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Aroostook War research

Aroostook War research

Posted: 9 Mar 2011 6:45PM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: Milan
I have read several threads on the Aroostook War so I am sure someone out there can point me in the right direction for my research.
How do I acquire the military roster and pay roll records for 1840 1842? I am trying to solve a family mystery and would appreciate any help folks can provide.
My gggrandfather Thomas Milan was born in 1840 in Hancock County. His death certificate states that his father was Patrick Milan who was "foreign born". Another document I have states Patrick was from Northern Ireland.

My grandfather (Frank Milan) told me that his grandfather (Thomas) explained to him that Patrick had fought in the Aroostook War and had died in Houlton while he was in his twenties. I can find no record of Patrick ever serving in the war but have found a William Milan who died at Hancock Barracks in 1842 just after the treaty was signed. I have found no record of a "William Milan" ever existing in Hancock County at all. I have found the Enlistment Roster identifing William, but no other documents to support this information as factual.

I believe that William and Patrick are one and the same person so I need some help proving/disproving this theory. I found a Patrick Milan who was baptised in Ireland in 1818 and I believe that my ggggrandfather was born between 1815-1818. I believe that he immigrated to present day Maine in the mid to late 1830's as he (Patrick) married my ggggrandmother in 1839. Thomas was born in 1840 and my ggggrandmother remarried in 1845. I am thinking that Patrick arrived after the 1830 census and because of his enlistment in 1840, he isn't listed anywhere in the 1840 census. Since he died in 1842, he was never identified in any US Census.
I am in hopes that payroll and muster records will provide useful information that can solve my mystery.
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Re: Aroostook War research

Posted: 12 Mar 2011 6:45PM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: Milan
I know of two general books on the Aroostook War. The better of the two (containing quotes and extracts from primary records) is Geraldine Tidd Scott's _Ties of Common Blood_; Bowie, MD: Heritage Books, Inc., 1992.

Ms. Scott used many types of sources to identify units and persons involved in the conflict.

None of the rosters she shows mention a person with a Milan-type surname.

Of course it is possible that she overlooked some surviving records.

On the other hand, all free white able-bodied males aged roughly 16 to 60 (varies by time and place) were expected to be available for County militia duty within the County, although most did not have any active duty service. It could well be that a local fort was garrisoned on a rotating basis during a perceived threat, but that a threat did not materialize in that time and place.

The problem of family stories is one that many of us tangle with. People who tell something long after the facts may be blending a partially recalled story with their own conclusions. If my time machine were working, I could get answers to many questions.

If you want to locate surviving rosters from this time period, a trip to the Maine State Archives in Augusta would be on your to-do list.

Good hunting!

Re: Aroostook War research

Posted: 14 Mar 2011 4:41PM GMT
Classification: Query
Thank you for taking the time to respond. Unfortunately my attempts to learn more at the Maine State Archives was unsuccessful. Records for the Aroostook War seem to be scarce and incomplete.

Do you, Or anyone else out there, know whether an actual form or card is fill out by an enlistee back in 1840? As I mentioned earlier, the only thing I was able to find was the enlistment report and that was filled out by a clerk, not the person actually enlisting. The Milan that I found was listed as William. The name on the list previous to his was William as well and there were several Williams on this single list. I am questioning whether the clerk misquoted the name when filling out the report. If there is an enlistment card or something that the enlistee actually singed, that would help me out.

Also, I thought that pay records might help me as well but I have not been able to locate those either. The national records seem to jump from 1812 to the indian wars in the mid 1840's.

Lastly, since my grandfather learned the information from his grandfather directly and it was his father that had died, I feel fairly certain that at least the fact of his death in the Aroostook War is accurate. I did also find a news article about my gggrandfather Thomas being wounded in the Civil War and it identified his father as dying in the Aroostook War but it didn't list his name.
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