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Pelham - Windham News 2 - May 6, 2011


Pelham Historical Society Presents News Online Initiatives, Gives Civil War Talk


by Robyn Hatch The Pelham Historical Society recently held their monthly meeting in the original Pelham Public Library, organized by William “Spike” Hayes. Pelham and the Historical Society are trying to make an interesting transition from a typical library to a state-of-the-art digital one, thereby eliminating costs and making much more available for research and history. The Pelham Historical Society was pleased to present the contents of their Hayes-Genoter History and Genealogy Online Library to its members via the Internet, which contains a variety of materials pertaining to the history and families of Pelham collected over a lifetime by Hayes and then put in digital format on a Website and created by Karen Genoter, Director of Computer Services for the Pelham Historical Society. Making these items digital was necessary, as many of Pelham’s early records have been


Civil War gun, water pouch, and photos and maps


destroyed, misplaced, or stolen. Hayes and Genoter ended up receiving the


2009 Research Award from the Historical Societies of New Hampshire for their online library initiative. They were the first to receive such an award in this category, dedicated to local history in the state of New Hampshire. This library is now noted as the most comprehensive library in such a small town, covering most the most history and genealogy in the country in such a small location. The library will boast the latest in digital


conversion technology, documentation software, and the Internet, granting historians and genealogists access to this highly complete pages of documents, publicity, and photos to the town of Pelham were now possible. Also, because this library has now gone digital with its information, expenses are being kept down and information is now current. There is an estimated increase expected over the next five years.


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In addition to the monthly meeting agenda and the online library presentation, an advertised talk on the Civil War drew a large crowd, from Pelham government officials to Carrolyn Law, who was the First Secretary of the Pelham Historical Society. Artifacts were nicely displayed under glass, with wall-to-wall marble


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Civil War artifacts


lists of the Pelham veterans with appropriate war dates. The Civil War talk’s speaker, Steven Robert Closs, has been a serious student of the Civil War for the past 20 years, and a member of the New Hampshire Historical Societies and National Historical Societies. He and his wife, Judy, devote their time to research and involvement with the Civil War, lectures, and public speakings with historical societies. His latest book, Rolling Sacrifice, was on display and talked about in his presentation. The statement that came up the most was the fact that so many Pelham people actually fought and died in the Civil War. Why were they never recorded or listed? It seems that the counts were never accurate, due to the times and the confusion of the uniform colors. This was actually a big issue and over the years, it was changed. The Civil War, which took place from the 1860s to 1880s, was inevitable, and the focus was still on the individual states. Thirty-nine thousand from New Hampshire went to war and lost the first great defeat at Fredericksburg. It seems that unless a war was won with a big defeat, not much mention was really made on what happened.


RH Civil War-1 – William “Spike” Hayes, President of Pelham


Awards and medals for Charles Hobbs (1917-1918, Pelham)


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