State Sen. Patty Ritchie, with the help of three northern New York historians, is asking area residents to help record the region’s contributions to America’s Civil War.
It’s part of a statewide effort to remember New York’s role in the “War that Saved the Republic” fought 150 years ago.
Ritchie is inviting community members to submit photos and information about the ubiquitous Civil War monuments and markers that exist in communities throughout St. Lawrence, Oswego and Jefferson counties.
The information will be used to create a commemorative guide of local monuments, and submitted as part of a project to create a statewide listing of memorials that is being spearheaded by a Central New York history professor.
Ritchie has recruited the help of three noted historians from her district: Sue Longshore, who is chair of the St. Lawrence County Civil War Sesquicentennial group; Shawn Doyle, an Oswego County legislator, published author and leading authority on the history of “Half-shire country;” and William Wood, director of the Jefferson County Historical Society.
“During the Civil War, regular citizens across the nation, and right here in Central and Northern New York responded to President Lincoln’s call to save the Union by organizing local companies and regiments, electing their own officers and marching off to war,” said Ritchie.
“All of our communities suffered devastating losses, and the sacrifices of loved ones were memorialized with towering monuments and simple markers, the location and meaning of many having been lost to time and memory. This project seeks to record those monuments and the interesting stories about them, to help us all better reflect and remember the important role that this region played in one of the defining moments of our American story,” Ritchie said.
Ritchie has created a website where local residents can list the locations and any information they have about local monuments. That page can be accessed through Senator Ritchie’s website, www.ritchie.nysenate.gov.