United States, Veterans Administration Pension Payment Cards (FamilySearch Historical Records)
|Access the Records|
United States Veterans Administration Pension Payment Cards,1907-1933 .
|This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.|
|Flag of the United States of America|
|Seal of the National Archives|
|National Archives and Records Administration|
- 1 What is in the Collection?
- 2 Collection Content
- 3 What Can this Collection Tell Me?
- 4 How Do I Search the Collection?
- 5 What Do I Do Next?
- 6 Known Issues with This Collection
- 7 Citing this Collection
- 8 How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?
What is in the Collection?
The collection consists of an index and images of cards used by the Bureau of Pensions and Veterans Administration to record the payment of pensions to veterans, widows and other dependents. The collection is part of RG 15 Records of the Veterans Administration and is NARA microfilm publication M850. The collection covers the years from 1907 to 1933.
A pension card was created for every veteran or veteran’s widow who received a pension. There were four types of cards kept. which are referred to as:
- Army invalids
- Army widows
- Navy invalids
- Navy widows
The form for the four types of cards is practically identical. On the front of the cards for invalid veterans are recorded the name of veteran, his certificate number, his unit or arm of Service, the disability for which pensioned, the law or laws under which pensioned, the class of pension or certificate, the rate of pension, the effective date of pension, the date of the certificate, any fees paid, the name of the pension agency or group transferred from (if applicable), the date of death, the date the Bureau was notified, the former roll number, and 'home.' On the reverse side of the form appears the name of the veteran, his certificate number, and the record of the individual payments. The army and navy widow’s cards are similar to the invalids’ cards with the addition of the widow’s name and occasionally information regarding payments made to minors, but they do not indicate if the veteran had a disability.
To Browse this Collection
|You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for United States, Veterans Administration Pension Payment Cards,1907-1933.|
In 1907 the Bureau of Pensions and Veterans Administration began recording payments of pension with a card system. Pensions were granted to army invalids, army widows, navy invalids and navy widows. The nearly 2 million 5x8 cards are arranged alphabetically by the surname of the veteran or widow. In 1923 payments were changed from monthly to quarterly. Payments that extended through this period were recorded on a second card.
The payment cards were created as a method for the government to keep track of the pensions being distributed. The information in these cards is generally reliable.
What Can this Collection Tell Me?
Information found in the collection are listed below:
- Name of pensioner
- Name of veteran
- Veteran’s military unit
- Commencement date of pension
- Certificate number
- Veteran’s death date
- Veteran’s “home”
- Name of widow (only on widows cards)
Additional information about these cards is available in the Wiki Article: Veterans Administration Pension Payment Cards, 1907–1933.
How Do I Search the Collection?
To begin your search it is helpful to know:
- The name of your ancestor.
- The military unit in which your ancestor served.
- The names of family members.
Search by Name by visiting the Collection Page:
Fill in the requested information 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.
View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page:
To search the collection you will need to follow this series of links:
⇒Select "Browse" link on the initial search page
⇒Select "Surname range" category which takes you to the images.
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.
|More images are available in the FamilySearch Catalog at United States Veterans Administration Pension Payment Cards, 1907-1933. Click on camera icon to see images.|
What Do I Do Next?
When you have located your ancestor’s pension payment card, carefully evaluate each piece of information about them. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors.
I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?
- Use pension payment cards to discover information about the veteran’s military service
- Use pension payment cards to learn about his unit, and the dates of service
- Use pension payment cards to learn more information regarding the veteran’s family
- The cards can lead to other military service records, and provide clues for further research on the veteran’s family.
I Can't Find Who I'm Looking for, What Now?
- Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for nicknames and abbreviated names.
- Look for another index. Local genealogical and historical societies often have indexes to local records.
- Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.
- 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.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.
Citing this Collection
Citing your sources makes it easy for others to find and evaluate the records you used. When you copy information from a record, list where you found that information. Here you can find citations already created for the entire collection and for each individual record or image.
- "United States, Veterans Administration Pension Payment Cards, 1907-1933." Database with Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Citing NARA microfilm publication M850. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
Record Citation (or citation for the index entry):
How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?
| 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.