It’s a compliment when people who attend your meeting say they want more time to look at the displays.

That’s the comment that organizers of Maine Old Cemetery Association meetings are hearing — and they’re listening.

Check out the MOCA archives material, the Marble Cemetery Records covering many towns, gravestone rubbings and whatever else catches your interest when the group meets on Saturday, Oct. 4, at Dirigo High School in Dixfield.

Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. for $3, with Dixfield historian Peter R. Stowell speaking on “Some Colorful & Industrious Citizens in Dixfield’s Past” at 9:15 a.m.

Visit the displays at 10 a.m., and attend the MOCA annual meeting at 11 a.m. Lunch at noon is $5, no reservations needed.

Stowell will give a tour of Dixfield cemeteries at 1 p.m., or you may choose to visit the Dixfield Historical Society.

To join MOCA and receive its newsletter — which I recommend — the cost is $5 for one

year, $20 for five years or $100 for a life membership, sent to MOCA, P.O. Box 641, Augusta, ME 04332-0641.

• • •

DNA and genealogy will be the focus of Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak, author of “Trace Your Roots with DNA: Using Genetic Tests to Explore Your Family Tree,” in a keynote speech and workshops at the Saturday, Sept. 20, meeting of the Maine Genealogical Society. “Linking to Your Family’s History” will be held at the Wyndham Portland Airport Hotel in South Portland.

Registration begins at 8 a.m., and registration is $75.

Add $25 for the luncheon buffet.

Make checks payable in U.S. funds to the Maine Genealogical Society, P.O. Box 221, Farmington, ME 04938.

For info on the conference, visit

• • •

In conjunction with Guilford Historical Society’s 25th anniversary, the society is launching <b.“Biographical Sketches of Guilford, Maine, 2009,” in order to collect biographical information on everyone currently living in Guilford.

The collection will be an important genealogical resource for future generations. To be included, fill out a simple form and return it to the historical society.

The form is self-explanatory. The data requested include birth date and place, parents’ names, married to, children’s names, service record and a biography of up to 100 words. You can add up to 150 more words for 5 cents a word. The limit is 250 words.

Forms may be picked up noon-4 p.m. Saturdays through October, including during the society’s Harvest Fair on Saturday, Oct. 4. Return the forms there or mail them to Guilford Historical Society, P.O. Box 893, Guilford, ME 04443.

• • •

The first meeting of the fall season of the Washington County Genealogical Society will be held 1-3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 20, at Peabody Memorial Library, 162 Main St., Jonesport.

William Plaskon, president of the Jonesport Historical Society, will talk about the Dr. Leonard Tibbetts collection that has been given to that society — 75 boxes of data from 75 years of research. Wow.

He also will discuss the genealogical materials that have been put on computer databases and housed at the library for use by the general public.

The databases contain more than 60,000 names from vital records, cemeteries and newspapers. Researchers interested in western Washington County genealogical research — especially the Jonesport-Beals-Addison areas — would benefit from attending this presentation. All are welcome.

The Penobscot County Genealogical Society will meet at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 17, in the Lecture Hall at Bangor Public Library.

Debbie Roberge will share her research into the men from Maine who were held in the Civil War’s most infamous Confederate Prisoner of War camp in Andersonville, Ga.

Camp Sumter, a 26½-acre facility commonly known as Andersonville Prison, was one of the largest prisons operated by the Confederacy during the Civil War. At one time, the prison housed more than 32,000 Union soldiers, with nearly 13,000 men dying over a 14-month period.

Send genealogy queries to Family Ties, Bangor Daily News, P.O. Box 1329, Bangor, ME 04402; or e-mail queries to

Roxanne Moore Saucier

Family Ties columnist