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Contributing Institution

Prince Memorial Library


Cumberland Pauper Book, Transcribed contains the records of the Cumberland Overseers of the Poor, and spans the years 1853 through 1910. The Cumberland Overseers of the Poor board was created under the authority of Chapter CXXII of the Laws of the State of Maine, An act ascertaining what shall constitute the legal settlement; and providing for the Relief and Support, Employment and Removal of the Poor, which governed the treatment of the state’s poor and indigent citizens. The state’s mandate to its municipalities to provide for the support of their indigent residents was a continuation of the laws in effect when Maine was part of Massachusetts, which in turn were linked directly to English law, specifically the 1601 Poor Law Act and the 1662 Settlement Laws. The first entry in the Cumberland Pauper Book is a registry of the paupers in the town Almshouse dated April 1, 1853, and the last entry is the 1910 annual report of the Overseers of the Poor. The book contains a number of annual registries of Almshouse residents, annual Overseers reports for the years 1855 through 1910, and assorted other information about the treatment of the poor and indigent in Cumberland. The Cumberland Pauper Book is a brown leather ledger containing approx. 160 pages, and measures 21.6 x 33 cm. The 85 pages of the book that contained writing were scanned at a resolution of 600 dpi, and each scanned page measures approx. 21 x 32 cm. This volume contains a true transcription of the original Cumberland Pauper Book.

Publication Date



Prince Memorial Library


Cumberland, Maine



Cumberland Pauper Book, 1853-1910, Transcribed



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