West Virginia, Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page
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|This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.|
Access the records: West Virginia, Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers, 1861-1865 .
The collection consists of Union service records of soldiers who served in organizations from West Virginia for the years 1861 to 1865. The records include abstracts of entries relating to the soldier as found in the following original records:
- Name, rank, company and regiment in which served.
- Muster rolls showing when soldier was mustered-in, discharged
- Appointment books
- Hospital registers
- Union prison registers and rolls
- Parole rolls
- Inspection reports
For each military unit the service records are arranged alphabetically by the soldier's surname. The Military Unit field may also display the surname range (A-G) as found on the microfilm. This collection is a part of RG 94, Records of the Adjutant General's Office, 1780s - 1917, and is National Archive Microfilm Publication M508. Index courtesy of www.fold3.com (previously Footnote.com).
Service records were kept for each soldier. Those records, or their abstracts, were compiled into individual files. Each envelope/jacket contains information and cross references to original records relating to the soldier.
The records are in individual files which usually include the following:
- A jacket-envelope for each soldier, labeled with his name, his rank, and the unit in which he served
- A card (or cards) with abstracts of entries from original muster rolls, returns, rosters, payrolls, appointment books, hospital registers, parole rolls, and inspection reports
- The originals of any papers relating only to the particular soldier
The index to these records contains the following:
- Jacket name
- Soldier’s full name
- Age (often estimated)
- Military unit served in
- Type of records in file
- NARA publication number, title, and roll number
How to Use the Record
To begin your search it is helpful to know
- The name of the soldier
- Identifying information such as age
Search the Collection
To search the collection fill in the requested information in the boxes on the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the individuals in the list to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to look at the information on several individuals comparing the information about them to your ancestors to make this determination. Keep in mind:
- There may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
- You may not be sure of your own ancestor’s name.
- Your ancestor may have used different names, or variations of their name, throughout their life.
- If your ancestor used an alias or a nickname, be sure to check for those alternate names.
- Even though these indexes are very accurate they may still contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned.
For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line video at FamilySearch Search Tips.
Using the Information
When you have located your ancestor’s service record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Add this new information to your records of each family. For example:
- Use the estimated age to calculate a birth date.
- Use the age and location of the military unit to find the soldier’s family in census, church, and land records.
Tips to Keep in Mind
- Continue to search the index and records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have served in the same unit or a nearby unit.
- When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
- If you are unable to find the ancestors you are looking for, check for variant spellings of the surnames.
Unable to Find Your Ancestor?
- Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for nicknames and abbreviated names.
- Look for an index. Local genealogical and historical societies often have indexes to local records.
- Search the indexes and records of nearby localities.
- Try alternative search methods such as only filling in the surname search box (or the given name search box) on the landing page leaving the other box empty and then click on search. This should return a list of everyone with that particular name. You could then browse the list for individuals with the same family number.
|Don't overlook FHL Keyword West Virginia, Civil War items in the FamilySearch Library Catalog. For other libraries (local and national) or to gain access to items of interest, see the wiki article West Virginia Archives and Libraries. For additional information about this state see the wiki article West Virginia.|
Known Issues with This Collection
For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached Wiki article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to email@example.com. Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.
Related Wiki Articles
- Union Service Records
- United States Civil War, 1861 to 1865
- United States Civil War, 1861 to1865, Part 2
- West Virginia Military Records
Contributions to This Article
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Citation for This Collection
The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Record collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher and archive for the original records.
- "West Virginia, Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers, 1861-1865." Index. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Citing "Compiled Service Records of Volunteer Union Soldiers Who Served in Organizations from the State of West Virginia." Fold3.com. http://www.fold3.com : n.d.
- This page was last modified on 30 January 2015, at 02:18.
- This page has been accessed 4,310 times.
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