Welcome to the Falmouth Library's page designed to shed light on the role women played in the American Civil War. As we approach the Sesquicentennial of the War, we will be sharing resources and information about this topic, focusing specifically on the role Maine women played during the war.
I heard back from the National Archives where I had requested Esther Graves' penion record. They were very sorry, but apparently, when they did a search, all they found was a note that her documents had gone missing in 1910. How disappointing!
Esther Graves of Bowdoinham was a Civil War nurse that I recently became acquainted with. I had heard stories of a "Miss Graves" from Maine that served as a nurse, but I couldn't find any more than that until recently someone identified her as being from Bowdoinham. With that clue, I was able to find much more information about her. Esther Graves was born January 28, 1821 and died in January of 1889. She served first as a field nurse with the 3rd Maine Regiment and then with the 7th Brigade Hospital near Alexandria, Virginia. She eventually made her way south to South Carolina and Port Royal Island. She is spoken of as the "Florence Nightingale" of Maine and "Bowdoinham's most noble and patriotic woman" in The History of Bowdoinham by Silas Adams. I have sent for more information from the National Archives and if I find out more, I will let you all know.