Lucky find on eBay for Civil War Museum
December 16, 2013 by Max
The Executive Director of the New England Civil War Museum, Matthew Reardon, stumbled upon a part of local history while perusing eBay earlier this month – a photograph of Rockville native Willard Griswold.
Griswold was in the Fifth Connecticut infantry regiment. The Republic Hall building was turned into a museum and is now a part of Vernon‘s Town Hall. Before the museum obtained Griswold’s photograph, he could be seen in the group photo of the regiment’s reunion on display. The museum had acquired the pin Griswold is wearing in the new photograph, which was given to him by the Confederates when they released him as a prisoner of war, and he had donated it to the museum before he passed away.
Civilwarintheeast.com states that The Fifth Connecticut regiment was originally a group of volunteers that answered President Lincoln’s request for soldiers. They were brought together in July of 1861 and were supposed to spend three years in the war. In 1864, they decided to continue fighting and stayed for one more year. Over 100 men were killed and another 80 died of disease.
Reardon would not say what he paid for the artifact but the seller did not know the man in the picture.
When museums find new artifacts to display, they commonly put out flyers or an insert in the local newspaper to attract an audience. Designing the insert includes catching the reader’s attention in a small amount of space, and a local printing company could help out here.