United States, General Index to Pension Files (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page

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{{FamilySearch Collection
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{{FamilySearch_Collection
|CID=CID1919699
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|CID=CID1919699  
 
|title=United States, General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934
 
|title=United States, General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934
|location=United States}}<br>  
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|location=United States
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}}<br>  
  
 
== Record Description  ==
 
== Record Description  ==
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The collection consists of the name index to pension files held at the National Archives. The files relate to service between 1861 and 1934. Most of the files are for Union Civil War service but also include the War with Spain, Philippine Insurrection, Boxer Rebellion and Regular U.S. military forces. The index is in alphabetical order.  
 
The collection consists of the name index to pension files held at the National Archives. The files relate to service between 1861 and 1934. Most of the files are for Union Civil War service but also include the War with Spain, Philippine Insurrection, Boxer Rebellion and Regular U.S. military forces. The index is in alphabetical order.  
  
State and federal governments filed pension records so as to keep track of the fund leaving the treasuries to support the veterans and widows of wars.&nbsp;The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints then obtained this collection to help individuals find information about their ancestors.
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State and federal governments filed pension records so as to keep track of the fund leaving the treasuries to support the veterans and widows of wars. The applications are usually reliable, depending on the memory of the applicant and the records to which he had access.  
 
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Pension applications are usually reliable, depending on the memory of the applicant and the records to which he had access.  
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For a list of records by surnames currently published in this collection, select the [https://familysearch.org/search/image/index#uri=https%3A//api.familysearch.org/records/collection/1919699/waypoints Browse].
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=== Citation for This Collection  ===
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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.
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{{Collection citation
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| text =<!--bibdescbegin-->Veterans Administration. United States, general index to pension files. Veterans Administration, Publications Service, Washington D.C.<!--bibdescend-->}}
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[[United States, General Index to Pension Files (FamilySearch Historical Records)#Citation_Example_for_a_Record_Found_in_This_Collection|Suggested citation format for a record in this collection.]]
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== Record Content  ==
 
== Record Content  ==
  
Pension files often include the following genealogical information:  
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<gallery>
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Image:US General Index to Pensions (11-0359) DGS 540757 90.jpg|General Index to Pensions
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</gallery>
  
[[Image:US General Index to Pensions (11-0359) DGS 540757 90.jpg|thumb|right|US General Index to Pensions (11-0359) DGS 540757 90.jpg]]
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'''Pension files''' often include the following information:  
  
 
*Name of the person claiming the pension  
 
*Name of the person claiming the pension  
 
*Service record of the soldier, including rank, company, and regiment  
 
*Service record of the soldier, including rank, company, and regiment  
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*Age
 
*Enlistment date  
 
*Enlistment date  
 
*Discharge date  
 
*Discharge date  
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*Death place of the soldier
 
*Death place of the soldier
  
The index to pension files also includes:
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== How to Use the Record  ==
  
*Film number
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To begin your search it is helpful to know:
*Digital image numbers
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*Surname range
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== How to Use the Record  ==
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*Name of the Pensioner
 +
*Other identifying information such as residence, age or details of their military service
  
Fill in your ancestor’s name in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the ancestors 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 compare the information about more than one person to find your ancestor.
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=== Search the Collection  ===
  
For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line video at
+
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:
[http://broadcast.lds.org/familysearch/2011-12-03-familysearch-search-tips-1000k-eng.mp4 FamilySearch Search Tips].
+
  
If you are having difficulty finding your ancestor, look for variations in the spelling of the name. If your ancestor used an alias or a nickname, be sure to check for those alternate names. Remember that these indexes may contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned.  
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*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.
  
==== Using the Information ====
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For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line article [[FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks]].
 +
 
 +
=== Using the Information ===
  
 
When you have located your ancestor’s 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. This information will often lead you to other records. For example:  
 
When you have located your ancestor’s 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. This information will often lead you to other records. For example:  
  
*Death dates may lead to death certificates, mortuary, or&nbsp;cemetery records.  
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*Use the age to calculate a birth date.
 +
*Use the death dates to search for death certificates, mortuary, or cemetery records.  
 
*Use the age to calculate an approximate birth date.  
 
*Use the age to calculate an approximate birth date.  
*Use the birth date or age along with the residence or place of birth of the deceased to locate census, church, and land records.
+
*Use the birth date along with the residence or place of birth of the deceased to locate census, church, and land records.
  
==== Tips to Keep in Mind ====
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=== Tips to Keep in Mind ===
  
 
*Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname as the deceased; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.  
 
*Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname as the deceased; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.  
 
*Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have been seeking the pension.  
 
*Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have been seeking the pension.  
 
*When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
 
*When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
 +
 +
=== Unable to Find Your Ancestor?  ===
 +
 +
*Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for alias names, nicknames and abbreviated names.
 +
*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 that may be your ancestor.
  
 
== Related Websites  ==
 
== Related Websites  ==
  
*[http://arcweb.archives.gov/arc/action/ExternalIdSearch?id=563268 National Archives Catalog Description]
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[http://www.archives.gov/research/military/pension-genealogy/1861-1934.html General Index to Pension Files]  
*[http://www.archives.gov/publications/prologue/1995/summer/navy-records-1861-1924. Pension Records]
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== Related Wiki Articles  ==
 
== Related Wiki Articles  ==
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{{Contributor_invite}}  
 
{{Contributor_invite}}  
  
== Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections ==
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== Citations for this Collection ==
  
When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.  
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When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information; that is, cite your sources. This will help people find the record again and evaluate the reliability of the source. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records. Citations are available for the collection as a whole and each record or image individually.  
  
A suggested format for citing FamilySearch Historical Collections, including how to cite individual archives is found in the wiki article [[Help:How to Cite FamilySearch Collections|Help:How to Cite FamilySearch Collections]].  
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'''Collection citation''':<br> {{Collection citation | text= "United States, General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934." Index and Images. <i>FamilySearch</i>. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2015. Citing NARA microfilm publication T288. Washington, D.C.: Veterans Administration, Publications Service, n.d.}}<br><br>
  
=== Citation Example for a Record Found in This Collection  ===
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'''Record citation''' (or citation for the index entry):<br> {{Record Citation Link
 
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|CID=CID1919699
"United States, General Index to Pension Files 1861-1934" &nbsp; images, ''FamilySearch'' (https://familySearch.org: accessed 18 January 2012). Mary E. Baker, widow of Jacob L Baker; citing Pension Files, Baker, Jacob-Baldwin, Julius A., image 72; National Archives and Records Center, Washington D.C., United States.
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|title=United States, General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934
 
+
}}
[[Category:United_States|Military]]
+

Latest revision as of 17:49, 2 June 2015

FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.

Contents

Record Description

The collection consists of the name index to pension files held at the National Archives. The files relate to service between 1861 and 1934. Most of the files are for Union Civil War service but also include the War with Spain, Philippine Insurrection, Boxer Rebellion and Regular U.S. military forces. The index is in alphabetical order.

State and federal governments filed pension records so as to keep track of the fund leaving the treasuries to support the veterans and widows of wars. The applications are usually reliable, depending on the memory of the applicant and the records to which he had access.

Record Content

Pension files often include the following information:

  • Name of the person claiming the pension
  • Service record of the soldier, including rank, company, and regiment
  • Age
  • Enlistment date
  • Discharge date
  • Date pension was filed
  • Whether an invalid, widow, or minor
  • Application number
  • Certificate number
  • Additional service information, including company and regiment
  • Death date of the soldier
  • Death place of the soldier

How to Use the Record

To begin your search it is helpful to know:

  • Name of the Pensioner
  • Other identifying information such as residence, age or details of their military service

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 article FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks.

Using the Information

When you have located your ancestor’s 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. This information will often lead you to other records. For example:

  • Use the age to calculate a birth date.
  • Use the death dates to search for death certificates, mortuary, or cemetery records.
  • Use the age to calculate an approximate birth date.
  • Use the birth date along with the residence or place of birth of the deceased to locate census, church, and land records.

Tips to Keep in Mind

  • Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname as the deceased; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
  • Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have been seeking the pension.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.

Unable to Find Your Ancestor?

  • Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for alias names, nicknames and abbreviated names.
  • 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 that may be your ancestor.

Related Websites

General Index to Pension Files

Related Wiki Articles

Contributions to This Article

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.


Citations for this Collection

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information; that is, cite your sources. This will help people find the record again and evaluate the reliability of the source. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records. Citations are available for the collection as a whole and each record or image individually.

Collection citation:

"United States, General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934." Index and Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2015. Citing NARA microfilm publication T288. Washington, D.C.: Veterans Administration, Publications Service, n.d.

Record citation (or citation for the index entry):

The citation for a record is available with each record in this collection, at the bottom of the record screen. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for United States, General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934.

 

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  • This page was last modified on 2 June 2015, at 17:49.
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