Gateway to the Blackstone Valley
|The Millbury Historical Society
Preserving Millbury's Past for its Future
"As a bridge from the past to the future, the Millbury
Historical Society is committed to preserve, protect,
present and promote the history of Millbury."
|P.O. Box 367
|Masons Donate Charter Replica (signed by Paul Revere) to The Millbury Historical
|This photo is from Millbury's 150th Anniversary
Parade held in June of 1963. THUS this snow
"contraption" is fifty-six years old now!
This and many other photos are currently
displayed in the lobby at our Town Hall is an
exhibit of more of that parade and the other
festivities that accompanied the 150th
|To My Dearest
The Civil War Letters of George and
On Thursday, June 13, the Annual Meeting of the
Millbury Historical Society took place. The
program was very well attended and refreshments
Here is more about the program: when the Civil
War broke out in 1861, George Ward was asked
to raise the 15th Massachusetts Regiment.
In August 1861, he left his wife, Emily, and their
two small children to go to war. They wrote to
each other frequently.
In all, 116 letters survive in the collection of the
Worcester Historical Museum. They detail the pain
of prolonged separation, the challenges of single
parenting and the horrors of the battle front.
Lynne McKenney Lydick and Thomas R. Lydick
shared the personal and poignant letters of this
This program was supported in part by a grant from the Millbury Arts Council, a local agency which is supported
by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.
We thank them for their support.
To My Dearest:
The Civil War Letters of George and Emily Ward
The letters presented herein, written by George Hull Ward and Emily Mayo Ward, are remarkable for all that they
communicate about the personal side of the Civil War. They detail the pain of prolonged separation, the
challenges of single parenting, the difficulties of carrying on a farm and maintaining a household in the absence of
the chief laborer and breadwinner, and of course, the horrors of the battle front.
The letters have been edited for brevity and several have been combined if letters overlapped. A few contain
words and ideas which today are considered offensive but were widely used as part of the vernacular and are
stereotypic of the time. We strive to be historically accurate even though we are uncomfortable with the language.
In all, the Worcester Historical Museum has 116 letters in the collection.
At the age of 21, George Hull Ward enlisted in the Worcester City Guards and in 5 years rose to the rank of
commander. When the Civil War broke out in 1861, he was asked by Massachusetts’ Governor John Andrews to
raise a Worcester regiment.
On July 12, 1861, the regiment was mustered into service for three years with Charles Devens, Jr., 41, as Colonel
and George as Lieutenant Colonel.
The regiment left for Washington D.C. on August 8th. Two days later, George sends his first letter to Emily and
their two children, Georgie, 3 years old and baby Robbie 6 months old.
Join Lynne McKenney Lydick and Thomas R. Lydick as they share the personal and poignant letters of this
|The real Emily Mayo Ward and her husband
George Hull Ward
Courtesy of the Worcester Historical
| The Museum of The
Millbury Historical Society is
located in The Asa Waters'
Mansion and houses an
extensive collection of Millbury
photos and displays.
Our next opening is
Wednesday, June 26th from