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United States Gotoarrow.png U.S. Military Gotoarrow.png Montana Gotoarrow.png Military Records


Many military records are found at the Family History Library, the National Archives and its regional centers, and state archives. See United States Military Records for more information about federal records. For Montana the following sources are helpful:

Forts and Camps


Encyclopedia of Indian Wars Western Battles and Skirmishes 1850-1890. By Gregory F. Michno. Mountain Press Publishing Co., Missoula, Montana C. 2003. ISBN 0-87842-468-7

Mexican War (1846-1848)

The Mexican War was caused by the annexation of Texas by the United States in 1845. Most volunteer regiments were from southern states. Records of Mexican War veterans might exist in a state where the veteran later resided.

  • United States. Adjutant General’s Office. Compiled Service Records of Volunteer Soldiers Who Served during the Mexican War in Organizations from the State of Tennessee. Washington D.C.: National Archives, 1965. FHL films 882797-882811. This includes regimental returns, a record of events during the war, and company muster rolls.
  • Mexican War Index to Pension Files, 1887–1926. (NARA T317). FHL films 0537000–13 Alphabetically arranged and includes the veteran’s name, rank, and unit; names of dependents; date of filing and application; certificate numbers; act filed under; and state from which application was made. Also available at:
  • Robarts, William Hugh. Mexican War Veterans : A Complete Roster of the Regular and Volunteer Troops in the War Between the United States and Mexico, from 1846-1848… Washington, D.C. : Brentano’s, 1887. FHL book 973 M2rwh Digital version available at Internet Archive.

Click on these links to learn more about the Mexican War and about Mexican War pension records.

Civil War (1861 to 1865)

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See Montana in the Civil War for information about Montana Civil War records, web sites, etc. with links to articles about the Montana regiments involved in the Civil War.

The regimental pages often include lists of the companies with links to the counties where the companies started. Men in the companies often lived in the counties where the companies were raised. Knowing a county can help when researching more about the soldiers and their families.

The Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System allows name searching for soldiers. The result set gives the regiments for the soldiers. Then you can check the Wiki regiment pages to determine counties. Often knowing the counties that had men in a regiment will help you determine if a soldier was your ancestor.

Indian Wars (1780s-1890s)

Historical sketches of army posts are available at the Family History Library (FHL film 1025168) and the National Archives and its regional centers. You can also find historical sketches in local histories. The Family History Library also has microfilm copies of the service and pension indexes for the many Indian conflicts. The actual records are available only at the National Archives.

Published sources about the soldiers who died at the Battle of the Little Big Horn are available. Military histories of the officers and enlisted men are in:

  • Carroll, John M., and Byron Price. Roll Call on the Little Big Horn, 28 June 1876. Fort Collins, Colorado: The Old Army Press, 1974. FHL book 973 M25hc.
  • Hammer, Kenneth. Men with Custer: Biographies of the 7th Cavalry, 25 June, 1876. Fort Collins, Colorado: The Old Army Press, 1972. FHL book 973 M25hk. Digital version at Questia($).

World War I (1917-1918)

The Montana Historical Society Archives has some records created by the Montana Department of Military Affairs, including original service records for the world wars. They also have enlistment records for the Montana National Guard from 1905 through about 1920.

  • United States. Selective Service System. Montana. World War I Selective Service System Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918. National Archives Microfilm Publications, M1509. Washington, DC: National Archives, 1987-1988. FHL film 1684099 (first of 37).
These cards have been digitized and are searchable online. See WWI Draft Records for more information.

World War II (1941-1945)

Korean War (1950–1953)

The Korean War was a conflict between North Korea (and its communist allies) and South Korea (with support of the United Nations, primarily the United States). See the Korean War wiki article for information on records and their availability.


See the Supplemental Information section of the United States Military Records for additional information.


  • Montana Research Outline. Salt Lake City, Utah: Intellectual Reserve, Inc., Family History Department, 1998, 2001.  (NOTE: All of the information from the original research article has been imported into this Wiki site and is being updated as time permits.)


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