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AfriGeneas Military Research Forum Archive

Needing Help: Tracing Civil War USCT
In Response To: Civil War Surnames ()

Hi Cynthia:

Take heart. Many of the posters on the Military Forum have ancestors who were in the Civil War. I am sure that they will answer your questions.

I responded to your query on the general surname Afrigeneas forum and asked you to visit the Military Forum again.

"Hi Cynthia:

I'm so sorry that your posting on the military site went unanswered. I read your post on the military forum and had it bookmarked to respond to your query. I am sure that the forum will give you some tips. There are some incredible historians and family researchers who can help you.

Please check back on the Military Forum for comments.

K Wyer Lane "

Cynthia you wrote a very interesting "stream of consciousness" query.

You began with your frustration in locating your ancestors' files (I believe) from WWI? If that is the case, put it out of your mind and focus only on the Civil War's US Colored Troops which seems to be the heart of your quest.

Searching for the military or pension records:

It's obvious that you have done a great deal of preliminary research. But the information that you have supplied is a bit confusing for me. In other words you've share too much information.

I have a question about the military history of your family in the Civil War. Is it a hunch or do you have any research in your family history or gaps in residences that might point to military service?
For instance, many men were mustered out one or two years after the war. They have lived somewhere other than their birth home.

As Richard Schaefer and others mentioned, it's expensive to order pension files for all suspected family members. Have you determined what men seem the best candidates. Perhaps you can post those names and what unit they served in. Bennie and many historians can tell you a bit about the units.

It's a hard road to make that call without researching your family, the area in which they lived etc.

Do you have a subscription to Ancestry.com? They list the names of men who had pension files. This would at least whittle down the number of pensioners. If not, the first step would be to order the military files on line.

PLEASE NOTE THAT YOU WILL NOT BE CHARGED FOR FILES THAT DON'T MATCH YOUR QUERY. That is date of birth death etc.

I can read the frustration in your words. But if we can help you, you'll have to leave out information that is not pertinent.

Lastly, one of the problems with family charts is that they contain no history of the era, the place or region in which they lived. This can be of great help to you. (I knew that my ancestor was in the Civil War because of historical newspapers documenting his Creole Brass Band and its connection to post war military meetings).

Again, take heart and ask us again. The process is not as painful as you might believe.

K Wyer Lane


18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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