Margaret Downs born in Portland in an orphanage. Sanford & Lewiston

I  am actually making research about my grand-mother, I’ve been able to find her marriage certificate, her dead certificate, but I can’t find her birth certificate.


 I went to Lewiston ME. to the parish center and they told me to contact Boston center.


My grand-mother’s name is Margaret Downs she was born July 17, 1908 in Portland. My grand-father’s name is Joseph Donald Dubois he was born in Manchester NH. June 20, 1900.My father told me that she was adopted when she was a new born by a family named Chamberland


What I found so far is that her parents name was (I don't have any official confirmation)  Raymond Downs and Lucy Ann Wilson from Sandford Me. but I have no official confirmation so far.

 I am trying to find out if this was a legal adoption by the state of Maine, or something done by the church. I would like to know where to start my search, since I can't find information about adoptions that took  place years ago. Thanks to all who reply.

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Here is the divorce record of Raymond Downs and Lucy Wilson. They were divorced 1 Aug. 1907, so it's unlikely that they were both parents of Margaret. Lucy married William Fernald Putnam in 1909, and lived in York, Maine, in 1910. Raymond remarried as well, in 1907.

I assume that this is the record of your grandparents' marriage. I found a notice of marriage intentions for Joseph Dubois and Margaret Downs, "both of 75 Pierce," but didn't spot a wedding announcement.

Hi Chris,

Thank you very much for the information you gave me even if it mixes me a little more, it must be said that the story of Margaret is not very clear. Margaret was born on July 17, 1908 according to my documents in Portland, but I can not find her birth certificate. On her marriage certificate she wrote as her father `` Raymond`` and her mother `` Lucia Downs`` ???? As I mentioned, she was adopted being very young. You seem to have a lot of information and knowledge to do research on websites, would you be interested in helping me find out who Margaret Downs's parents are? I can send you the few documents I possess. If you accept I could prepare a list of questions related to the subject, example May 29, 1907 Lucy Wilson gave birth to a second child in Sanford whose father is unknown? Would it be possible that it was Margaret ??? Why does he name Raymond Downs sometimes with a T sometimes with a B and Lucy Wilson sometimes Lucy A Wilson? Thank you again for all the information you can give me I appreciate greatly.

I should have mentioned in my previous post that Lucy sued Raymond for divorce in 1905, but the case was dismissed in 1906. It was Raymond who sued for divorce in 1907.

Lucy had a child with her second husband in 1910. The birth record is here. It says that this was her second child. The 1910 census says that Lucy had just one child, though her son Raymond Downs was also living with them. I don't see a record of another child born in 1907, but birth records of illegitimate and adopted children in Maine generally are not included in publicly available collections.

I can't explain why Raymond and Lucy's middle initials change in different records. "Raymond B. Downs" and "Lucy A. Wilson" do appear to be correct.

Yes, feel free to share with me any records that might solve this mystery.

Hi Chris,

I would like to do research in the orphanage in Portland to find document about my grand mother. Could you give me few tips on how and where should I go to get documents that would confirm Margaret birth.


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