The following will offer a pictorial history of how the subject Abraham Lincoln relic came to be preserved and how it came to a Park Street, Portland Maine treasure trove of historic Civil War mementoes
In addition to her handwritten inventory of keepsakes, Mrs.
Ricketts cherished file included a post war newspaper interview
of her memories to include the treasured gift of a martyred
President’s lock of hair.
Brig. Gen. James B. Ricketts. The treasure was
precious to Fannie who kept it in her collection of
personally related Civil War relics. Fannie’s
treasure is shown here as she kept it and as it was
maintained by her, her daughter, then her
granddaughter who lived in Portland, Maine.
Fannie Rickets was acclaimed as one of the early heroines of the Civil War as she passed through the gates of Libby Prison in Richmond ,Virginia to be with and care for her husband Gen. James Rickets who had been wounded and captured at the 1st Battle of Bull Run. Clearly a tough lady Mrs. Ricketts also a society figure in wartime Washington. She could count the first Lady as a personal friend. Her little file of personal notes on scraps of paper, postal covers, a handwritten inventory of war time mementoes and her most precious relic, the lock of the martyred president’s hair, would remain in the family as a chronicle until 1950 when the file was rescued from obscurity as it passed from the effects of the late granddaughter to the personal collection of Portland’s most prominent antiquarian specialists.