United States, Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty Land Warrant Applications (FamilySearch Historical Records)

From FamilySearch Wiki

(Difference between revisions)
(bibdesc)
Line 1: Line 1:
{{Record_Search_article|location=United States|CID=CID1417475|title=Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty Land Warrant Applications Files}}  
+
{{Record_Search_article|location=United States|CID=CID1417475|title=Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty Land Warrant Applications Files}} 
  
{{Contributor invite}}
+
== Collection Time Period<br> ==
 
+
==== Style Guide  ====
+
 
+
For guidelines to use in creating wiki articles that describe collections of images and indexes produced by FamilySearch, see: [[FamilySearch Wiki:Guidelines for FamilySearch Collections pages|FamilySearch Wiki: Guidelines for FamilySearch Collections pages]]
+
 
+
== Collection Time Period<br> ==
+
  
 
Most of the records in the files are dated between 1800 and 1900, although there is some correspondence dated as late as 1940. These records cover about 20 percent of American military, naval, and marine officers and enlisted men who served in the Revolutionary War.  
 
Most of the records in the files are dated between 1800 and 1900, although there is some correspondence dated as late as 1940. These records cover about 20 percent of American military, naval, and marine officers and enlisted men who served in the Revolutionary War.  
  
== How to Use the Records<br> ==
+
== How to Use the Records<br> ==
  
 
Begin your search by finding your ancestors in the index. Name indexes make it possible to access a specific record quickly. Remember that these indexes may contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned.  
 
Begin your search by finding your ancestors in the index. Name indexes make it possible to access a specific record quickly. Remember that these indexes may contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned.  
Line 37: Line 31:
 
*Check for a different index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume.&nbsp;
 
*Check for a different index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume.&nbsp;
  
== Record Description<br> ==
+
== Record Description<br> ==
  
 
The pension and land warrant applications consist of about 80,000 files. Each file may be a single card or may contain from 1 to 200 pages or more. A typical file is about 30 pages and includes an introductory card, an application, sworn affidavits, and other supporting documents that verify a veteran’s identity and service. The file also includes papers that show decisions made concerning the claim. In 1912 the Survivor, Widow, Rejected, and Bounty Land Warrant files were consolidated into a single alphabetical series.  
 
The pension and land warrant applications consist of about 80,000 files. Each file may be a single card or may contain from 1 to 200 pages or more. A typical file is about 30 pages and includes an introductory card, an application, sworn affidavits, and other supporting documents that verify a veteran’s identity and service. The file also includes papers that show decisions made concerning the claim. In 1912 the Survivor, Widow, Rejected, and Bounty Land Warrant files were consolidated into a single alphabetical series.  
  
=== Record Content<br> ===
+
=== Record Content<br> ===
  
 
Each application file includes some or all of the following genealogical information:  
 
Each application file includes some or all of the following genealogical information:  
Line 56: Line 50:
 
*Ages or birth dates of the children
 
*Ages or birth dates of the children
  
== Record History<br> ==
+
== Record History<br> ==
  
 
Pension acts were passed and amended many times between 1776 and 1878. In 1776 the first pension law granted half-pay for life to soldiers disabled in the service and unable to earn a living. A pension law passed in 1818 permitted compensation for service, regardless of disability, but was later amended, making eligible only those soldiers who were unable to earn a living. The pension act of 1832 allowed pensions again based on service and enabled a veteran’s widow to receive pension benefits.  
 
Pension acts were passed and amended many times between 1776 and 1878. In 1776 the first pension law granted half-pay for life to soldiers disabled in the service and unable to earn a living. A pension law passed in 1818 permitted compensation for service, regardless of disability, but was later amended, making eligible only those soldiers who were unable to earn a living. The pension act of 1832 allowed pensions again based on service and enabled a veteran’s widow to receive pension benefits.  
Line 84: Line 78:
 
Revolutionary War Pension Records and Bounty Land Warrants  
 
Revolutionary War Pension Records and Bounty Land Warrants  
  
== Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections ==
+
== Contributions to This Article ==
  
A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the Wiki Article: [[How to Cite FamilySearch Collections|How to Cite FamilySearch Collections]]
+
{{Contributor invite}}
  
Please add sample citations to this article following the format guidelines in the wiki article listed above. Examples of citations:
+
==== Style Guide  ====
  
*United States. Bureau of the Census. 12th census, 1900, digital images, From FamilySearch Internet (www.familysearch.org: September 29, 2006), Arizona Territory, Maricopa, Township 1, East Gila, Salt River Base and Meridian; sheet 9B, line 71
+
For guidelines to use in creating wiki articles that describe collections of images and indexes produced by FamilySearch, see: [[FamilySearch Wiki:Guidelines for FamilySearch Collections pages|FamilySearch Wiki: Guidelines for FamilySearch Collections pages]]
*Mexico, Distrito Federal, Catholic Church Records, 1886-1933, digital images, from FamilySearch Internet (www.familysearch.org: April 22, 2010), Baptism of Adolfo Fernandez Jimenez, 1 Feb. 1910, San Pedro Apóstol, Cuahimalpa, Distrito Federal, Mexico, film number 0227023
+
  
=== How Has This Article Helped You? ===
+
== Sources of Information for This Collection: ==
  
[[FamilySearch Collection Feedback|Send us your story]]
+
<!--bibdescbegin-->“Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty Land Warrant Applications Files,” database, FamilySearch; from United States Veterans Administration . “Revolutionary War pension and bounty-land-warrant application files.” National Archives, Washington, D.C. FHL microfilm, 2670 reels. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah. <!--bibdescend-->
  
==== Style Guide  ====
+
<br>The format for citing FamilySearch Historical Collections, including how to cite individual archives is found in the following link: [[How to Create Source Citations For FamilySearch Historical Records Collections|How to Create Source Citations for FamilySearch Historical Records Collections]]
  
For guidelines to use in creating wiki articles that describe collections of images and indexes produced by FamilySearch, see: [[FamilySearch Wiki:Guidelines for FamilySearch Collections pages|FamilySearch Wiki: Guidelines for FamilySearch Collections pages]]
+
== Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections ==
  
== Sources of Information for This Collection: ==
+
A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the Wiki Article: [[How to Cite FamilySearch Collections|How to Cite FamilySearch Collections]]
  
<!--bibdescbegin-->“Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty Land Warrant Applications Files,” database, FamilySearch; from United States Veterans Administration . “Revolutionary War pension and bounty-land-warrant application files.” National Archives, Washington, D.C. FHL microfilm, 2670 reels. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah. <!--bibdescend-->
+
Please add sample citations to this article following the format guidelines in the wiki article listed above. Examples of citations:
 +
 
 +
*United States. Bureau of the Census. 12th census, 1900, digital images, From FamilySearch Internet (www.familysearch.org: September 29, 2006), Arizona Territory, Maricopa, Township 1, East Gila, Salt River Base and Meridian; sheet 9B, line 71
 +
*Mexico, Distrito Federal, Catholic Church Records, 1886-1933, digital images, from FamilySearch Internet (www.familysearch.org: April 22, 2010), Baptism of Adolfo Fernandez Jimenez, 1 Feb. 1910, San Pedro Apóstol, Cuahimalpa, Distrito Federal, Mexico, film number 0227023
  
<br>The format for citing FamilySearch Historical Collections, including how to cite individual archives is found in the following link: [[How to Create Source Citations For FamilySearch Historical Records Collections|How to Create Source Citations for FamilySearch Historical Records Collections]]
+
<br>

Revision as of 20:42, 3 December 2010

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

Contents

Collection Time Period

Most of the records in the files are dated between 1800 and 1900, although there is some correspondence dated as late as 1940. These records cover about 20 percent of American military, naval, and marine officers and enlisted men who served in the Revolutionary War.

How to Use the Records

Begin your search by finding your ancestors in the index. Name indexes make it possible to access a specific record quickly. Remember that these indexes may contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned.

When searching the index it is helpful to know the following:

  • The place where your ancestor lived.
  • The name of your ancestor.

Use the locator information found in the index (such as page, entry, or certificate number) to locate your ancestors in the records. Compare the information in the record to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct person. You may need to compare the information of more than one person to make this determination.

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. For example:

  • Use the birth date or age along with the residence or place of enrollment to birth records and parents' names.
  • Use the birth date or age along with the residence or place of enrollment to find the family in census records.
  • Use the residence to locate church and land records.
  • The place of death or burial could lead you to funeral and cemetery records which often include the names and residences of other family members.
  • Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname. 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 lived in the same county or nearby. This can help you identify other generations of your family.
  • 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, try the following:

  • Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
  • Check for a different index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume. 

Record Description

The pension and land warrant applications consist of about 80,000 files. Each file may be a single card or may contain from 1 to 200 pages or more. A typical file is about 30 pages and includes an introductory card, an application, sworn affidavits, and other supporting documents that verify a veteran’s identity and service. The file also includes papers that show decisions made concerning the claim. In 1912 the Survivor, Widow, Rejected, and Bounty Land Warrant files were consolidated into a single alphabetical series.

Record Content

Each application file includes some or all of the following genealogical information:

  • Veteran’s name
  • Age or birth date
  • Residence
  • Birthplace
  • Death date and place
  • Name of spouse or widow
  • Residence
  • Marriage date and place
  • Names of the children
  • Ages or birth dates of the children

Record History

Pension acts were passed and amended many times between 1776 and 1878. In 1776 the first pension law granted half-pay for life to soldiers disabled in the service and unable to earn a living. A pension law passed in 1818 permitted compensation for service, regardless of disability, but was later amended, making eligible only those soldiers who were unable to earn a living. The pension act of 1832 allowed pensions again based on service and enabled a veteran’s widow to receive pension benefits.

A veteran or his widow seeking a pension had to appear in court in the state of his or her residence to describe under oath the service for which the pension was being claimed. A widow was required to provide information concerning the date and place of her marriage to the veteran. The application statement, or “declaration” as it was usually called, was certified by the court and then forwarded, along with all supporting documents (this may have included property schedules, marriage records, and affidavits of witnesses) to a federal official, usually the Secretary of War or the Commissioner of Pensions. The applicant was then notified that the application had been approved, rejected, or set aside pending the submission of additional proof of eligibility. If an applicant was eligible, his name was placed on the pension list. Payments were usually made semiannually. A rejected applicant often reapplied when the law was later amended.

The Federal Government granted bounty land warrants, or rights to free land, to Revolutionary War veterans and their heirs. The promise of bounty land during the war was an incentive to enter and remain in the service. After the war, bounty land grants became a form of reward.

Veterans or their heirs who claimed bounty land warrants sent applications to the Secretary of War (later the Commissioner of Pensions and then the Secretary of the Interior). Also forwarded were affidavits of witnesses who testified of service performed, marriage records, and other forms of evidence. If an application was approved, the claimant was issued a warrant for a specified number of acres. He could then “locate” his warrant, that is, select a portion of the public domain to have in exchange for his warrant. The Treasury Department, and after 1849 the Interior Department, accepted the warrants and then issued patents to the land. Many recipients of Revolutionary War bounty land warrants did not relocate to their new land. They sold the warrants instead.

Pensions and bounty land warrants were originally administered by the Secretary of War. In 1815 two bureaus were created, one for pensions and the other for land warrants. In 1841 the Secretary of War placed bounty land functions under the direction of the Commissioner of Pensions. In 1849 the Pension Office was transferred to the newly established Department of the Interior. In 1930 the Bureau of Pensions was placed under the jurisdiction of the new Veterans Administration.

Why This Collection Was Created?

Pensions and bounty land warrants were issued to compensate Revolutionary War veterans for their service. Later, widows of veterans also received benefits.

Record Reliability

Information recorded on pension and bounty land warrant applications is generally reliable, but its accuracy depended on the memory of the applicant and the records he or she had access to. Some applications were rejected if the information could not be verified in federal records or if the claim was suspected of being fraudulent.

Related Web Sites

This section of the article is incomplete. You can help FamilySearch Wiki by supplying links to related websites here.

Related Wiki Articles

Revolutionary War Pension Records and Bounty Land Warrants

Contributions to This Article

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. Guidelines are available to help you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide. If you would like to get more involved join the WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Style Guide

For guidelines to use in creating wiki articles that describe collections of images and indexes produced by FamilySearch, see: FamilySearch Wiki: Guidelines for FamilySearch Collections pages

Sources of Information for This Collection:

“Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty Land Warrant Applications Files,” database, FamilySearch; from United States Veterans Administration . “Revolutionary War pension and bounty-land-warrant application files.” National Archives, Washington, D.C. FHL microfilm, 2670 reels. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.


The format for citing FamilySearch Historical Collections, including how to cite individual archives is found in the following link: How to Create Source Citations for FamilySearch Historical Records Collections

Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections

A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the Wiki Article: How to Cite FamilySearch Collections

Please add sample citations to this article following the format guidelines in the wiki article listed above. Examples of citations:

  • United States. Bureau of the Census. 12th census, 1900, digital images, From FamilySearch Internet (www.familysearch.org: September 29, 2006), Arizona Territory, Maricopa, Township 1, East Gila, Salt River Base and Meridian; sheet 9B, line 71
  • Mexico, Distrito Federal, Catholic Church Records, 1886-1933, digital images, from FamilySearch Internet (www.familysearch.org: April 22, 2010), Baptism of Adolfo Fernandez Jimenez, 1 Feb. 1910, San Pedro Apóstol, Cuahimalpa, Distrito Federal, Mexico, film number 0227023