believe you might be connected to our nation’s rich history and folklore? Have you discovered an ancestral link to a founding father or an American icon? Is there a family story passed down for generations you would like investigated and finally answered?

To apply submit an application to;




San Francisco:

 LIFE  on the FARM

by Barb Chandler

 Many of our Chandler ancestors were farmers, this caused me to wonder what life was like for them.

This short video clip answered my question and gave me an appreciation for the life many of our ancestors lived.

Life on the farm is hardly laid back like the picture John Denver paints in his song “Thank God I’m A County Boy.”


By Barb Chandler

Statehood Certificate for Elihu Chandler from Iowa Genealogical Society

Statehood Certificate for Elihu Chandler from Iowa Genealogical Society

One way to make sure your family history is not buried with your ancestor is to contribute your research to the public. Besides preserving your family history; your research will help future genealogists, and you may even find others who are researching your line.

Contribute your research to genealogical or linage societies. Google ‘genealogical society’ for your state or you can find a number of genealogical and linage societies on Cyndi’s List;

Consider sending photos to your state genealogical library and/or contribute them to Dead Fred, a genealogy photo achieve;

Think about putting your family tree online. Rootsweb, as well as other web sites, offers free space for family trees;  

Another place to add your research is Find A Grave;  do a search for your ancestor, if they aren’t listed and you have sourced information where they are buried create a memorial to them, if you have an obit and/or picture all the better. Also, consider adding memorials for current relatives who have died.

Send Barb or Carol stories about your relatives so their lives can be immortalized in the Courier.


Lineage:  Mary Elizabeth>Reuben>Jonathan*>Judah>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the Immigrant

Research by Sharron Ross and Carol May

Written by

Carol May

Mary Elizabeth Chandler and George Barret Chamberlin

Mary Elizabeth Chandler and George Barret Chamberlin

Mary Elizabeth Chandler’s early life showed no sign that she would be swept up in one of the seminal events in Civil War history.  She was born in Maine into a family of paupers that was split up. (See the last several issues about her family)

She was the last child of Reuben and Mary (Parcher) Chandler.  Various sources list her birthdate from 1836 to 1839, but most show 1837. Shaker records show her brother Hewett and sister, Statira, had been sent to live with the Shakers.  We don’t know if she also lived with the Shakers or lived with other relatives. We do know that her father, Reuben, was alone in in the US 1840 census.  Her mother, Mary, formally joined the Shakers in her later years.

Like her brothers and sister, Mary Elizabeth left Maine for Massachusetts where there were jobs and opportunities. At age 23, she first appeared in the records as a resident in her brother, Malcolm’s, household in the 1860 US census for Brighton, Mass where Malcolm was a prosperous ice dealer. 

She married George Barret Chamberlin later that year on Nov. 27, 1860 in Brookline, Mass.  Brighton records show her birthplace as listed as Lewiston, Maine which is adjacent to Poland, Maine.

Her young adult life was uneventful and typical for a New England woman of her age, marriage then the birth of a daughter, Annie, born May 1, 1863 until the event that rocked the nation — the Civil War.  From then on Mary Elizabeth’s life wasn’t typical anymore.

Her husband, George, enlisted as a private in Union Army on August 15, 1862 in Boston, but was only enlisted for a nine month term. After being mustered out he volunteered and was recommended to serve as quartermaster under Colonel Thomas Wentworth Higginson of the First South Carolina Volunteers Colored Infantry later to be renamed the 33rd United States Colored Infantry Regiment.  He was promoted to First Lieutenant and was mustered Aug. 29, 1863 in Beaufort, South Carolina.  His enlistment was for three years.

George’s service with the First South Carolina Volunteers Colored Infantry is what separated Mary Elizabeth’s life from the lives of most Civil War wives, because Mary would later join him not only living in strategically located army camps in captured enemy territory, but with a history making regiment.

George and Mary Elizabeth must have also had Abolitionist sympathies or he wouldn’t have been recommended for appointment to this regiment and Mary Elizabeth would not have joined him in an army camp consisting of former slaves in captured enemy territory. Mary Elizabeth also had undoubtedly been exposed to Shaker views and practice of tolerance and equality growing up as her brother was a Shaker leader and her mother joined the Shakers.

To understand how unique George and Mary Elizabeth’s experience was with the First South Carolina Colored regiment and its historical significance, here is a little history of how the regiment came into being.




The regiment that baby Annie would review daily.

“Dress parade of the 1st South Carolina [U.S.C.V.], Beaufort, S.C.” Library of Congress Digital Print LC-USZ62-62492

The First South Carolina Volunteers Colored Infantry, later renamed the 33rd United States Colored Infantry, was the first officially recognized regiment composed of African Americans and the first composed of escaped slaves. This was also the only regiment formed from the rebelling states that was loyal to the Union, a matter of pride amongst the men.

 The movie “Glory” depicted the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Army but it was formed later from free African Americans from the Boston area.  Free African Americans were willing to fight, but were not allowed until a presidential proclamation allowed them to do so later on.  At the time, the majority of people in the North felt that it was a “white man’s war.”  As for slaves, many Northerners doubted the ability or willingness of former slaves to fight.  Some Northerners were Abolitionists, but the majority was not. 

At the beginning of the war slaves were returned to their owners if they supported the Union. Initially, as more and more slaves escaped or were abandoned, the Union evaded whole legal issue by declaring them “contrabands of war” then abandoned property.  When Union General David Hunter captured parts of coastal South Carolina, there were 10,000 slaves that had been abandoned by their fleeing owners or had escaped.  General Hunter, who was an Abolitionist, declared them, as well as all of the slaves in South Carolina, Georgia and Florida, free. 

Unfortunately, that order freeing the slaves was rescinded by President Lincoln and General Hunter was reprimanded for acting on his own.  Lincoln had to walk a fine line between freeing slaves and pushing the loyal slave states into seceding and joining the Confederacy because four states, five when West Virginia formed, while loyal to the Union, were still slave states.

General Hunter, also and on his own and unofficially, had been asking for volunteers and was “drafting” the escaped and abandoned slaves who had not been put to work harvesting the abandoned plantation cotton and rice fields into the military. 

His retort to Congress regarding the slaves was:

“I reply that no regiment of “Fugitive Slaves” has been, or is being organized in this Department. There is, however, a fine regiment of persons whose late masters are “Fugitive Rebels” –men who everywhere fly before the appearance of the National Flag, leaving their servants behind them to shift as best as they can for themselves… thousand(s) of these hardy and devoted (African American) soldiers.”

This first military effort did not go well as the former slaves were not paid and, did not really get a full chance to fight.  On July 17, 1862 a proclamation was made authorizing African Americans to be employed in the war effort and to become soldiers, but still no official recognition, still no full pay,  and still no promise to be free when the war was over.  At this early stage of the war, the war was to preserve the union and not to free slaves, although that would come later, but by the war’s end 12.5% of the slaves had been freed, considerably weakening the South’s ability to fight.

Pressure from Abolitionists, an ever growing number of escaped and abandoned slaves, and a need for more troops led to orders that were sent down from the Secretary of War to General Rufus Saxon. Those orders were for General Saxon, who was anti-slavery, to find someone to lead a new regiment consisting primarily of slaves which would be commanded by white officers.

Colonel Thomas Wentworth Higginson was asked and accepted the appointment.  Colonel Higginson was a Harvard educated, Unitarian minister, ardent  Abolitionist, author, scholar, friend of Harriet Tubman, of the Underground Railroad,  and future mentor and friend of poet  Emily Dickenson.  He also had been part of the “Secret Six” who supported   John Brown, the Abolitionist, who in a failed attempt tried to free the slaves and begin a slave revolt at Harper’s Ferry in 1859.

ThomasWentworthHigginsonColonel Higginson set about staffing his command with white officers as that was part of the arrangement as it was already considered a radical move to recruit African Americans as soldiers.

They began recruiting escaped slaves and remnants of General Hunter’s unpaid disheartened soldiers for this brand new, regiment consisting of former slaves, the First Carolina Volunteers Colored. 

Many slaves on the outer reaches of the Sea Islands had seen very little or nothing of white people, only black overseers, and were fed stories, undoubtedly started by plantation owners,  of Yankees as having horns and tails and with the intent of capturing slaves in order to sell them to Cuba or pull carts like oxen. 

Finally, the Emancipation Proclamation was issued and Colonel Higginson introduced Dr. W. H. Brisbane who read the text to a gathering of soldiers and citizens on January 1, 1863 next to a moss draped tree that became known as the Emancipation Oak. Lincoln’s Executive Order declared the slaves in the rebelling states to be “forever free” which ended the ambiguous status of escaped slaves and allowed them to join the military and made the First South Carolina Colored official. 

Chief Petty Officer Amanda Hughs, Naval Hospital Beaufort's command historian, stands near the Emancipation Oak.

Chief Petty Officer Amanda Hughs, Naval Hospital Beaufort’s command historian, stands near the Emancipation Oak.

A lone elderly former slave with a slightly cracked voice began to sing My Country Tis of Thee, and was soon joined by two women also former slaves. The officials on the stage started to join in, but Col. Higginson quieted them as he felt that only the voices of the former slaves should be heard as they finally were free and had a country. To read Col. Higginson’s moving account and to see pictures click: Take a walk through Beaufort’s history: The Emancipation Oak, and ‘independence’ | Beaufort SC Local & Visitor Guide | Eat Sle

A lot was riding on this regiment for both the African American soldiers and their white officers, as they knew that they would be heavily scrutinized and that they could not fail or it could doom the fate of all African Americans. 

Northerners, upon hearing what slave conditions were like, sent teachers, who had to take an oath to the Union and be commissioned, and philanthropists to the Port Royal area to help the ever growing number of escaping slaves and freed slaves

Colonel Higginson wrote later, “this particular regiment lived for months under the glare of publicity” which “tests any regiment where they had a continuous stream of visitors, military and civil”.

“Watched by microscopic  scrutiny by friends and foes. The slightest camp incidents sometimes came back to us, magnified and distorted, in letters of anxious inquiry from remote parts of the nation,” he wrote.

They had to meet Army standards and if there was any mutiny or major desertions “it would be all over.”

Upon hearing that the Union was forming regiments using former slaves, Confederate President Jefferson Davis issued a proclamation that if the slaves turned soldiers and their white officers were captured, the African Americans would be auctioned off and their white officers hanged.

Colonel Higginson called it “serving under the threat of the noose.”    He had another worry, if they were too strict in training the troops they would appear to be like slave owners and if too lenient the troops would fall apart. He decided that strict army discipline and fair treatment was the proper way to go. Once the former slaves were convinced that they were all under the same military rules and military hierarchy, officers and enlisted men alike, it worked out and the former slaves turned soldiers took pride in their service and what their service meant. One former slave and now a sergeant pointed to his stripes and said “See this. This means guv’ment” when his authority was questioned.

The regiment did not participate in major battles, but engaged in military raids, often accompanied by gunboats, obtaining supplies, chasing rebels and freeing slaves up the St. Mary, St. John and the Edisto Rivers. They later had picket line duty where they had to patrol the line to keep the Confederates from recapturing strategic Port Royal which served as both a blockade against the South and a vital supply point for the Union.  They shot at the Rebels and in turn were shot at as the Rebels tested the line while the Union pickets looked for any movement of Rebel troops that could indicate a major attack.  They had to watch out for snipers, being lured into Rebel traps, and disguised Rebels trying penetrate the line or attack them. The southerners also had their dogs, ‘the detectives of the South” as Col. Higginson called them.  These dogs formerly used to hunt runaway slaves, now looked for any Union soldiers reconnoitering or moving as advance troops.

Bombardment and Capture of Port Royal, SC 7 November 1861," Engraving by W. Ridgway after a drawing by C. Parsons, published by Virtue & Co., New York. Digitized by the U.S. Naval History Center,, accessed 6 Jan 2011.

Bombardment and Capture of Port Royal, SC 7 November 1861,” Engraving by W. Ridgway after a drawing by C. Parsons, published by Virtue & Co., New York. Digitized by the U.S. Naval History Center,, accessed 6 Jan 2011.

When not on patrol or picket duty, the regiment was posted mostly near Beaufort, a small town situated on Port Royal Island which lay between the port cities of Savannah Georgia and Charleston, South Carolina. There was Camp Saxton and later Camp Shaw which were both located on the Old Fort Smith Plantation. The ruins of the original fort dated back to colonial days and pre-dated the plantation.  Later on the regiment moved to Hilton Head and Folly Island near Charleston. 

New troops were added as slaves were freed.  Harriet Tubman, famous for being a conductor of the Underground Railroad, served with the regiment as a Union Spy, army scout and nurse.  She was a friend of Col. Higginson and with Col. Montgomery she planned and led a raid up the Combahee River that freed over 750 slaves and captured a fortune in goods and supplies for the Union. Most of the escaped slaves joined the regiment. These slaves, afraid of the Yankees at first until Harriet reassured them and spread the word of the Emancipation Proclamation, charged to board the gunboats. They ran from the fields and cookhouses, with men hired by their owners in pursuit, shouting that “Lincoln’s gunboats” had come to set them free.

Union gunboat. Gunboats often accompanied the regiment on their military excursions into enemy territory

Union gunboat. Gunboats often accompanied the regiment on their military excursions into enemy territory

This was First Lieutenant George Barret Chamberlin’s regiment and the regiment where later Mary Elizabeth and daughter baby Annie joined him.


Mary Elizabeth’s Arrival to Camp Shaw

It was November of 1863 and the regiment was settled in their winter camp at Port Royal Island, South Carolina, near Beaufort, when, according to Colonel Higginson’s diary, George B. Chamberlin, the quartermaster,  knocked at the door of his tent.

“The door opened and the Quartermaster thrust in the most beaming face I ever saw. “Colonel” said he, “there are great news for the regiment. My wife and baby are coming by the next steamer!”

“Baby!” I said in amazement. QM (we always called the Quartermaster QM for shortness) “There was a pass sent for your wife, but nothing was said about a baby, baby indeed!”

George, the QM, replied, “Baby was included in the pass. Besides the pass itself permits her to bring necessary baggage, and is not a baby six months old necessary baggage?”

Colonel Higginson asked him, “How can you make the little thing comfortable in a tent, amidst these rigors of a South Carolina winter, when it is uncomfortably hot for drill at noon and ice forms by your bedside at night?”

George replied, “Trust me for that!” 

The quartermaster, resourceful enough to get both wife Mary Elizabeth and baby Annie down there, was up to the task. The tent soon had rafters, a floor, chimney, a door with hinges, but no latch as Colonel Higginson got the only latch. The regimental carpenter made a bedstead and a cradle which could fit underneath.  A scrap of red carpet was the finishing touch. It was a double tent with the front serving as the quartermaster’s office and the rear portion, the living quarters and parlor.  One of the sergeant’s wives was hired to be a nursery maid.

Mary Elizabeth and Annie, who was now six months old, arrived at Port Royal by steamship and settled into Camp Shaw populated by a few white officers and fewer still of their wives, 800 former slaves turned soldiers, plus cooks, laundresses, and workers who were also former slaves. 

Camp Shaw was named after Colonel Robert Gould Shaw who died with his men in the second battle of Fort Wagner. The movie “Glory” about the 54th Regiment and Colonel Shaw, took literary license as portraying it as being the first regiment made up of slaves, but that honor actually went to the First South Carolina Volunteers Colored, Col. Higginson’s regiment. Colonel Shaw and his fallen troops were heroes to the men, which is why the camp was named after him.

Camp Shaw was far, far different than Boston. In addition to the slaves turned soldiers and constant influx of liberated or escaped slaves, there was the ever presence of the enemy who would send over volleys of shells. Instead of cranberries and snow there was tremendous heat, humidity, disease in warm months, magnolias, hanging moss, alligators, and bugs, many bugs, especially mosquitoes and sand fleas.

Mary Elizabeth may also have known Clara Barton, “the angel of the battlefield” and founder of the American Red Cross as she was in nearby Beaufort. She also most likely met Harriet Tubman as she was with the regiment. Mary Elizabeth did become friends with Susie King Taylor, a former slave, who served with the Regiment as a laundress and nurse wrote of Mary Elizabeth in her book “Reminiscences of My Life In Camp with the 33rd United States Colored Troops First S.C. Volunteers.”

“Mrs. Chamberlain (sic), our quartermaster’s wife, was with us here (Camp Shaw, near Beaufort South Carolina). She was a beautiful woman; I can see her pleasant face before me now, as she, with Captain Trowbridge, would sit and converse with me in my tent two or three hours at a time. She was also with me on Cole Island (near Charleston, South Carolina), and I think we were the only women with the regiment while there. I remember well how, when she first came into camp, Captain Trowbridge brought her to my tent and introduced her to me. I found her then, as she remained ever after, a lovely person, and I always admired her cordial and friendly ways.”

It was baby Annie who caught the heart of the regiment. Her nursery maid would take her on tours of the camp. Colonel Higginson was so taken by baby Annie that he devoted an entire chapter in his book to her. (You can read more about baby Annie by going to our newsletter archives and read Sharron’s story about her in the Sept. and Oct. 2006 issues or read the chapter in Col. Higginson’s book, Army life in a black regiment – Thomas Wentworth Higginson – Google Books)

“At guard-mounting in the morning, Baby was always there to inspect them,” wrote Col. Higginson. The Officer of the Day “would come to Baby to on his way to receive her orders first” and then on to Col. Higginson.

Annie would review the troops daily. Monthly, “some inspecting officer was sent to the camp by the general in command to see the conditions of everything from bayonets to buttons”, Col. Higginson wrote, but then he would always say that there was one more thing to inspect that was “peculiar to the regiment,” then out would be brought Annie, “a flower in the midst of war.” He wrote that she never failed to elicit a smile.

“Our little lady was very impartial and distributed her kind looks to everybody. She had not the slightest prejudice against color, and did not care in the least whether her particular friends were black or white,” Col. Higginson wrote of baby Annie.

Annie especially liked the drummer boys as they “were small and made a noise.” The drummer boys, who “gave more trouble than all the grown men,” would catch partridges to show to Annie according to Col. Higginson. Lizards and possums were also presented to her, but the only animals that she took a shine to were the kittens. “Little baby” addressed to the kittens were, Annie’s first words. Annie had a playmate for a few weeks when the baby of one of the sergeant’s was visiting.

While the tent stove usually kept the family warm, on occasion, the wind shifted and they would be smoked out of the tent and Mary Elizabeth and baby Annie in her Red Riding Hood cloak would be forced to flee in the rain to the Adjutant’s wife’s tent.

The soldiers sang spirituals, which along with the Gullah dialect of the Sea Islands, were a source of study and fascination for the Colonel. 

While the soldiers sang spirituals around campfires, for the officers, the quartermaster’s tent was the place to be in the evenings where Methodist hymns were sung, “With Mrs. C.’s sweet tones chiming in.”

As the regiment was actively engaged in war, George, Mary Elizabeth and baby Annie’s residence moved with the troops. When the regiment was on picket duty, Mary Elizabeth and baby Annie came along. Regimental headquarters were set up in an abandoned plantation house which had half of the windows broken out, about seven miles from Beaufort. “Baby’s father and mother had a room upstairs” and where the ladies “hung wreaths and hangings of evergreen” to cover the dirty walls. 

 Smith Plantation where the regiment headquartered during part of their service.

Smith Plantation where the regiment headquartered during part of their service.

Life in regimental headquarters certainly was more exciting for the whole family, especially Annie. She would watch the couriers and officers come and go all day with dispatches and orders. When bored with the latest courier, her attention would turn to the tethered horses. Often her father was one of the riders and he would take her in his arms and treat her to a gallop around the house. According to Col. Higginson “she was fearless” and enjoyed everything with equanimity.

Annie now had an “intimate knowledge of drills and parades” and certainly of inspections. So she it seemed “that the closer that she came to actual combat, the more seemed to like it, peaceful although her little ways may be.” Shot, shell and cannon fire would be exchanged and couriers would be “sent to and fro” and the men would be called to arms preparing for Rebel attack. The ladies would come downstairs at headquarters with their best bonnets on and wait for the ambulances to evacuate them before the expected fight.

“She (Annie) shouted with delight at being suddenly uncribbed and thrust into her little scarlet cloak, and brought downstairs at an utterly unusual and improper hour, to a piazza with lights and people and horses and general excitement. She crowed, gurgled and waved her little fists and screamed out what seemed to be her advice on the military situation.”  Colonel Higginson wrote that if he could have interpreted what she was apparently trying to say “perhaps the whole of the Rebel Force could have been captured with her plans.” He wrote that he would have rather obeyed her orders than those of some generals that he knew. Once the danger of attack had passed the ladies and Annie would return to their beds. Little Annie would go back to spilling her milk and bread in the morning as if nothing had happened.

That winter, while at Beaufort, the regiment was told to pack up the camp and make ready to leave for battle in Florida. The troops were eager to go as much as General Saxton wished them to stay. The general kept saying that there was small pox amongst the troops so they shouldn’t go but Col. Higginson countered with that there was always smallpox and the men who had it were getting better. In the end with the camp broken down and packed aboard the ship, General Saxton prevailed and the entire camp that they just loaded onto the ship that morning now had to be unloaded. One of the soldiers remarked it was like “loading feathers,” but “unloading lead,” they were so dispirited at not being able to join the battle in Florida.

Days later there was a regimental ball in Beaufort where all of the ‘collected flags of the regiment were hung.” Civilians were few at the ball and Mary Elizabeth was one of the fewer still women who attended.  However, during the ball rumors began floating through the gathering about things not going well in Florida. Then came another rumor about the ship, Cosmopolitan, arriving with wounded from the battle. “Suddenly in the midst of ‘Lancers’ there came a perfect hush, the music ceasing. General Saxton strode hastily down the hall, his pale face very resolute and, looking almost sick with anxiety,” Col. Higginson wrote.

He told the crowd the ball must end immediately because there were 250 wounded men from the Battle of Olustee, Florida that had just arrived by boat.

Later that evening, as Col. Higginson walked on board the boat carrying the wounded, he thought that “I longed to ask the men (of his regiment who didn’t get to go) what they thought of our ‘Florida disappointment’ now?”, but he dared not.

Once on board, he “found our kind-hearted ladies, Mrs. Chamberlin and Mrs. Dewhurst, on board the steamer, but there was nothing for them to do, and we walked back to camp in the radiant moonlight; Mrs. Chamberlin more than ever strengthened in her blushing woman’s philosophy, ‘I don’t care who wins the laurels (awards for the dead and wounded) provided we don’t!’ “

George asked for a leave of absence on May 24, 1864 so he could take baby Annie back to Massachusetts as she had been ill for several weeks. The family was back in Massachusetts, but sadly little baby Annie Chamberlin, died on June 11, 1864 in Brookline, Massachusetts,  “before her toes could trod the ground,” wrote Col. Higginson. Mary Elizabeth was also expecting again.

Son Edward Chandler was born in Brookline, Massachusetts on Christmas Day in 1864 when the Chamberlins resided on Beacon St. Their daughter Marion W. Chamberlin, was born sometime during the period of 1865 and 1871. Every source for her gives a different birth date, although all sources say that she was born in Massachusetts. She did not show up in the 1870 US census, but whether that was due to error, her away visiting relatives, or that she was not yet born, we don’t know.

Col. Higginson had to leave the regiment because of an injury and malaria. George was later assigned to General Saxton’s headquarters in Beaufort by the General himself. George also became ill from the diseases that were so prevalent in the South in the warmer months and was given a medical leave of absence which was extended several times. This was in 1865 and the war had ended. Because of his assignment to the General’s staff and later illness, he was not with his regiment and the government lost track of him and declared him AWOL. It wasn’t until c. 1915 and a pension was sought that the government declared the AWOL designation erroneous.

Once the war was over or military service ended, for most was it was a return to home and resumption of normal civilian life, but not for the Chamberlins.

They both must have been people of conviction, because George became a Deputy U.S. Marshall during Reconstruction in Atlanta, Georgia and Mary Elizabeth and young Edward went with him, according to the 1870 US census. The marshals were armed and wore a uniform.

Georgia had been decimated during the war, rice plantations ruined and never were revived, cotton plantations were reduced from producing 700,000 tons of cotton to 50,000 tons, most of the livestock was  gone, farm equipment was gone, most everything was in ruins. The people were hungry, especially the newly freed slaves with no jobs and no homes. It was during that time Ku Klux Klan and the Red Shirts made their first appearance.

Atlanta after the civil war.

Atlanta after the civil war.

According to the U.S. Marshal’s official web site, this is why the marshals were sent to Atlanta,

“These acts of violence and terrorism led to the passing of the Klan, or Force Acts of 1870 and 1871. These acts put U.S. marshals and their deputies in charge of supervising all congressional elections in cities. They made it a crime to wear masks or disguises to attack citizens. The acts essentially established the first hate crime law – they made it illegal to attack any person based on race, color, or previous enslavement. Marshals were encouraged to vigorously enforce the new laws, even being promised they would be protected from arrest by the state governments. Attorney General Amos Akerman stated, “The Government in these matters is not vindictive, and wishes to worry no citizen unnecessarily, but it expects from all its officers the most energetic efforts to bring these marauders to justice.” (Calhoun)

Southern Marshals arrested approximately 7,000 violators of civil rights laws throughout the former Confederate states between the late 1860s and 1877, the period known as Radical Reconstruction”.

Col. Higginson wrote several years earlier of the hostility of the southern women toward the black soldiers while they were being rescued by them from a big fire in Beaufort, so one can only imagine what it must have been like for the Yankee marshals and their families who were there helping the former slaves.

Sadly, Mary Elizabeth died March 20, 1871 in Atlanta, Georgia. She was only her in thirties. By the 1880 US census, George, still in Atlanta, had remarried. Little Eddie and Marion had gone back to Boston to live with their grandmother and aunts. It was there in Massachusetts that Mary Elizabeth was buried.

Although Mary Elizabeth was no longer by his side, George was still ever the crusader. The teeth had been taken out of the Reconstruction laws and the power had gone back to the states and with it most of the power to protect the former slaves voting rights and freedom from persecution by whites, so George resigned from the marshal service.  His new appointment was as a Special Agent of the Postal Department according to the 1880 census.

The government was appointed special postal agents to go after the post-Civil War explosion of swindlers who were using the US mail to carry out their schemes and to catch train robbers where U.S. mail was stolen.  The marshals were also given the responsibility to enforce the new Comstock Law directed at stopping pornography which had proliferated during the Civil War.  Unfortunately, it was an overzealous effort as even medical books and art were being confiscated.

Sadly, George’s new marriage was not a happy one.  Perhaps he married too soon after Mary Elizabeth’s death and still grieved for her, or perhaps his new wife couldn’t tolerate Atlanta, or perhaps they just weren’t meant for each other. The marriage ended and he married for a third time, this time happily and had three sons.  He went to work in the Virginia/ Washington D.C. area and died in 1915. He was buried in Arlington Cemetery as was his third wife, Aglae.  She was of French descent and it is a French name.

Our member Sharron’s husband descends from George and Mary Elizabeth (Chandler) Chamberlin through their daughter, Marion, the only one their three children, Annie, Eddie and Marion, to have living descendants.

Camp Shaw and Camp Saxton, now a National Historic site, later became part of the Naval Hospital grounds in Beaufort. They have Civil War reinactments there and the Emancipation Proclamation is still read every year by the Emancipation Oak.

“Massachusetts, Marriages, 1841-1915,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 29 Aug 2012), George B. Chamberlin and Mary Eliza Chandler, 1860.

“Massachusetts, Marriages, 1695-1910,” index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 29 Aug 2012), George B. Chamberlin and Mary E. Chandler, 27 Nov 1860; citing reference 75, FHL microfilm 2031400.

Mary’s name was abbreviated to Mary Eliza. Her parents were listed as Reuben and Mary Parcher.  The second marriage record was most likely transcribed incorrectly as it gives her parents as “Reubin” and  “Mary Parker” instead of Reuben and Mary Parcher.

“Massachusetts, Births and Christenings, 1639-1915,” index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 29 Aug 2012), Mary E Chamberlin in entry for Anna Chamberlin, 01 May 1863; citing reference , FHL microfilm 1420999. (Birth of daughter, Anna (Annie)

“Massachusetts, Deaths, 1841-1915,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 04 May 2013), Annie P. Chamberlin, 1864. (The death of Annie)

Massachusetts, Births, 1841-1915,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 29 Aug 2012), Mary E. Chamberlin in entry for Chamberlin, 1864. (Birth of son Edward H. Chamberlin (Eddie)

United States Census, 1860, Mary E. Chandler, age 32, in the household of “Malcomb” Chandler. Fold3

“Massachusetts, State Census, 1865,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 13 May 2013), Mary E Chamberlin in household of Phinehas Chamberlin, Westford, Middlesex, Massachusetts.

“United States Census, 1870,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 06 May 2013), Sarah George in household of Gen B Chamberlin, Georgia, United States; citing p. 60, family 487, NARA microfilm publication M593, FHL microfilm 545650.

“United States Census, 1880,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 07 May 2013), George B. Chamberlan in entry for L. M. Dunwich, 1880. (George B. Chamberlin, wife Doris and daughter Agnes age 4)

“United States Census, 1880,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 07 May 2013), Mary N. Chamberlin in entry for Rebecca Chamberlin, 1880. (Eddie H. Chamberlin now living with grandmother, aunt and cousin back in Massachusetts)


Army life in a black regiment – Thomas Wentworth Higginson – Google Books

Taylor, Susie King, b. 1848. Reminiscences of my Life in Camp with the 33d United States Colored Troops late 1st S.C. Voluntee

Low Country Africana – History of the 33rd United States Colored Troops (USCT)

Low Country Africana – Who Lived This History? The 33rd United States Colored Troops (USCT)

33rd USCT History and St. Augustine Members

The Port Royal Experiment, November 7, 1861 to March 3, 1865

Harpers Ferry, Redux –

Thomas Wentsworth Higginson

Definitions Of Civil War Terms

1st South Carolina Volunteers (Union) – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Raid at Combahee Ferry – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Harriet Tubman – Civil War Spy – Combahee Raid Account – Civil War Filing Cabinet – Liberty Letters

U.S. Marshals and the Post-Civil War South | U.S. Marshals Museum

If you have ideas for articles you would like to see in future issues of The Community Courier  please contact Barb Chandler at or Carol May at

Leave a comment

Filed under Chandler News, General Geneology


As this is the Fall and Winter issue, we want to wish all of you a Happy Thanksgiving, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.  We hope that none of you suffered the effects of Hurricane Sandy.

This issue we feature brothers Hewett, Luther and George Chandler, children of Reuben and Mary (Parcher) Chandler. Also, a story on the Shakers, their inventions and ideas affect all of us even today (Hewett Chandler was a Shaker leader and inventor), a story on doing genealogy forward to find living distant cousins today using the US 1940 census, plus tips, pictures, and updates on past stories.

Work is still being done to get permission to place a plaque in Duxbury.  Many of the other founding families have plaques commemorating their ancestors in Duxbury.  Alden and Delano are among them.

Next issue will be the Spring and Summer issue combined.  Our research is getting much more time consuming and complicated so it takes a while to get things assembled, especially since we are tackling brickwalls and hard to research folks. Our editor, Barb, is working on doing a story on Chandler mariners, in particular Capt. John Chandler.  Billie and I are working on Chandlers, or the possibility of Chandlers, in the Barbados. We also want to do a story on Nathaniel Chandler’s military experience and his death in the war in the Spanish West Indies.  Sharron is still in the process of moving so that’s why we don’t have the story on Mary Elizabeth Chandler, the last of Rueben and Mary’s children in this issue. That will be next issue.  Mary Elizabeth is the ancestress of Sharron’s husband.  That story will focus on the Civil War.  Lastly, we want to begin our series on Chandlers in the Revolutionary War.  This is a tall order so if we don’t get to all of it in the next issue we will eventually.

As always we try hard not to make mistakes, but if you find any let us know.



Our treasurer, Bob Chandler, has moved to Nebraska. His e-mail address is the same. However, if you wish to write him or join the ECFA you will find his new address on the membership form on the ECFA web site


More and more changes from Familysearch.  Some parts of their site are still restricted to members of the church, but many new features are available to all for free if you sign up with them. For a free sign up go to:

FamilySearch: Account Benefits

With one new dandy feature you can compare your family tree (check with the folks at Familysearch to see if your genealogy program is compatible) against those in their database to look for matches. The comparisons will show up side by side. Your family tree will not be altered or absorbed into their system. It is simply a way to search for matches. If you see, information from a match that you want you can transfer it.

Some of you may have already noticed this, but Familysearch has a nifty new feature where you can just copy and paste the citation for your source. You need not sign up for an account to use this feature. You will notice that in this issue the Familysearch sources have been just copied and pasted into the stories instead of being  laboriously transcribed by hand. Not all of you may wish to use the format they use, but it is a real time saver.

As mentioned in the last issue, folks will finally be able to correct their mistakes on the Familysearch family trees that they have created. In the past the Familysearch family trees were so error ridden that most serious genealogists gave up on them. Coming soon is the ability for all users, not only the creators of these trees, to point out mistakes. As this can be a thorny proposition, (out of the frying pan and into the fire!) I think the plan is to have the folks at Familysearch arbitrate.

If you plan to make a pilgrimage to the genealogy library of all genealogy libraries, Salt Lake, changes are coming there, too. They are digitizing books like mad. This is great, but they do not put the books back because they have to tear them apart to do it. You can read about Eastman’s explanations and thoughts on the subject here:

Now if you need assistance with your research, you can call Familysearch and they have experts in several areas including Massachusetts. Here is the link:

Research Help—Get and Give

Another source for assistance from Familysearch:

Free Live Assistance


genealogy book links

This came from Eastman via Sharron.   There are town histories, church histories, genealogies and more.  This is the first resource that actually groups the books in one place with a clickable link.  Many of the books are available free on Google, but you have to hunt them down individually, here they are listed in one place.


This website started up in 2007 and differs from other genealogy sites in that it tends to expand sideways rather than vertically.  Folks put in their names and what they know of their family and wait to be linked to cousins.


Another site with resources listed by state.  A useful tidbit – a list of courthouses which burned up in Maine.


New Tombstone Technology – Eastman’s Online Genealogy Newsletter

According to a report in Eastman’s column, the latest thing is to have a code embedded in the grave marker of the deceased which direct those with Smart Phones to a web page about the deceased. The codes which cost between $99 and $400 are in use both here and in England.


This is a huge archive of old maps that is being digitized. This was from Sharron. On the opening page are a couple of very old maps of Boston.


For fun Sharron sent Eastman’s column on 19th century beauty tips. Bathing was advised at least once a week, but in those days hair should be dusted because washing will ruin it!


Unless another TV network picks up the TV show “Who Do You Think You Are?,” it has sadly departed from the airwaves. However, there is a history/genealogy program on the radio. Sharron sent me an e-mail about a radio show that deals with New England Genealogy and History. You can listen to it on your computer. I have not tried it. Let us know if it is useful.


“The Fiddler on Pantico Run” An African Warrior, His White Family Descendants, a Search for Family

By Joe Mozingo

A while back, there was a series in the Los Angeles Times about the results of ancestor searching. It was written by reporter Joe Mozingo. He is a very white looking guy from Orange County, but his unusual last name, which he was told was Italian, sent him on a quest to find out the whole story. That story led back to an African warrior named Edward Mozingo in 17th century Virginia. For his story, he found both black and white Mozingos across the country most of whom were not aware of their roots. He took a trip to Africa where he found out that there were over a thousand languages where Mozingo could have emerged from. The Times series was fascinating study of not only genealogy but of history and race relations.


by Barb Chandler

I got this from a woman on FindAGrave, and feel it speaks to the importance of  working on genealogy.

 There is one in each family who seems called to find the ancestors. To put flesh on their bones and make them live again, to tell the family story and to feel that somehow they know and approve. To me, doing genealogy is not a cold gathering of facts but, instead, breathing life into all who have gone before. We are the story tellers of the tribe. All tribes have one. We have been called, as it were, by our genes. Those who have gone before cry out to us: Tell our story. So, we do. In finding them, we somehow find ourselves. How many graves have I stood before now and cried? I have lost count. How many times have I told the ancestors you have a wonderful family you would be proud of us? How many times have I walked up to a grave and felt somehow there was love there for me? I cannot say. It goes beyond just documenting facts. It goes to who am I and why do I do the things I do? It goes to seeing a cemetery about to be lost forever to weeds and indifference and saying I can’t let this happen. The bones here are bones of my bone and flesh of my flesh. It goes to doing something about it. It goes to pride in what our ancestors were able to accomplish. How they contributed to what we are today. It goes to respecting their hardships and losses, their never giving in or giving up, their resoluteness to go on and build a life for their family. It goes to deep pride that they fought to make and keep us a Nation. It goes to a deep and immense understanding that they were doing it For us. That we might be born who we are. That we might remember them. So we do. With love and caring and scribing each fact of their existence, because we are them and they are us. So, as a scribe called, I tell the story of my family. It is up to that one called in the next generation to answer the call and take their place in the long line of family storytellers. – Author Unknown



Simeon>Joseph>Benjamin>Edmund, the immigrant

They were the New Hampshire orphans that we did a story on in June of 2010.  Our member, Susan, sent pictures of David Hiram Chandler (AKA David Hiram) and his brothers, Steven and Charles, sons of Hiram Chandler and Lucy Peters, and the house where  David Hiram spent his final years in New Hampshire.  She also found out that his father, Hiram, was born July 24, 1813 and died February 9, 1854.

Charles William, Stephen Kimball and David Hiram Chandler 1900’s

David Hiram Chandler

Old Chandler House in Dover

Coincidentally, Chris Murray just sent a picture of Hiram David Chandler’s brother, Allen.  Chris descends from Allen.

Allen Chandler, son of Hiram and Lucy (Peters) Chandler and brother of Hiram David (AKA David Hiram)Chandler. From Chris Murray


View Images — Free Family History and Genealogy Records

Further research since the last issue seems to indicate that her line died out with her grandchildren.

Her son, Charles N. Tucker, did not stay in New York and did not marry Gladys to update information from the last issue of the Courier. It appears, according to the 1900 US census, that his wife was Mary and his children were son, Henry, age 24, and daughter, Elenor, age 18.  They were living in Kansas City, Missouri. It appears that his widow and children later moved to Petaluma, California. Neither appears to have married, but more research needs to be done.

Statira’s two other grandchildren, Albert F. James and Charles Nathan James did not marry. Their mother, Statira’s daughter Mary (Tucker) James, died when they were young and they were raised by relatives.

Above is the death record for Albert F. James (Statira Chandler Tucker’s grandson). Sadly, he had dementia praecox (schizophrenia) and died of TB in the state hospital in Danvers, Massachusetts. He was buried in Evergreen Cemetery as was Statira.

One of the scariest places in Massachusetts is the hospital in Danvers where Albert F. James died. It is laid out on the Kirkbride plan, which is described as looking like a flying bat. It is very Gothic.

Albert’s brother, Charles Nathan James, was registered in the World War I draft, appeared in the 1920 US census for Massachusetts and probably again in the 1930 US census as a patient in the Belmont hospital in Middlesex, Massachusetts. If we are correct in that was him, he may have been a patient because he was sick or because he was just old.

REBECCA (CHANDLER?) Lane (*Jonathan>Judah>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant)

I had guessed that maybe Jonathan and Zeruiah (Brown) Chandler (see Fall 2011 Courier) had a daughter named Rebecca because of the clues that I had. Only problem is that now I think that she was not my Rebecca Chandler, who married Jonathan Snow, but possibly was the Rebecca who married Jonathan Lane. I came across an old unverified tree on Familysearch that showed that this Rebecca Lane’s maiden name was Chandler.

Our member, Steve, in the rain with a head cold, went to the Empire Cemetery to find out if these people were buried near each other, which could be another clue as to relationships.  Turns out Jonathan Lane, wife Rebecca, son Milton Lane and Aunt Rachel, Jonathan, Jr., Reuben and Rufus Chandler are all lined up in a row next to each other.

LANE STONES (From Left to Right) 1. Jonathon Lane. Died May 12, 1882
2. Rebecca Wife of Jonathon Lane, Died Nov. 27, 1847 (the 7 might be a 2?)
3. Milton A. Son of Jonathon & Rebecca Lane, Died Dec. 1845 4. Lane (?) This stone is terribly eroded. I think I could decipher “Lane” but nothing else.
CHANDLER STONES (continuing left to right from the Lane Stones) 5. Aunt, Rachel Chandler, Died Jan.20, 1864, 82 yrs. 6. Father, Jonathon Chandler, Jr., Died Dec. 13, 1846, Age 37 7. Mother, Cynthia L., Died June 27, 1844, Age 41
8. Rueben Chandler, Died Jan. 13, 1847, 52 yrs 9. Cyrus Chandler, Died Jan. 16, 1903, 75 yrs (could have been 72?) 10. Mary J. Chandler, Jan. 25, 1907, 77 yrs. – Photo and notations by Steve

So now the pendulum is swinging back to the original idea that my Rebecca Chandler was the daughter of Abel and Sarah (Weston) Chandler and this Rebecca is looking more and more like she could have been Rebecca Chandler, daughter of Jonathan Chandler and the sister of Aunt Rachel, Jonathan, Jr., Rufus and Reuben Chandler.



Carol May

The US 1940 Census is finished, it is free and it is searchable.  You can access it free from both and   Familysearch is always free, but because several genealogical organizations and their volunteers worked together to transcribe this census, Ancestry is also making the 1940 census free to search. Again, I found people on one site but not the other, so check both. Ancestry has a few more bells and whistles and is easier to read because of the highlighting. An interesting twist to the 1940 census is that they ask where people were living five years previously. If you are lucky, one of your family members may have been asked the bonus questions which include how many children and how many marriages the mother had. Only a small percentage of the enumerated were asked the extra questions.

I didn’t think that the 1940 census would be useful beyond looking up immediate family members for fun, but after working hard researching the Reuben Chandler family (*Jonathan>Judah>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant), I began wondering if they were progenitors of what seemed to be a nearly extinct line. Usually if there are many descendants, there is a big paper trail and research from other family genealogists who have worked on that line. Reuben and Mary’s daughter, Mary Elizabeth (Chandler) Chamberlin, the ancestress of our member, Sharron’s husband’s family, seemed to be the only one with living descendants

I began searching forward again to look for more descendants. John disappeared from the records shortly after he was born, George died young without children, Hewett had children, but one died young and it appears that his adopted son did not have children, Austin’s adopted children appear not to have married, Malcolm’s line probably died out with his grandchildren, Statira’s line may also have died out with her grandchildren. That left Luther P. Chandler. Did he have descendants?

I trudged forward again through the censuses and records to find out if Luther’s descendants made it to the 21st century.  His son Walter Luther Chandler had  son, Arthur Luther Chandler, and daughter, Anna (Chandler) Larmer/Lormer/Lorner/Loomer. All of those variations and misspellings of her married name made her very hard to track.

Anna married Thomas Larmer and had daughters.  One daughter served in the military in World War II, but probably married too late to have had children. I was unable to trace the other two daughters beyond the 1920 census.

That left Arthur Luther Chandler (Walter Luther>Luther P.>Reuben>*Jonathan>Judah>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant).

Did Arthur Luther Chandler have children?  When the 1940 US census came out this year, I found that Arthur did indeed have children.  I smiled when I saw some of the names.  They were familiar Chandler first names from the past.

It takes both luck and persistence to find living descendants, but armed with the information that I had obtained from the census I thought that maybe I could find them.  The places that I searched were all free and all part of public records that are online – SSDI, Find A Grave, obituaries, and “find people” sites on the internet.

Occasionally, you will find a plea from someone on one of the Chandler boards at Rootsweb or Gen Forum who has hit a brick wall and you can link up with them. That’s how Sharron and I connected, but I knew that wouldn’t be the case here.

The first two places that I checked were the  Social Security Death Index ( SSDI free on Familysearch) and Find A Grave to see if they are still living or not.  It helped that they did not have common names.  I found one in the SSDI index, which also gave clues as to where he lived.  A Google search found obituary information for him that led to names of relatives which led to a search of more obituaries which led back to Find A Grave and to the names of his survivors.

The next descendant didn’t show up in the SSDI or Find A Grave.  From that I presumed that he was still living. After a few more twists, turns and sidetracks I had enough information to search and  and similar “find people” sites to look for living people.

So now out of Reuben and Mary (Parcher) Chandler’s eight children, two did go on to have documented 21st century descendants

I am not divulging names here of who I believe are the descendants because I have not corresponded with them yet and respect their privacy. I left a phone message for one and did not hear back yet and have not contacted the other descendants yet because I want to wait until the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy settles down.

Regarding being “found” by cousins, I was found by a cousin who I didn’t know from my father’s side and was also found by a cousin on my mother’s side.  Neither are Chandlers. In both cases they were fellow genealogists so we were mutually delighted and have been corresponding. I have visited the cousins who live nearer to me. It turned out great.

However, not all folks are into genealogy and might consider it irrelevant to their lives or worse, being found out-of-the-blue by a very distant cousin weird. If I hear nothing back from e-mails,  I will snail mail them the information that we gathered about their ancestors, wish them well, and move on to another project, because one day a family genealogist will spring up in those families and find it fascinating.

PS.  This came in today just as we were going to press  to use an old newspaper term.  I did hear from Luther’s descendant.  His middle name is Hewitt, with an “i” instead of an “e”, but has gone by that name much of his life. Hewitt’s name goes on to yet another generation to his son.
He didn’t know that he was the namesake of Hewett Chandler, the Shaker leader and inventor. I had the pleasure about telling him about his Chandler ancestors and he was able to fill me in on information about his immediate ancestors.
His brother, Malcolm who died in 2001, was the namesake of Malcolm Chandler, the ice man who owned Chandler Pond, in Brighton, Mass and who was the Shaker leader’s brother.


by Barb Chandler

I’m a member of geneabloggers, folks who write blogs about genealogy, and are given a prompt for the day to get the creative juices flowing. Several days ago there was a prompt about “sympathy.”  One of the blogs which was featured  a description of a webpage containing information about early American burial practices and gravestones that I thought you might find interesting. The webpage is at;

The Orphan Train

by Barb Chandler

I’d love to know the story behind her adoption, I thought as I looked at the name of my gg grandfather’s adopted daughter.

I thought about getting her record, but decided to put it off ‘for another day.’ When I happened across an article about Orphan Trains I begin to put two and two together. She appeared on the census in the late 1800s and the family was from Illinois. I never thought one of my ancestors might have been on the Orphan Train now I wonder if I had found one.

The Orphan Train movement grew out of a dream of its founder Charles Loring Brace. He conceived the idea because he believed institutionalizing children was not conducive to their emotional or physical well-being. Instead, he felt that if children had a strong family and educational life they would thrive. Brace speculated that pioneers in the West could probably use help, so he arranged for the Trains to send orphaned children to pioneers. There were both positives and negatives. Many children were separated from their siblings, some became indentured servants to families and were abused, while others were adopted either formally or informally and made part of the family unit.

This video provides a good overview;

Between 1853 and 1929, more than 250,000 children rode the Orphan Train to their new lives. To find resources and read more about this movement click on;



Carol May

Most people today know little about the Shakers, often confusing them with the Amish who shun modern inventions and drive horse drawn buggies, or think that Shaker is a style of furniture.

Actually they are 180 degrees from the Amish as they not only embraced technology, but during their heyday propelled it forward as technological leaders and agricultural innovators through their belief in uplifting humanity through labor saving devices and improving agriculture. 

They are responsible for a style of furniture which was named after them, but as one of their members succinctly put it, “I am not a chair.”

They and their inventions and agricultural contributions continue to affect us all today.

Danish modern furniture was inspired by the Shakers.  The German Bauhaus art and architectural movement which spawned modern architecture was influenced by the Shakers.  Did you ever buy a seed packet? Use a flat broom, a circular saw, a clothes pin, an ink pen with a metal nib? These were just a few Shaker inventions. Other inventions, while no longer used today, were rotating ovens for baking bread although commercial ovens today use a similar design, water-powered butter churns, mechanical apple corers, the forerunner of the modern washing machine (the early prototype involved a couple of tons of granite)  and more.

The official name of the Shakers is the “United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing.”

The church originated in France with French Calvinists in the 17th century. The French Calvinists known as Camisards fled to England after losing a battle with Louis XIV.  There they influenced the Society of Friends, commonly known as Quakers.  Both the French Camisards and Quakers believed that everyone could find God through personal experience rather than through an organized church. A group of Quakers led by Jane and James Wardley broke away from the Quakers and formed a group known as the Shaking Quakers because their worship involved a marching dance where they would tremble and shake.

The early Shakers were known for their dancing and later marching dances which was part of their religious experience.

In 1758 in England, Ann Lee joined the “Shaking Quakers. She was incarcerated for her beliefs and during one of the incarcerations; she had vision that through purity mankind could find redemption.  She was elected leader of the society and became known as Mother Ann.

In 1774 as a result of another vision she left England for New York with the idea of establishing a utopian society which was a popular idea at that time. The Shakers established 19 communities from New England to as far south as Kentucky based on the ideals of purity, pacifism, tolerance and equality of the sexes. While they may have believed in tolerance, some who came into contact with them did not and the Shakers had to suffer persecution at their hands for their beliefs.

In addition to inventing, they also believed in scrupulous cleanliness and healthy eating. At a time when the American diet emphasized fatty, preserved meats and starch (sounds like we still have that problem!), they emphasized locally grown (usually from their own gardens) fresh fruits and vegetables cooked with herbs and whole grains. Believing in health as well as thrift they cooked many vegetables with the skins on and saved the liquid for soups.  Some were vegetarians. They served daily vegetarian meals as well as meals which contained meat.  Maybe some of the recipes that were handed down in your family originally came from the Shakers.

Canterbury Shaker Village in Canterbury, New Hampshire, displays the natural Beauty of the countryside where the Shakers settled their communities, far from the corrupting elements of the major cities
Courtesy of Canterbury Shaker Village


Their belief in equality gave the freedom and opportunity to their member, Tabitha Babbitt, to invent the circular saw.  Hewett Chandler invented a mower and a way to make barrel staves.  They not only were inventors and innovators, they manufactured their inventions, packaged seeds and sold them to people across America. Locally, they sold, “fancy” goods, baskets, canned goods. They held patents and sold herbs for medicine. As medicine progressed they embraced that, too. Their progressive approach to farming and horticulture led them to experiment to cultivate the best fruits and vegetables and package their seeds which they sold to farmers all over the country. This idea took hold like wildfire.

They also loved their religiously inspired music some of which endures today.  One of the most well-known songs was made famous by Aaron Copland for the ballet “Appalachian Spring” called “Simple Gifts” which was originally composed by Elder Joseph Bracket in the Alfred, Maine Shaker colony in 1848.

Later on it was incorporated into the hymn “Lord of the Dance” adapted by Sydney Carter.

While you may have been touched by the Shakers through their inventions, your ancestors may have been influenced by the Shakers through more than just their horticultural accomplishments, inventions and recipes. Perhaps they were converts for a while such as one of my Hanscom ancestors was, or they were raised by them if they were paupers or orphans such as Reuben Chandler’s children.

The Shakers took in orphans until the mid-20th century.  Changing times, no more orphans and a celibate life all contributed to their decline in population to the point where there are only three Shakers left and they live in the Sabbathday Lake colony in New Gloucester, Maine.

Shakers live a disciplined life, obedience being the most difficult to follow according to some of their converts.  They are up very early and their days are filled with chores and prayers.  The men and women lived in “families” but were separated as celibacy was part of their religion for the fully converted. Each “family” had an Elder and an Eldress to run it. They had separate doors to enter and exit and separate seating for men and women.

They did have friends in the local communities that followed a less rigorous commitment than the fully converted. They were the most successful of the utopian societies with a peak of 6000 members during the early 19th century which began a decline after the Civil War. Many of the former Shaker Colonies are now museums which you can visit. See list of Shaker museums below after the links list.

You can visit the last active Shaker colony at Sabbathday Lake in New Gloucester, Maine.  In addition to the museum, you can sign up for naturalist led nature walks, chair caning, canning and a variety of other classes taught by volunteers. There are livestock and orchards to see and seed packets and herbs and other things for sale in the store.

This last active Shaker colony, with three members, is the New Gloucester Maine Colony adjacent to land belonging to our member, Steve.

Shaker Historic Trail — A National Register of Historic Places Travel Itinerary

Text Only Version — Shaker Historic Trail — National Register of Historic Places

Shakers – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Simple Gifts: The Shaker Way to Cook and Eat : NPR

Abby’s Kitchen | easy shaker recipes | shaker recipe | quick recipe | TNT recipe

The United Society of Shakers at Sabbathday Lake Maine  Modern Shaker recipes


Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village_
r/text.htm#sab  — New Gloucester, Maine
Alfred Shaker Historic District  _ — Alfred, Maine
Enfield Shaker Historic  District_ — Enfield, New
Canterbury Shaker Village  — Canterbury, New
Harvard Shaker Village Historic  District_  — Harvard,
Shirley Shaker Village_
Shirley, Massachusetts
Hancock Shaker Village
Pittsfield, Massachusetts
Tyringham Shaker Settlement Historic  District_  — Tyringham,
Enfield Shakers Historic  District_  — Enfield,

Mount Lebanon Shaker Society_  — New Lebanon, New
Watervliet Shaker Historic  District_ — Albany, New York


 Why was the Reuben and Mary (Parcher) Chandler family so difficult to trace?  As our research slowly progressed, it became apparent that with this family we hit the trifecta of research difficulties.

First, most of the Maine vital records concerning them were either lost or burned up in fires.

Second, they were declared paupers and the family was split up so they did not begin showing up in the now mostly Massachusetts records until they were adults. They only appeared as a family once and that was the US 1830 census for New Gloucester, Maine and even then only head the head of household was enumerated by name and not all of the children had been born yet.

Third, only two (Mary Elizabeth and Luther P.) of Reuben and Mary’s eight children had descendants that survived into the 20th century. Few descendants mean a smaller paper trail.


Chandler lineage: Reuben>*Jonathan>Judah>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant

 Born c. 1832 in Chesterville, Maine and died between 1865 and 1870 in Wisconsin

Nurseryman, horticulturist and westward pioneer


Carol May

 Luther P. Chandler  didn’t become an ice man like brothers Malcolm and Austin, but instead was involved in agriculture like his brother, Hewett.  He was a nurseryman, a superintendent of a large show place farm, and horticulture judge at Wisconsin fairs.

He was born in Chesterville, probably because his mother, Mary (Parcher) Chandler appeared to have had Parcher relatives there, probably her brother and maybe her grandfather. Proof of the relationship is only circumstantial at this point.

He was listed as an 18-year-old laborer in the 1850 US census in the household of Nathan Dane of Alfred, Maine. Alfred was home to a colony of Shakers and there were also Parchers who lived in that area. Whether he lived there because of the Shakers or because of Parchers, or neither reason, we don’t know.

According to Massachusets marriage records, Luther married Ellen E. Gowen of Dorchester, Massachusetts on October 17, 1856. In the Massachusetts marriage records he was listed as the son of Reuben Chandler and Mary.

Luther was listed as a nurseryman and resident of Roxbury, Mass, which coincidentally is the home town of the huge William and Annis Chandler family, although Luther descended from Edmund Chandler.

Because of his occupation as a nurseryman as opposed to just being a farmer and later was involved with the more technical aspects of horticulture, it seems likely that he was raised with the Shakers as that is what they emphasized.  Only siblings, Hewett, Statira and mother, Mary, were found in Shaker records, but their records are incomplete.

Nurserymen were of major importance to the agricultural development of the United States as they worked at not only growing plants, but developing better hybrids, grafting, and supplying seeds, plants and trees to supply farmers and households. Our founding fathers, George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were notable horticulturists of their time considering it an important part of developing the nation.

There were many fine illustrations done for catalogues, advertisements and even china plates promoting different varieties of fruits and vegetables in the 19th century.

Interestingly, the Brighton area of Massachusetts where Malcolm and Austin lived was a major center of American horticulture. His brother, Malcolm, bought the ice pond which became known Chandler’s Pond from William C. Strong, a well-known horticulturist who built a huge greenhouse of 18,000 square feet with a continuous glass roof.

Luther didn’t stay long in Massachusetts as he and his wife and children were enumerated in the US 1860 Burke, Dane Wisconsin census. Luther again was listed as a nurseryman. Burke is on the outskirts of Madison, Wisconsin. Although he was listed in the 1850 census in the household of Nathan Dane, so far, I have not been able to make a connection to Nathan Dane and Dane County Wisconsin other than he may have been related to the Massachusetts congressman named Dane for which the county was named.

He was referred to as L.P. Chandler in the “History of Dane County.”  In September of 1865 he was listed as on the executive committee for the Wisconsin Fruit Growers which later became the Wisconsin State Horticultural Society.

(I just learned today from a descendant of Luther that Luther was a horticulturist who developed lines of plants. There were pictures of them and we are hoping to get copies which we can include in a future update.)

Luther had a home and a small piece of land which he may have farmed, but his main job was working for J.V. Robbin’s “Rock Terrace” farm. Luther was the foreman along with Marshall P. Wilder. The “P” in Luther P. Chandler most likely stood for “Parcher” his mother’s maiden name.

 The farm raised purebred livestock and had an extensive nursery.  The farm was so large that when visited by campaigning politicians, there were more employees of the farm than there were the Governor’s Guards. More flags and banners flew on the farm for their arrival than did the city of Madison.

We don’t know what role Luther had in creating the farm’s 1,620 pound cheese that was exhibited at the 1860 Wisconsin State Fair, but the cheese project was so big that the farm managers had to go beyond the borders of the farm and into the community for additional milk.  J.V. Robbins was a great admirer of Stephen A. Douglas and supported him for President over Abraham Lincoln.  It was his intent to give the giant cheese to Douglas if he won the presidency which we know he did not.  So instead the giant cheese, said to have been very fine, was distributed amongst his friends.

Luther died sometime between 1865 when his last child was born and the 1870 US census where only his wife and children were listed.  The farm continued to be a showplace after Luther was gone. A subsequent owner imported Clydesdale horses from Scotland which he exhibited to success.

Children of Luther P. Chandler and Ellen E. Gowen:

Eveline AKA Nellie born 1857 in Massachusetts died Dec. 24, 1908 buried in Forest Hill Cemetery, Madison, Wisconsin                               

Walter Luther born about 1859 in Wisconsin, died in Montana and buried in Forest Hill Cemetery, Madison, Wisconsin

Frank AKA George born 1860 in Wisconsin probably died young

Anna B. AKA Annie born about 1864 in Wisconsin died probably in Pasadena, California. Married Thomas B. Larmer also spelled Larner, Dec. 14, 1892

Mary AKA Ellen AKA Mamie born about 1865 in Wisconsin died July 17, 1915 buried in Forest Hill Cemetery, Madison, Wisconsin

 After Luther’s death, his widow and family continued to live in Burke then eventually moved to nearby Madison, Wisconsin as shown by census records. We don’t know where Luther was buried.  Several of the children’s went by nicknames or middle names which changed through the censuses.  By the 1900 census, four of the five children were still living. Son Frank/George died young.

Annie Chandler, daughter of Luther and Ellen (Gowen) Chandler

Luther and Ellen’s daughter, Annie, married Thomas Lormer (also spelled Larmer). By 1900 the Lormers were living in Pasadena, California.  They were fairly well off, living in a house that was paid for and had a servant. Thomas was listed as a capitalist on the 1900 census. In the 1880 US census he was listed as an agricultural importer. Pasadena was the refuge from the cold for very wealthy easterners who built mansions there and surrounded themselves with orange trees and other tropical and sub-tropical plants and trees. The Rose Parade is one of the legacies of the early Pasadeneans. For the not so rich there were the bungalows.  He died March 30, 1915 and was buried in Milton cemetery in Wisconsin as was his first wife.  We couldn’t find when Anna died and where she was buried.

They had three daughters, Elizabeth, Anita and Florence. Both Elizabeth and Florence became teachers and both traveled — Elizabeth to Europe when she was 20 years old and Florence to Hawaii when she was 25.  It appears that Florence joined the armed forces during World War II and married later in life as she was Florence Lormer Shaw when she died in 1985. We don’t know if Elizabeth and Anita married and had children.

Walter Luther Chandler, son of Luther and Ellen (Gowen) Chandler

Luther, Ellen, and Walter Chandler’s headstone. Photo by Neil at Find A Grave

Walter Luther Chandler was the one that we were able to trace who has living descendants, but out of regard for their privacy will not list the names of living people.

Walter Luther Chandler, married Clara E. Bewich February 26, 1894. They lived in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin which is also on the outskirts of Madison.

Children of Walter Luther Chandler and Clara E. Bewich:

Arthur Luther Chandler, born 1895

Ray W.  born 1897

Caryl Loreen born 1902

Walter Luther Chandler became a hide dealer.  Eventually he settled in Montana while the family stayed in Wisconsin. The US 1920 census showed them both living together in Wisconsin, but it also showed him married but living alone in Montana. By the 1930 census his wife was a “widow” in Wisconsin, but he was “single” living in Montana. Whether or not living in different states was a frontier version of a divorce, we don’t know.  His wife, Clara Bewick Chandler died July 17, 1940 and was buried in Fremont, Newaygo County Michigan home of her son Ray W. Chandler. While the information at Find A Grave says that Walter died in Lewis and Clark, Montana, there is no Lewis and Clark, Montana.  He most likely died in Lewiston, Montana where he resided for many years. Walter died on January 17, 1955.  He was buried in Forest Hill Cemetery, Madison, Dane County Wisconsin.

Arthur Luther, Ray W. and Caryl Loreen’s birth years came from the censuses. It appears that their daughter, Caryl Loreen, died single at 36. Son Ray W. Chandler married Lillian Appleton but it appears that they did not have children. He became a farmer in Michigan.

Luther’s line was continues today through Arthur Luther Chandler, son of Walter Luther and grandson of Luther.


“United States Census, 1850,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 25 Aug 2012), Luther Chandler in household of Nathan Dane, Alfred, York, Maine, United States; citing dwelling 168, family 180, NARA microfilm publication M432, roll 276.

“United States Census, 1860,” index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 25 Aug 2012), Luther P Chandler, , Dane, Wisconsin; citing p. 151, family 73; NARA microfilm publication M653, FHL microfilm 805403.

“United States Census, 1870,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 25 Aug 2012), Ellen Chandler in household of Ellen Chandler, Wisconsin, United States; citing p. 25, family 175, NARA microfilm publication M593, FHL microfilm 0553207.

“United States Census, 1880,” index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 25 Aug 2012), Ellen Chandler, Burke, Dane, Wisconsin; citing sheet 253B, family 0, NARA microfilm publication T9-1421.

“United States Census, 1900,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 25 Aug 2012), Ellen E Chandler, ED 54 Madison city Ward 7, Dane, Wisconsin, United States; citing sheet 6B, family 140, NARA microfilm publication T623, FHL microfilm 1241783.

“United States Census, 1910,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 25 Aug 2012), Ellen E Chandler, Madison Ward 7, Dane, Wisconsin; citing sheet 9A, family 214, NARA microfilm publication T624, FHL microfilm 1375721.

Find A Grave (Ellen G. Chandler, Luther’s wife)

Birth: unknown
Death: Jul. 4, 1913
Note: Date of Burial: 7/6/1913, Military: none, Race: White,,, Father:, Mother: Death Place:, Birth Place: American, Cause: Old age, Occupation: Ref: Cemetery Records
Forest Hill Cemetery
Dane County
Wisconsin, USA
Plot: Section 32, Lot 035 NE1/2, Vault Other vault Find A Grave (Mary E. Chandler, Luther’s daughter)

Birth: unknown
Death: Jul. 17, 1915
Note: Date of Burial: 7/17/1915, Military: none, Race: White,,, Father:, Mother: Death Place:, Birth Place: American, Cause: Kidney disease, Occupation: Ref: Cemetery Records
Forest Hill Cemetery
Dane County
Wisconsin, USA
Plot: Section 32, Lot 035 NE1/2, Vault Other vault WALTER LUTHER CHANDLER (SON OF LUTHER) SOURCES:“United States Census, 1920,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 25 Aug 2012), Walter L Chandler, , Fergus, Montana; citing enumeration district (ED) , sheet 5B, family 96, NARA microfilm publication T625, FHL microfilm 1820970.“United States Census, 1930,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 25 Aug 2012), Walter Chandler, Lewistown, Fergus, Montana; citing enumeration district (ED) 0145, sheet 5A, family 96, NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 1255.

Find A Grave for Walter Chandler

Birth: unknown
Death: Jan. 17, 1955
Note: Date of Burial: 1/22/1955, Military: none, Race: White,,, Father: Luther P. Chandler, Mother: Ellen Gowen Death Place: Lewistown, Montana, Birth Place: Burke Township, WI, Cause: General Ateriosclerosis-prostrate, Occupation: Farming Ref: Cemetery Re
Forest Hill Cemetery
Dane County
Wisconsin, USA
Plot: Section 32, Lot 035 B, Vault Casket  





“United States Census, 1940,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 22 Aug 2012), Ray W Chandler, Dayton Township, Newaygo, Michigan, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 62-11, sheet 15A, family 283, NARA digital publication T627, roll 1797.


“Wisconsin, Marriages, 1836-1930,” index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 25 Aug 2012), Thomas Larmer and Anna B. Chandler, 14 Dec 1892.

“United States Census, 1900,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 29 Aug 2012), Anna B Lormer in household of Thomas Lormer, ED 113 Precincts 1 and 8 Pasadena city, Los Angeles, California, United States; citing sheet 6B, family 154, NARA microfilm publication T623, FHL microfilm 1240091.

“United States Census, 1910,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 29 Aug 2012), Anna Loomer in household of Thomas Loomer, Pasadena Ward 2, Los Angeles, California; citing sheet 5A, family 117, NARA microfilm publication T624, FHL microfilm 1374099.

“United States Census, 1920,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 29 Aug 2012), Anna Lormer, Pasadena Township Pasadena City Precinct 20, Los Angeles, California; citing enumeration district (ED) , sheet 12B, family 293, NARA microfilm publication T625, FHL microfilm 1820117.

“United States Census, 1930,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 29 Aug 2012), Anna E Lormer, Pasadena, Los Angeles, California; citing enumeration district (ED) 1220, sheet 8A, family 217, NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 168.

“California, Death Index, 1940-1997,” index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 29 Aug 2012), Lormer in entry for Florence Lormer Shaw, 1985; citing California Department of Health Services, Vital Statistics Section, Sacramento, California.



Chandler lineage: Reuben>*Jonathan>Judah>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant

Written by Carol May

Research by Sharron Ross

George is another of Reuben and Mary’s children for whom there is no birth record.  He was born June 27, 1835. He was born June 27, 1835 in Poland, Maine. According to Massachusetts death records, he was the son of Reuben Chandler born in Poland, Maine and Mary born in Waterton, Maine.  We believe that Reuben was actually born in North Yarmouth, but raised in Poland.  There is no Waterton, Maine and all of the circumstantial evidence that we have seen point to Mary having been born in Waterboro, Maine. 

George was a farmer in Brighton, Massachusetts when he contracted erysipelas, a disease that can follow strep throat or a wound. It also affects swine and poultry. Today it could be easily cured with antibiotics.  He died in adjacent Boston on August 28, 1860 at age 25 years 2 months and 21 days.   He was buried in Lewiston, Maine although we have not been able to find the grave.


“Massachusetts, Deaths, 1841-1915,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 05 Nov 2012), George W. Chandler, 1860.


 Shaker leader and inventor

December 17, 1833 – August 3, 1908

Chandler lineage: Reuben>*Jonathan>Judah>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant

 Written by

Carol May

Research by:

Janet Griffith, Carol May, Sharron Ross

DIED AUG. 3. 1908
BORN DEC. 7. 1849
DIED SEPT. 26. 1922

Hewett was the mystery man who started this research project into not only his life, but that of his parents, siblings, and their mystery lineage.  We knew his parents were Reuben and Mary (Parcher) Chandler and that Hewett was a Shaker, but that was all.  Brother Arnold of the Shakers had a friendly debate with our member, Steve, about which branch of the Edmund Chandler family that Hewett belonged to – the Chandlers of New Gloucester or the Chandlers of Minot, Maine.

From our research, it appears that Hewett descended neither from neither of these two branches, but from a third branch of the Edmund Chandler family.  We believe, from strong circumstantial evidence (see Winter 2012 issue) that Hewett’s grandparents were Jonathan and Zeruiah (Brown) Chandler, originally of North Yarmouth, Maine who moved to Poland, Maine sometime between the 1800 US census for North Yarmouth and the 1810 US census for Poland, Maine.

Hewett was born a pauper as his family had been declared paupers by the town of Poland, Maine eight months prior to his birth on December 17, 1833. From notices in the newspaper we learned that in March of 1834, the entire family absconded from the person to which they had been placed. In April 18, 1837, this time just Mary and her three children, probably her youngest who would have included Hewett, absconded again.  The same day that the notice was posted in the newspaper Hewett was indentured, at only a little over three-years-old, to Deacon James Holmes of the New Gloucester Shaker colony (For more details go to the Spring 2012 issue)

Shaker records show that Hewett’s sister, Statira, also lived with the Shakers and that in 1864 his mother formally joined the Shakers. Reuben, his father, was enumerated alone in the 1840 US census for Poland, Maine.   We don’t know where his mother and other siblings were living in 1840 or where they were living while Hewett was growing up, but  they also may have lived with the Shakers as the family remained close throughout the years.

From this very difficult beginning, Hewett flourished with the Shakers.  Deacon James Holmes was a Shaker leader and a multi-talented, resourceful person who had a great influence on young Hewett. Holmes was admitted to the Shakers in 1783, appointed deacon in 1806 and put in charge of the garden, shop and seed business.  He resigned in 1814 and was reappointed in 1830.  He was an herbalist and horticulturist. He printed labels and seed packets. At age 80 he printed three collections of farmers and gardeners hints with a press of his own invention and making.  He also printed the “Collection of Anthems Given by the Spirits” which is the only collection of Maine Shaker music.

Hewett followed in his footsteps. Holmes example and influence plus Hewett’s natural abilities enabled him to also be an inventor and leader.  At a young age his agricultural accomplishments were praised by the state horticulturists.

He was listed as a machinist in the 1850 US census for the Shaker New Gloucester colony. According to that same census Statira had left the Shakers and had married and was living in Massachusetts. His brother, Luther, was working as a laborer in Alfred, Maine. We could not find his mother or the rest of his siblings in the 1850 US census.

On March 3, 1855, Hewett was appointed Second Elder of the church and in 1860 he was appointed Second Trustee.  He was again listed as a machinist in the 1860 US census residing in the Shaker New Gloucester colony. Hewett’s mother joined the Shakers at Poland Springs at age 65 on December 4, 1864. In 1865 a mowing machine that he invented was patented and manufactured in the colony and sold over the entire country. Hewett became First Trustee in 1866. By the 1870 US census, Hewett was listed along with two others as a “Trustee and Overseer of the United Colony” (Shakers). He was Trustee again in the 1880 US census.

As Trustee he had to interact with the world on behalf of the Shakers. The Shakers had patents, inventions (some of which Hewett created) which were manufactured by them, a seed business, herbal remedies and more which sold countrywide.  So Hewett’s life as trustee caused him to have much more contact with the outside world than most of the Shakers who lived a simple religious life of work and prayer within the Shaker community.

Trustees’ office in the Sabbathday Shaker Colony in New Gloucester. It was the office where Hewett Chandler and his future wife, Mary Grant worked.

The Shaker store at the Sabbathday Lake Shaker Colony in New Gloucester, Maine.

“Shaker schoolhouse at the Sabbathday Lake colony that Hewett Chandler was in charge of building. It is now the Shaker Library”


A simple religious, communal life was their goal, but they had to deal with managing money and business ventures just like the rest of the world.  Hewett had disagreements with them over how things were to be run and finally left after a disagreement over where to build the main building, but he did not leave alone.

With him came his future bride, Mary Grant.  She was the daughter of Albion Grant and Frances Brackett and great-niece of Elder Joseph Bracket.  Like Hewett she also came to live with the Shakers when she was a girl, but it was only for a few months.   Most likely because her father died and her mother remarried, then died.  Friends took her from the Shakers to California. She returned to visit the Shakers in 1872 and joined them that same year.  She worked as Associate Postmaster in the Trustee’s office.

Hewett and Mary married in Boston on May 18, 1882. According to the Boston City Directory, Hewett was a carpenter and they lived on #17 High St. from 1883 to 1884.  Sometime after that they bought a farm and moved to Spruce St. South Middleboro, Massachusetts where he was a fruit grower. At the time Middleboro was well known for its apples. Now it is much more famous for its cranberries as Ocean Spray started their cranberry business there in the 1930s and their headquarters are still located in Middleboro.

Hewett and Mary had their first and only natural child, Annie Louisa Chandler, on November 6, 1883.  She was mentally handicapped and died on July 23, 1886 of convulsions.  They adopted a son in the 1890s who they named John Joseph Chandler and who was of Irish parentage.   He was born in Boston on February 17, 1890. It is interesting to note that Hewett and Mary dutifully told the 1910 census taker that his parents were born in Ireland, but in later censuses John reported to the census takers that his parents were born in Maine.

Hewett retired from fruit growing and they moved from their home on Spruce St. in Middleboro to nearby Rock on Miller St. in October of 1907. Hewett died in August 3, 1908 in Rock, Massachusetts of apoplexy (stroke) and “ossification of the arteries” at age 75.    He was buried next to his daughter, Anna Louisa, in South Middleboro cemetery in Middleboro, Massachusetts.

Mary and John were recorded in the 1910 US census in Middleboro.  Mary returned to live with the Shakers in New Gloucester on May 27, 1913. Their son, John, remained in Massachusetts.

John married Mary Silva (another Mary!) who was of Portuguese and Irish descent.  His adopted mother, Mary (Grant) Chandler,  died from heart disease on September 25, 1922.  John and his wife traveled from their home in Wareham, Massachusetts to bring the remains back to Massachusetts where she was buried next to Hewett and their daughter.

John and his wife, Mary,  stayed in the Bourne and Wareham areas of Massachusetts.  He served as a private in World War I. He worked as a guard for the United States Engineering office.  He was well paid and made several times the amount of money that his lobster fishing neighbors made. From the censuses it does not appear that they had children.  John died November 15, 1971 and Mary Clara (Silva) Chandler died in 1982.   They were buried in Centre Cemetery in Wareham, Massachusetts.


“United States Census, 1850,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 26 Oct 2012), Huet Chandler, New Gloucester, Cumberland, Maine, United States; citing dwelling , family , NARA microfilm publication M432, roll 250

“United States Census, 1860,” index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 26 Oct 2012), Hewett Chandler, , Cumberland, Maine; citing p. 40, family 336; NARA microfilm publication M653, FHL microfilm 803437.

“United States Census, 1870,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 31 Oct 2012), Hewitt Chandler in household of Otis Sawyer, Maine, United States; citing p. 1, family 1, NARA microfilm publication M593, FHL microfilm 0552039.

“United States Census, 1880,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 31 Oct 2012), Huit Chandler in household of Joseph Brackett, New Gloucester, Cumberland, Maine, United States; citing sheet 398C, family 2, NARA microfilm publication T9-0478.

“United States Census, 1900,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 01 Nov 2012), Hewitt W Chandler, ED 1134 Middleboro Town (all south of Main & Plympton Sts.), Plymouth, Massachusetts, United States; citing sheet 21A, family 467, NARA microfilm publication T623, FHL microfilm 1240674.

“United States Census, 1910,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 01 Nov 2012), Mary H Chandler, Middleboro, Plymouth, Massachusetts; citing sheet 4A, family 82, NARA microfilm publication T624, FHL microfilm 1374625.

“Massachusetts, Marriages, 1695-1910,” index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 01 Nov 2012), Hewett Chandler and Mary H Grant, 31 May 1882; citing reference , FHL microfilm 817790.

“Massachusetts, Deaths, 1841-1915,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 31 Oct 2012), Hewett Chandler in entry for Annie L. Chandler, 1886. (Death of Annie L. Chandler, Hewett’s daughter at age two of convulsions)

“Massachusetts, Deaths, 1841-1915,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 31 Oct 2012), Hewett Chandler, 1908.

“United States Census, 1940,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 01 Nov 2012), John Chandler, Wareham Town, Plymouth, Massachusetts, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 12-170, sheet 4A, family 86, NARA digital publication T627, roll 1640. (Hewett’s son, John, and his wife)  Hewett’s birth from Shaker archives

Hewett Chandler (1832 – 1908) – Find A Grave Memorial

Recollecting Nemasket: Rock Village History Walk a Feature of Anniversary Celebration  Hewett lived in Rock

Centre Cemetery Names List  Lists Hewett’s son, John, and wife

Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village | Exhibit Brochures

New Gloucester, Cumberland County, Maine | Maine Genealogy  Shakers in New Gloucester, censuses

The Communistic Societies of the United States: The Shakers.: Details of the Shaker Societies

Maine Memory Network Exhibit – In Time and Eternity: Maine Shakers in the Industrial Age

Living a Tradition | People & Places | Smithsonian Magazine

Cannundrums: Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village  Mentions Hewett and his mowing machine

Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Pictures of main dwelling house, school house.

Are you researching a branch of the  Chandler family that you would like featured in the Courier,  have a genealogy tip, family recipe or anything else pertaining to genealogy you’d like to share? If so, we’ll be happy to put it in the next issue of the Courier. Send to;

Leave a comment

Filed under Chandler Ancestors, General Geneology, Uncategorized




WINTER 2012  

Moonlight-Night by Maxfield Parrish

Happy New Year and I hope that you all have had a wonderful Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas. We have big Duxbury news! Also Maine news, the mystery surrounding Reuben Chandler and his family which included the Shaker, Hewett, has been solved. Reuben and his family were declared paupers!  TV news about more genealogy shows coming up, a Maine Supreme Court decision involving Cyrus Chandler, research tips and alerts and more!

Next issue, we will feature more details about Reuben’s children.  Two of them, plus a brother-in-law were ice dealers and we will find out about ice houses, ice harvesting and ice famines. I still plan to do a story on the new Familysearch, but it keeps changing so hopefully it will be settled down enough to do a story.


Duxbury - Showing Old Location and Path's

Things are popping on the Duxbury front.  As most of you know our member, Billie, has been diligently working on the Chandlers of early Duxbury for quite some time.  Her biggest and latest project has been Joseph Chandler, son of Edmund the immigrant, and Joseph’s grandson Capt. John.
Billie showed, after looking at over 400 Duxbury deeds, where the lands of Joseph Chandler which include the Mayflower Cemetery, the Partridge Academy, the present day town buildings, the church and meeting house, the Bradford houses, in other words, the heart of the town were.  Joseph’s land was on both sides of present day Tremont St. up to Harrison and down to Surplus.  Billie created a chain of title for those houses and properties which include 900, 907 and 915 Tremont St.
The town is in the midst of creating more historical districts and because the Chandler information that they had was either incorrect or incomplete leaving a big gap in the town history.  We are hoping that one of the new historic districts will be named the Chandler District.  Not only did Billie show where Joseph’s land was, Billie provided them the real history of the houses at 900, 907 and 915 Tremont St. solving a town mystery.
The house on 915 Tremont is especially interesting to us because we believe it was Joseph’s house.  It is one of the oldest houses in Duxbury.  We know that Joseph owned the land originally and that the house went to Capt. John.
As far as our group is concerned, we feel that the case has been made that Capt. John was Edmund and Elizabeth (Alden) Chandler’s son and Joseph’s grandson. This Edmund, who married Elizabeth Alden, was the grandson of Edmund, the immigrant and not the immigrant himself as many have confused the two. However, each group has its own way of looking at things and we hope that the Alden Kindred agrees with us about Capt. John. We will just have to wait and see.
Our long-time member, Dick, has now been appointed president of the Chandler Family Association. Dick is not a descendant of Edmund or of any other American Chandler. So how can that be?  He is British, but studies Chandlers worldwide through his “Chandler One Name Study.”  In that capacity he has been involved with both Chandler groups.  The CFA started out dedicated to the descendants of John Chandler of Jamestown, Virginia, but eventually found that many southern Chandlers did not descend from that John Chandler.  As a result the CFA is open to all Chandlers although it does have a mostly southern slant. We take care of the Edmund Chandler family.
The Chandler Family Association has a new web address.  It is:


Dick, of both the ECFA and the CFA, is on the Chandler DNA committee and writes that this year there will be a push to encourage more English Chandlers to be tested.  This will be a good thing for all as it will provide an opportunity to discover the English origins of several Chandler families, including Edmund as we still don’t know where in England Edmund originated from.  The operative word is “opportunity” as we don’t know what will be found.



As I mentioned in the last edition, things could change with this family – people could be added or dropped.  Since then I found that Jonathan Chandler may indeed have had a daughter named Rebecca, only she may have married Jonathan Lane.
My Rebecca married Jonathan Snow. If the Rebecca who married Jonathan Lane was a Chandler, she most likely was Jonathan Chandler’s daughter and therefore not my Rebecca Chandler. My Rebecca would return to the Abel Chandler family (not Rev. Abel as that was another family) who descended from Edmund’s son, Benjamin.
This would bring the number of Rebecca Chandlers, all residing in the Minot/Poland area and all born within a few years of each other, to FOUR!  We have identified two of them conclusively previously.
This new possible Rebecca Chandler is buried in the Empire Cemetery where several of, who we believe, were Jonathan and Zeruiah’s children and their families were also buried.  This new Rebecca is buried with her husband, Jonathan Lane who was the brother-in-law of Jonathan Chandler, Jr. also buried in the Empire Cemetery.
If Rebecca (Chandler?) Lane was born in 1795 (according to her tombstone she died November 25, 1847 at 52 years 7 months) she would be the “mystery girl” born about that time described in the last edition of the Courier.
However, we will have traded one mystery girl for another, because who was the girl born in the 1780s if my Rebecca Chandler is out?
The source was the iffy Ancestral File, but did make sense, and will have to be investigated further. We may know more after the snow melts and one of our members is able to check on where in the Empire cemetery Jonathan and Rebecca Lane are buried.  


Jonathan and Rebecca (Chandler?) Lane’s children included John B. Lane who married Jacob Chandler’s daughter, Joann Chandler. We believe that Jacob was probably also one of Jonathan and Zeruiah Chandler’s children.  So if this theory is correct, John B. Lane married his first cousin.
Jacob and Thankfull Higgins Chandler were buried in the Hotel Rd. Cemetery in Auburn, Maine.   We believe that Jacob was the son of Jonathan and Zeruiah Chandler.
Also buried in the Hotel Rd. cemetery in Auburn are Rufus C. Lane, his wife Adeline and daughter Rebecca C.  Lane.
However, Ancestral File family trees had them attached to Simeon and Charlotte (Chandler) Lane.  This is incorrect because the facts do not bear this out. The only Rufus Lane aka Rufus C. Lane that I could find was the son of Jonathan and Rebecca (Chandler?) Lane.
Rufus Lane appeared in the household of Jonathan Lane in the 1850 census.
There were so many Chandlers and Lanes– spreadsheet anyone? –there may be more corrections in the future.  



(Reuben*>Jonathan>Judah>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund, the immigrant)

Written By

Carol May

Research by:

Steve Chandler, Janet Griffith, Carol May, Sharron Ross and the ECFA

Last issue we featured a circumstantial reconstruction of the Jonathan Chandler family of Poland, Maine. This time we feature who we believe was Jonathan and Zeruiah (Brown) Chandler’s son, Reuben, and his family.  It was Reuben and his wife, Mary Parcher, who started the quest to find their lineage and to solve the mystery surrounding them.  

Reuben Chandler

Unbeknownst to each other, there were several of us who were all stuck at the same brick wall — Reuben and Mary (Parcher) Chandler. We each had a different part of the puzzle because we were researching different children of Reuben and Mary. It wasn’t until we converged and pooled our knowledge that we discovered that the children were siblings.
Janet and I were, separately, looking for the Shaker Hewett Chandler’s family.  Our member, Sharron, had been on a 20-year-long quest to find Mary Elizabeth Chandler’s ancestors. We found that not only were Hewett and Mary Elizabeth siblings, but so were John, Austin and Malcom who were incorrectly entered  into our database as the children of Reuben and Mary (Bucknam) Chandler when they were in fact  the children of Reuben and Mary (Parcher) Chandler.  Two more siblings were found in Massachusetts records, George, by Sharron and Statira and Luther by Janet.
Research stalled and we were stuck again until more information could be found.  Once more information was found, we fit those puzzle pieces together using birth records in Maine,  Shaker records, Massachusetts marriage and death records, and census records. From the information that we found, we determined that Reuben and Mary (Parcher) Chandler’s children were:  
John born Minot, Maine March 12, 1824
Malcom born Minot, Maine February 8, 1825
Austin born Minot, Maine October 29, 1826
Statira M. born New Gloucester, Maine 1828
Luther P. born Chesterville, Franklin County, Maine about 1832
Hewett born in Poland, Maine December 17, 1833 (from Shaker records)
George W. born Poland, Maine June 27, 1835
Mary Elizabeth born Lewiston, Maine 1837-39
We think that we have found all of the children, but the details and parentage of Reuben and Mary (Parcher) remained elusive.  There were no birth records for either of them nor was there a record of their marriage, but we estimate that they were married in the early 1820s.  
We had already determined that our Reuben was not a part of the Jonathan and Rebecca (Packard) family of Poland/Minot or of the New Gloucester Philip and Deborah (Hewett) Chandler family despite the fact that Reuben and Mary named one of their sons Hewett.
Having so much difficulty with the Chandler side of the family, we researched the Parchers for clues. Again we were plagued with scant and missing records so we had to do a circumstantial reconstruction of the Parchers.  We think that Mary Parcher was the daughter of John and Mary (Gubtail or Guptil) Parcher.  We think that her father, John, was the son of George and Mary (Chamberlin) Parcher. Research of the Parchers did come in handy when we tracked who we believe were Mary’s Parcher relatives in Chesterville, Franklin County, Maine.  That bit of knowledge explained why Reuben and Mary (Parcher) Chandler’s son, Luther, was born in Chesterville.
We found Reuben in the 1830 US census for New Gloucester, Cumberland, Maine with, who we believe, was his wife and three children, Malcom, born in Minot, Austin, born in Minot, and Statira, born in New Gloucester, Maine. We think that probably their first born son, John, died.  As we continued our research we found Hewett, born in Poland, Maine, Luther, born in Chesterville and George, born in Poland, and Mary Elizabeth born in Lewiston, Maine.
Then we found Reuben, alone, with no children and no wife and no occupation listed in the 1840 US census for Poland, Maine. The town of Poland is adjacent to both Minot and New Gloucester.
The big breakthrough came with the discovery of the grave stone for Reuben Chandler, who died in 1847, and was buried in the Empire Cemetery in Poland, Maine. Instead of the breakthrough and growing collection of facts making the story clearer, it became murkier because there were now even more questions and unexplained loose ends. 
We now knew that Reuben didn’t die young as we first thought, but why was he alone in the 1840 census? Where were Mary and the rest of the children? We knew that Hewett was placed with the Shakers and indentured to Deacon James Holmes on April 18, 1837, but why as he was only six years old?  Why was Statira also sent to live with the Shakers? Why were the children born in so many different places?  Why wasn’t Mary buried next to Reuben in the Empire Cemetery when she died? The mystery deepened.
What happened?
That is when Sharron found the key piece of information that tied all of this together, Reuben Chandler and his family had been declared paupers!
From the Eastern Argus newspaper
March 19, 1834
“Reuben Chandler, a pauper, for whose support I have a contract with the town of Poland, for the term of one year from April last has absconded.  As I have made suitable provisions for the support of said Chandler and his family, all persons are forbid harboring or trusting them on my account.”
Poland, March 1834

Joseph StroudThen in 1837 a second notice about the family appeared also in the Eastern Argus newspaper.

April 18, 1837
Page 3
Pauper Notice

“The subscriber hereby gives public notice that he has entered into bonds with the town of Poland to support for the term of one year, Mrs. Mary Chandler and three children, and has made suitable provision for their support, but the said Mary left on the 10th inst (archaic for current month) The situation provided for her.  This is therefore to caution all persons against harboring or trusting her on my account as I shall pay no debts of her contracting, being at all times ready to maintain her agreeably to my contract with said town of Poland.”

Samuel McCann
Poland, April 14, 1837
In those days if a person or a family were declared paupers, they could be “bid off” which meant being auctioned off to the lowest bidder for their care which is what happened to Reuben and his family.  Families could also be split up and children could be taken from their parents and apprenticed out which is probably what happened to Hewett and maybe one or more of their other children. (Read more about paupers, poor farms and poor houses  at the end of this article.)
The people who bid on their care were probably counting on the money that was to be paid to them by the town.  Having taken on the responsibility for the care of the family, they certainly didn’t want to be held responsible for any new debt the family could incur, hence the legal notices.
Upon first reading it sounds like Reuben was a scoundrel taking off while his family was living on the charity of the town, but a closer look reveals a more complicated story.  It may not have been just Reuben who absconded as the newspaper notice also mentions uses the word “them” so it may have Reuben and his whole family. If they left as a family it may have been to stay together and escape the stigma of being declared paupers. According to  Jean F. Hankins, author of “Over the Hill to the Poor House”, men didn’t end up on the poor farm because they didn’t want to work it was because they couldn’t work, so it must have also been true for those who were declared paupers.
It is interesting to note the date when Hewett was indentured to Deacon Holmes.  It was April 18, 1837, four days after that the notice was printed in the newspaper.  Did the town leaders see the notice and send young Hewett to the Shakers. We don’t know.
Reuben and his family were wards of Poland as early as 1833, perhaps earlier, according to the Eastern Argus newspaper. Reuben was a still in his thirties when he was declared a pauper. Things didn’t appear any better for him by the 1840 US census either as he was alone with no occupation listed.
It seems likely that he was disabled.  Rufus, who we believe was his brother, was only in his twenties when died in 1826 leaving behind a young family. Could both brothers have been in an accident or suffered from the same illness? As the highest alcohol consumption ever recorded in the US was in 1830, could that have been an additional factor?  It is not likely that the town would have supported a drunk. Alcohol was such a problem that men were lying strewn about in the gutters passed out drunk in Portland, Maine. Sometimes entire families were drunk including the children.  Hard apple cider often was kept in a pail with a dipper next to the door.  The chaos and harm that alcohol brought to families led to the embrace of the Temperance movement especially in Maine.  “Taking the pledge” became the new social cause because of the problem.
The disability that caused Reuben to be declared a pauper remains a mystery. It does appear that Mary returned to Reuben at least for a while after she absconded from Joseph Stroud’s custody because she had another child, Mary Elizabeth, born most likely in 1837, but perhaps in 1839. We do not have a definitive source.
As we found Reuben Chandler recorded as living alone in the 1840 US census for Poland, Maine, we can only guess where Mary and some of the children were living because the 1840 only lists the head of household by name.   
We know from Shaker records that Hewett and Statira were living with the Shakers, but we still don’t know where Mary was living or where the other children were living until they started showing up in the censuses in the 1850s and 1860s. Did Mary and some of the children eventually go back to Reuben?  Were they living with the Shakers, but the records of them living there were lost? Were they living with relatives or friends, ducking authorities even census takers because they had been declared paupers? Was there a rift over religion between Reuben and Mary.  We don’t know.
Reuben’s siblings were not having an easy time of it either.  Rufus died in 1825 leaving a wife and children and Jonathan, Jr. died in the early 1840s leaving a wife and children.
Reuben died in 1847 and was buried with who we believe were his siblings and their wives.  His Chandler family must have loved him and thought well of him because if he were a scoundrel or drunken lay-about it seems unlikely that they would bury him in what turned out to be the center of the row of Chandlers buried in the Empire cemetery. He also had a nice granite headstone and not just a field stone.
Four of Reuben and Mary’s children were found in the US 1850 census.  They were Hewett, who was with the Shakers, Luther who was working as a farm hand in Alfred, York, Maine, and Malcom and Austin who had moved to Massachusetts.  It is interesting to note that the town of Alfred also had a large Shaker colony.
There was still no Mary, Mary Elizabeth, Statira or George that we could find in the US 1850 census.

Shaker Hill Dormitory in Poland Maine

Mary couldn’t be found in the 1860 US census, either. Shaker records show that she joined the Shakers at Poland Hill on December 4, 1864 when she was 65 and that she died in New Gloucester on July 2, 1868 at age 70. However, other records show that Mary was a few years younger born about 1802. Mary may have lived with the Shakers for years, but did not enter the covenant with them until 1868.  She may have been living elsewhere outside of the Shaker community. She could have been an Outer Order Believer who was a follower of the Shakers, but not a covenanted member of the community.
We had wondered why Mary was not buried next to Reuben when she died, but if she had become a covenanted Shaker, most likely she was buried in the Shaker cemetery in New Gloucester. The Shaker cemetery does not have individual stones, just a single stone marker with the word, “Shakers” engraved upon it.
By 1860 all of Reuben and Mary’s children had moved to Massachusetts.
They all most likely moved there for jobs.  The American industrial revolution began in the 1840s in Lowell, Massachusetts which caused an exodus of young people, both men and women, to these new industrial centers located in Massachusetts.  
Malcom and Austin were living in the same household for the US 1850 census for Charleston, Middlesex, Massachusetts. Malcom later settled in Brighton, Middlesex, Mass and stayed there until he died.  Later on Austin moved to Manhattan, New York. Both of them were ice dealers.
Statira married Nathan Tucker on May 12, 1850. Nathan was an ice dealer for a while, but sometime after the US 1870 census for Waterton, Massachusetts the family and the two younger children (the eldest had married) moved to Dunkirk, Chautauqua New York where they were enumerated in the New York State census 1875.  By 1876 Statira and the children, were back in Massachusetts. Nathan may have died in New York which prompted the move back to Massachusetts.
Luther had moved from Alfred, Maine to Roxbury, Mass sometime after the 1850 census as he married in Dorchester, Mass in October of 1856.  Luther soon chose going west for land and farming over work in the cities of Massachusetts as he and his wife and family were enumerated in the US 1860 census for Burke, Dane County Mass.
We don’t know when youngest brother, George, moved to Massachusetts, but he also lived in Brighton and died in Boston August 28, 1860.
They youngest of the Chandlers, Mary Elizabeth, was enumerated in the US 1860 census for Brighton, Middlesex, Mass, and resided in the household of her brother, Malcom.  She married George B. Chamberlin November 27, 1860 in Brighton, Massachusetts.  Her husband served as a lieutenant in the Civil War.
The children may have started out as paupers, but Malcom and Austin became prosperous ice dealers, Luther a respected nurseryman, Hewett became a Shaker leader, inventor and nurseryman. The girls married.  Statira even had a domestic servant and Mary Elizabeth’s husband was an officer in the Civil War. John probably died as baby and George died, single, at only 25.
Next issue we will have more details about the children and their descendants and a story about what it was like harvesting and selling ice in the days before refrigeration.



Carol May

A usually ignored trove of genealogical information, are records dealing with paupers, poor farms and poor houses.  The people in these records often could not be found in censuses or church records because of their impoverished status left them without a regular residence. At the very end of this article check out the websites, especially the website dedicated entitled “Mission Statement” as it is a nationwide resource dedicated to as a resource for genealogist, students, teachers and historians.

Now onto the paupers of New England —
The treatment of the poor in America has its roots in England where the town where the paupers lived was charged with the responsibility for taking care of paupers.

Examples can be found in early New England including Duxbury, where you can read about poor and old widows being boarded with families which were reimbursed for their care by the town.  The town also took charge of those who were not of sound mind, like Benjamin Chandler (Benjamin>Edmund, the immigrant). As Benjamin was well off, the town did not have to support him, but town leaders appointed a guardian for him. His guardian hired people for his care and did the accounting.

Towns were responsible for its residents, but the townspeople did not want to be burdened with poor newcomers who required support.  To avoid this, the town would issue a “warning out.”  The impoverished newcomer could be being literally thrown out of town and sent back to their original hometown to be supported there.  However, not all persons served with a “warning out” were forced to actually leave. The “warning out” served as legal announcement that the town would not be responsible for the person or persons warned out if they fell into financial difficulty
Some towns actually issued warnings out to perfectly upstanding citizens who moved to the town in sort of a preemptive strike in case the family ever fell on hard times.  It was hard enough for the townspeople to feed themselves, without the added burden of paupers or even worry of potential paupers. The problems of illegitimate children, the feeble minded having children, paupers coming in from other towns were all economic worries that towns faced.  Today people think of those early New Englanders as a bunch of uptight people fixated on condemning moral laxity, but the reality was that they were all living close to the edge and being inundated with paupers could overwhelm a town’s scarce resources.

Today we grumble about home owners’ associations, co-op boards and condo rules thinking that in the “good old days” people were free to do what they wished.

In reality in early New England, towns had a lot of control over their citizens.  If someone sold a house or property, the buyer in many cases had to be approved by the town.  The reasons could range from the practical of whether or not the newcomer could be on the way to becoming a pauper, or to the more narrow-minded of not wanting people of other religions, especially Quakers in some areas, to move in.

Even after the custom of warnings out was phased out, towns would spend time and money trying to send the pauper back to their home town. Towns would also try to bill other towns for the care of a pauper, a practice which eventually ended.

Towns practiced the “bidding out” of paupers who were town residents. Once the town determined that individuals or a family were paupers their care was “bid out” to the lowest bidder. The paupers were also expected to work for family to which they were bid out.  It was no free ride. The quality of care varied widely from good to Dickensian.

When only dealing with a few individuals, bidding out worked, but when dealing with large families, the town would often split the children up which appears what happened in the case of Reuben Chandler’s family.

Being declared a pauper was more than just a horrible social stigma.  The town could take the children away if they were impoverished or untended and place them with relatives or apprentice them out which is what happened to 6-year-old Hewett Chandler. Children were obligated to stay as apprentices until they came of age. The entire family or even just part of the family could also be “bid out” which is what happened in Reuben and Mary’s case.

Generally, women and children were bid out, but not many men as the women and children could do a wide variety of chores while the men might be disabled and not get along.

Because of the difficulty and expense of bidding out large, entire impoverished families and not wishing to have to split families up, towns began creating poor farms.

The thinking was that the creation of “poor farms” would be a more economical and practical solution for the problem of the taking care of the poor. Responsible people were put in charge of poor farms because running them not only involved care the paupers, a chunk of the town’s treasury was involved. Despite that, quality varied widely from the clean and well run to the dirty and disease ridden.

The poor farms would take in whole families, and also the infirm, the aged, the handicapped, the mentally unsound, vagrants passing through town, and children.  Usually there were more men than women as the men were single or widowed, too old or disabled to work and had no family or their family couldn’t or wouldn’t take them in. The poor housed there were called, unfortunately, “inmates.”  The idea was that the ”inmates” could work on the farm and making it at least mostly self-sustaining, the town only contributing as needed.  Another idea that sounded better than it turned out.  

When the townspeople realized that the poor farms were costing more than they saved, poor houses were the next step. A poor farm could be brimming with “inmates,” for a while then only have a few, but the farm needed upkeep and animals had to be fed just the same which became an added expense for the town. The superintendent and his wife could be flooded with people needing care to having no one to care for depending on the health and circumstances of the town’s inhabitants.

The poorhouse was more expensive to operate than a poor farm while it was being used, but less expensive when it was idle.
After abandoning poorhouses, towns in Maine tried the voucher system where the poor would apply to the town for aid and if approved would be given vouchers to use at specific merchants.  There was a stigma attached to that too, because every year when an accounting of the town’s books was done, there would be, for all to see, the list of those received aid from the town.

Also, people realized that mixing children, adolescents, the handicapped, paupers of all ages, and the mentally ill all in one place was not the best idea. In the large cities asylums for the mentally ill, and orphanages were created, which also had their own problems.
Today, being ”sent to the poor house” is just an expression, but in those days it was a frightening possibility and a threat if one did not save and practice thrift, or abused one’s health with drink, or for women, married badly.  Just as they feared Hell in the afterlife, they feared the poor house in this life.

The picture from the postcard that illustrates this story is that of the poorhouse in Rockland, Maine.  Our co-chairperson, Bob’s, ancestor, John W. Chandler ran the Rockland, Maine poorhouse or poor farm.
MISSION STATEMENT   The Poorhouse Story.  A great resource about poorhouses in America geared to genealogists.  Another great resource for breaking down your brick walls because that lost relative may have been sent their due to infirmity, being an orphan, injury, or disability. Read “Over the Hill to the Poorhouse” on this site. It is highly readable and interesting.Historical Survey of METHODS OF POOR RELIEF IN MAINEWarning out in New England : Benton, Josiah H. (Josiah Henry), 1843-1917 : Free Download & Streaming : Internet Archive   This book was originally published in 1911 and may be read online  on this web site.POOR FARM History Project | Facebook  Maine poor houses
MPR: Over the Hill to the Poor House  Minnesota Public Radio including a song about going to the poorhouse
POOR FARM History Project | Facebook This is where the picture of the Rockland, Maine poor house came from.


Benjamin M. Royal vs. Cyrus Chandler

There was a precedent setting case involving Cyrus Chandler involving property boundaries.
Cyrus Jonathan,Jr.*Jonathan>Judah>Joseph>Joseph>Edmund) was involved with a dispute over the boundary of a piece of land.  Cyrus argued that the boundaries of the land were pointed out to him by his father, Jonathan Chandler, Jr.  His father acquired the property in Auburn (then Poland) Maine on February 14, 1822.
Jonathan later conveyed property to Jonathan Lane (my comment probably his brother-in-law) and Rachel Chandler (my comment: Rachel was Cyrus’ aunt). Rachel later conveyed part of the land to Rufus C. Lane (my comment maybe a great nephew).
The precedent that was set in this case was:
“The declaration of ancient persons (my comment Jonathan Chandler, Jr.) made while in possession of land owned by them, pointing out their boundaries on the land itself and who are deceased at the time of the land are admissible evidence…”
Reports of cases in law and equity determined by the Supreme Judicial Court … – Maine. Supreme Judicial Court, John Shepley,


Our member, Sharron, alerted me to movement afoot to restrict access to the Social Security Death Index because of fears of identity theft.  It was pointed out by several genealogists among others, is that the SSDI is a great tool against identity theft because all it would take was a search of the SSDI to check if the social security number belonged to someone who was deceased.  Loss of the SSDI would also be a blow to genealogists as it is an excellent place to search for relatives who lived in more recent times.
As of this writing you can still access SSDI for free at Familysearch, but not in the free pages of Rootsweb anymore, but if you want to pay you can access it at Ancestry.  This doesn’t seem fair either.
For more information you can read:
Are We Going to Lose the Social Security Death Index (SSDI)? – Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak’s Roots World


One of the new features of Familysearch is the inclusion of the “Old Man’s Draft.”  This included men born from about 1877 to 1897 for possible drafting for duty in World War II.  It is also not complete, because most of the records for the southern states and a few other places were destroyed.
If you can find your relative, you will find a trove of information – address where that elusive relative lived, birthplace, job, employer and contact person who was usually a relative.  This information was on the front side of the card.  The backside of the card gave the person’s physical description.
Unfortunately, with the two people that I looked up, the front side of the card was mistakenly paired with the backside of someone else’s card. So I was getting a wrong physical description.
I found this out while searching for Reuben Chandler’s great-grandson, Clark Gilman Boynton. He was described as a 195 pound, 6’ 1’ black man with probably a desk job.  This would have been fine, except that in previous records Clark had been white.  So I looked up another Philadelphia area Boynton and found a Charles Boynton, born in Alabama, working as a longshoreman described as 55-years-old, 135 pounds, 5”10” with a pale complexion and gray hair. This also sounded wrong.  I figured that there had been a microfilming mix-up and maybe it was a very rare occurrence.   
When I looked up my grandfather a similar mix-up occurred. Maybe it was still a fluke, but be aware that it did happen – twice.
I found both men in Familysearch, but neither in Fold3 which serves as a reminder to look in all of the databases that you have access to. At this point, I thought that these mix-ups may be more wide spread, hence the research alert.


If you are ever passing through western Massachusetts you might want to check out Chandler’s Restaurant if only to take a picture of the sign, although it is an award winning restaurant.  I called them and asked if they were named after a specific Chandler hoping for an Edmund connection, but they said no.  They got the name for the restaurant the same way that most early Chandlers got that name because Chandlers way, way back were candle makers.  Later on Chandlers were also known as grocers and ships suppliers.
Chandler’s Restaurant is located in the Yankee Candle Flagship in South Deerfield, Massachusetts.
Chandler’s Restaurant on Vimeo



The genealogy TV show, “Who Do You Think You Are” will be back on February 3rd. It will be in the same time slot on Friday at 8 PM on NBC.  Check your listings as these things change. The third season will bring Marisa Tomei, Martin Sheen and Blair Underwood amongst others.  

For those unfamiliar with show, it traces the ancestry ( using dozens of researchers from of various celebrities and actually visits their ancestral homes, from the gold fields of California (Sarah Jessica Parker), to Belarus (Lisa Kudrow) to Italy and France (Brooke Shields).  So even if you are not particularly interested in the celebrity, you get to see some fine research (wish it were as easy as the make it look) and get a tour of various parts of the world.


Also, just being announced today is FINDING YOUR ROOTS WITH HENRY LOUIS GATES, JR., with the renowned cultural critic and Harvard scholar who also will be in attendance at the TCA/PBS Press Tour. Premiering Sunday, March 25 at 8:00 p.m., the 10-part series delves into the genealogy and genetics of famous Americans, combining history and science in a fascinating exploration of race, family, and identity in today’s America. Professor Gates shakes loose captivating stories and surprises in the family trees of Kevin Bacon, Robert Downey, Jr., Branford Marsalis, John Legend, Martha Stewart, Barbara Walters and Rick Warren, among many others

You can read or listen to more about this new genealogy series by clicking the below link to Eastman’s column below.  

January 04, 2012

“Finding Your Roots,” a 10-part Series on PBS

*Another genealogy series is about to be launched on television in the U.S. “Finding Your Roots” with historian Henry Louis Gates Jr. will launch on March 25. That will be the first episode of a 10-part series on PBS stations.

The new series will feature two people in each one-hour episode, including husband-and-wife actors Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick, who jokes she’s afraid they might turn out to be cousins. “They are indeed distant cousins,” revealed Gates. “Talk about six degrees of separation, right?”

Check your local listings for the exact time and channel in your area.

Leave a comment

Filed under Chandler Ancestors, Chandler News, General Geneology

FALL 2010 CHANDLER NEWS by Carol May

News from the Edmund Chandler Family Association

This month we have a story about Rev. Abel Chandler’s children, “haunted” places including Duxbury’s own haunted places, research sources and tips, Vermont pictures, and more.

Usually we focus on Thanksgiving this time of year because in addition to being a national holiday, it is special to us because of our Pilgrim connection.  However, fall also has Halloween, so this time for fun you can check out a few “haunted” places instead.

Our member Billie made another trip east, but not to her “adopted hometown, Duxbury” so no Duxbury news, but Billie did write that she is still on the Joseph and Capt. John research project.  She wants to rework parts of it and then submit it to the Alden Kindred, which I think includes the Mayflower people, and to the powers that in Duxbury who have the authority to authorize the plaque.

Billie took the pictures these Chandler sites in Vermont.  We will feature her Minot, Maine pictures in a future issue. I also want to do a story on Elisha Otis, descendant of Lucy Chandler for the next issue which will be our winter issue which should be out sometime in January.

Happy Thanksgiving and a very early Merry Christmas and we should see you in January!


Old Wells Farm

View back of the barn, Wells farm, Halifax, VT

Most Vermont Edmund Chandler descendants descend from his son Benjamin. However, we have found Galen who descends from “mystery” Zebedee descendant, and two daughters of Nathaniel Chandler, who we believe descend from Edmund’s son, Joseph, who also lived in Vermont.  The two daughters were Zerviah Chandler (proven), who married Hubble Wells and Lucy Chandler, through compelling circumstantial evidence, who married Stephen Otis.

Vermont is a real challenge to navigate. Fortunately, Billie and husband had directions and the newly bought Garmin GPS or her vacation may have been greatly extended by getting lost in the maze of back country roads.  When we think of towns, we think of stores, restaurants, etc., but in Vermont some of those old “towns” are just very old farm houses scattered amongst the big trees with maybe one or two old buildings marking the “center” of town. So with a warning to look out for bears, Billie and husband set out and took these pictures and wrote:

Gravestones for Deacon Jonathan Wells (son of Hubbel Wells and Zerviah Chandler) and wife, Catherine. If you look between these two gravestones, the Elisha Otis marker is visible in the background

“Next we visited the Whitneyville Cemetery, north of Halifax Center, searching for the grave of Lucy (Chandler) Otis and her husband, Stephen. Constance told me that they were buried here, not in the Center Cemetery as town records indicate. She recalled that all that was left was a small footstone marked “L.O.,” and another marked “S.O.,” but we couldn’t find them. She assured me that they were by the Waters family gravestones…and we located all of those…so maybe we were at her gravesite after all (albeit with no visible stone).

“In the Halifax Center Cemetery we found the grave of Jonathan Wells (son of Hubbel Wells and Zerviah Chandler), and the large marker commemorating Elisha Otis (inventor of the elevator), the grandson of Lucy Chandler Otis. We drove up Collins Road in Halifax and I photographed the original Wells farm. It was another beautiful Vermont farm, just north of what would have been the village center in the old days. It is labeled Halifax West on a map, but today there is not much here. The old meeting house where Hubbel Wells held forth as Town clerk and moderator is currently the elementary school and historical society”


This source was passed onto James then to me by someone who enjoyed our website and used as it as a teaching aid in the classroom:

Another great source that I came upon while researching is a free Massachusetts vital records link from 1600 to1850.

For those of you searching Illinois records, many free vital records can be found at this site, contributed by Barb:

Do you think that you may have a Loyalist in your family tree?  As far as I know there were no Edmund descendants that were Loyalists; however, there were several William and Annis Chandler descendants who were Loyalists. Contributed by Barb.

Avoiding a Research Pitfall

Not all ancestors were named after a family member or a friend, some were named after then famous people, whose names we wouldn’t recognize now.  A simple Google search will help you determine if your ancestor was named after a famous person.

It became popular during the 19th century to name children after famous people.  Several of us got tripped up by Elbridge Gerry Chandler.  No, he wasn’t related to the Elbridge Gerry who was the governor of Massachusetts and who inspired the term gerrymandering, but he was named after him.  Many parents named their children after Elbridge Gerry during that era and then their children were often named after the parent who was named after Elbridge Gerry so it can get complicated.

I recently came across the name Adoniram Judson (also spelled Judgson) Chandler and then I came across Adoniram Judson Merrill.  Related! A Eureka moment! No, they were both named after the first American foreign missionary, Adoniram Judson.  After more research it turned out that Adoniram Judson (or Judgson) Chandler wasn’t an Edmund descendant, but I did learn to do a Google search on names from the experience. The tip off should have been that the whole name was used.

More Census Search Tips

Are you checking more than one census source when you hit a brick wall?  You should. Because not all censuses contain the same information as they were transcribed by different people and also the different census sources allow different ways of searching – first name, last name, age, birthplace, county, location and more.

Due to modern technology, previously unreadable censuses have been cleaned up so now you can read them.  Ancestry has cleaned censuses. If you couldn’t find your guy in the census, go back again and check all of the census sources that you can. Go to the census images and don’t just rely on the transcriptions!

I use Heritage Quest, which I get free at home on line from my local library, Familysearch, Familysearch pilot, and Familysearch beta which are also free and online for everyone to use. Don’t forget that many states also have censuses and many of those are now available.   You can also get a little free info from the paid site, Utilize each census site’s different research capabilities. The Familysearch sites and Ancestry use Soundex, but Heritage Quest does not.  Due to transcriber errors, your ancestor may show up on one of these sites, but not another.

The three main ways that people are “lost” in the censuses that I have found are:

1. Part of the family is listed on one page of the census image and your guy is on the next page and he just got left off the transcription.  So go to the next image page and find out if he is there.

2. Transcribers occasionally are unable to decipher a first name or last name correctly or a name may have been misspelled, or just initial were used, or nicknames, or first and middle names were transposed. For first names, search by last name, age and place and then start scanning the names.  Misspelled last names are trickier. On Heritage Quest you can narrow your search to a small area and one census year and just scan everyone listed, or narrow your search further by scanning for first names in that small area, hoping to come across your ancestor’s misspelled or incorrectly transcribed last name. Heritage Quest is literal and does not use Soundex, so using a broad search method works well there.

3. If you found your ancestor in an earlier census, but he or she seems to disappear, check the census records for the children as an older person may have gone to live with one of his or her children.  Transcribers often will record the family of say, Smith, but will leave Grandma or Grandpa Chandler out as the surname is different. Go to the census image.


I am hoping to work on the databases with the guru that I have lined up in November.  That’s the plan.  We were recently contacted by our sister group, The Chandler Family Association about the databases. The CFA  started out with just the descendants of John Chandler of 1610 Jamestown, Virginia, but have since expanded to include all Chandlers (we take care of the Edmund descendants) because many southern Chandlers turned out not to have been descended from John Chandler of Jamestown.

They have access to our databases that are online now, but in the future after our databases are updated we are talking about sharing access of our updated databases with their lead genealogists.  It would not be accessible by more than 2 or 3 people in their group.  We, and they, are sensitive about our respective databases as we don’t want them misused or taken over by some company for their use.  In return, I would like to have access to their New England section as they plan to enlarge their area of Chandler research worldwide!  It should make Chandler research easier in the future as time won’t be lost researching a person who turns out not to descend from our Duxbury Chandlers.  I have researched a lot of those!  I will keep you posted. If you have comments or suggestions about this, send them to us.


If you missed episodes of the genealogy TV show “Who Do You Think You Are?” hosted by “Friends” star, Lisa Kudrow, you can now catch them on line until January 10, 2011 at:

This is NBC’s site.  As the show has been renewed, new episodes should most likely appear on NBC early next year.


As this is the time of year for haunted, spooky places, you might want to check this website out to see if your town has a haunted place. Our founder, James, found this site.

Duxbury’s Haunted Places

Duxbury has its share of stories about “haunted” houses and “haunted” places.  You can read about a couple of them below.  The then new occupants of the Isaac Chandler house on Powder Point Rd. spent the first few days worried if their house was haunted, Isaac maybe? (You can read about that house in a past issue of the Courier.)

The Sun Tavern

One place in Duxbury revels in its “ghost” year round. That is the Sun Tavern (found on the Shadowlands site) on 500 Congress Street.  Its full service bar may contribute to keeping the story going.  It was built as a residence in 1741.  The last full time resident was a hermit named Lysander Walker who unfortunately killed himself in the house in 1928.  It became a summer home of the Rev. Francis Keegan and then in the early 1930s Mary  Hackett turned the home into a restaurant.  Over the years several subsequent owners of the restaurant noted disturbances and strange occurrences supposedly caused by the spirit of Lysander Walker.

If you go to the restaurant, you will get the whole ghost story on your place mat.  Some of the ghostly disturbances that have been reported are cold spots and tables turned over. Wonder if that happens more on the full bar side than on the restaurant side?

The Alden House

Every October the Alden house presents its annual haunted house and haunted trail at the historic Alden house. The Alden house is just north of the old Chandler neighborhood at 105 Alden St. in  Duxbury.   It is family friendly event , so if you plan a trip to Duxbury, the kids can visit the haunted house without being overly scared.  Check the Alden site for the date. During the warm months, the house is open to the public for tours and you can visit Aunt Polly’s gift shop.

As the Alden house’s origins date back to the 17th century, it has had ample opportunity to generate ghost stories.  John and Priscilla Alden (of the Henry Wadsworth Longfellow poem, The Courtship of Myles Standish) settled on the property in 1632.  It was home to generations of Aldens. Apparently, the head ghost is Aunt Polly, who died at age 93 in 1882. However, for the purpose of the haunted house, they have several ghosts to choose from.

The Weston House

“King Caesar” Weston’s house, 120 King Caesar Rd. Duxbury,  has had its share of tragic deaths which gave rise to stories that the place was haunted. Eerie noises and shrieks were reported, so apparently not like the more family friendly ghosts of the Alden house. King Caesar was actually Ezra Weston and was a Duxbury ship builder during its ship building heyday. At one time he was the largest shipowner in America. The house is now a museum dedicated to early shipbuilding and is owned by the Duxbury Rural Historical Society.

The Spookiest of the Spooky Massachusetts Places

Two really scary looking places, haunted or not, are the old Monson State Hospital in Palmer, Massachusetts and especially the Danvers State Hospital in Danvers, Massachusetts. I came across Monson and then Danvers while doing some research a while back. If there is an architectural style called “haunted aslyum” Danvers is it with Monson second. Danvers with its elaborate Victorian Gothic style, and Monson with its abandoned buildings and houses surrounded by trees give one the creeps especially if you imagine what they must look like during a storm at night.  Danvers was built on the Kirkbride plan, which was once described as laid out like a flying bat, with the main section its body and head. Leaving the scary architecture aside, thousands of people went through the doors of those old hospitals, some were cured and some poor unfortunates spent their lives there and were buried in the back with only a number on their grave.

There were so many wild stories about Monson that I set about trying to find the real story and got an unexpected short history of Massachusetts health care as well.

Only one part of Monson  is still being used and that is for mentally disabled children. It is, from all reports, a fine institution located across the road from the abandoned section. The entire site contains 46 buildings and 7 major structures all scattered amongst the trees on 6,710 acres of land. That is not a typo.

Monson started out in the 19th century as an almshouse (poorhouse) then became a hospital.  Part became a general hospital, part a TB ward, part an epileptic ward, part was a home for the severely disabled, and part was an insane asylum. There are remnants from its days as an insane asylum — straight jackets, tubs for water treatments, iron rings for restraints which have all fallen into creepy, abandoned disrepair scattered about.  The state of Massachusetts owns it and dilengently patrols it keep people from venturing into the abandoned grounds.

Danvers served as a psychiatric hospital, or lunatic asylum to use the words of the time, until 1992. The original and noble intent was for the mentally ill to live in the country and work in the fields in order to recover. There was some resentment by the locals at the time of the hospital’s elaborate buildings. For some reason, the 19th century became the great age of the asylum.

Unfortunately, in the early 20th century Danvers became very overcrowded, understaffed with all of the attendant ills that those conditions cause and was the site of now abandoned medical procedures. However, in modern times according to a someone who worked there for many years until it closed, it had entertainment, a movie theatre, dancing, and arts and crafts, a farm, the place was a self-contained city. It was not perfect, but not the place of some of the wild stories told about it  Sadly when it closed some of the patients ended up on the street.  He said it was the mystique and architecture that  fostered many of the stories.

Afterclosing it was used as a movie site, it figures, and then part of it was torn down and the rest has been turned into cheery apartments and condos, complete with recreational facilities.  A little too creepily cheery for me. Living there now would certainly be a conversation starter, or stopper.



History of Danvers including an interview of a former employee

Danvers now restored as the spiffy Avalon apartments


A glimpse of Monson’s early days:

Monson now abandoned:

As I added the last word to the article, the word being “Danvers” I was notified of a computer malfunction, but the work was saved. True and a little spooky.  Happy belated Halloween!

Leave a comment

Filed under Chandler Ancestors, Chandler News, General Geneology


News from the Edmund Chandler Family Association

As promised this month you will get the scoop on the Southern California Genealogical Society’s Jamboree including ways to break down your brick walls. Over 1700 people attended the three day Jamboree to visit the many booths and hear lectures by experts from all over the country.

The Isaac Chandler house of Duxbury is featured this month. Also, Duxbury news including an update on the plaque, DNA news, military research tips, and more!

We  welcome a new member, Paul, from Florida. I don’t know his lineage yet, other than being an Edmund descendant, but will ask.


Billie is refining and will reprint her document on Joseph Chandler, son of Edmund, the immigrant, and Joseph’s grandson, Capt. John. She has added larger maps and pictures to her report and the final result should go to the Alden Kindred and the Town Historian of Duxbury among others.

She is also working on tracing the land owned by Nathaniel Chandler, her ancestor. Nathaniel Chandler is one of our “mystery” Chandlers. He owned land in the old Chandler neighborhood which was Joseph and Capt. John’s homestead area. We think he was Capt. John’s brother. Nathaniel also owned his homestead farm in the North Hill area of Duxbury. She is tracing that land. Land owned by the Chandlers was sold or traded back and forth over the generations within the family which makes tracing their land difficult because they did usually did not record the transactions until the land left the family. It was the land records which solved the Capt. John Chandler mystery and land records may shed further light on Nathaniel.


Billie is also spearheading the historical plaque project which would honor Joseph Chandler and family and probably also nephew Benjamin’s contribution to the town of Duxbury. Billie says that the proof will be in the document that she is working on. Then it will be submitted for approval. The heart of the town — the town buildings, the cemetery and the meeting house — all sit on what was land once owned by Joseph. The first school was built on land donated by Benjamin Chandler.


This is just speculating, but could Edmund’s father have been named Samuel? It has long been believed that Edmund and Roger were related and both had sons named Samuel. If they were brothers, and we know the way the Chandlers loved to honor their relatives and we know how naming patterns worked, could Samuel have been Edmund’s father’s name? Again, this is just speculation, so please don’t enter this in your databases. It is just something to contemplate and be on the look out for.

Speaking of speculation, newcomers please note that Edmund Chandler was not the son of John Chandler and Jane Gitton. Mary Chandler Lowell thought he probably was in her book, but folks took her speculation as fact and ran with it. We don’t know who his parents were. It is all over the Internet that they were John and Jane, but it is wrong. If you read our member, Dick’s, explanation on the first page of our website you can find out why. Go to the left hand side and click “Where Did Edmund Chandler Originate From?”

Unfortunately, Edmund was born at a time when birth records were just starting to be kept so his birth may not have been recorded. Also, some records were destroyed over the years and lastly, dissenters may not have wished to have their children’s births recorded in Church of England baptismal books and may have maintained their own books. Those records may have been lost.

However, we are still looking and we are also tackling the issue through DNA testing. If we get a match with an English Chandler or a Chandler with a known pedigree in England we may get our answer that way.


We are now trying to broaden our DNA knowledge beyond descendants of Edmund’s sons, Joseph and Benjamin, by testing a Roger Chandler of Concord, Mass descendant. Roger of Concord, has been speculated as the son of Roger Chandler of Duxbury who is believed to have been related to Edmund. A match could between a Roger of Concord testee and the Edmund group would bolster that theory.

We also want to test a descendant of Zebedee Chandler, born c. 1712 and died 1777 in Plympton, Mass to confirm that he was a descendant of Edmund, the immigrant. There is a small possibility that he could have descended from another Chandler family. As Zebedee is one of our “mystery” Chandlers, it would help with that research to be able to confirm that he was or was not a descendant of Edmund. Announcements about our offer went out in July to the boards and various genealogy groups.

I believe that Dick has found a Roger descendant to test, but we are still seeking a Zebedee of Plympton, Mass descendant to test. Roger’s test is being paid for by a generous donation and our group is offering to pay for a descendant of Zebedee’s test.

If you know of a male Chandler with a documented, unbroken male line going back to Zebedee Chandler of Plympton, let us know.

Results of these tests will help us with our research.


We all are familiar with That is probably the first place that we looked online when we started tracing our ancestors, but quickly gave up on after encountering so many mistakes in the family trees.

Well folks, they have changed. Previously, I wrote about the Familysearch Pilot which only contains vital records, censuses and the like, but change is upon us again.

The information from Familysearch Pilot and Familysearch is being merged into their Familysearch Beta site. I found this out from the Familysearch booth at the Jamboree. When completed the pilot site will be gone.

Most, but not all, of the records will be free. Why so? Familysearch does not own all of the indexed records on the new site. Regular membership as well as the premium membership are free and allow you to access information that you would not ordinarily be able to do so. However, with the premium membership you are also allowed to access paid sites. To get a premium membership you are required to do indexing or belong to a contributing group. More information is available about this on the beta site.

The beta site is a work in progress so parts may not work at times. It is also interactive. You can actually complain about an omission, error in their records, a glitch in their system, or make a suggestion for improvement and get a reply!

From what I understand, the new site will allow corrections to trees by their creators, something the old site never allowed and which drove us all crazy and ultimately away.

So take advantage of the pilot site while it is up and try the new beta site. The feature that I most like about the pilot site is filtering. You can enter the name Chandler then Ohio for example and then further whittle down your choices by dates, i.e. 1830-1840, gender, names by initial, collection i.e. census records by year, birth records and more.

I have made many discoveries in the short time that I have used it. Ever have an ancestor named James, for example, and been unable to find him? If you use the first letter of the name option, you may find him under “Jas” or “Jim” or J.W or whatever his middle initial was. Or even Warren J. or another first name with “J” being the middle initial.

My favorite feature, so far, about the beta site is “residence.” Before you could only search for birth or death, now you have the residence option, put in the locales and approximate dates where your ancestor lived and get even more information.

They get their information from a variety of sources so when you see Maine easy or Vermont easy for a birth or marriage record they did not access one giant repository. Rather, they created their own giant repository from all sorts of local records. You will probably recognize some of the information even though the source was not named individually. If you get images, great, but if you get transcriptions, there may be errors which may mean an eventual trip to the courthouse basement to see the original record.

So this is a great, great new resource, but it still won’t completely take the place of wading through the weeds at a cemetery to read an inscription or looking at original records.

ANCESTRY.COM is a very useful, but expensive subscription resource. Sometimes they are the only place that you can get certain records other than a trip to a courthouse basement, cemetery or the LDS library in Salt Lake.

However, the library version which is often found free at your local library is not the same as the home version. I had the chance to try both versions out at the Jamboree. I noticed that the home version demo was easier to use and more complete than the library version.

While at a genealogy meeting, I heard that the census indexes on Ancestry are being outsourced to India and China! This may explain some of the errors.

The LDS is relies on volunteers to do its indexing, but no matter who does the indexing there will be errors. If you find them on the LDS sites, report them so that they may be fixed. I have found that Heritage Quest (also free at many libraries), the LDS censuses and the censuses sometimes differ.  If you can’t find your ancestor on one of these sites, try another site.


For our New England ancestors we rely on town or local historical societies like the Duxbury Rural Historical Society to find the exact house or location where our ancestors lived. Or in our group’s case, we relied on our member, Billie, to plow through hundreds of deeds to finally locate Edmund, the immigrant’s, son Joseph’s house.

However if you are searching for the mid-western farm of your ancestor and wish to see it outlined on a Google satellite map, there is another way. Ancestry is offering a county atlas which can be overlaid on a Google Earth satellite picture and from there you can outline your ancestor’s farm. You look for township boundaries, streams, roads and railroads that have survived to the present day to locate the farm and overlay the map. It does take some doing and knowledge of which features to use on the Google Earth maps, but once those settings are in place, it is not hard lining up the old map with the satellite picture. If you want to know more let me know.


Quick, do you know who the largest publisher in the world is?

Answer: The US government.

I thought that I was doing a pretty good job researching with my sources, but found that I had barely touched the surface of what is available. Not everything is available online, but you may be directed to a library or source which has the material for which you are seeking. The audience was told by Curt Witcher, Manager of the Genealogy Center of the Allen County Public if you ask the librarian of whichever library you wish to seek answers from very nicely, and very specifically he or she may look it up for you. The Allen County Public Library in Indiana is one of the largest genealogical libraries in the country.

Here are some sources, some for military subjects and some for everything that Curt Witcher spoke about:


This is the largest free bibliographic database (1.5 billion records) in the world. They access information from 12,000 libraries. You can an even search a specific military unit there.

The Library of Congress Catalog

National Union Catalog of Manscript Collections known as “Nuk Muk” for NUCMC.

Some of their collections are online and some while not online, but often have very detailed descriptions which may answer your question.

American Memory – You can search for specific battalions and more.

Chronicling American Historic Newspapers

Veteran’s history 20th century.

“A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation.” You can find pensions and relief for pensions here.

If my notes are accurate, the Library of Congress has the “Ask a Librarian Service” which will respond in a day or two. Again, you have to have a very specific question.

The National Park Service

That may elicit a “What?” but many national parks and monuments consist of former battlefields and they may have information about who fought there.

Other sites of interest:

This site has US Army history

This is a fantastic site that has much more than military records, but old historical books which may have information about your ancestor. I have found books on Duxbury here.

This is from the TV channel, but you can look up all sorts of historical events on their site.

This is a more modern site, but contains letters written by soldiers.

Lastly, Curt Witcher’s library

That’s all until next time. Please share your breakthroughs, your questions and other interesting tidbits of information. If you have an interesting Chandler story or picture let Barb know so she can put it in the Courier.

Leave a comment

Filed under Chandler News, General Geneology


Understanding migration routes your ancestors took, who they traveled with, and where they settled is yet another instrument in your genealogical toolbox.

Westward migration started when the colonists landed in America. Some went inland a couple hundred miles in search of land they where they could raise crops. In 1790, 97% of Americans lived on the East Coast. Between 1841 and 1866 it is estimated that 350,000 to 500,000 people migrated westward.

Migration routes tended to go westward or southward. People usually traveled with relatives, friends or, neighbors and followed the same route as their ancestors. Before there were roads, people usually traveled along waterways, railroad routes, or Indian trails.

Some of the more popular migration routes are;

(1) Northeast of the Mississippi

(a)    National Road that extended from Maryland, Pennsylvania,

West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, to Illinois. Appx. 780 miles

(b)   Boston Post Road extended from the New England region

into New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, and into

the Southern States. Appx. 800 miles

(c)    Old Connecticut Path: From Boston west by southwest

through Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New York, has

two ending points in Hartford and Albany. 290 miles

(d)   Iroquois or Mohawk Trail: West from Albany along the

Mohawk River through Utica and Rome with a branch

going through Fort Oswego to Lake Ontario. 190 miles

(e)    Forbes Road: Pennsylvania route stretched from Carlisle to

the Forks of the Ohio River around present day Pittsburgh.

200 miles

(f)     Great Warrior’s Trading Path: Through the Shenandoah

Valley covering Virginia and Tennessee. 250 miles

(g)    Chicago Road: From Lake Michigan south by southwest

through Peoria and Springfield, east of St.Louis to

Kaskaskia on the Missouri River. Appx. 350 miles

(2) Migration Trails Southeast of the Mississippi

(a)    Natchez-Lower Creeks Trail: East across lower Mississippi

and lower Alabama to Montgomery. 380 miles

(b)   Natchez Trace (Chickasaw Trail): From Natchez,

Mississippi north by northeast to Nashville, Tennessee.

380 miles

(c)    Jackson’s Military Road: From Nashville south by

southwest through Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, and

ending in Louisiana at Lake Ponchartrain. 445 miles

(d)   Federal Road: Began in Macon, Georgia and extended

southwest ending in Natchez, Mississippi. Appx. 380 miles

(e)    Great Indian path (also known as the Scioto Trail): Straight

south from Sandusky Bay, on Lake Erie along the Scioto

River to Portsmouth on the Ohio River. 220 miles

(3) Migration Trails West of the Mississippi

(a)    Royal Road (also known as El Camino Real): The 600

mile California Mission Trail that connected Alta’s

California 21 missions, 4 presidios, and several pueblos,

stretching from Mission San Francisco Sononma southward

into Baja California.

(b)   Spanish Trail: This was a historical trade route which

connected the northern New Mexico settlements near Santa

Fe with those in the region surrounding the present site of

Los Angeles. Appx. 1,200 miles

(c)    Gila Trail: Gila Trail follows river. It comes up from

Mexico along the San Pedro River, just west of Bisbee,

Arizona, until the river’s confluence with the Gila River,

then follows that westward to Yuma, Arizona. A branch of

the Gila Trail goes eastward along the Yuma River to the

San Pedro River, then follows the San Francisco River to

just over the state border into New Mexico, thence north to

Zuni, New Mexico. Appx. 1,500 miles

(d)   Old San Antonio Road: This trail is located in Texas and

Louisiana. Parts of it were based on traditional Native

American trails. Its Texas terminus was about 35 miles

southeast of Eagle Pass at the Rio Grande in Maverick

County, and its northern terminus was at Natchitoches,

Louisiana. The road continued from Texas through to

Mexico City. Appx. 587 miles.

(e)    Oregon Trail: The trail opened the Pacific Northwest. The

Oregon Trail was the overland emigrant trail for the

Missouri River to the Columbia River country, Oregon

Territory. Like all western trails it tended to follow rivers

where possible. It followed the Missouri River from St.

Louis to the Kansas River near Independence, Missouri,

then that river to the Little Blue River where it joined the

Platte River. It took the North Platte in western Nebraska to

the present Casper, Wyoming, followed the Sweetwater

River to South Pass, and then went southwest to Fort

Bridger Wyoming. At this point the trail split with the

Mormon Trail, which continued southwest to the Great Salt

Lake, while the Oregon Trail went northwest to Fort Hall,

near Pocatello, Idaho. Over the Blue Mountains in

northeaster Oregon, then down the Columbia River to

Willamette Valley, where the early settlers finished their

journey. Appx. 2,170 miles

(f)     Mormon Trail: The Mormon trail followed the North banks

of the Platte and North Platte Rivers, unlike the Oregon

Trail which followed the South banks. West of Fort

Laramie, however, the two trails united and followed the

same track until the Mormon Trail turned southwestward

toward the Great Salt Lake. Appx. 1,300 milestoward the Great Salt Lake. Appx. 1,300 miles[1]

[1] Westward Migration and Genealogical Research in the United States

Leave a comment

Filed under General Geneology