This Portland, Maine state contract military waist belt was destined for issue to a Maine recruit then finds its way to use by a Confederate soldier. Most likely removed from a fallen Maine trooper and pressed into service utilizing the Confederate captor’s pre war militia waist belt plate, the captured leather belt with its oval puppy paw plate was then collected from remains of the fallen Confederate as he lay on the Gettysburg battlefield.
A prize collected by one of a number of local civilians who scoured the battleground after the fighting, the Portland, Maine waist belt with the belt plate of its unfortunate Confederate captor still attached, was nailed to a local barn wall in Gettysburg as a memento of what had gone on there. Gleaned from the farmer’s barn for a special Civil War display at the 1906 dedication of Pittsburg’s Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall, the relic was eventually returned to the Maine G. A. R. for display. Fortunately this relic of North & South still retains its old Maine GAR hall display tag preserving the history of this J. B. THAXTER PORTLAND ME. 1862 marked belt and plate.
A demonstration of Yankee practicality is offered by this antique walnut block level with period identification to Mainer
J. Jones. The carpenter tool retains a period hand penned notation:
Josiah Jones was a 23 year old carpenter from Lisbon, Maine when he mustered in on December 4, 1861 as a Pvt. of Co. C 13th Maine Volunteer Infantry. As a member of the 13th, Jones would see plenty of New Orleans and vicinity. Re-enlisting in February 1864, Pvt. Jones transferred to the 30th Maine Infantry in January 1865 and would remain with that regiment until mustering out at Savannah, Georgia August 20, 1865.
Captured at New Orleans 1863
under Ben Butler’s time
in the Rebellion.