Southern Claims Commission

From FamilySearch Wiki

(Difference between revisions)
(added deadlink template)
(added deadlink template)
Line 236: Line 236:
 
*St. Louis County Library [http://www.slcl.org/branches/hq/sc/scc/scc-main.htm Researching Southern Claims Commission Records]. {{dead link}} Many of the NARA descriptive publications are actually online at this website including:
 
*St. Louis County Library [http://www.slcl.org/branches/hq/sc/scc/scc-main.htm Researching Southern Claims Commission Records]. {{dead link}} Many of the NARA descriptive publications are actually online at this website including:
  
== References ==
+
== References ==
 +
 
 +
<references />
  
<references/>
 
 
*Dick Eastman, "Southern Claims Commission 1871-1880 Online" in Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter at http://blog.eogn.com/eastmans_online_genealogy/2007/03/southern_claims.html (accessed 1 April 2009). Explains SCC records.
 
*Dick Eastman, "Southern Claims Commission 1871-1880 Online" in Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter at http://blog.eogn.com/eastmans_online_genealogy/2007/03/southern_claims.html (accessed 1 April 2009). Explains SCC records.
  
{{African American|African American}} {{U.S. Civil War|U.S. Civil War}}
+
{{African American|African American}}&nbsp;{{dead link}} {{U.S. Civil War|U.S. Civil War}}&nbsp;{{dead link}}  
  
__NOTOC__
+
__NOTOC__  
  
 
[[Category:African_Americans|African_Americans]] [[Category:United_States_Civil_War,_1861_to_1865]]
 
[[Category:African_Americans|African_Americans]] [[Category:United_States_Civil_War,_1861_to_1865]]

Revision as of 05:26, 22 December 2011

United States Gotoarrow.png U.S. Military Gotoarrow.png U.S. Civil War Gotoarrow.png Southern Claims Commission

Southern Claims Commission

Who Qualified and Who Was Mentioned

Union loyalists in the grey states on this map who suffered losses could apply for compensation from the Southern Claims Commission.
Although only a few people per county qualified for a settlement, the application papers of the Southern Claims Commission typically include questions mentioning hundreds of their neighbors. Neighbors of all races, and classes were questioned and discussed in these records.

Southerners from the 12 states of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia qualified to file claims before the Southern Claims Commission (SCC) between 3 March 1871 and 3 March 1873 based on the fact they:

  1. were loyal to the Union during the Civil War
  2. had quartermaster stores or supplies taken by or furnished to the Union Army during the rebellion

While only losses incurred in the twelve states in rebellion at the beginning of the Civil War qualified many claims were made from other states by individuals that claimed to reside in the qualifying states during the war. As a result, records from a total of 24 states and the District of Columbia appear in the "Barred and Disallowed Case Files of the Southern Claims Commission, 1871-1880" (NARA M1407) records.

Southern Loyalists (those who were Union sympathizers) made 22,298 claims for property losses totaling $60,258,150.44. However, only 7,092 claims (32%) were approved for settlements totaling $4,636,920.69. Each claimant sought to prove their loyalty and loss through the testimony of others. The paper trail created by the claimants and the people who came forward to testify, for or against a claimant, provide a wealth of information about individuals living in the South during the Civil War.[1]

Content of the Records

Southern Claims Commission records may include information about people of all classes, all races, all political/military backgrounds, and explain their relationships potentially including:

  • personal descriptions, and accounts of events during the war
  • military records of claimants, or their relatives
  • letters, diaries, and family Bible records
  • wills, property inventories, and probate records

Strategy for Finding Ancestors

The most effective strategy is to search all the Southern Claims Commission records for everyone living in the same Southern county as an ancestor. Any particular ancestor is unlikely to have actually applied to the Commission (only 0.2 percent of population), but he or she is more likely to have testified (2.3 percent) about an applicant, and an ancestor is even more likely to be discussed (about 10 ? percent) in the hundreds of answers to questions in other people's testimony. This is an advanced, time-consuming strategy with a less than 50 percent chance of locating information about your ancestor. But you will learn about the way of life in the county where your ancestor lived, and much about relationships between his or her neighbors.[2]

These are the steps to use to find all of the Southern Claims Commission records in a county. This strategy will involve reading thousands of manuscript pages with no guarantee you will find a particular ancestor mentioned in them.

Step 1. Determine the Southern county where an ancestor lived.

Use family records, census, county histories, or other records to identify the residence of an ancestor during the Civil War from 1861-1865.


Step 2. Printout all the claimants in that county from the "Geographical List of Claimants.

A. Open the St. Louis County Library [Internet site] article “Geographical List of Southern Claims Commission Claimants.”[dead link] Perhaps it is here.
B. Scroll down to the links to PDFs for states and counties listed in alphabetical order.
C. Click the link that would include the county where the ancestor lived between 1861-1865.
D. Print the page(s) of the PDF for the county where the ancestor lived.
E. Close the PDF.


Step 3. Copy data for each claimant in the county in Southern Loyalists in the Civil War.

A. Get access to Gary B. Mills, Southern Loyalists in the Civil War: The Southern Claims Commission (Baltimore: Genealogical Publ., 1994, or reprint 2004). [FHL book 975 M2s].
B. In this book find and copy all data provided for each claimant in the county.


Step 4. To identify which NARA microfiche to purchase, use an appropriate NARA descriptive pamphlet (DP) and follow instructions at the St. Louis County Library’s Internet site.

Step 5. Order from the National Archives a microfiche copy of the file for each claimant in your ancestor’s county.

Step 6. Search each county claimant’s file for information about your ancestor or his neighbors.

Step 7. Search related Commission journals, agent letters, and miscellaneous letters at the FHL.

Where to Find the Records

Online

(Note, Ancestry & Fold 3 are subscription sites. Many can, however, be accessed free in the Family History Library and its branch Family History Centers. See table below)

Ancestry

Barred and Disallowed Claims:
Approved Claims:
  • NARA M2062 Southern Claims Commission Approved Claims, 1871-1880: Alabama.
  • NARA M1658 Southern Claims Commission Approved Claims: Georgia, 1871-1880.
  • NARA M2094 Southern Claims Commission Approved Claims, 1871-1880: Virginia.
  • NARA M1762 Southern Claims Commission Approved Claims, 1871-1880: West Virginia.

Fold3

Barred and Disallowed Claims:
  • NARA M1407 Barred and Disallowed Case Files of the Southern Claims Commission, 1871-1880.
Approved Claims:
  • NARA M2062 Southern Claims Commission Approved Claims, 1871-1880: Alabama.
  • NARA M1658 Southern Claims Commission Approved Claims: Georgia, 1871-1880.
  • NARA M2094 Southern Claims Commission Approved Claims, 1871-1880: Virginia.
  • NARA M1762 Southern Claims Commission Approved Claims, 1871-1880: West Virginia.
The approved claims records for the other eight states have never been microfilmed. Fold3 is in the process of digitizing these records directly from the original documents and placing them online. Fold3 is placing the records from the remaining eight states together in one collection named "Southern Claims Commission Approved Claims, 1871-1880". Check to see a list of states currently available.


Family History Library

The records have not all been filmed or fiched, See the chart below to learn what is currently available through the National Archives and the Family History Library (FHL). As noted below search on line sites for additional information.

State Record Record Group NARA # FHL First Film Number of Films
National U.S. Court of Claims 1884-1943        
National Disallowed Case Files and those barred, U.S. House of Representatives 123 M1407 unavailable 4.829 fiche
National A: Consolidated Index of Claims; B: Summary reports of the Commission. 1878-1880   P2257 unavailable 1 roll
National U.S. Court of Claims, Docket Cards for Congressional Case Files, ca. 1884-1943 123 M2007 unavailable 5 rolls
National Records of the Commissioners of Claims, 1871-1880 56 M87 1463976 roll 14: Consolidated index
1463975 roll 13: Geographical List of Claims
14 rolls
Alabama Approved Claims, 1871-1880 217 M2062 unavailable 36 rolls
Arkansas   217  
Not on film
Florida   217     Not on film
Georgia Approved Claims 1871-1880 217 M1658 unavailable 761 fiche
Louisiana   217   Not on film
Mississippi   217     Not on film
North Carolina   217     Not on film
South Carolina   217     Not on film
Tennessee Online Claimant Index        
Texas   217     Not on film
Virginia Approved Claims 1871-1880; Rockingham Co.Index 217 M2094 unavailable 45 rolls
West Virginia Approved Claims 1871-1880 217 M1762 unavailable 3 rolls
(table last updated April 2009)

Related Books

Websites

References

  1. St. Louis County Library website, "Researching Southern Claims Commission Records" (accessed 1 April 2009)
  2. St. Louis County Library website, "Geographical List of Southern Claims Commission Claimants" (accessed 1 April 2009). Use this list to find all the applicants in a given county.
 [dead link]

 [dead link]