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Special Collections: Guide to the Eliab W. Murdock Papers

Arranged and described by Brenda Howitson Steeves
September 2010

Collection title: Eliab W. Murdock Papers
Collection number: MS 1646
Dates of collection: 1841-1877 (inclusive); 1862-1865 (bulk) 
Size of collection: 1 document box (12 folders)
Provenance: Gift of Mrs. E.C. Hildreth and Mrs. H.T. Anderson in 1974
Restrictions on access and use: Kept at Fogler Library's offsite storage facility. One week's notice required for retrieval.


Eliab W. Murdock, the son of James and Ruth Washburn Murdock, was born May 13, 1820, in Hebron, Maine. He married Sarah Ann Goodridge Banister in September 1848. Sarah, born March 18, 1816, was the daughter of John Goodridge of Boston and the widow of Samuel Bradley Banister of Boston. The Murdocks lived in Paris, Maine, where Eliab became owner of a grist mill. They had three children: Edward Wesley, Pauline Caroline, and Frederic Augustus.

Eliab Murdock enlisted as a private in the 17th Maine Regiment, Company F in August 1862. He was wounded at the Battle of Chancellorsville on May 3, 1863. He re-enlisted in the Veteran Reserve Corps in August 1864 and was discharged in November 1865 as a corporal in Company D of the 1st Regiment of the Corps.

Sarah Murdock died on April 16, 1876 and Eliab Murdock died on June 1, 1877.

Scope and Content Note

The collection consists primarily of letters written by Murdock to his wife while he was serving with Company F of the 17th Maine Regiment and in the Veteran Reserve Corps during the Civil War. Letters written by Sarah Murdock to her husband as well as a few written to Murdock by his daughter Pauline and his brother James are also included, as are letters of recommendation, 1841-1844, for Murdock regarding his qualifications to teach school. His military discharge papers and documents concerning his military pension can also be found in the collection.

Box List

Box 1


1 Information about the collection

2 Letters of reference and recommendation for Eliab Murdock, 1841-1842, 1844, 1845

3 Eliab Murdock letters, 1862, to his wife Sarah

4 Eliab Murdock letters, 1863, to his wife Sarah

5 Eliab Murdock letters, 1864, to his wife Sarah

6 Eliab Murdock letters, 1865, to his wife Sarah + undated letters

7 Sarah Murdock letters, 1862-1865, to husband Eliab

8 Sarah Murdock: miscellaneous

9 Letters to Eliab Murdock from daughter Pauline and brother James Murdock, 1862, 1864-1865

10 Miscellaneous correspondence of Eliab Murdock, 1865, 1872

11 Military discharges, 1864, 1865

12 Military pension documents, 1873, 1876, 1877


Finding Aids for selected manuscript collections in the Special Collections Department at Fogler Library are accessible online in URSUS, in a browsable Guide to Manuscript Collections. Please contact Special Collections at or (207) 581-1686 for further information.

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Special Collections Staff: | Revised: 03/18/2015
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